Clement Louis Deforge
SO. Burlington, VT
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Clement Louis Deforge. Lou was born on July 12, 1943 in Burlington, Vermont and grew up in the Old North End. He was the son of Clement (Zeb) Deforge, a Burlington police officer, and Marguerite (Archambault) Deforge, a telephone operator.
Lou graduated from Rice Memorial High School in 1961, first attended Champlain College, and then transferred to the University of Vermont. There he joined the Reserve Officer Training Corps, becoming a member of the Billings Center Governing Board and the Kappa Sigma Fraternity. In 1966, Lou married his high school sweetheart, Marilyn LaVallee, and went on to have four children: Jennifer, Michael, Martin, and David.
In 1967, he became the first member of his family to graduate from a university. He entered the Army where he served as an Executive Officer at the Air Defense Artillery Missile Unit of Schwabach and Ansbach, Germany. As a Captain, he performed two tours of duty in the Vietnam War. While an Advisor to the Republic of South Vietnam, he earned the Bronze Star, later serving on the staff and faculty of the USARV Advisor School.
After his Army service, Lou entered the transportation industry, spending the next forty years managing terminal operations for several trucking companies in Boston, Connecticut, and Chicago, one of the largest terminal operations in the country at the time. After his tenure in Chicago, Lou and his family returned to Vermont where companies such as St. Johnsbury Trucking benefitted from his expertise. Operations under his leadership regularly won awards and praise, especially for road safety.
Lou enjoyed being involved in the community and volunteered his time, providing logistical or operational advice. Over the years, he served as the president of the Ethan Allen Club and supported his children as the president of the Rice Memorial High School Athletic Boosters, Burlington Youth Hockey Association, Burlington South End Little League, and the Green Mountain Transportation Club. He was a UVM hockey season ticket holder and member of the Victory Club from 1978.
Lou had a warm and generous personality, made friends easily, and is best remembered for the many personal connections he made. He had a tremendous memory, rarely forgot names, and genuinely appreciated the time he spent with others. He was a skilled storyteller, cribbage player (Don’t ask for your money back. He won fair and square), accountant, photographer, consultant, crossword fanatic, historian, and Harley rider. He was known for being unable to walk down a street without somebody stopping him for a conversation.
Lou is survived by Marilyn, his devoted wife of over 54 years; his four children and their partners: Jennifer Deforge and Thomas Guttadauro, Michael Deforge and Jennifer Deforge-Kling, Martin Deforge and Meggin Taylor, and David Deforge and Amelia Gulkis; his four grandchildren: Margaret and Penelope Deforge, and Sylvie and Delphine Deforge-Kling; his sisters: Joan Deforge and Jacqueline Yandow; and numerous sisters- and brothers-in-law, nieces, and nephews and his many friends. He was predeceased by his parents and his sister, Jeanne Deforge.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Wednesday, June 2, 2021 at 2:00 pm at Saint Anthony Roman Catholic Church in Burlington. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that you donate to the McClure Miller Respite House, 3113 Roosevelt Highway, Colchester, VT 05446.
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