SWANTON — Virginia “Ginger” Erno of Swanton died peacefully on Nov. 8, 2017 at the age of 95.

Ginger led a long, full and happy life. She was born in Swanton on Feb. 3, 1922 to the late Walter and Addie (Sartwell) Fadden, and prided herself on being the oldest Swanton-born town member. Ginger was spirited from the time she was a child; she loved to ride her bicycle around town with her feet on the handlebars and climb the tree in her front yard. She played basketball in high school and was the last surviving graduate of her Swanton High School class. During World War II, Ginger joined the war effort by assembling airplane parts at Pratt and Whitney in Hartford, Conn. She met her husband of over 50 years, Hayden Erno, out dancing at Barkers in St. Albans (now Bayside Pavilion). Hayden’s opening line when he learned she was living in Hartford was, “Why don’t you stay here and marry me?” Six months later, she did.

Ginger and Hayden’s house, once the property of Northern Bus Lines, was renovated into the lovely home where Ginger lived for almost 70 years. They had two children, Pamela (Erno) Smith, married to Tom Smith of St. Albans, and Kim Erno; four grandchildren, Melissa, Molly, Katie and Michael; and four great-grandchildren, Liam, Quinn, Hazel and Oliver.

Ginger was creatively gifted; she enjoyed a good craft project and had an eye for antiquing. She was a beautiful seamstress; all four of her grandchildren received handmade quilts for their high school graduations. Ginger spent many summers with family and friends at her camp on Lake Champlain, which her grandchildren knew as “Oma’s Lake.” She was a long-time member of the United Methodist Church and also attended services at the West Swanton Church. She loved maple creamies, made a mean apple pie, and took pleasure in watching the town goings-on from her front porch with a glass of Riesling.

Ginger is survived by her son, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews. A memorial service celebrating her life will be scheduled for a later date. For those who wish, donations in Ginger’s memory may be made to the UVM Medical Center Foundation.


Condolences, photos, and memories are welcomed by Ginger’s family and may be shared through www.gossfs.com.