Norwich University

1987 Obituaries

If you would like more information regarding a name on this list, please contact the Alumni Office at 802.485.2100 or Please note that we do not have a detailed obituary for all names listed, but those we do are clickable links to the full obituary below. Obituaries that appear below were provided by the family or friends of the deceased to inform the Norwich community.

Jeffrey P. Cameron, 6/30/1996
John A. Dolan, 5/16/2002
Debra A. Evans, 12/8/2005
Marguerite H. Ferris (Vermont College), 8/14/2015
Thomas J. Haggerty, 2/17/1991
Paul W. Hoag, 2/24/2015
Barbara Mitchell (Vermont College), 3/10/2009
Lt. Col. Keith Lawrence Underwood, 6/14/2009
Thomas L. Wolfe, 11/2/2007

Marguerite H. Ferris

Marguerite (Petie) Hayes Ferris died peacefully on Friday, Aug. 14, 2015, at the Arbors in Shelburne, Vermont, under the thoughtful and loving care of the staff who have provided for her over the last five years as she struggled with a particularly difficult form of Alzheimer's disease.

Petie was born in Montpelier on July 31, 1927, to AD and Margie Hayes and spent her childhood with her two sisters and dear friends on College Street, an address she would return to many times in her life. As a student at Montpelier High School, she met a mentor, Miss Edwards, the drama coach, who influenced the course of her life and she went on to study drama at Scripps College in California. Local theater became one of the centerpieces of her life when she returned to Vermont. When her first marriage to Jack Ward ended in divorce in the mid '60s, she finished college attending Vermont College, Norwich University and Johnson State and subsequently earned a master's degree at Goddard College. After serving as admissions director at Vermont College she was appointed dean of the college. After her marriage to Cyrus Ferris she retired and moved to a home they built together on Cutler Heights Road in East Montpelier, where she stayed until she moved into the Arbors. She was passionate about social justice and an outspoken supporter of women's issues. She was especially proud to have worked closely with former Governor Madeline Kunin, helping to run the lieutenant governor's office during her campaign and transition into the governor's role. Working at the Kellogg-Hubbard library, both as a board member during the capital campaign, and as an active volunteer, was one of the joys of her life. As a volunteer she especially treasured her role of selecting and delivering books to the homes of people unable to get to the library on their own. The Hayes Room and the Ferris Stage in that room were named in honor of Petie and her father, AD Hayes, recognizing Petie's long-time support of the library and love of learning. She would be thrilled to know that she will be remembered as a strong, gracious, articulate and kind woman and served as a role model for many younger women during a time of social change. But perhaps for many, she will be remembered for her roles with the Montpelier Theater Guild, the Lost Nation Theater and many other production companies, as she starred in too many productions to be recounted over a local career that spanned over 40 years on stage.

She was predeceased by her loving husband, Cyrus, and is survived by her son, Nick (Leslie), of Calais, Vermont, and her daughter, Connie Salmone, of Holyoke, Massachusetts, and her grandchildren Thaddeus (Daysi), Hester, Hayes, Dylan, Benjamin, Mark, Ryan and Ted, as well as great-granddaughters Ariel and Sofi. She was also a loving stepmother to Cyrus's children, Dale Phillips, Cyrus and the late Tikhon, with a special connection to Dale's children, Gretchen, Elizabeth, Ally and Stephen.

In lieu of flowers please consider a small donation in Petie's honor to the Kellogg-Hubbard Library or the Lost Nation Theater. 

Paul W. Hoag

Paul Warren Hoag, 67, Liberal, passed away Feb. 24 in Wichita due to complications from surgery for a brain tumor.

Mr. Hoag was born May 31, 1947, in Beaver, Okla., the son of Warren Burdett Hoag and Minnie Hirn Hoag. Although the family moved frequently due to his father’s military career, he and his mother visited the Hirn Ranch and Liberal throughout his childhood. Both of his parents served in WWII.

Mr. Hoag graduated from Minot Central High School, Minot, N.D., and received a bachelor of arts and a bachelor of philosophy from the University of North Dakota, Fargo, in 1984. He later received a master’s degree from Norwich University in political economy.

His academic honors and awards included a Fellowship from Harvard in Economics, Government Ethics and Transparency, a Goddard Fellowship for Graduate Study, and a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship at the University of California, San Diego, and an Annenberg Fellowship at the Annenberg Foundation, Washington, D.C.

Mr. Hoag continued his academic endeavors throughout his life, with a resume that cataloged more than 80 academic papers and seminars. Mr. Hoag traveled extensively in India, Tibet, Nepal and Afghanistan.

Mr. Hoag started his career at the North Dakota Insurance Commission where he was eventually promoted to Assistant Commissioner and gained a reputation for taking on the large insurance companies. Mr. Hoag was also instrumental in the 1990s in advocating for farmers having access to natural gas pipelines for their farming operations. Mr. Hoag designed economic models and testified on numerous occasions before the Kansas Senate and House Utilities Committees showing how detrimental and negative the effects of local gas utilities and the natural gas pipeline companies’ monopolistic behavior had on the rural Kansas economy. He worked closely with the Southwest Kansas Irrigation Association during this time protecting farmers’ gas supplies.

He was also invited to testify before the Texas Railroad Commission on natural gas legislation that he helped advance in the State of Kansas protecting Kansas farmers. He was owner and manager of Bastrans, Inc., which included The Car Lot. He taught as an adjunct professor at University of North Dakota in Judo and Seward County Community College/Area Technical School in English. He assisted in writing SCCC/ATS’ Title III grant. He taught overseas in Europe, India and Cameroon.

An active member of the Seward County Democrat Party, Mr. Hoag served as a Seward County Commissioner from 1992-1993 and Seward County Clerk from 1993-1995. More recently, he served as chair of the Seward County Planning and Zoning Commission. Mr. Hoag was an Eagle Scout and continued to support Boy Scouts throughout his life. Mr. Hoag also was a member of the First United Methodist Church; the War and Peace Group, Wichita State University; the Southwest Symphony Society; Scientific and Technical Association of Tanzania; Wildlife Preservation Society of India; an editorial board member of “Scientific World,” and a former co-editor of the journal “Research in Political Economy.”

Survivors include a niece, Natalie James (husband Jacob), two great nieces Jenica Belle and Remi James of Denver, Colo.; niece Nancy Hoag of Denver, Colo.; adopted daughter Holly Pery of Rockville, Md., and sister-in-law Ann Marie Thorndal of Fargo, N.D. He was preceded in death by his parents and his younger brother, Ray.

• Mr. Hoag has been cremated and memorial services will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday, March 11, at the First United Methodist Church with graveside services at Arkalon Cemetery to follow.

Services are under the direction of his friends.

There will be a Celebration of Mr. Hoag’s life on Tuesday, March 10, from 6 to 9 p.m, at Ruffino’s Italian Restaurant (The Train Depot) at 2 Rock Island Road, Liberal.

Lt. Col. Keith Lawrence Underwood

Lt. Col. Keith Lawrence Underwood, 44, of Laurel St., passed away Sunday evening, June 14, 2009, at home with his family.
He was born in Greenfield on May 26, 1965, the son of Lawrence C. and Judith E. (Parsons) Underwood. Keith was educated at the Gill Elementary School and then attended Turners Falls Jr. High School. He graduated from Northfield Mount Hermon School in 1983 and completed a BA degree at Norwich University, Northfield, Vt., in 1987 in criminal justice. He was then commissioned at 2nd Lt. in the U.S. Army Reserve.
He worked for the Windham Co. Sheriff's Dept., C&S Grocers, and was an associate professor of military science at UMass, Western New England College and Springfield College. He served for over 20 years in the National Guard at grades ranging from 2nd Lt. to Lt. Col. and was on active duty throughout 2008, serving in Afghanistan. He received the Vt. Veterans Medal for Honorable Service in the military and the Vt. Distinguished Service Medal for honorable service in a combat theater while serving in the U.S. military.
He enjoyed hiking, hunting and fishing with his friends and sons, and teaching his sons the love of nature. He was an avid reader of military history and tactics, from colonial militia through WWII and current actions and tactics.
He was a past Boy Scoutmaster of Northfield and an active supporter of Scouting, and an active member and supporter of the Advent Christian Church in Vernon, Vt.
He leaves his wife, the love of his life, the former Jennifer Vilbar, and two sons: Jephunneh, 11, and Karl, 5, at home, and his parents, Lawrence and Judith Underwood of Gill, and two sisters, Lisa Stevenson and her husband Dean of Fraser, Mich., and Erin Dennis and her husband Richard of Auburn, N.H.; eight nieces and nephews and many other family members.

Thomas L. Wolfe

Thomas L. Wolfe, 43, of Leominster, Mass., died suddenly on November 2, 2007 while enjoying his favorite place a wooded path at Lake Wampanoag in Ashburnham, with his faithful dog Jackie at his side.

Born May 13, 1964 at Burbank Hospital, Fitchburg he spent his early childhood in Ashby, MA before moving to Leominster. He graduated from Leominster High School in 1982, participating in Varsity soccer and wrestling.

While attending Norwich University in Vermont, Cadet Wolfe sustained a broken neck injury, rendering him a quadriplegic, when responding to a call as a volunteer fireman on Norwich’s Fire Brigade. After hospitalization and months of physical therapy, he returned to Norwich and earned his Bachelor degree in Political Science. He later attended University of Delaware where he received his Master’s Degree in Political Science.

He managed and edited In Touch a newspaper for disabled persons, served on the Johnny Appleseed School Council, revitalized and was Chairperson of Leominster’s Disability Commission. Tom also owned and operated King’s Corner News Stand and Video for several years. He enjoyed shooting pool, winning several competitions. Admired and loved for his courage, intelligence, sense of humor, and generosity, he will be missed by so many whose lives he touched profoundly.

He is survived by his parents Dr. Glenn E. Wolfe and Elizabeth (Lister) Wolfe; his sister Donna Lanza and her husband Peter; his brother William Wolfe and companion Linda Hume; nephews Paul Wolfe, and Jonathan Lanza and his niece Kathryn Lanza.


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