Ann StoneMarch 19,2014
MONTPELIER — With the full Crow Moon shining on freshly fallen snow, Ann “Nan” Stone died in peace on March 16, 2014. She suffered a stroke and died one week later after declining any life-prolonging assistance.
Nan was born June 25, 1921, in Indianapolis, Ind., the daughter of Arnold and Helen (Clark) Talbott.
Nan spent her formative years in Rye, N.Y. After graduating high school, she attended the University of Grenoble, France, where she was not an honor student, and Katherine Gibbs in New York City.
On New Year’s Eve 1943, Nan married Charles Johnson Stone. Together they shared a love of skiing, the outdoors and their family. They developed their passion for skiing while Charlie was in the Air Force in Colorado, by driving up Loveland and Berthoud passes and taking turns skiing down.
Nan and Charlie moved to Redding, Conn., where they raised their family and lived for almost 50 years. For many years the family traveled to Vermont to ski in the winter. Nan purchased a farm in East Montpelier, Vt., in 1971 to be closer to skiing and because she had fallen in love with the beauty of the Green Mountains. Following Charlie’s death in 2002, Nan moved to East Montpelier permanently, to be close to her children and grandchildren.
In 2003, Nan reconnected with high school sweetheart Alan Gould. After 62 years, their love rekindled, and they spent nine years together between Jekyll Island, Ga., and East Montpelier. Following Alan’s death, Nan moved to Westview Meadows in Montpelier, where she made many new friends, including the neighborhood crows.
Nan was always an active community member. For many years she was a literacy and life skills volunteer, and worked closely as an advocate and mentor for Southeast Asian refugees in Danbury, Conn., where she was known to many as “Grandma.” She also illustrated books for the gardening author Ruth Stout, was an energy auditor in the 1970s, ran a fine arts frame shop, and was affectionately known as “Saint Nan” by friends for her endless good deeds and generosity. Most recently, Nan was a staunch advocate for Act 39, a Vermont law relating to patient choice and control at end of life, also known as “death with dignity.”
Throughout her life Nan was passionate about the environment, energy conservation, travel, gardening, reading, education, swimming and walking with friends. Her self-described occupation as “homemaker” encompassed designing and sewing her own clothes, reupholstering heirloom furniture, and cultivating prolific organic vegetable and flower gardens. She was an accomplished and adventuresome cook, and a warm and gracious hostess. Nan was also known for her frequent long-distance swims across Great Pond in Ridgefield, Conn., with friends — all trailing empty Clorox bottles on strings tied to their waists for emergency flotation.
Nan leaves three children, Chip Stone and his wife, Susie Atwood-Stone; Chris Stone and his wife, Mary (Thomas) Stone, all of East Montpelier, Vt.; and Ann Guerlain Ndione and her husband, Modou Ndione, of Waterbury Center, Vt., and Dakar, Senegal. Nan took great enjoyment and pride in the lives of her five grandchildren: Zoe Stone and Phoebe Stone, of East Montpelier, Vt.; Maia Stone and her fiancé, Simon Preuß, of Dresden, Germany; Antoine Guerlain and his partner, Ashley Loehr, of Hudson, N.Y.; and Maddie Guerlain and her partner, Tim Sider, of London. Nan is also survived by seven nieces and nephews, for whom she cared deeply. She was predeceased by her brother, Edmund “Bud” Talbott.
Nan was loved and will be missed by her friends and family for her adventurous, independent, generous and occasionally mischievous spirit.
A memorial gathering will be held in May in central Vermont. Details will follow.
Donations in her memory may be made to Central Vermont Home Health and Hospice, 600 Granger Road, Barre, VT 05641 (cvhhh.org); Vermont Land Trust, 8 Bailey Ave., Montpelier, VT 05602 (vlt.org); or Vermont Foodbank, c/o Melissa Baptiewright, 33 Parker Road, Barre, VT 05641 (vtfoodbank.org).
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