Arthur J. LaBerge, Jr., 94, of Holyoke, passed away peacefully on Thursday, March 19, 2020 at Day Brook Village, following visits with his beloved children and many grandchildren and with his cherished daughter by his side. Art was born in Lenox, MA, the only child of Arthur J. LaBerge, Sr., and Bertha (Girardey) LaBerge. He attended the Westfield schools where he excelled in the classroom, in sports, and on stage. After graduation, Art enlisted and served during WW II with the U.S. Coast Guard in both the European and Asian theaters. On leave before his discharge in 1946, Art met his beloved future wife Dorothy O’Sullivan at an ice rink in West Springfield. Dot was a “college girl,” which, impressed and inspired Art to attend college himself on the GI Bill. Following his graduation from American International College in 1950, Art married Dot and they moved to Grafton, Vermont, where they each taught multiple grades in different one-room schoolhouses. Eventually, the couple returned to Springfield, where they started their family and Art began his career in the insurance industry. Art’s business career included many accomplishments over more thirty-five years’ service with MassMutual and Reliance Standard Life of Philadelphia. Art received an Underwriters Degree (CLU) from the American College of Life Underwriters and served as the President of the Insurance Accounting and Systems Association (IASA), the largest insurance industry association. Art retired from Reliance Standard Life as a Vice President in 1987 and began enjoying a retirement that lasted nearly as long as had his professional career. Art was an avid golfer and college and professional sports enthusiast, supporting the Red Sox. Pats, Bruins, and Notre Dame. Although he mightily resisted moving to a “retirement” place, Art embraced the community at Day Brook Village (formerly Loomis House) where he served as the President of the Residents Association and he and Dot made many, many friends. Art’s family wishes to thank the caring staff members of Day Brook for their kindness and attention to Art. Art felt that his greatest achievement by far was the large, loving family that he and Dot created and of which they both were very proud. Art was predeceased by Dot in 2013 after 63 years of marriage. Art is survived by four children: Katherine (Thomas), Mashpee, MA; David (Maritza), Gotha, FL; Robert (Ellen), Syracuse, NY; and Richard (Lynne), Newtown, PA; 10 beloved grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his special nephew Michael O’Sullivan (Pamela), Shrewsbury, MA, and their two children. Due to present circumstances, services will be private. The Barry Farrell Funeral Home is handling the arrangements. A public memorial service will be scheduled and announced in the future. Words of comfort may be expressed at barryjfarrellfuneralhome.com. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Day Brook Village Employee Scholarship Fund, 298 Jarvis Avenue, Holyoke, MA 01040.
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