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John Henry Hanson, Sr.

April 8, 1938 ~ March 10, 2024 (age 85) 85 Years Old

John Hanson, Sr. Obituary

John Henry Hanson, Sr. (85) passed into glory at home surrounded by the love of his family on Sunday, March 10, 2024.

John was born April 8, 1938 in New Britain, Connecticut to Henry and Esther (Westman) Hanson. They brought him home to the family dairy farm on Spruce Brook Road in Berlin where he would live for all his years. John attended Berlin schools beginning at the four-room Hubbard School in East Berlin. His first grade teacher called him “a regular boy” who “likes to fool.” He graduated from Berlin High School in 1956 and then attended the University of Connecticut where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in the College of Agriculture and met the love of his life, Sarah “Sally” LaFountain.

John and Sally were married on October 21, 1961 at the Berlin Congregational Church in Berlin, Connecticut, beginning their solid, loving and faithful marriage of over 61 years. Together, they ran the family farm and taught their five children to work hard and to “straighten up and fly right.”

John inherited Spruce Brook Farm from his father and grandfather and was proud to be able to pass the farm on to his son and grandchildren. As any farmer knows, in order to afford farming, one must have an off-farm paycheck. Over the years, John was a building superintendent at New Brite Apartments in New Britain, a night-crew manager and dispatcher at Dattco Bus Company, also in New Britain, and Sexton of the Berlin Congregational Church.

Somehow finding the time, John was also a firefighter at Berlin Volunteer Fire Department where he was a Commissioner and Engineer tasked with keeping the pumper trucks working. He was also a member of Royal Order of the Eagles, earning many B.S. awards. He served as a board member of A Better Choice Women’s Center in Middletown, and Representative to Central Association of United Church of Christ.

John was a faithful 72-year member of the Berlin Congregational Church, where he was baptized as an infant, helped his mother dust pews on Saturdays, was confirmed at age 14, served as Deacon and Senior Deacon, and worked as Sexton for over 30 years.

While he could have a rough exterior, John was deeply devoted to Sally their five children. When grandchildren came along, he became the official family toy-fixer and battery supplier. John loved a good long conversation always beginning with “let me put it to you this way” as he shared his wisdom with anyone who sought his advice (and sometimes those who didn’t). John loved the Springtime when the flowers begin to bloom but it’s still too muddy to start plowing. He and Sally were loyal customers at the Starlight and Uncle D’s Diners where they could be found on most Sunday mornings before church sharing pancakes with the grandkids.  

John was pre-deceased by his beloved Sally, their youngest son Timothy, and his sister Ruth Hanson Cowan. He is survived by his children, John Jr. and his wife Linda of Onancock, VA, Mary of Hartford, Nancy of Northfield, MA, and Jim and his wife Jill of Berlin; his grandchildren Rebecca, Travis, Ethan, Sarah, Erik, and Jennifer; four Brown Swiss cows; and countless friends who will cherish his memory.

Calling hours will be Friday, March 22, 2024 from 4:00 to 6:00 pm at the Erickson-Hansen Funeral Home of Berlin, 111 Chamberlain Hwy., Berlin. The funeral service will begin at 10:00 am on Saturday, March 23, 2024 at the Berlin Congregational Church, 878 Worthington Ridge, Berlin. Burial will follow in Maple Cemetery.  In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in John’s honor to the Berlin Congregational Church. 

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Services

Calling Hours
Friday
March 22, 2024

4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Erickson-Hansen of Berlin/Porters
111 Chamberlain Hwy
Kensington, CT 06037

Funeral Service
Saturday
March 23, 2024

10:00 AM
Berlin Congregational Church
878 Worthington Ridge
Berlin, CT 06037

Burial
Saturday
March 23, 2024

Maple Cemetery
1165 Worthington Ridge
Berlin, CT 06037

Please note
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in John’s honor to the Berlin Congregational Church.

Donations

Berlin Congregational Church
878 Worthington Ridge, Berlin CT 06037
Tel: 1-860-828-6586

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