To The Daily Sun,
My friend Sonny Levasseur died on New Year's Eve. The obituary carried by The Laconia Daily Sun for its Saturday edition touched, ever so briefly, on who Sonny Levasseur was. I'm not going to expand on that greatly because you don't need me to tell you. All you have to do is talk to anybody who's in the building trades, or who sells lumber and building supplies, or my wife, June, or anybody else for whom the Levasseur family did work, and you'll be impressed.
I do, however, want to say a few things about Sonny to kind of set the stage. Sonny was born about 10 months before me, so he was a year ahead of me in school. We attended what began as "L'Ecole St. Joseph," located at Sacred Heart Church, which quickly became Sacred Heart School. We didn't graduate from LHS. We graduated from Sacred Heart High School, of happy memory. We all drooled over Sonny's blue and white 1956 Chevy, but he had more serious pursuits.
Over the years I've seen Sonny and Loretta practically every week at Sacred Heart, including the 4 o'clock Mass Thursday afternoon.
After my dad served in Congress and the Johnson administration, he came home and joined Arthur Couture from whom he finally bought Bernie Boutin's insurance and real estate agency. That included the Busy Corner Store where he and Clem and Sonny had coffee every morning (Sonny ultimately had to relocate to LaFlamme's bakery (The Water Street Café). More recently I've seen Sonny at My Coffee House, where Fred Lamere had his auto repair shop for many years.
The point is that we have had a personal and business relationship that has endured for more than 50 years. My dad owned several apartment houses, which kept Clem and Sonny pretty busy at times. I have also not been shy about tasking them with projects. Through it all, Sonny Levasseur has maintained a contracting and building prowess; an honesty and dedication; and a focus on doing every job right, even if it meant going back several times to insure the customer was completely satisfied.
Sonny and I were part of a dying breed. Laconia has lost another native son.
David O. Huot
- Category: Letters
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