Francis McLaughlin II, 66, former Marine sergeant who served Chester community

Francis E. McLaughlin II, 66, died peacefully at home with his family in Chester on Feb. 28, 2018 after a long battle with heart disease. He was born March 23, 1951 in Hartford, Conn., to Ralph McLaughlin and Gladys (Robbins) McLaughlin.

Mr. McLaughlin graduated Bloomfield High School class of 1969. He served as a volunteer fireman at the Blue Hills Fire Department in Bloomfield, Conn., where his father was captain of the firehouse for many years.

He served in the U.S. Marine Corps. for four years, where he earned the National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, the Good Conduct Medal and Marksmanship badges. While a Marine, he supervised a unit on track vehicles in Okinawa, was a member of the Foreign Service Institute School of Language Studies in Laotian and, stateside, was platoon sergeant in charge of instructing officers in training. Before being honorably discharged in 1972, Mr. McLaughlin had achieved the rank of sergeant.

He then worked for Pratt & Whitney as a technician, attended Hartford State Technical College and went on to work for Manchester Memorial Hospital in the building trades.

On Sept. 23, 1978, Mr. McLaughlin married Donna. After moving to Vermont in 1982, they started a small farm and began raising a family.

Mr. McLaughlin was active in the community as a member of the Chester-Andover Elementary School board, coach for Chester Recreation Department baseball and soccer teams and a Cub Scout leader. He also helped the Chester Players’ Guild and St. Joseph’s Church. He was always willing to drop everything to help a neighbor or friend.

Mr. McLaughlin had also worked for Wiggins Concrete in North Springfield, as a plant manager supervising second shift and as a mechanic. He then went on to work as a fleet mechanic for Cota & Cota, where he stayed for 14 years.

He is survived by his wife, Donna J. McLaughlin, and their three children, Jacob, Joshua, and Sarah, all of Chester; his siblings Dorothy Goddard of New Hampshire, Laurie Thompson and her husband, Gil, of Connecticut, Nancy McLaughlin of Florida,  Mary McLaughlin also of Connecticut, Ralph McLaughlin and wife Becky of Oklahoma, Dr. Robert McLaughlin and his wife, Elizabeth of Connecticut and Jonathan McLaughlin of New York. He was predeceased by his parents.

A funeral mass will be held to celebrate his life at 10 a.m. Saturday, March 10 at Church of the Annunciation, 7 Depot St., in Ludlow, with a reception following. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Visiting Nurse and Hospice of Vermont and New Hampshire, P.O. Box 881, Brattleboro, VT 05302. We cannot express our thanks enough for their efforts and assistance through the last 10 months.

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  1. Sheryl Fratino says:

    Donna, Jacob, Josh Ana Sarah. I’m so sorry for your loss and my prayers for comfort are with. I will be gone on the 10th but please know my heart is with you.

  2. Tim Roper says:

    Frank was a good man, who will be missed by all who knew him. I’m sorry I’ll be away on the date of the mass, but send my condolences and best regards to the family.

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