WESTMINSTER, Vt. – James C. Holton, of Westminster, Vt. and Venice, Fla. passed away on Dec. 5, 2017, surrounded by family and friends. He was born in Saxtons River, Vt., June 21, 1925, son of Charles and Elizabeth Bartlett Holton. He graduated from Bellows Falls High School in 1943. He joined the United States Marine Corps serving from 1943 to 1946 in the South Pacific theatre. After the service, he went on to Arnold College, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree. He went on to the University of Massachusetts graduating with a Master’s degree in physical education.
He married Barbara Wentworth of Bellows in 1948. Together they served as house parents at Kurn Hattin Homes in Westminster, Vt. where he was also the director of physical education.
Leaving Kurn Hattin, he went to his first love of farming, raising potatoes for 25 years. Leaving farming he went to work in the school system, as a bus driver, custodian at the Bellows Falls High School, and then 20 years as grounds keeper for Bellows Falls Union High School. He retired from there in 1994.
Over the years, he served as Chief of Police and Tax Collector for the village of Westminster. He belonged to the Windham County Deputy Sheriffs, was a member of the Westminster Volunteer Fire Department, and served on the Westminster Institute Board of Directors. He was a member of the Vermont Football Officials Association and the New England College Football Association, officiating in high school and college for many years.
He was a life member of the Bellows Falls Elks Club, the Polish American Club of Bellows Falls, the American Legion of Bellows Falls and Venice, Fla., the VFW in Englewood, Fla., and the Bellows Falls Moose Club. While living in Venice, Fla., he was an active member in the Military Order of the Devil Dogs and Toys for Tots.
He is survived by his wife Barbara of Venice, Fla.; a son Gregory, his wife Joan of Westminster, Vt.; daughter Raynie Laware her husband John of Walpole, N.H.; grandsons Christopher his wife Megan of Massachusetts, James Wheeler and his wife Susan of Tennessee, Eric Wheeler and his wife Margarida of Connecticut, and Brett Wheeler of Venice, Fla.; great-grandchildren Jack Holton; Nicholas, Gracie, Landon, and Logan Wheeler; Tyler and Benjamin Wheeler; Jordan Harvey; and many nieces and nephews.
He was predeceased by his parents Charles and Elizabeth of Westminster; two brothers Bill of Westminster and George of Jacobus of Pennsylvania; and a nephew Bradley Holton of Jacobus, Pa.
A memorial service will be held at a later date at the convenience of the family. Contributions, in his name, may be made to the Westminster Congregational Church of Westminster, P.O. Box 122, Westminster, VT 05158.