Daniel Carpenter, Sr.

Daniel Dechert Carpenter, Sr., 91, formerly of Easthampton, Mass., and Pembroke, Bermuda, died Aug. 21, 2013, in New Haven.

He was predeceased by his wife of 65 years, Jane Conyers Carpenter, and their son William Stratton Carpenter.

Survivors include Daniel Dechert Carpenter, Jr., of Hamden, with whom he resided, Peter Chapin Carpenter of Pembroke, Bermuda, Deborah Carpenter Jerome (Lawrence) of Barrington, R.I., Jennifer Reed Carpenter Reid (Joseph) of Brick, N.J., Kris Carpenter of Albuquerque, N.M., and grandchildren Clare, Jennie, Gates and Sam Jerome.

Born and raised in Pottsville, Pa., Dan was the son of James Stratton Carpenter, III, and Clare Beck Dechert Carpenter.

Survived by brothers James Stratton Carpenter, IV of Salem, Peter Chapin Carpenter of Bethlehem, Pa., many cousins, nieces and nephews and legions of former students and friends.

Dan graduated from South Kent School in Connecticut in 1941 and Dartmouth College in 1945. He served in the United States Air Force as a navigator during World War II.

He taught and coached for 30 years at Williston Northampton School in Easthampton, Mass., retiring in 1985. Dan also had a lifelong association with Keewaydin Camp, Temagami, Ontario, Canada.

A memorial service will be held at a later date.

Arrangements in care of Beecher & Bennett, 2300 Whitney Ave., Hamden, CT.

Gifts in his honor may be made to Williston Northampton School, 19 Payson Avenue, Easthampton, MA 01027; The Roy Waters Scholarship Fund or The Carpenter Long Trip Fund at The Keewaydin Foundation, 950 West Shore Road, Salisbury, VT 05769; or The Bermuda Maritime Museum, P.O. Box MA 133, SANDYS MA BX, Bermuda.

42 thoughts on “Daniel Carpenter, Sr.”

  1. My thoughts are with the family..Carpy was an extrordinary man and I will always remember his spirit both on campus during my 3 years and also in Bermuda where he will be missed also.

    Class of 1980.

  2. This is the passing of a true icon. I am so sorry, but also feel grateful to have had the chance to be associated with Carpy so many years ago. My thoughts and prayers go out to the family.
    John White

  3. Dan Carpenter was a wonderful faculty member, coach and human being. He lit up every room he was in. What an enthusiastic personality! He taught me how to block and tackle– both literally and figuratively. I’ll never forget him, and my life is the better for having crossed paths 1969-72. We’ll all miss you Carp.

  4. There are no words to express the profound impact Carpy made on my time at Williston. He was one of the first people I met when I arrived and he knew right away I was scared of being there. He always made a conscious effort to check in with me to make sure I was ok. Thank you Carpy, I am ok because I was blessed with meeting someone like you!!

  5. Carpy was one of a kind…smart, engaging, witty, charming and extraordinarily generous of heart. Just knowing he was on the planet made the world seem like a better place. He will be missed by so very many…Heartfelt condolences to his family.
    Wendy Logan ’80

  6. He was always a comforting presence at football practice. Once I got hit in the head and I remember him taking me aside and saying “Oh, you just got your bell rung”. Sure, later we learned more about the dangers of head trauma, but at the time it made me feel better. He was a good man.

  7. Had Carpy both in the class room and on the ice. Found memories from both during my four years at Williston. RIP.

  8. While nearly every teacher I came in contact with during my years @ Williston provided me with excellent teaching & role model skills, “Carp” was one of the 2 “greats.” He & Joe Lossone were my heroes. R.I.P., Carp.

  9. Dan (Mr. Carpenter, Carpy) helped make Williston memorable for me. He was encouraging – even to someone whose math skills developed ‘late’ and whose athletic skills are ‘on the way’. He was the consummate ‘prep-school educator’. We were fortunate to have him and others in his mold.

  10. I remember Mr. Carpenter as a great teacher – warm, funny and encouraging. He made a lasting impression and lives on in fond memories.

  11. Bless you , Carp
    You and Jane always exemplified the Williston spirit and mission
    Best wishes and condolences to the remainder of the Carpenter and Williston family
    Class of 1970

  12. Carp brought out the best in everyone he was around – whether in the classroom, field, dorm, or dining hall. He was the best of the best, and had a great, position impact on me. He exemplified everything good about Willison. He will be greatly missed and never forgotten.

  13. Carp. What a remarkable life. What a remarkable guy. The class of ’67 will miss you but will forever be influenced by your kindness, generousity and spirit. You were simply the best.

  14. I loved Carpy! What a wonderful guy. I have only happy memories of him and being in his class. Funny, supportive, and kind, with a twinkle in his eye! He made the world a better place and I’m sorry to hear of his passing.

  15. Thank God for Carp and all that he shared with us through his patience, wisdom, kindness, and leadership.

    To Carp and family, our love and thanks always

  16. This is the passing of a Williston icon. I’m honored to say that I played two sports for him. He always inspired me to give my best on the field. A great coach, teacher and friend. My condolences to the Carpenter family.

  17. I recall a group of us trying to get an old 8mm projector to show some x rated movies in the basement of Mem dorm late one night. Carpy walked in and we all took a deep breath. How would he react? Would we get ejected from school? His words – ‘I’m disappointed in you.’ After a hesitation to let us sit on edge a little longer – ‘I would have thought by now at least one of you would know how to run a projector like this.’ The relief we felt was palpable. I’ll always remember him as a kind teacher/leader who understood the young men going through adolescence at an all boys school.

  18. What a wonderful man Dan was. As I look back over my 4 years at Williston he clearly stands out as one of those people who was a great “teaching” coach, an important mentor to so many of us, a caring teacher and he was such a loving Father/Husband to his children/Grandchildren and all of the many many Williston students he adopted over the years. MAY HE REST IN PEACE!

  19. As a completely non-athletic girl, I never had a class or sport with Mr. Carpenter, but saw him around school all the time. He was such a profoundly nice guy, sweet and engaging with everyone including people like me who were not in his immediate orbit. I have (sadly) forgotten many things about high school, but I absolutely remember his cheery smile and greeting. I was a classmate of his daughter Jen’s, and I also remember so fondly the sweet way he was with her, protective but also letting her explore the world. He will be missed

  20. I never had Carp as a teacher in class, but his presence as a beautiful man taught me my four years at Williston. What a great human being. A role model. Rest in peace, Mr. Carpenter.

  21. This is one of those very sad days. As the manager of Waterlot, as a math teacher, as a footballl and baseball coach…I never once knew Carp in any of those roles. But as a friend of his I count myself among the luckiest men on the planet.
    Danny Jr, Deb and Peter, my thoughts are with you tonight. Jane and Dan and Bill…together again !!

    All the best, John Faiella ’68

  22. What always struck me about Carpy was his ability to always be happy and see the positive side of things, a real gift. Obviously a superb educator on all levels, we all can learn from him.Blessing to his family.

  23. Carpy was definitely one of a kind. As a teacher I try very hard to emulate him each and every day. This world has lost a remarkable human being, and I was truly blessed to have had him in mine! My deepest sympathy to his family.

  24. I was just thinking of Carpy 2 days ago for the first time in while and today I got the email informing us of his death. I played hockey under Carp with his great son Peter, who was the fastest skater on the team and a really nice guy too!

    My condolences to the entire family. Carpy touched so many people. I can still see his bow tie and all of the chalk all over his face and clothes! 🙂 He was one of the nicest people I’ve ever known. R.I.P.

  25. Carpy, the man who always had a smile and a joke. You will be missed by all but mostly your families in Bermuda that always looked for you ‘ down the street ‘ . We are all blessed for just knowing you. Thank you for touching my life. My prayers are with his family and friends. Well done Carpy for a wonderful life lived – may your soul rest in peace.

  26. I had Carpy for algebra as a Lower Middler (9th grade), my first year at the school. I remember him as patient — I was not a very good student. Another memory of him was as the Zamboni driver, and someplace in my vast pile of negatives I have a photo of him doing that, probably from winter term in 1968. I’ll try and find it and send a scan to Jeff.

  27. Carpi was the only math teacher who I got an A from and deserved it. I loved his stories to get our class going, and his engaging smile and twinkle of his eyes. To this day, I always am proud of the fact that I “know” geometry. His easy going personality got through to me and made me smile. Thanks Carpi, you did good in this world.

  28. My 3 brothers and I all played baseball for Dan and a couple of us had him in the classroom too. Chalk on his face; pipe smoldering in his sport jacket pocket; twinkle in his eye; kindness for everyone. I spent time watching NFL games at his house on Sundays (great doughnuts from Jane), he took me to my first professional hockey game, taught me to like the Oakland Athletics, and reminded me that you had to swim upriver to reach Dartmouth but only needed to glide downriver to get to Yale. We will all miss him. Our best to his entire family–who were always a part of ours.
    Mike, Gary, Gil, and Mark Timm

  29. Carpy will always have a special place in my heart. He brought such joy to his students and was always such an important part of Williston. He taught me to enjoy math by bringing energy and laughter to the classroom. I still remember many of the nicknames he gave each of us, and how he would invent stories about members of the class and turn them into math problems.

  30. Carp was truly one of the greats! He taught me so much more than Math and Hockey. He taught me the value of respect. He will be greatly missed. Here’s to you Carp!

  31. Yes a very sad day but I have so many good memories of Carp that I am thankful to have known and laughed with him.
    Never had him as a coach or teacher, but he would always check in on me to make sure I was doing OK. From across the Quad in deep winter, in a bermudian accent, I would here this voice,”Hey Outer, vat yu doing bie?”My spirits would be lifted immediately!
    In Bermuda Carp and Jane lived just down the road. Strolling over there for a cold beer and a chat about his Atheletics ( Philadelphia that is) and other life topics was so good.Or I would see him walking home from Hamilton and I would slow down and say” Hey you looking for Alfonzo and the cafeteria?” and he would say,”No. not that hungary, yet.”
    At Halloween Patrick, Layton and I would take our children there Trick or Treating; candies for the kids and an offer of a cold libation for the parents. What a laugh. What a good man. we are all better for knowing him.
    I have missed Carp since he moved back to Connecticut to be with Dan and Debbie. But I have so many memories to enjoy and laugh with to myself. Thanks Carp for being part of my life.

  32. Carp was one of a kind. I remember the many photos of former Williston players and teams on the wall of his den in his home. How I wished to be among them, for it meant that I would be ever in Carp’s “hall of fame.” Yet, we all know that Carp carried us with him always. He was so instrumental in our lives at Williston. He forgot no one. He had time for every one. And with a little time, he might even call you “Veteran.” Ah, Carp… you are much appreciated.
    Steve August ’72

  33. Saw Carpy this June at reunion (I celebrated our 52nd with the class of 1963) and had a chance to get to him to chat after the throngs parted. He was a great guy, a “Mister Chips of Williston” and a warm friend, always greeting us when coming back to Williston and then bringing up stories I’d forgotten–like the bet we made if we could beat Suffield, he’d buy one of our Labrador’s pups. That brought the pup we had dubbed Arcturus to campus–can’t remember if he renamed him. He was the biggest pup in the litter. And senior year when I sat through sophomore honors algebra to get my board score raised to get into Dartmouth–which he told me I should and I could, and then went about setting up an alumni interview even though Phil had other ideas where we should go to college. Always asked about my parents, always interested in me and my family. I can’t think about Williston and all the good things that happened there without including him in my thoughts. I bet Williston will give him the 2nd annual all-time sports award for his coaching tenure next June at reunion.

  34. Carp was a true legend of Williston and will be missed by so many. I remember Carp from one of my first days on campus as a freshman, he saw I had a letter from my grandfather (who would pass away during that school year) and noticed the town it came from, which was close to where he was born. We immediately hit it off from that moment. He was always good for a smile and a laugh and I found that you hadn’t really “arrived” on campus until he gave you a nickname (his special way of remembering everybody) and when I received mine very early on it was like a grandfather putting his arm around you and saying he’d help you through the rough spots and kick you in the behind when you needed it. He was a fantastic and gifted teacher but more importantly he was an amazing person who you always looked forward to finding and chatting with for a few minutes at reunions. The “old guard” of Carp, Francis, Shaler, St. George, Bolt, Brownie, EB, and Gregory were what made Williston great and those are the people who still impact my life today. There will never be another group like these individuals and I feel honored that they were all a part of my life.

    My thoughts and prayers go to Carp’s family, today we all shed a tear with you.

  35. My thoughts and prayers go to Carpy’s family. He was one of the great instructors who instilled honesty and integrity into all who knew him. He was such a fine man who will always be in my memory.

  36. My condolences to the Carpenter family. I knew Peter and Debby best, but Jennifer has kept me abreast of life at Williston too. Losing a father is hard! Mr. Carpenter was well loved by so many people. It is wonderful when one man can make such a difference in other peoples lives. Sincerely, Susan Andrew, Class of 1972

  37. As we say in Bermuda, Carpy is ‘down de road and tru de trees’. But forever in our hearts. Our lives were widely enriched through our association with one of Williston’s greatest. Rest in Peace. My deepest condolences to the Carpenter family.

    Tony Becker, ’77

  38. Carp was a coach and a man you could never forget. Playing four years of hockey and three years of baseball for a coach like him was quite an experience for an impressionable teenager. But what I will never forget was his compassion when as a freshman Carp had to come to my dorm, wake me, inform me of my oldest brothers death and then drive me home to West Springfield to be with my family. Only a man like Carp could handle that chore. Carp was a joy to play for but more importantly he was someone you were honored to know. My thoughts are with his family, who always made us feel like we part of his family.
    T.J. O’Brien, ’75

  39. I am so sad to have just learned of Carpys passing. My first thought was how glad I am that I saw him at the reunion in June. It was really important to me to see him again and chat with him. Just thinking about him always made me smile. He was an absolute favorite of mine and all of us are much better human beings for having known him. What a wonderful, bright light he was. My deepest sympathies go out to all of his family. He will be deeply missed. Thanks for all the smiles Carpy. We love you.

  40. Carpy, where do I start?
    For those who knew him – they were the fortunate ones. He was a kind, upbeat, unselfish and fun loving mentor to many. He always had a smile in his eyes. The last time I saw Carpy was at a recent reunion. As I was walking away I turned to him and we exchanged silent, secret baseball hand signs, exactly as we had done so many times on Galbraith Field over 50 years ago.
    We will forever see his smile within our hearts.

  41. All manner of things come and go, all manner of men are born and pass away. I was yet a young man at the mid-point of Dan Carpenter’s 30 year career at Williston Academy and shall never forget him. He greeted me during my first week and because of my origins, immediately nicknamed me “Dan of the Bayous.” He taught me math that first year (Euclidean geometry I believe) and had a style about him that made the subject interesting. He also had a sense of humor, wry like the British. I recall a particular time whaen I was living at Sawyer House and he came by to speak with my room mate who played on one of Dan’s teams. The room mate liked to adorn his side of the room with Playboy pin-ups, and Dan, seeing these, stepped up to one for closer inspection. The gal, quite exposed of course, was standing beside a billiard table with a cue stick in her hand. In those days such displays were frowned upon, possibly outlawed, and I thought my room mate was in for it. But after a moment’s hesitation Dan turned and said, “Nice cuestick” and immediately launched into the matter he had come for. Mr. Carpenter was old school American, raised on solid foundations, as were many of the faculty in those days. His example helped instill good values for learning in the classroom and good sportsmanship on the playing fields. I saw him for the last time in 2007 when in his declining years, but he was still friendly, still relatively sharp. I reminded him about “Bayou Dan” and he laughed. We both did. For me he will always be one of the Williston greats and I regret the news of his passing. I shall always honor his memory.


    Dan Desjardins, ’72

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