1950 – 2021
Woodstock– Cheryl Ricard Wakely, 71, of Woodstock passed away peacefully at her home surrounded by family on Monday, December 6th 2021. Born in Killingly, CT on September 23rd 1950, the daughter of Shirley Babbitt Ricard and Armand Ricard, Mrs. Wakely is survived by her two beloved sons, Jonathan, and wife Jennifer of Washington, D.C., Stephen, and fiancée Melissa of Barrington, R.I., and grandchildren Samuel and Cecilia Wakely of Washington, D.C.
Mrs. Wakely was a 1968 graduate of Killingly High School, where she was a school piano accompanist, and a 1972 graduate of the University of Connecticut School of Business. She changed careers in 1996 when she received a Master’s degree from Simmons College in Library Management. She was a member of Beta Phi Mu, the International Library Honor Society.
In an early career, Mrs. Wakely was the purchasing agent for Loos and Company in Pomfret. She later became interim director of the Stafford Public Library and director of three local school libraries: The Hyde School, Marianapolis Prep School, and Killingly High School. She was the owner of Woodstock Hill Antiques for forty years, helping many people furnish their homes with 18th- and early 19th- century antiques.
Mrs. Wakely volunteered for many institutions and agencies, including: Chair of the Woodstock Wetlands Commission, serving on that agency for ten years; historian and librarian of the First Congregational Church of Woodstock, during the time of the church’s 300th anniversary; president of the Woodstock Historical Society for eight years and on the Board of Directors for fifteen years; a member of the Woodstock Tercentenary Committee, on which she served as publications chair; and a long-time member of the Concert Choir of Northeastern Connecticut.
She was the author of From the Roxbury Fells to the Eastward Vale: A Journey Through Woodstock, 1686-2011; co-editor with Charlene Perkins Cutler of Heritage and Horizons: Woodstock Remembers 300 Years; and editor of the 300th anniversary edition of the Woodstock Parish Observer. She wrote many articles about Woodstock history.
Mrs. Wakely loved leading Walking Weekend history tours, singing with choirs in the Quiet Corner, sailing on Alexander’s Lake, and playing golf at many local golf courses.
Donations may be made in memory of Mrs. Wakely to a memorial fund for the Killingly High School Library Media Center or to the First Congregational Church of Woodstock.
Relatives and friends are invited to a funeral service at 2:00 pm on Saturday, December 18, 2021 in the First Congregational Church of Woodstock, 543 Route 169, Woodstock, CT. For memorial guestbook visit www.GilmanAndValade.com.
Dear Jonathan, Stephen and family,
I am so sorry to hear of Cheryl’s passing. Cheryl was wonderful friend and colleague at Marianapolis Prep where I first met her in 2006. Cheryl was dedicated to making the school’s library a modern place of study. A true historian at heart and a lover of books, Cheryl was incredibly helpful to all of our students. I especially remember her investing a great deal of time assisting my science students when they were working on their Science Fair projects! Since she and I both have a love for antiques, I often ran into her in downtown Putnam and we would reconnect in the years after she left Marianapolis. Cheryl would never fail to tell me how each of you were doing, and it was so evident how much she loved her grandchildren!! She was a very proud mother and grandmother. Please know that I will be praying for you all at this very hard time. Know too that a mother’s love never ends!
Johnathan and Stephen, so sorry for your loss.
Warmest thoughts to you and your families.
So sorry to hear of Cheryl’s passing….We shared great grandparents …her contribution to her community and the schools she served made those communities and schools a better place…Golf was a fun activity for her and we enjoyed a few rounds together….May she Rest In Peace….
There is a special place in Heaven for people like Cheryl. Historians are a rare enough breed. Some historians also have a great mind for order and organization. Those who can ALSO write history try to make sense of the jumble of information for the rest of us. Combining the appreciation of history, the ordering of information and a talent for expressing the value of this local history, this was Cheryl’s great gift to our region. I valued Cheryl highly for her willingness to help me with my /our mutual research and I will miss her.
My condolences to Cheryl’s family. We lost a great one with her passing but her work will live on!
My dear Cheryl
I miss you so much your beauty, dignity, and professionalism ; you brought the KHS library up to a higher standard. I’m so sorry for the family but now you have an angel watching over you and Heaven.
All I can say is I will see you again
Deb & Richard Nielsen - Scranton's Shops
Our condolences to Cheryl’s family and friends. She will be missed.
In loving memory of Cheryl, I give to your family and friends, my deepest sympathy for your loss. Rest in peace Cheryl.