BURLINGTON, VT. — Gaston Marcel Carrier died on June 20, 2012, at the age of 92. He was born on Jan. 14, 1920, in Montr^al, Canada, to Alfred and Adelina (Lapierre) Carrier.
He graduated from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario. In 1944, he married Mary McKay Archibald, whom he had met while he was an exchange student at Acadia University. He earned divinity degrees from United Theological College (McGill) and Meadville Lombard Theological School (University of Chicago). Over the years, he also earned graduate degrees from the Universities of Bridgeport and Vt. He was a member of the first Clinical Pastoral Education class in Vt., and he was awarded an honorary doctorate from Meadville in 1973.
Following graduation from divinity school, Gaston served Unitarian-Universalist parishes in; Ottawa, Ontario, Cohasset and Lowell, Mass., and Danbury, Conn., before moving to Burlington in 1961 with Mary and their four daughters, where he served as minister at the Unitarian Church, and Mary pursued her career as a psychiatric social worker. In 1978 he retired from the Burlington Unitarian Church, but served for ten more years as minister of United Church of Christ parishes in Willsboro and Wadhams, N.Y., across Lake Champlain, while continuing to live in Burlington.
Gaston was a member of the American Association of Pastoral Counselors. He led the Great Books discussion series in both the Danbury and Burlington churches. He was active in the Civil Rights Movement during both of these ministries, and he was instrumental in bringing Planned Parenthood to Vt. He was a founder of the Memorial Society of Vt., and was an active member in the Community Council of Greater Burlington, the Burlington Council of Churches, and the Champlain Valley Clergy Association.
Gaston was a true bibliophile who enjoyed adding to his diverse library whenever possible. Throughout his life, he pursued his deep and abiding love of all things French Canadian, including language, literature, history, culture, and antiques. He also loved to write, and he published a book of prayers and a children's story (Johnny Peanut) that he loved to read to others, especially his grandchildren.
Following his retirement, Gaston joined his wife Mary in volunteering as a guide at the Shelburne Museum. They also enjoyed exploring the Vt. countryside together, and visiting their favorite views of Lake Champlain. Mary died in 2008, after 64 years of marriage, and in 2010, Gaston moved to Boston, living at Rogerson House Assisted Living until the time of his death.
Gaston is survived by his four daughters, Mich^le Carrier of Burlington, Natalie Carrier and her husband David Ackerman of Asheville, N.C., Jill Carrier and her husband David Duncan of Boston, and Hilarie and her husband David Terebessy of Oak Park, Ill.; his four grandchildren, Samuel and Sarah Duncan, Matthew and Nina Terebessy; his brother, Jean-Paul Carrier, of Aylmer, Quebec; and many nieces and nephews.
Gaston's family wishes to thank the staff at Rogerson House and Matthew S. Shwartz Hospice for their kind and attentive care.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Gaston's memory may be sent to the Committee on Temporary Shelter, P.O. Box 1616, Burlington, Vt. 05402.
A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 1, 2012 at Bishop Booth Conference Center, 20 Rock Point Circle, in Burlington,VT.