Burton E. Jacobs, 94, of Oxford, CT, passed away peacefully on January 21, 2019 at his home with his son by his side. He was predeceased by his beloved wife of 67 years, Nancy Cragen Jacobs.
Burton was born at home on August 15, 1924 in Bristol, Vermont, son of the late Chester E. and Ruth Beers Jacobs.
His love for chemistry started at a young age. He delighted in doing experiments in his basement, much to the chagrin of his parents and sisters. He had a mischievous sense of humor, often playing tricks such as boobytraps, setting off fireworks outside his parents’ bedroom, and minor explosions.
After graduation from Bristol High School in 1943, he served his country honorably as a member of the 90th Infantry Division during World War II. Of interest, he participated in the liberation of the infamous Flossenburg concentration camp. He received the Silver Star, three Purple Hearts, and a battlefield commission. He was incredibly humble, minimizing his scars as ‘just bullet wounds’.
Upon returning home, he became a volunteer firefighter for the town of Bristol. On June 25, 1947, he married the love of his life, Nancy Hanks Cragen also of Bristol. Burton attended the University of Vermont and graduated with a degree in Chemistry in 1950.
Shortly after graduation, he was hired by the U.S. Rubber Company in Passaic, New Jersey where he was a Research Scientist. Burton remained with the company through several moves and merges. Ultimately, he retired as manager of the Patent Department for Uniroyal in Middlebury, Connecticut after 40 years.
Burton was a lifetime member of the Masons, Libanus Lodge #47. He was also a lifetime member of the Bristol Historical Society.
After retirement, he was able to devote more time to his lifelong passion for gardening. He shared his bounty with neighbors and coworkers. Burton loved the outdoors and delighted in introducing the wonder of nature: birdwatching, geology and astronomy to three generations of family. He amazed the grandchildren by telling time by the position of the sun.
Burton’s talents were multifaceted. He was equally adept at carpentry, plumbing and electric work. He engaged in numerous complex household projects with his devoted helper, his wife, Nancy.
His love of family knew no bounds. He will be long remembered for his devotion to and love for his wife. Burton was a true gentleman and wonderful provider. One of his greatest joys was being called ‘Dad’.
Burton leaves his daughter, Nancy Catherine (James E. ‘Mickey’) Boudreau of Waynesburg, PA.; his son, Burton E. Jacobs, Jr., of Oxford, CT.; his sister, Carol Burbank of Williston, VT.; his grandchildren, Lisa (Jeff) McMeans, Grant (Tammy) Boudreau, and Ryan Boudreau; his great grandson, Jacob McMeans; several nieces and nephews, cousins, and great nieces and great nephews.
In addition to his wife, he was predeceased by his sisters, Elaine Bordeaux and Myrle Jackman.
A graveside service with full military honors will be held on Saturday, May 11, 2019 at 11:00 AM at Greenwood Cemetery, Bristol, VT. Arrangements are being handled by Brown-McClay Funeral Homes, Inc.