James Cavanaugh

James T Cavanaugh

Friday, June 25th, 1943 - Tuesday, October 13th, 2020
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James Thomas Cavanaugh

Milton - It is with much sadness that we announce the passing of James Thomas Cavanaugh (Jim). Our beloved husband, father, grandfather & friend.

Jim was born June 25, 1943, in Burlington, VT to the late John Cavanaugh and Glenna (Tennien) Cavanaugh. He graduated from Winooski High School in 1962 and went on to serve in the United States Air Force. On June 3, 1967, he married his wife of 53 years, Jeanette (Lapointe) Cavanaugh.

Jim then pursued his life's passion in a career with the Burlington Fire Department for 27 years. Jim was proud to serve with BFD and cherished the "brothers" he served with. Through the years with BFD he made headlines doing what he loved, fighting fires big and small, and was recognized for saving the lives of total strangers. When you heard "C5 IS ON DUTY", you knew the city was in good hands... Jim was on duty. Jim retired from BFD as a Battalion Chief in 1994. C5 is now relieved of duty.

Left to cherish his memory are his loving wife Jeanette, his treasured son and daughter-in-law Shannon and Sheila Cavanaugh of Colchester, and his pride and joy grandson Jimmy Cavanaugh and friend Erika Lemieux of Fairfax.

His brothers Pete Chagnon, Steven (Donna) Chagnon, Tommy (Karen) Chagnon, Chet Chagnon, John (Mary) Cavanaugh, Tom (Jaynie) Cavanaugh, and Joe Cavanaugh. His sisters Theresa (Bob) Lovergine and Delina (Wil) Wilson. His brother-in-law Frank Lapointe, several nieces and nephews, extended family and friends.

He was predeceased by his parents, his brother Rick Chagnon, and his sister Glenna Richardson.

A Mass to celebrate his life will be held at St. John Vianney Church in So. Burlington on Wednesday, October 21, 2020, at 11:00 AM, with burial to follow at Resurrection Park Cemetery. Visiting hours will be Tuesday, October 20, 2020, at LaVigne Funeral home in Winooski from 4:00 PM to 7:00 PM.


When I am called to duty, God wherever flames may rage, give me the strength to save a life, whatever be its age. Help me to embrace a little child before it's too late, or save an older person from the horror of that fate. Enable me to be alert to hear the weakest shout, and quickly and efficiently to put the fire out. I want to fill my calling and to give the best of me, to guard my neighbor and protect his property. And if according to your will I have to lose my life, bless with your protecting hand my loving family from strife.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to The Josh Pallotta Fund (to help with people with PTSD), P.O. Box 542, Colchester, VT 05446 or the American Macular Degeneration Foundation (AMDF), P.O. Box 515, Northampton, MA 01061-0515
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Tuesday, October 20th, 2020 | 4:00pm - 7:00pm
    Tuesday, October 20th, 2020 4:00pm - 7:00pm
    LaVigne Funeral Home and Cremation Service
    132 Main St
    Winooski, VT 05404
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Service

    Wednesday, October 21st, 2020 | 11:00am
    Wednesday, October 21st, 2020 11:00am
    St John Vianney Catholic Church
    160 Hinesburg Road
    South Burlington, VT
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Interment

    Resurrection Park Cemetery
    200 Hinesburg RD
    South Burlington, VT 05403
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Mary Wilkens

Posted at 06:42pm
Dear Jeanette and family,
Sorry to hear of your loss. In addition to being a fireman Jim was a great co-worker as well. I enjoyed working with him at the door of Costco. A nice man with a sense of humor. Take good care All,
Mary Wilkens

Pete Chagnon

Posted at 10:53am
Jimmy with our mother 1943-4. St Louis Street , Burlington. He is at peace now , freed from his pain and ills. Jimmy lived life to the fullest. From his brother Pete ( Cavanaugh) Chagnon

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