Published DateMEREDITH — Claude P. Goddard, Sr., known as Phil to his friends and family, died peacefully on June 3, 2013 at Golden View Nursing Center in Meredith. He was 91.
Phil was born May 22, 1922 in Holderness, NH, and grew up on farms in Holderness and Ashland. He graduated from Ashland High School as Salutatorian in 1940 and studied Electrical Engineering at the University of New Hampshire, where he was a member of the Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity. He left UNH after his sophomore year to enlist in the U.S. Navy in 1942. He proudly served on board the U.S.S. Foote, a Fletcher Class Destroyer and maintained his relationship with his shipmates through the USS Foote Association. He saw action in the Atlantic, the Caribbean, and the South Pacific. He survived the torpedoing of his ship in the Battle of Empress Augusta Bay in November 1943 and remained with the ship until it was towed back to Tulagi for refit. He was then selected for Navy flight training and returned to the United States to become a Naval Aviation Cadet. He was completing the final stages of flight training when the war ended and he was honorably discharged. For his service, he was awarded the World War II Victory Medal, the American Campaign Medal, the Asiatic Pacific Campaign Medal, the Good Conduct Medal, and the Combat Action Ribbon. Returning to Meredith, where his parents then resided, Phil worked as a supervisor at Allen Rogers and as a flight instructor and pilot for the fledgling Winnipesaukee Aviation, Inc. at Laconia Airport
It was at Allen Rogers that Phil met his future wife, Doris Dow, a Laconia resident. He impressed Doris with his love of and skill in flying by taking her on seaplane rides to his parents' house on Lake Waukewan. He and Doris married in 1947 and soon started their family, which eventually grew to six children. In 1949, the couple relocated to Glendale, California, where Phil took a job as a draughtsman for Douglas Aircraft Corporation. He later worked for Lear Inc. (subsequently renamed Lear Siegler) as a field service technician on gyroscopes used in auto-pilot, navigation and bombing systems aboard Air Force fighters, bombers and cargo aircraft. His assignments for Lear took him and his family to Alabama, Washington State, New York, Massachusetts, Puerto Rico, Johnston Island, New Mexico, Michigan, New Jersey, Florida, Oklahoma and Ohio. He later took a job at Sanders Associates in Manchester, NH, and ended his work career as Director of Marketing of Lockheed Support Services in Arlington, Texas. After his retirement, he worked for many years as a handyman locally.
Throughout their many moves around the country, Phil and Doris maintained a close relationship with family in New Hampshire. It was their dream to live on Lake Waukewan, and in 1962, Phil and Doris bought a summer camp at Pollard Shores on Lake Waukewan, just up the lake from where his parents had lived. In 1964 the family moved his family to Meredith and then in 1968 built their year-round house on Pollard Shores Road. Phil lived there until moving to Golden View three years ago. His friends and the staff at Golden View soon became family to Phil, and he died there among his friends and the compassionate and professional staff.
Phil loved to fly, hunt, fish and play golf. He was a man of many talents who instilled in his children a keen sense of the value of an education and the need to work hard. He was a warm and personable man with an excellent sense of humor.
Phil's wife, Doris, passed away in August of 2005. He is survived by a large and loving family: his daughter, Crystal Wolfe, and her husband, Doug, of Green Valley, Arizona; his son, Nelson, and Nelson's wife, Jeanne Goddard, of Exeter, NH; his son Robert, and Robert's wife, Marsha Goddard, of Rutland, VT; his son, Claude, Jr. of Arlington, VA; his daughter, Corinne Pike, of Jupiter, FL; and his daughter, Kim Hamel, and Kim's husband, Ken, of Meredith; eleven grandchildren; seven great grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews. Phil's ashes will be interred in Meredith Village Cemetery beside those of his loving wife, Doris.
A Calling hour will be held at Mayhew Funeral Home (Rtes. 3 & 104), Meredith; on Saturday, June 8, 2013 at 1:00 pm. Interment will follow at the Meredith Village Cemetery (Rte. 3), Meredith.
Mayhew Funeral Homes & Crematorium of Meredith and Plymouth are handling the arrangements. For Phil's Book of Memories: www.mayhewfuneralhomes.com