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JACQUELINE SUZANNE FLICKINGERMIDDLEBURY: Jacqueline Suzanne Léa (Foster) Flickinger, or “Jackie,” of Middlebury, Vermont, died peacefully on October 22, 2017, at the Haven at the Residence at Otter Creek. She lived in Middlebury for more than fifty years and coped with Alzheimer’s with grace and dignity for over five years.
Jacqueline was born in 1923 in Beverly MA to Robert Foster and Rachel Tréché. Her father died suddenly when Jackie was seven, leaving Rachel to raise Jackie and her infant sister Pauline. Rachel, who had emigrated from France, worked as a skilled dressmaker to maintain the family house and created a strong and loving home in the midst of the Depression. Jackie assisted her mother in many household responsibilities and remained a highly responsible and organized person all her life.
Jackie was a quick learner and skipped a grade in elementary school. After matriculating from Beverly High School, she attended the Katharine Gibbs School, then a well-known secretarial school in Boston. Jackie was employed by General Electric in Lynn, MA from 1941-45, where she met a young engineer, John H. Flickinger. They married in 1945 in a wartime wedding that required pooling rations for gas, butter and other commodities. Jackie and John had two boys and twin girls and Jackie devoted herself full-time to raising the children and running the household.
In 1966 John’s career brought the family permanently to Middlebury, VT. In 1967, Jackie re-entered the work force in the Office of Student Activities at Middlebury College. There, Jackie’s warmth and natural gift with young people, coupled with her organizational abilities, high standards and good judgment, enabled her to become the Director in 1973. In this position she oversaw the college’s many student clubs and organized Winter Carnival, Homecoming Weekend, concerts and other major events. She retired from the college in 1988 after forging lasting relationships with many students, administrators and faculty.
Jackie was gracious, intelligent and welcoming with a strong moral compass. Her genuine interest in and concern for others allowed her to connect with all kinds of people. She was a caring relative and neighbor and an active member of the Middlebury Congregational Church. She enjoyed cross-country skiing and swimming, and was an avid walker around the village and on hikes with John.
Jackie took deep pleasure and joy in her family and she and John hosted many ski weekends, holidays, and other get-togethers in Middlebury. Her family remembers with great fondness the many gatherings she and John hosted where the food was ample and delicious and conversation flowed easily among the generations seated around the large table.
She doted on her grandchildren, traveling with John to attend numerous recitals, sports events, and graduations. Jackie is survived by son John “Jay” (Cally), daughters Barbara (Kim Christiansen) and Nancy (James Witkin), and niece and namesake Suzanne Gyorgy. She is pre-deceased by husband John (2016) and son Robert (2012) (Caryl). Her sister Pauline (Gyorgy) also predeceased her (2008). Jackie leaves nine grandchildren and five great-grandchildren as well as seven other nieces and nephews and their families.
A memorial service to celebrate Jackie’s life will be held at 2 p.m. on December 9, 2017 at the Middlebury Congregational Church. Her family is extremely grateful for the wonderful care and respect provided to their mother by the staff at the Haven at the Residence at Otter Creek as well as Addison County Home Health and Hospice. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Addison County Home Health and Hospice, Elderly Services in Middlebury, or the Middlebury Congregational Church.
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