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1176 Main Street
Fairfax, VT 05454
Phone: 802-849-6261
Fax: 802-849-6262
Rodney Willingham

Rodney Willingham

Saturday, January 23rd, 1965 - Thursday, November 28th, 2019
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Rodney Willingham of Burlington, VT passed away peacefully at the age of 54 on November, 28, 2019 after a long courageous battle with cancer. Rod was born on January 23, 1965 in Albany, NY. He was passionate about sports, particularly basketball. His love of the game lead him to Champlain College where he found a home with his basketball community. Throughout the years he maintained special friendships with many of his “basketball brothers.'' Rod was a true family man, coaching his kids’ sports as well as creating opportunities for other kids to further their education through basketball.

Rod is survived by his wife of 31 years, Jenny and his beloved children, Marcus and Jasmine. In addition, he is survived by his mother, Suzzette and siblings, Francine, Rachel, Denise and Eric along with many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his father, Davis. The family would like to express our appreciation to Bill & Marilyn Mahoney, Dr. Mitch & Deb Norotsky, Mike & Martha Wool, Sara Wool Rodriguez, Lenny & Heather Zuk, Steve Gentile, Harlan Sylvester, Jack & Lynn Russell along with countless friends and neighbors. We are grateful for the medical care from Dr. Mario Giannakis of Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Amy Fox, Dr. Paul Unger, Katrina Merlo and the team of Doctors & Nurses from UVM Medical Center along with Dr. Jaina Clough and team from the UVM McClure Miller Respite House.

A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday December 7th at 10:30 a.m. at UVM Davis Center Silver Maple Room. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to: Boys & Girls Club of Burlington, King Street Center, or the UVM McClure Miller Respite House. The family also invites you to share your memories by visiting
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Service Details

  • Celebration of Life

    Saturday, December 7th, 2019 | 10:30am
    Saturday, December 7th, 2019 10:30am
    Dudley H. Davis Center
    590 Main Street
    Burlington, Vermont 05405
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
    A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday December 7th at 10:30 a.m. at UVM Davis Center - Silver Maple Room.


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Private Condolence

Janelle Jones

Posted at 12:35am
Condolences from Janelle Jones (Willingham)and Family. Our thoughts and prayers are with you
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Janelle Jones purchased flowers and planted a memorial tree for the family of Rodney Willingham. Send Flowers

Jean Lawrance

Posted at 10:05pm
My deepest sympathies to you all. I knew Rod, and family, through Middle school basketball league. My son, Robert, and Marcus were classmates and teammates. Rod was an outset coach, man, and mentor. We have never forgotten those basketball years. Rod poured his heart and soul into that team and the boys matured and improved and deeply respected Rod. He will be missed tremendously and I hope your memories and love of family and friends will sustain you through this loss. Jean Lawrance

Kim Rossignol

Posted at 10:31am
Jenny, Marcus and Jazzy, I am so so very sorry for your loss and heartache. I am sadly not able to go on Saturday which breaks my heart. I would really love to come see you soon and if there is anything you need, I am here. I and the kids deeply remember what a beautiful caring, compassionate and inspiring man Rod has been in not only our lives but all who were blessed to know him. He was the catalyst to helping David in Elementary school when he was having such a tough time there. David looked up to him so deeply and Rod was always there for him helping through basketball, his confidence after being bullied for so long and life. He never failed to inspire all of us and make life a better place to be in with his kindness, heart and dedication. All of our lives are a kinder and better place because of him and he continues to inspire us today. His love for his family is unmatched and his dedication to you all and all that was important or good for you was profound. We have been, and forever will be blessed to have been uplifted and cared about by him, and will always carry him and our memories of him, and all of you in our hearts. There is no greater blessing than a soul so beautiful, that reaches and touches the lives of every single person around him. My love to you all. Always. Kim, (David, Nathalie, Michael and Robert)

From Darrien White Family

Posted at 09:35am
Sorry for your loss my condolence goes out to the Willingham family.
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Birgit Bozek

Posted at 02:47pm
We first met Rod in the early months after we moved to the neighborhood. A beautiful morning. He was accompanied, as was so often the case, by Brodie - tail wagging in sheer delight of being with Rod. We introduced ourselves and I immediately felt Rod's kindness and an inner strength. Simply put, Rod Willingham was a wonderful human being. In love with his wife and children, in love with the broad net of close friends and in love with life. We are all better human beings having had Rod in our lives and he will be sorely missed. Indeed, being with Rod was sheer delight!
Birgit and Frank Bozek

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