SEARSMONT — Barbara Viano LaRoche, 87, died peacefully Dec. 24, 2022.

She was born in 1935 in Lexington, Mass., the first of the four children of Eugene Viano and Lillian Bradford.

After an early career in retail in Boston, in 1957 she married Army Capt. Raymond O. LaRoche of Nashua, N.H. For the next 13 years, Barbara raised three children while the family was posted by the Army to cities around the country and in Germany.

In 1972, the family moved to Searsmont and Barbara started an organic farm called Maple Brook Farm. Barbara’s days were full and happy with a herd of milking goats, a flock of sheep, laying hens, pigs, broilers, a horse and fields of vegetables. For several years, she also ran a bed and breakfast at the farm. Barbara enjoyed creating many perennial gardens around her house.

An avid reader, Barbara always seemed to have a book in her hands. She helped start the Searsmont Town Library and was a volunteer there for years. Barbara served on various town boards including the Library and Planning boards. She loved cooking, hosting friends, and watching New England sports. Later in life, she traveled domestically and abroad with her sister Jean.

Barbara is survived by her children: daughter Brenda L. Whitney, son-in-law Chris and grandson Tucker; son Brad, daughter-in-law Evelyn deFrees and granddaughter Olivia; and daughter Barbara Jean LaRoche; her sister Jean Whitehurst and brother John Viano and their families; and Lee LaRoche. She was predeceased by her sister Joan and ex-husband Raymond O. LaRoche.

Those who wish to remember Barbara can make donations in her name to the Friends of the Searsmont Library: P.O. Box 56, Searsmont, ME 04973. Condolences to the family can be expressed at ripostafh.com or sent to 254 Lawry Road, Searsmont, ME 04973.

 

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