Shawn K. Eaton, 52: ‘Big Chief’ enjoyed working with his hands

Shawn Eaton, 52, died on July 6, 2012/ 2011 Sharon Baker photo

Shawn Eaton, 52, died on July 6, 2012/ 2011 Sharon Baker photo


Shawn K. Eaton, of Windham, VT, died after a brief illness on July 6, 2012 at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, NH. He was 52 and was born May 16, 1960 in Brattleboro.

Mr. Eaton attended Flood Brook Elementary School in Londonderry and graduated from Green Mountain Union High School in Chester. He was a professional sheet rocker.

He is survived by his mother, Priscilla Eaton of Windham; a brother, Matthew and his wife Christina of Chester; a niece, Liza Eaton of Burlington, and aunts, uncles and cousins. His father, Paul Eaton died in 1989.

He also left behind his soulmate and the love of his life, his fiancée and life partner of 15 years, Sharon Baker of Chester and Windham, and her son and two daughters and their spouses, who loved him as their father: Jason Ringquist and Angelina Conte, of Marshfield, MA; Amanda Ringquist and Edward Kelly, of Holbrook, MA, and Sarah and John Paulicelli of Hanover, MA. He was affectionately known to Ms. Baker’s 11 grandchildren as ‘Bumpa.’ He also leaves behind his beloved dog of eight years, Angel.

Mr. Eaton, a member of the American Legion Post 67 in Chester, was a lover of the outdoors and Indian traditions and was known to those around him as ‘Big Chief.’ He was a great listener and confidante. He was also an an avid fisherman.

Mr. Eaton enjoyed working on old vehicles, specifically Chevys, and was forever finding old pieces of furniture and giving them new life. He made beautiful grapevine wreaths and gave them to his closest family and friends to adorn the outsides of their homes, barns and mantle pieces. Mr. Eaton also had a green thumb and loved to grow plants of every kind.

He was always one to stop at a tag sale or go the the flea market and come home with a new treasure.

He was a big guy but never forgot the little things in life like stopping to pick a bouquet of wild flowers for Ms. Baker.

Mr. Eaton will be remembered for his sensitivity and kindness, his constant smile, quick wit and his blue eyes that danced with mischief when he laughed. Many also will remember his “Shawnisms,” including changing the words to songs to evoke laughter.

There will be no calling hours. A celebration of his life is planned in the coming weeks. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the American Heart Association of Vermont, 434 Hurricane Lane, Williston, VT 05495.

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  1. Amanda Ringquist says:

    Shawn is missed so much and will forever be in my heart. We are a strong family who sticks together through thick and thin. Shawn was such a huge part of our lives over the last 15 years and has touched all of our hearts in such a deep, unforgettable way. To his fiancee, my mother Sharon: You have always been such a positive person. Although this is without a doubt the hardest thing you have had to endure in life, you will get through this. Shawn will forever be in our hearts.
    Amanda Ringquist

  2. Liz Folsom says:

    My heart and thoughts go out to Shawn’s loved ones and family. We all share fond memories of Shawn and will keep them close to our hearts.

    Liz and Haley Folsom

  3. Ashley Family says:

    To Sharon and all of Shawn’s family,
    Please accept our deepest sympathies on the loss of Shawn. May the happy memories with him bring you comfort.
    Prayers, hugs, and of course, love,
    The Ashley family