Paul Truax, 84, pioneering male nurse, entrepreneur and genealogist

Paul Truax of Chester died on April 23, 2019. He was 84.

Born in Huntington Center, Vt., Mr. Truax was the only child of Nina (LaForce) and Albert Truax.  In 1935, he had the distinction of being born on Nov. 4, the birthday of his father’s paternal grandfather.  Although an only child, he enjoyed the company and challenges of his 18 aunts and uncles and more than 50 first cousins.

On June 29, 1960, Mr. Truax  married Colleen Merrill Truax, and the couple began a life full of adventures.

Mr. Truax studied engineering at the University of Vermont from 1953 to 1955 with the intent of becoming a pilot upon graduation.  A severe illness changed his focus to the medical field.  After a short stint as an orderly at the Mary Fletcher Hospital, Mr. Truax was recruited by the Mary Fletcher Hospital School of Nursing, where, in 1960, he became the first man to graduate from the school.  Upon graduation from nursing school, Mr. Truax was employed at the Mary Fletcher Hospital, becoming a charge nurse and in-service instructor.

While continuing to working in the medical field, Mr. Truax was instrumental in the development of Vermont’s first Medicare standards for hospitals and nursing homes and licensure for nursing home administrators.  In the 1970s, Mr. Truax developed and became administrator of ITT Sheraton’s rehabilitation facilities in Burlington and in Worchester, Mass.

Mr. Truax was also an entrepreneur with boundless energy.  Never inclined to have a single project in the works, Mr. Truax developed businesses in such diverse areas of operation as: research and development of engines with Fuel-Air and Venture-E; Truax Nursing Home; running the family dairy farm; working with Truax Associates operating restaurants, gas stations, laundry mats, dry cleaning plants, real estate sales, apartment facilities and an excavating company; land management, firewood operations, and ski touring facilities with Sherman Hollow Inc.; operation of the Mountain View golf course and Spalding Inn and Club; and single family home construction with Vermont Built Inc.

Later in life, while officially claiming to be retired, Mr. Truax began several new projects connected with genealogical research where he helping to found the Vermont French Canadian Genealogical Society and Vermont Genealogical Library.  Much of his research went into The LaForce Descendants in North AmericaIn 2010 he took on another project and was instrumental in the reopening of The Fort at No. 4 Open Air Museum in Charlestown, N.H.

Mr. Truax was also active with Vermont State Students Nurses’ Association and the Vermont Nursing Home Association. He was appointed by Gov. Dean Davis to the Vermont State Nursing Home Licensing Board, was a member of the Camels Hump Commission, a Boy Scout Troop leader; a village trustee, town chairman for Vermont Cancer Society, town Republican Party chair, Master of the Olive Branch Lodge of FAM, Worthy Patron of Mizpah Chapter OES, chairman of Fort at No. 4 Board of Trustees and author of a multitude of articles for genealogical publications.  Mr. Truax also was a member of the Vermont Air National Guard and the U.S. Air Force Reserves.

Mr. Truax is survived by five children and their families: Wendalyn Truax Baker and Kevin Baker of Andover; Maureen Truax Holland and S. Taylor Williams of Memphis, Tenn.; Brent Truax  and Elizabeth Temple Truax of Mammoth Lakes, Calif.; Sally Truax Krumrie and Bill Krumrie of Ferrisburgh; and Stephany Truax Pippin and Steve Pippin of Chester.

He is also survived by his grandchildren: Margot Holland Chapman, Clay Chapman, and their children Callan and Wiley Wendall Chapman of Memphis; Yvette Holland Kirk and Trey Kirk, also of Memphis; Alex Krumrie and Amber Krumrie of Ferrisburgh; Alexandria Pippin and Sawyer Pippin of Chester; Katherine Truax of Mammoth Lakes; Verity Baker DaCosta and Antonio DaCosta II of Amesbury, Mass.; and Mia Baker of Ludlow.

Friends may call at the Truax home on Remington Road in Chester from 4 to 6 p.m. on Sunday April 28. Masonic and Eastern Star services will be conducted during the visiting hours.

A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. on Monday April 29, 2019 at the United Methodist Church of North Charlestown, 471 River Road,  North Charlestown, N.H.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Fort at No. 4 P.O. Box 1336 Charlestown, N.H. 03603

Davis Memorial Chapel in Springfield is assisting with arrangements.

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