FLETCHER/DELAND, FLA. — Hugh Thomas ‘Tom’ Lancaster of Fletcher, Vt./DeLand, Fla., age 80 died on March 3, 2015.  Tom was born in Hanover, N.H. on June 29, 1934, and grew up in what is affectionately called, H.E.L.L. (Hanover, Etna, Lebanon and Lyme, N.H.).

Tom is survived by his wife of almost 60 years, Eva (Hooper) Lancaster.  They were married on Aug. 19, 1955.  Also surviving are his son, Ted Lancaster; his elder daughter, Shelley Broderick and her children, Damon and wife, Cecilia, Trent, Todd and Emma; his younger daughter, Laura Weber, her husband, Mark, and their son, Alexander, who held a special place in his grampa’s heart.  He also leaves three great grandchildren, Calvin, Casey and Tucker Broderick.  Tom is also survived by his sister, Jane Patch and her family; Emerson Blaisdell, who he took on as a son, and Lisa Glover whom he welcomed as a daughter, her husband, Keith and their children, Devon, Abbey and Austin, and their grandchildren, Colton and Kai.  Tom was predeceased by his sons, Thomas in 1993 and Timothy in 1997, and several other family members with whom he now joins.

Tom was a Specialist 3rd Class in the U.S. Army and was stationed at Fort Dix, N.J., and Camp Drum, N.Y., from 1954 to 1957.  His was in charge of the Unit Armory and instructed recruits on how to use their weaponry.  He was a proud veteran and received both the National Defense Service and Good Conduct Medals. Tom went on to be a dairy farmer in Fletcher and retired in 1983.  While on the farm he owned the “Lancaster Fix-It Shop” and was the go to guy for the obscure tractor parts (all “goodies”, don’t you know).   Tom also treasured his iconic license plate garage in Fletcher, which is highly photographed and could be seen in the Mountaineer magazine, among other places.

Tom will always be remembered for his comedic sense of humor and masterfully quick wit.  When asked recently how he was feeling, he responded, “with both hands”.  When shaking his hand, he had the strongest grip you’d ever come across putting to shame youngsters 60 years his junior.  He loved to yodel, and was an “animal whisperer” and could befriend any dog, cat or bird he’d see, especially while sitting on the porch or in the garage enjoying his cup of coffee and pipe full of tobacco.

He was loved by many, and appreciated special treatment by having his favorite strawberry shortcake as his last dessert lovingly prepared by his wife with the help of Lisa Glover whom was with, and care took of him during his last week here.

Tom’s loved ones made it possible for him to spend his final days in the warm state of Florida.  The family caretakers we would like to give heartfelt thanks to are his sister, Jane; daughter, Laura; grandson, Alex and son, Ted who was with him until his final moments.

In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to the American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, or to a charity of your choice.

Per Tom’s wishes, there will be no visiting hours or funeral.  Interment will be private, held in Vermont and determined at a later date by his family.