Leonard E. Downes
Leonard "Lenny" E. Downes, 83, a lifelong resident of Franklin, died, Saturday, February 8, 2020 at the Merrimack County Nursing Home in Boscawen following a period of failing health. Lenny was born in Franklin, August 30, 1936, son of the late, Howard O. and Audrey (Morrill) Downes. He attended schools in Franklin and graduated from Franklin High School, class of 1954. Lenny served honorably with the United States Army from September 24, 1954 until September 23, 1957, discharged with rank of SP3 (T).
In the late 1970's he and his wife Rachel took ownership of, and operated Laroche's Market, a family neighborhood meat and grocery store on upper Central St in Franklin. A truck driver for many years, Lenny worked for the former Giles Dairy in Franklin, Weeks Dairy, and Pike Industries in Tilton. To keep busy, Lenny continued working in the maintenance department at the Belknap County Nursing Home in Laconia until his retirement in 2000. Lenny had a gift to gab and had a wonderful sense of humor. He certainly enjoyed eating out with his wife Rachel as often as he could. Not sure he ever went without his meals, and of course his snacks. His fastidious care of his property, gazebo and all, could be seen as you passed it on Willow Hill.
In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by his four sisters, Betty Zanchi, Olive Shaw, Blanche Tilton and Phyllis Ingerson.
Lenny leaves his wife of 64 years, Rachel (Laroche) Downes of the Merrimack County Nursing Home. His two daughters, Brenda Johnson and her husband, Dan of Franklin and Linda Murphy and her husband, Shawn of Gilford, his son, Ernest Downes and his wife Dina of Franklin, grandchildren, Nicholas and Matthew Johnson, Allison Quinn, Tyler Murphy and Jerricko Downes. He also leaves his sister, Pearl R. Corrigan of Lebanon and numerous generational Nieces and Nephews.
Lenny's family wanted to acknowledge and thank the staff for the compassion and dignity shown to Lenny at the Peabody Home in Franklin and Merrimack County Nursing Home in Boscawen.
As requested by Lenny, there are no calling hours. A graveside service will be held later in the spring when weather permits, at the family lot in Franklin Cemetery in Franklin with military honors offered. Burial will follow.
Those wishing, may make memorial contributions in Lenny's name to the Franklin Visiting Nurse Association and Hospice, 75 Chestnut Street, Franklin, NH 03235.
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