SOUTH CAMBRIDGE — Hollis “Sonny” Edwards Jr., died at home on Jan. 22, 2014 after a long illness, just down the road from the brick farmhouse where he was born, 81 years ago on April 16, 1932. He was the son of Iola (Flanders) and Hollis Rae Edwards Sr. Sonny began school at the age of five, sometimes riding downhill to the one room school on his sled. He attended high school at Cambridge High School. He graduated from the Vermont School of Agriculture (now VTC) in 1955 and was the sixth generation to own the family farm. During his lifetime, the farm changed from having Jerseys to Holsteins. The Edwards farm was the last working farm in South Cambridge. The owner of a distinctly dry sense of humor, he delighted in passing along the latest joke, or occasionally springing one on the unwary. An inveterate old Yankee farmer, Sonny could fix nearly anything with baler twine, duct tape, wire and hope. He was a member of the Vermont Farm Bureau for over 50 years, and served the Lamoille County Farm Bureau in many capacities. He received the Keith Wallace award from the Vermont Farm Bureau in November 2011. He was very involved in the community. He served on the Lamoille County Reparative Board and Lamoille County Court Diversion, as well as the local Development Council and the town finance committee. He will be missed at Town Meeting for being willing to make motions and asking, “would someone please explain…” for his or others edification.
In September 1985 he married Barbara Smith Collins.
He is survived by the five children from his first marriage, Linda and husband, Paul Haines, of Johnson, Robert and wife, Debbie, of Belvidere, Martha Edwards Manning and her companion, Tim Corey, of Fairfield, April and husband, Bryce Bartlett, of Jeffersonville, and Richard and wife, Kimberley, of Jeffersonville. From his second marriage, Kathy and husband, Rick Jochim, of Swanton, Colleen Collins of Colorado, Victoria and husband, Tom Foster, of Morrisville and Kevin Collins of Johnson, also 26 grandchildren, 8 great-grandchildren and one great-great grandson. He leaves sisters Blossom Longe and Waverley and husband, Pete Purdum, and brother, Jack Edwards, many nieces, nephews, cousins and his two devoted cats.
He was predeceased by his second wife, Barbara, his parents, Hollis and Iola Edwards, a brother, Robert, sister-in-law Ilene and their daughter Marcia, brothers-in-law Douglas Longe and Webster Pratt, and his dog Freddy, who cheerfully asked for toast each morning.
Visiting hours will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014 from 2 to 4 p.m. and from 7 to 9 p.m. at A W Rich Funeral Home – Fairfax Chapel, 1176 Main St. Fairfax, VT 05454. Funeral services will be held on Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014 at 11 a.m. at Second Congregational Church – Jeffersonville, with Reverend Mick Comstock officiating. Memorial contributions in Sonny’s memory may be made to the Lamoille Home Health Hospice, 54 Farr Ave., Morrisville, VT 05661 or the Varnum Memorial Library, P.O. Box 198, Jeffersonville, VT 05464. The family invites you to share your memories and condolences by visiting www.awrfh.com.