Colonel Robert John Laflam Sr
Col. Robert John Laflam died peacefully on November 7th 2019 in Concord, NH. He was born on July 24th 1931 in Laconia, NH of Alice Guimont and Arthur Laflam of Belmont, NH. His mother, Alice Marie, brought him up in the Catholic faith which was an important foundation for his life. He was thankful to have been born in a small town where he developed a great love of the outdoors with fishing, trapping, tapping maple trees and making maple syrup mainstays of his childhood. Grounded by his family, faith and community he left Belmont for West Point the United States Military Academy and later received a Masters in Engineering from the University of Illinois.
He began his career in the United States Army assigned to the 97th Signal battalion in Boeblingen, Germany. He went on as an instructor in applied communications and Electronic warfare at Fort Monmouth, NJ. Later he served as the Battalion S-3 Operations Officer in 13th Signal Battalion, 1 st Calvary Division, Korea. He was Senior Signal Advisor to the lII Corps, Army of the Republic of Vietnam. Other assignments included Senior Signal Advisor and Force Development Advisor to the Chief Signal Officer, and the Deputy Chief of Staff, Force Development, Imperial Iranian Ground Forces. Upon returning to the US he finished his service as Director of Force Modernization Integrated Logistics Support for the U. S. Army Communications Research and Development Command and Communications-Electronics Command, respectively, at Fort Monmouth. During his tour in Vietnam he was awarded the Purple Heart. He retired as a Colonel after a distinguished 31 year career.
He noted that the greatest joy in his life was to meet Margaret (Peggy) Bowman on the steps of the Officers Club at Panzer Kaserne in Bobligen Germany. Peggy would become the love of his life. “ She is a saint in heaven and she was the answer to my prayers”. They were married for fifty years before her passing in 2006.
After retirement he continued to serve his country as representative to the NH House of Representatives for two terms. His life long love of the environment led him to serve on the State Public Water access advisory board, The Squam Lake Public Access Trust Board of Directors and the conservation commission of Sanbornton NH. He noted “while I served all over the world in a multitude of assignments there was always a common ingredient and that was people. I had a great love for my troops and the people that served in my commands. And in general, I found that if you love people they love you right back.”
Colonel Laflam was an active parishioner of St. Mary of the Assumption Catholic Church in Tilton, and a Fourth Degree member of the Knights of Columbus.
He is survived by a loving family including daughter and son in law, Nanette and Ross Bevan of Chevy Chase, MD; daughter and son in law Elizabeth and Todd Smith of Spokane, WA; son and daughter in law, Dr. Robert and Maureen Laflam of Concord NH; son LTC David Laflam of Augusta, GA; son and daughter in law Dr. Paul Laflam and Dr. Monica Garin-Laflam of Roanoke, VA; and thirteen grandchildren, Andrew, Rosemary, Renee, Michelle, Rebecca and Margaret Laflam. Maxwell, Theodore and Pryce Bevan, Katherine, Emma, Bowman and Albert Ridinger; sister in law, Catherine Parella of Arcadia, FL; and first cousins who were like his brothers Paul Laflam and his wife Joyce Laflam of Belmont, NH and Donnie Laflam and his wife Candice of Lakeport, NH; Richard Ridinger and Nancy Hoffman of Hopkinton, NH.
Calling hours will be held on Sunday, November 10, 2019 from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM at the William F. Smart Sr. Memorial Home, 584 West Main St. (Tilton-Franklin Rd) in Tilton. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Monday, November 11, 2019 at 10:00 AM at St. Mary of The Assumption Church of St. Gabriel Parish, Chestnut St., Tilton. Burial will be held at a later date in St. John Cemetery in Tilton.
Memorial donation in memory of Col. Robert, may be made to St. Mary of the Assumption of St. Gabriel Parish, P.O. Box 490, Franklin, NH 03235.
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