Don Booth died early this morning in the nursing facility at the Havenwood Retirement Community in Concord. He was a pillar of the Quaker and pacifist communities in New Hampshire for decades.
I will remember him as one of the first Quakers I got to know when I started working with AFSC in 1981. At the time he was pioneering the design and construction of passive solar homes. When he retired he devoted countless hours to witness for peace, often through silent vigils in Concord.
Don’s son Steve wrote early this morning,
“I think we were all very fortunate, Dad squeezed every last available second out of his life, right to the end. He took so much joy in the people around him, that even when he was confined to sleep by his heart condition to very nearly 24 hours a day, when he did wake up it was inevitably with a huge smile and arms outstretched to celebrate his time with us. If he had any regrets in life, I did not hear them; I think he was very much at peace with himself. Of course, there is still the unfinished business of this darn world of ours, and the troubles of its billions of people – no doubt he is still carrying those concerns with him now, in his own way. This is something we will need to continue to talk about, and what we might do to carry on in our own way, but for now I want to focus on him, and his place in our hearts at this time.”
A memorial service will be held Saturday, Feb. 5, starting at 11 AM, a the Unitarian Universalist Church, 274 Pleasant St. in Concord. After the service a buffet lunch will be served, followed by a peace vigil at State House Plaza, where a collection of Don’s peace baners will be displayed.