|Birth: ||Jan. 28, 1925|
|Death: ||Nov. 12, 2008|
Bernice "Gram" Assard, 83, of Bethlehem died Wednesday, November 12, at Charlotte Hungerford Hospital in Torrington. She was the widow of James Assard.
Mrs. Assard was born January 28, 1925, in New Milford, the daughter of Alfred and Gladys (Bray) Johnson. She graduated from New Milford High School and moved to Bethlehem upon her marriage in 1944. She and her husband operated a dairy farm. She was an avid gardener and for many years operated a vegetable stand which came to be known as "Gram's Stand" on Main Street in Bethlehem.
She was a life member of the Bethlehem Fair Society, where she was responsible for the scarecrow exhibits, and also played the role of Mrs. Claus at the Bethlehem Christmastown Festival.
She was a poll worker for the town for many years. She was a past member of the Ladies Auxiliary of the Bethlehem Volunteer Fire Department.
She was a director of the Litchfield County 4-H Fair and the Litchfield County 4-H Foundation and a member of the Litchfield County Homemakers Club and Litchfield County Farm Bureau.
She was a communicant of the Church of the Nativity and a member of the Good Shepherds, where she was known for her chicken soup at their Christmas Bazaar.
She was proudest of her work with children, and taught all of her grandchildren to read before the age of 4. She was a Brownie leader and den mother as her children were growing up.
For more than 50 years, Mrs. Assard was the leader of the Bethlehem 4-H Busy Stitchers, one of the oldest 4-H clubs in Connecticut. In 1999, she was elected to the inaugural class of 4-H Hall of Fame for her work with youth at a ceremony at the National 4-H Center in Chevy Chase, Md., one of only 52 people to be so honored from across the U.S.
She was the recipient of the Margaret Langlois Volunteer Award, the Lions Club Community Service Award and the Washington-Bethlehem Rotary Club Volunteer Award.
She was an avid fan of the UConn women's and men's basketball teams and also followed the Boston Red Sox.
She leaves her children, Elaine Brodeur, Leonard Assard and his wife, Tess, and Eileen LeClerc and her husband, Kenneth, all of Bethlehem; her sister, Gladys Archambault of Dover Plains, N.Y.; six grandchildren, Sharon (Todd) Pistilli of Fairfield, Rebecca (Robert) Zielinski of Thomaston and Kenneth (Dana) Assard, Jennifer (Christopher) Gallo, Kathleen and Jessica LeClerc, all of Bethlehem, and six great-grandchildren, Jordan and Lauren Pistilli, Andrew and Anya Zielinski, and Robert and James Assard.
She was predeceased by her daughter, Kathleen Bixby, five brothers and two sisters.
A mass of Christian burial took place November 15 at the Church of the Nativity. Burial was in Bethlehem Cemetery. Arrangements were by the Woodbury Funeral Home of Munson-Lovetere.
Memorial contributions may be made to the James and Bernice Assard Memorial Scholarship Fund, 98 Main St. South, Bethlehem 06751.
Created by: Michael Ryley Bradbury
Record added: Nov 28, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 31783648
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