Park House’s Hazel Levasseur Celebrates a Century of Living
This was first published in the Herald of Randolph April 21, 2016. Levasseur is about to celebrate her 101st birthday.
Hazel Levasseur, who makes her home at the Park House on Main Street in Rochester, turns 100 years old on the day this issue of The Herald is published. She celebrated the occasion a few days early at a party attended by family and friends this past Saturday at the Park House.
“I never expected to be this old!” she commented the day before her party.
Born April 21, 1916 in Randolph, she was the youngest child of Mark and Kate Stiles and grew up on the family farm on the North Road in Bethel with her older brothers, Frank and Carl.
The day after she graduated from Whitcomb High School in 1935, she began a 14-year stint as a bookkeeper in the office at the Bethel Mills. She was married briefly to Earl Tewksbury. She later married Stan Adams, and they had a son, Chuck. After her third husband, John Cattnack died, she married Richard Levasseur in 1968, and they owned and ran the Red Clover Restaurant on Main Street in Bethel for many years.
“After we sold that, we ran the Blazing Saddle Restaurant on Route 107 in Gaysville, but then that burned down and that was it!” she explained.
Petite and still full of energy, Hazel noted that, “I used to drive a truck to pick up scrap metal and other junk to take to the junkyard for Richard’s scrap metal business, and he also had a business that built trailers for snow machines and heavy equipment, and I used to deliver those, too.”
She and Richard “retired” to Georgia, where they lived for a number of years, continuing their truck business. They moved back to Vermont before his death in 2009.
Why does she think she lived to celebrate her 100th birthday?
“Well, I always worked and I didn’t drink much, and I never smoked,” she replied. “I tried a cigarette once and then I could taste it for two weeks afterward!” she added, making a face.
A grandmother of three and great-grandmother of two, Hazel is beginning her fifth year of living at the Park House, and says she’s very happy there.
“I love it!” she said with a grin. “You can do as you please, and the food is excellent!”