James T. Day, 67, a long time resident of Keene, died on April 19, 2015 after a sustained fight with prostate cancer and significant spinal disease.
He was born in Wolfeboro, NH, January 21, 1948, son of Helen (Hurd) and John Wilman Day. He attended Keene Schools and was a 1966 graduate of Keene High School. Mr. Day earned a liberal arts degree in History from Plymouth State College in 1970 and a Master’s Degree in Education in 1971, also from Plymouth State College. In 1986, he earned a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies in Educational Leadership from the University of Massachusetts.
He began his career as a teacher and coach at Newfound Memorial Jr. Sr. High School in Bristol, NH in 1971. He then became teaching principal of Russell Elementary School in Rumney, NH for two years. In 1974, Mr. Day became supervising principal of Canaan Elementary School in Canaan, NH.
In 1977, he became principal of Fuller School in Keene until he was selected to serve as principal of Keene Junior High School in 1983 where he continued until 1990. In that year, Mr. Day became assistant superintendent for Keene Schools and served in that capacity through 1993. He then considered himself very fortunate to have been able to return to the principalship in 1993, this time at a renamed Keene Middle School where he served through June of 2003.
Mr. Day then made the difficult decision to leave this position believing it was time to do something different with his life. Always willing to accept a challenge, he then took the position of Principal of Brattleboro Union High School where he served until progressive back and leg problems, together with an advanced cancer diagnosis, forced him to leave this position in May of 2011.
As an accomplished educator and principal, as well as an always proud father, Mr. Day loved working with school children, coaching them in Little League and in schools, introducing them to exciting things like model rocketry, supporting his own and other students on sidelines, serving as an advisor to middle and senior high student advisories, taking students on field trips, and chaperoning the 8th grades trips to Washington, DC, and high school students to NYC. He served on five middle school visiting committees to other schools, chairing his last three. During his career, he had been a member of national professional associations for elementary, middle, and senior high schools and was particularly proud of having yearbooks dedicated to him in two different secondary schools.
While serving as principal in Brattleboro, Mr. Day was privileged to participate in two extended trips to China in order to strengthen education exchange programs between China and Brattleboro Union High School. In 2012, Mr. Day was recognized by the General Assembly in Montpelier, VT for his “enduring legacy of achievement” serving 40 years in school administration in two states.
Since his departure from regular school service, Mr. Day became an active member of the Chad Evans Wrongly Convicted Committee believing strongly in the innocence of this outstanding former student and then school board member in the Keene School District.
In his later years, Mr. Day also served as President of the Willowbrook Association in Keene.
Survivors include his loving partner in life since September, 2006, Ann Eaton of Keene, NH; a son, Jamie Day and his wife, Anamaria of Newburgh, NY; a daughter, Stephanie Stark and her husband, Gordon of Sonora, CA; two granddaughters, Macormic and Sawyer, of Sonora, CA; one grandson, James T. Day III; a sister, Patricia Day Roux of Charlotte, NC; two brothers, Richard Day and his wife, Jacqueline, of Concord, NH; Robert Day and his wife, Lynn, of Scotts Hill, TN, and; a wonderful Mother in her 100th year, Helen Day of Fort Myers, FL. former wife, Cynthia Day of Keene. There are numerous, nieces, nephews, cousins and former students who knew him very well. He also leaves many dear friends in Keene and in Brattleboro.
Mr. Day was very appreciative of all the medical care he received, mostly from the Norris Cotton Cancer Center at Cheshire Medical Center, but also from Florida Cancer Specialists. His last days were spent comfortably at Hope Hospice in Cape Coral, Florida.
A memorial funeral service and Christian burial will be announced for Mr. Day at some point in the summer. There are no public calling hours. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Mr. Day’s memory to the First Baptist Church, 105 Maple Avenue, Keene, NH 03431. All services are under the care of Cheshire Family Funeral Chapel and Crematories, 44 Maple Ave. Keene, NH. 03431. www.cheshirefamilyfuneralhome.com