Edmund R. Champagne 100 years old passed away May 22, 2012. Born May 30, 1911 in St Julie, Quebec Province, Canada, to Joseph and Marie Ida (Cartier), moved to the Lowell/Lawrence/Haverhill area of Massachusetts as a young child. He was educated in Canada and the United States. He moved to Holyoke where he worked at the former Newton paper mills. He moved back to northern Massachusetts where he met and married Olive A. Pratt to whom he was married for 64 years. After becoming the father of two daughters the family moved to Springfield and eventually to Chicopee where his third daughter was born. He was a resident of Chicopee for over seventy years, and a communicant of the former St. Marys Church in Willimansett. He had a long career as a die sinker at Storms Drop Forge and the Springfield Armory where he retired, before becoming the manager of Pioneer Tool and Die in West Springfield. During that time he held part time jobs as a baker at Mercolino Settembro Bakery on Columbus Ave. in Springfield and as a butcher at the A&P store on Exchange Street in Chicopee. His big love was officiating football and basketball and umpiring baseball for area high schools and prep schools. In the mid to late forties and early fifties he voluntarily coached intramural boy’s basketball at Bowe Jr. High School. He frequently and fondly talked about “his boys”, some of whom went on to play professional sports. His fondest memories include being called “coach”..
He was a lifetime member of the Association of Intercollegiate Football Officials and a life member of the International Association of Approved Basketball Officials, he was also a life member of the Western Mass Association of Football Officials’ and a member of the Western Massachusetts Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame, he held an honorary membership in the Eastern Association of Intercollegiate Football Officials, and was a life time member of the Western Massachusetts Baseball Umpires Association. He was honored with a plaque at the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame as a founder and life member. He was a member of the Chicopee Chapter Lodge of Elks. He also volunteered with the Chicopee Girl Scouts.
Many weekends would find him at his vacation home on Cape Cod, or on his boat in Wellfleet Harbor where he enjoyed sharing that life with his wife, his children, his grandchildren and his great grandchildren. He was also a life long fan of the Boston Red Sox and was thrilled to see his team win the World Series. He also was a fan of the Boston Celtics and the New England Patriots, enjoying an occasional game at Fenway Park or the former Sullivan Stadium. In his later years he was frequently seen in the exercise class at the Chicopee Senior Center where he made many new friends.
He was predeceased by his mother and father, sister Lillian Fisher, brothers Norbert and John, daughters Deanna Flynn and Candace Robinson. He is survived by his sister Mary Davitt of Texas and Florida, daughter Sandra Shuback and husband Bud, grandchildren Jeffrey Flynn and his wife Lisa, Christopher Flynn and his wife Patricia, Kimberlee Brennan, and Kelley Assarian and her husband Gregory, great grand children Samantha Assarian, Ashley Assarian, Meghan Brennan, Brian Brennan, Scott Flynn and Morgan Flynn a niece and nephew Robin Davitt and Dr. William Davitt, and several cousins.
The funeral will take place from the Corridan Funeral Home on Saturday at 9 a.m., followed by Mass at the Elms College Chapel at 10 a.m., with burial at St. Patrick's Cemetery Calling hours will be held on Friday from 4-7p.m.