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Paul R. Dery

Posted By Bill On March 13, 2020 @ 12:30 pm In Obituaries | 48 Comments

1951 – 2020

N. Grosvenordale – Paul R. Dery, 69, of School St., passed away on Friday, March 13, 2020 at Day Kimball Hospital. Born in Putnam, he was the son of Doris (Roy) Dery and the late Norman E. Dery.

Mr. Dery worked as a Math and Computer Science Teacher for Tourtellotte Memorial High School. He was a member of the Putnam Rotary Club and a member of the Tourtellotte Sports Hall of Fame. He enjoyed chess and fishing. He was a coach for track and cross country as well as girl’s basketball.

Paul is survived by his sisters, Jeanne Dery of N. Grosvenordale, and Diane Dery of Eastford.

Relatives and friends are invited to visit with Paul’s family from 9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, March 19, 2020 in the Valade Funeral Home and Crematory, 23 Main St., N. Grosvenordale. A Mass of Christian Burial will take place at 11:00 a.m. in St. Joseph Church, 18 Main St., N. Grosvenordale, CT. Burial will follow in St. Joseph Cemetery.

Memorial donations may be made to T.E.E.G., P.O. Box 664, N. Grosvenordale, CT 06255. For memorial guestbook visit www.GilmanAndValade.com.

Condolences for the family of “Paul R. Dery”

Condolence from Susan Rickaby Mayo on March 13th, 2020 5:11 pm

So sorry for your loss he was a great man and a great basketball coach this is so sad to hear fly high Mr Dery you will be missed by many

Condolence from John and Karen Clough & Family on March 13th, 2020 5:12 pm

We are so very sorry to hear this. You are all in our thoughts and prayers.

Condolence from Tim O’Brien on March 13th, 2020 5:18 pm

Paul was a great friend, colleague and teacher. He will be missed.

Condolence from Jennifer Keefe on March 13th, 2020 6:03 pm

Jeanne and Dianne, I’m incredibly sorry for your loss.

I have lifelong fond memories of Paul stopping by to say hello often, waving to my brother and I as we played in our backyard as children, and being one of the kindest and most patient teachers I’ve ever met. I know it’s been a rough few years for him and I’m thankful he is no longer in pain.

Sending love and strength to both of you in this difficult time.

Condolence from Henry Frederick on March 13th, 2020 6:05 pm

I graduated from Tourtellotte Memorial High School in 1980, but I never had Paul Dery as a teacher. Nor did I run track. But I interacted with him – or should I say he interacted with me – in the hallways between classes at lunch time or while checking out books in the library. I was very shy and sometimes vulnerable to being made fun of or left out in my early teens, but Paul Dery was very observant. He saw how introverted I was and helped build up my confidence. He encouraged me to do what I do best: Read and read some more. And to share what I learned in the classroom. I did and have continued to so all these years later. Paul Dery devoted most of his life to the education of thousands of school children. His instructional leadership in the classroom and on the track cannot be measured in pass/fail or wins vs losses because every child counted to him. Mr. Dery’s time in life was well spent and the lessons he imparted on the rest of us was truly priceless. To his sisters, Jeane Dery and Diane Deary, and all those who loved and admired his can-do spirit, may Paul R. Dery rest in peace. — Henry Frederick, Sanford, Florida

Condolence from maureen Demarais on March 13th, 2020 6:13 pm

I had the pleasure of meeting and Knowing Paul in the 70’s such a down to earth teacher!!!! May you Rest In Peace Paul! Heaven has gained an awesome teacher!! My condolences to his family and friends.

Condolence from Barbara on March 13th, 2020 6:20 pm

I’m so sorry to hear this he was a good teacher

Condolence from Renee Waldron on March 13th, 2020 6:23 pm

Paul was one of those unsung heroes. He touched so many lives in such a positive way. He’ll be sorely missed. So sorry Jeanne and Diane.

Condolence from T. Kearns on March 13th, 2020 6:30 pm

I am very sorry for your loss. Mr. Dery was a wonderful math teacher, an amazing Track & Field coach and an all around great guy. May your memories help comfort you at this difficult time.

Condolence from Raymond Williams on March 13th, 2020 8:30 pm

Sad to see this. Mr. Deary was a great teacher. My condolence to his family. May he rest in peace.

Condolence from The MacKenzie Family on March 13th, 2020 8:43 pm

Diane and Family-

I am so sorry to hear about the loss of your brother! I he was truly a remarkable person! May you all be comforted by his memories.

Condolence from Michael on March 13th, 2020 9:12 pm

Paul aka Jocko was a great friend. During high school we enjoyed fishing and playing cards. In college we were roommates, played soccer and majored in math and secondary education. Paul was a man of great integrity and was a wonderful coach and mentor. You are in a better place my friend until we meet again.

Condolence from Angela Girardin Cahill on March 13th, 2020 10:01 pm

This man shaped me and helped me become the person I am today. There is not a single accomplishment that I can’t track back to what he provided me in HS. He was tough yet fair. He was unapologetically supportive of not just me and the track team but women’s sports in general. It is absolutely heart breaking that the last time we connected was when he was honored in our HS HOF. He was an amazing man and I’m deeply saddened by his loss. I hope you know how much he offered our small piece of the world and the impact he made on so many. He will be missed but he will always be remembered. XO

Condolence from DAVE BABBITT on March 13th, 2020 10:11 pm

Sorry to hear of Pauls Passing….We had many exciting times at TMHS . His leadership in the classroom and in athletics helped many students throughout his long and distinguished career….TMHS was always number one with Paul….We have lost a great TIGER…

Condolence from Randy Para on March 13th, 2020 11:20 pm

He was a great teacher. I remember he started the Computer Club at Tourtellotte in the late 1990’s. This club got me interested in programming which landed me the career I have today. Thank you Mr. Dery.

Condolence from Karen jackson on March 14th, 2020 6:13 am

So sorry for your loss, he was a gentle soul. He was a great teacher and humble human being.

Condolence from Linda (Titchen) Integlia on March 14th, 2020 7:58 am

As the class of 1970 prepares for our 50th reunion, we are saddened that we have lost another classmate. “Jocko” was a great guy and we will miss him. We send our deepest sympathy to Paul’s family in your loss.

Condolence from Crystal StPeter on March 14th, 2020 8:16 am

I am so sorry for the loss of Paul. He was very near and dear to my heart. I developed a very close relationship with Paul over the last several months. He meant so much to me. I loved sitting and listening to him talk about when he was a kid and him being a teacher. I could listen to him talk for hours. He was such a kind soul and such a smart and intelligent man. I am going to miss so much about him from our talks, to him asking about my son going to Ellis and watching him eat the same lunch of a cheeseburger and soup. He will always have a special place in my heart.
Crystal StPeter or as Paul would call me Kelly

Condolence from Tom Caffelle on March 14th, 2020 8:55 am

I am so sorry to hear of Paul’s passing. I have such fond memories of our seasons of coaching basketball together at TMHS. Not only was he a great coach but even a better person. He handled his illness with such strength, truly exhibiting the champion he was. He will be missed by many, my condolences to his family.

Condolence from Marguerite Fatsi on March 14th, 2020 10:07 am

My condolences on Jocko’s death. He and Jon were great friends so many years ago. Who knows, maybe they’ll run into each other in heaven!
Mrs. Marguerite Fatsi

Condolence from Tim Fatsi on March 14th, 2020 12:52 pm

So sorry to hear hear about Jocko’s passing. He’ll definitely see Jon in heaven. My condolences to the Dery family.

Condolence from Kelli Kaliszewski on March 14th, 2020 1:28 pm

Mr Dery was my track coach and teacher graduating in 89. I saw him years later and he still remembered my personal records and relay times. He was a great guy that cared about all his students as if they were his own kids. He made a huge impact on many of his students. May you find comfort and peace in the days ahead. RIP Mr Dery.

Condolence from Anne Dery on March 14th, 2020 1:38 pm

Dear Jeanne and Diane,
Ken and I are deeply sorry for your loss. We had been visiting Paul at Yale and had such great conversations. He has been through so much suffering but went through it with such dignity. May he now Rest In Peace.
Sincerely, Ken and Anne Dery

Condolence from Tom Auclair on March 14th, 2020 2:42 pm

My deepest condolences to the Dery family. Paul and I were colleagues at TMHS for decades in both the classroom and athletic areas.
Tom “Coach” Auclair
Avon Park Florida

Condolence from Ryan and Cindy Ouillette on March 14th, 2020 3:11 pm

One of the brightest men I’ve known. It was a pleasure being able to work with him at Tourtellotte across the hallway. If there was ever a question, Paul was the man to ask. He will be missed. Rest in Peace.

Condolence from Joann Desrochers on March 14th, 2020 4:26 pm

Our deepest condolences to your family.

Condolence from Donna (Tetreault) Stark on March 14th, 2020 5:33 pm

Jeanne and Diane, sorry to hear of Paul’s passing. My first year out of college, I had the privilege coaching TMHS jv girl’s basketball team with Paul who was at the helm as varsity coach. His coaching expertise and commitment to the girl’s still resonates through those memories making it a special time in my life. He put his all into coaching those girl’s. His advice to me as a coach, watch the college games to learn really good plays. TMHS was very fortunate to have such a dedicated man

Condolence from Jeannette Dery Simm on March 14th, 2020 7:01 pm

My prayers to Doris and daughters.

Condolence from Erin Johnston on March 14th, 2020 8:17 pm

His was my one of my favorite teachers when I was at TMHS. He helped me develop my love of math….Prayers for your family during this difficult time.

Condolence from Maggie on March 15th, 2020 10:04 am

Mr. Dery was all about TMHS. Great school spirit and love for his students. Big heart. Enjoyed Geometry class and having him as a coach. My condolences to his family.

Condolence from Terry Guertin on March 15th, 2020 12:06 pm

I am so sorry to hear of Paul’s passing. We always had good conversations when we met @ Thompson Public Schools & later at American Legion Baseball games. May your precious memories give you comfort at this sad time.

Condolence from Dick & Kathy Keefe on March 16th, 2020 1:08 pm

To Doris, Jeanne & Diane, We’re so sorry for your loss. Take comfort in knowing he is no longer in pain. Paul was a terrific colleague and teacher to our children, and an important friend to our family. We miss you old friend.

Condolence from Kathy Kirk on March 16th, 2020 1:34 pm

I am so sorry for your loss. I didn’t know him well, but he was a fellow Rotarian, and will be greatly missed. You will be in my prayers and again, very sorry.

Condolence from Carole and Nick Marshall on March 16th, 2020 8:45 pm

One of the truly good guys. We will always be grateful for his positive influence on our children.

Condolence from William Child on March 16th, 2020 9:07 pm

We are sorry for your loss .


Joy and Will Child

Condolence from Meghan on March 17th, 2020 6:20 pm

Mr. Dery truly cared for each and every student and his passion for his work was amazing. I’m saddened by the news of his passing and will never forget him, as he always had me get him a diet root beer on my open campus breaks. Fly high mr. Dery you’ll be missed by many <3

Condolence from jim faucher on March 18th, 2020 9:56 am

Am very sad as I write this. Paul was one of my best friends in Troop 29 for many years. We were active putting on Order of the Arrow ordeals, both, with Jim Morrison, being leaders in the initiation rite. We had some great camping experiences. As we lived close by, I remember making a Christmas wreath together one year. Many happy memories. Would extend my condolences in person, but am self-isolating. Regardless, my sincere thoughts are with you.

Condolence from KEVIN DANIS on March 18th, 2020 11:24 am

I am so sorry for your loss Jean and Diane. Paul was a good friend and neighbor for many, many years. I will miss our talks about current events and what was going on in town. He had a big heart and genuinely cared for his students and the kids he coached. He was a good caregiver to his mother and sisters even when he was sick himself. He suffered for a long time and now is at peace in heaven.

Condolence from John Peters on March 18th, 2020 1:24 pm

Diane and Jeanne

I am sorry for your loss and am truly saddened by the passing of “Jocko”. I have many fond memories of our time together in high school and after high school. TMHS and the town of Thompson have lost a truly good man. Please accept my deepest sympathies.

John & Carole Peters

Condolence from Valerie Miller Champany on March 18th, 2020 2:01 pm

So sorry for your loss. Mr. Dery was a wonderful person and cross country coach. You will be greatly missed. RIP Mr. Dery

Condolence from Cindy Ouillette on March 18th, 2020 8:08 pm

I hope there is no word limit to these condolence messages. 🙂 I first met Paul when he was a rival coach at TMHS and I was an athlete at PHS. The Plainfield Panthers and the Tourtellotte Tigers had some big-time battles back then, with Angela Girardin leading the pack. I remember my coach, Frank Russell, and Paul bringing us together one time at Owen Bell Park to work together to prepare us for the state heptathlon. Back then, there was one coach to deal with all of the events, and Paul and Frank were experts at them all, but specialized in some :). I really appreciate how they worked together to prepare us (with Richard Jerr as well!). Back then, the QVC Pentathlon was held at TMHS on the brand new track and I’m sure Paul did the organizing which must have been a huge amount of work. I know he would think back to these times with huge smiles. As Angela wrote, Paul was a huge supporter of women’s sports, and he was a dedicated and talented coach. Those were the good old days in the QVC! In 2003, I “moved”to Tourtellotte from Plainfield High School to take a position in the Social Studies Department. Paul was THE FIRST person to make me feel at home. I think Paul liked to appear as though he was “all business,” but he was really a sweetheart. Soon, I realized that Paul was not only a talented coach but even more so a talented teacher. The man was a genius. He knew his math more than anyone my husband (math colleague) or I have ever known. He had high expectations for his students and helped those who wanted to persevere through his tough Statistics class (etc.). My husband Ryan, who came to teach at TMHS in 2004, was profoundly influenced by Paul and considered him a hugely influential colleague and friend. Paul was a tough critic in all the best ways-he made you think and question even when you just wanted the faculty meeting to end :). Most of all, Paul was jovial and a great friend. I have so many stories associated with Paul that make me laugh. Just thinking about his laugh/chuckle makes me smile. I will remember Paul with such fondness and his dedication to teaching will continue to influence both Ryan and I for our years to come. Paul-we will miss you. To Paul’s family: Please know that Paul had a huge impact on so many of us!

Condolence from Lynne O’Brien on March 18th, 2020 8:28 pm

Paul was a kind and generous soul. I remember how much he cared about his students. When he was a coach, he would even buy students sneakers if they needed them . He will be missed by all who knew him.

Condolence from Missy Denault on March 19th, 2020 8:43 am

I am so sorry for your loss. Mr. Dery was a great teacher, cross country and basketball coach.
Missy Denault TMHS Class of 84

Condolence from Angela Girardin on March 19th, 2020 9:45 am

Sorry for the multiple responses. I’m sad that I’m unable to attend service and offer a proper goodbye to an amazing man. I would very much love to hear from you if you’re able so I can express how much he meant to me. If you’re able to call or email my information is below. Sending my warmest hugs and hope you the knowledge that he brought smiles and happiness to so many eases your pain knowing his memory lives on in the many lives he touched.

Condolence from Adele Dery LaPrey on March 20th, 2020 2:37 pm

Dear Diane and Jeanne,

I am so sorry to hear about Paul’s passing. I know he had been suffering for some time. May he Rest In Peace.

Condolence from sandra oleksiak on March 22nd, 2020 10:17 am

Jeanne and Diane my deepest sympathy for the passing of your brother. My friendship with Paul goes back to when we were elementary students at St. Joan of Arc School in Southbridge, Ma. up until the 2nd grade when he and his family relocated to Thompson. However, I would have never thought we would meet again, this time, as teachers at TMHS. I will miss the many conversations we use to have. Paul was always there to listen if we had a school related issue, he was the “Go To Guy” because he always knew the answers and gave sound advice. I miss you already, Paul. May God comfort you.

Sandy Oleksiak

Condolence from Chris on March 24th, 2020 12:32 pm

Mr Dery wore his heart on his sleeve, and cared very much for his students and fellow staff members. I owe him a debt of gratitude for how he helped me in my senior year at TMHS many years ago. Mr Dery spent time after school tutoring me in a subject I was struggling with until I finally had that “epiphany moment” and everything became clear. Had it not been for him, I would not have received AP credits, or the foundation that helped me in that subject throughout college. I hope he knew the vastly positive impact he had on his students (and that goes to all of his fellow staff members as well). To his family, I offer my sincerest condolences. It is heartwarming to see the outpouring of respect and good memories of Mr Dery.

Condolence from Larry Prentiss on March 25th, 2020 8:26 am

I had the pleasure of working with Paul at TMHS. He was a professional, intelligent and kind person. We shared many great conversations and I feel lucky to have known him. My deepest sympathy to his family and friends.

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