Roland C. Blanchard, 83: Former Central principal, dedicated educator serving several generations of students

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MANCHESTER, NH – Roland C. Blanchard, 83, of Manchester, died November 27, 2021, at Elliot Hospital after a period of declining health.

He was born in Manchester on April 12, 1938, to Robert and Antoinette (Berthiaume) Blanchard.

He attended Manchester public elementary school and graduated from Goffstown High School in 1956. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in English from Keene Teachers College; a Master’s Degree in counseling from the University of New Hampshire and a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study in Administration from Boston University.

Mr. Blanchard began his 36 years in education as an English teacher and drama coach in Hollis and Milford. He was an English teacher and school counselor at West High School and administrator at Central High School for 28 years culminating his career as principal.

He was highly respected by the youth, faculty and community for his dedicated service to several generations of students. He will be fondly remembered for his wisdom, sense of humor and love of family.

Mr. Blanchard served his country for 20 years in the National Guard and U.S. Army Reserves. He was activated during the Berlin Crisis in 1961.

He held membership in the National Education Association, Manchester Retired Educators Association and the New Hampshire Retired Educators Association of which he was state president from 2002-2004. He also served on the board of trustees at Keene State College in the 1970’s.

He was a communicant of St. Joseph Cathedral and prior to the closing of St. George Parish had served many years as lector and Eucharistic Minister.

Family members include his wife of 59 years, Claire (Robitaille) Blanchard of Manchester; three sons, Martin Blanchard and Jerome Blanchard and his wife, Jacqueline, all of Manchester and Joel Blanchard of Menifee, CA; grandchildren, Chantal, Simone and Gabrielle all of Manchester, Nicholas and Alexander of Menifee, CA and Tucker, Bailey and Erin of Northwood; a sister, Darlene Gelinas and her husband, Don, of Clermont, FL; numerous cousins and several nieces and nephews.

He was predeceased by a brother, Lester Blanchard.

SERVICES: Calling hours are Wednesday from 4 to 7 p.m. at Lambert Funeral Home & Crematory, 1799 Elm St., Manchester. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Thursday at 10 a.m. at St. Joseph Cathedral, 439 Pine St., Manchester. Committal prayers will follow at Mt. Calvary Cemetery, 474 Goffstown Rd., Manchester.

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