On July 20, 2017, Myrtle M Sprague, a lifelong resident of Brattleboro, decided that her work here is done and left this life to join her husband and departed family members in the next life.
Myrtle was born in Brattleboro on May 10, 1920, the eldest child of Emile and Cora Lavalley. She attended Saint Michael’s School until the age of sixteen when, in the fashion of the time, she went to work in the cotton mill to help support her family. On May 30, 1942 she married the love of her life, Bertie E. Sprague Sr. and with him raised four children Bertie Jr. (Christine) of Brattleboro, VT, Stewart (Donna) of Fuquay Varina, NC, Cheryl (Karl) of St. Albans, VT, and Darlene (Paul) of Hinsdale, NH. Her husband predeceased her on August 26, 2011 after sixty-nine years of marriage. In addition to her parents and husband, Myrtle was predeceased by two brothers, Donald and Bernard Lavalley and one sister, Irene Supernaw.
Mrs. Sprague was a hard worker all of her life. When the cotton mill closed she took employment at the Book Press for a short time, then the dietary department of Brattleboro Memorial Hospital and later the dietary department of the Brattleboro Retreat from which she retired after 21 years of faithful service. After retiring she earned her high school diploma through the Adult Diploma Program. She and her husband also traveled extensively and especially enjoyed their trip to the Holy Land.
Mrs. Sprague was active in her Roman Catholic faith and was a member of the Daughters of Isabella. She also supported and joined her husband in many of his activities with the Knights of Columbus.
Together with her husband she worked very hard to provide a home for their family. They maintained large gardens and picked whatever fruit was in season. All of this was frozen or canned for later use in preparing nutritious meals for their family. She was an accomplished seamstress and quilter. In addition she created countless beautiful items with her knitting needles and crochet hooks. For many years she made countless pairs of mittens and hats for the Christmas stocking. She was an excellent cook and loved cooking and baking for large family gatherings.
In December of 2014, facing failing health, she went to live at the Holton Home where she made many friends among the residents and staff with her sharp wit and caring personality. Myrtle’s family would like to extend their heartfelt appreciation to the entire staff at Holton Home for the wonderful care that she received during her stay.
In addition to her four children, Mrs. Sprague is survived by twelve grandchildren, twenty greatgrandchildren, and numerous nieces and nephews. She is also survived by one sister, Bernice Trombley, of Brattleboro.
The Liturgy of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Wednesday at 11:30 AM at Saint Michael’s Roman Catholic Church with Fr. Justin Baker, pastor, celebrant. Committal Rites and burial will follow in the Sprague family lot in Saint Michael’s Parish Cemetery.
Friends are invited to call at the Atamaniuk Funeral Home Tuesday from 6-8 PM.
Memorial contributions in Mrs. Sprague’s name may be made to St. Michael’s School, 48 Walnut Street, Brattleboro, VT 05301 or to Holton Home, 158 Western Avenue, Brattleboro, VT 05301.
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