Posted by Natasha Courter

Community News Editor

The Facts

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FRANKLIN – Martha Jane Olmstead, age 87, passed away Tuesday morning, June 28, 2016 at her home with her son at her side.

She was born June 28, 1929 in St. Albans the only child of the late Winfred and Helen (Richard) Riley.

Martha Jane was a lifelong resident of Franklin and a 1947 graduate of Franklin High School. She was also a 1949 graduate of Vermont Junior College in Montpelier. Following graduation from college Martha Jane worked at the Division of Markets with the Vermont Department of Agriculture for three years. She then worked as the Assistant Town Clerk for the Town of Franklin from 1965 – 1980 and then held the position of Town Clerk from 1980 until her retirement in 1994. She was an active member of the East Franklin Union Church and the Franklin United Women. She was also instrumental with others in the community in the creation of the Franklin Homestead.

Martha Jane enjoyed sitting on her porch in the rocking chair made especially for her by Wayne King, watching birds with her cat Tabitha sitting on her lap while visiting with friends and neighbors.

She is survived by her sons, Harmon Olmstead and his girlfriend Sherry Provencher of Newport, and Matthew Olmstead of Franklin; several nieces, nephews and cousins. Besides her parents, Martha Jane was predeceased by her husband, Howard R. Olmstead on March 17, 1995. Martha Jane and Howard were married on October 5, 1952. Her son, David Olmstead on Feb. 4, 2008, also predeceased her.

A memorial service will be held Tuesday, July 5, 2016 at 11:00 AM at the East Franklin Union Church, 4610 Lake Road/Vermont Route 120, East Franklin with Rev. Dr. Jason McConnell officiating. Interment will follow in the East Franklin Cemetery. There will be no visiting hours.

For those who wish, contributions in Martha Jane’s memory may be made to the East Franklin Union Church, P.O. Box 84, Franklin, VT 05457 or to the Franklin Fire Dept., P.O. Box 172, Franklin, VT 05457

Messages of condolence may be sent to Martha Jane’s family on-line through