Obituary: Helen Douglas, 1942-2022 | Obituaries | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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Obituary: Helen Douglas, 1942-2022

Lifelong Vermonter will be remembered for her kindness and unconditional love

Published July 5, 2022 at 6:04 a.m.
Updated July 5, 2022 at 5:01 p.m.


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Helen Douglas - COURTESY
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  • Helen Douglas
Helen Lawson Douglas was a beloved nana, mother, sister and friend during her incredible 80 years of life. She passed away peacefully on June 30, 2022.

We will remember Nana for her kindness and unconditional love. She instilled generosity and volunteering in her children from an early age, including volunteering as a family every year at the Special Olympics. Helen knew desserts like nothing else and always had ice cream on hand. Her tradition of sharing Thanksgiving with others and everyone making a pie has continued to the third generation.

Helen was the best mom anyone could ask for, sharing her love of baking, sewing, crafting, being outdoors and scouting. She instilled in us self-belief so that we could overcome obstacles and pursue our dreams. She was an engaged, nurturing Nana who celebrated her children’s and grandchildren’s accomplishments and supported their passions, attending countless games, races, matches and performances.

Helen had a full life. She was born on February 1, 1942, in Burlington, Vt., to Kenneth F. and Eva L. Douglas. She was delighted to welcome her brother, Kenneth "Elliot," to the family two years later and loved him more than anything. She played varsity basketball at Burlington High School, where she graduated in 1960. She went on to complete an associate's degree from Champlain College.

Helen worked at the Burlington Electric Department before having her four children, Eve, Kim, Paula and Doug. After raising her children, she returned to BED until retirement.

A lifelong Vermonter, Helen enjoyed traveling around the world with friends and family. She explored Kenya, Egypt, Bolivia, Peru and traveled throughout Europe. She also visited Alaska and Hawaii. An avid skier, Helen enjoyed skiing into her seventies throughout Vermont, Canada, Montana, Switzerland and France. In the summer, she bicycled and kayaked around the Champlain Islands and through the Green Mountains.

Helen was predeceased by her parents. She is survived by Elliot and his wife, Nancy McClellan; Eve Niquette and husband, Charles Pohl, and their daughters, Geneva, Charlotte and Sophira Pohl; Kim Niquette and husband, Winston Krone, and their children, Alienor and Jasper Niquette; Paula Nenninger and husband, Todd, and their sons, Sumner and Rowan Nenninger; Doug Niquette and wife, Melissa, and their children, Morgan Champion and Dugan, Fenway and Lawson Niquette.

We will miss Nana dearly and are so grateful for the time we had with her. She taught us to be caring and compassionate, with kindness at the core of everything she did. Our Mom loved life—she biked to Montreal, did an annual boat trip with retired colleagues, volunteered as a Flynn Spirit, nurtured lifelong friendships and never gave up on anything or anyone, leading her to win numerous raffles, including a bike and ski package. She loved being with her family most of all, taking everyone to Cancun for her 75th birthday and hosting yearly reunions at her South Hero camp. We will always feel her presence in our hearts. We know our mom loved us.

A celebration of life will be held at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Burlington on Sunday, July 10, at 3 p.m., with an outdoor reception to follow.

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