JANET PATRICIA NICHOLS KRUEGER passed away on August 14, 2023 in Stamford NY after a long, full life. Born in Southbridge Massachusetts to Alice Richard Nichols and Leslie Elwin Nichols, she was raised by her mother and her mother’s family. Her summers were spent in and around Webster Lake in the family cottage built by her grandfather, Edwin Richard, water skiing and sailing with friends.
Janet loved every minute of her four years at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst with her Kappa Alpha Theta sorority sisters. She graduated in 1957 with a B.B.A. After school she returned to Southbridge and worked for the New England Telephone and Telegraph Company, the radio station WESO, and as a second grade teacher in Oxford, MA. But most of her stories from this era were from a one week stint as a cook on a windjammer in Maine and her two seasons spent as a “ski bum” in Aspen, Colorado. It was on another ski slope, Mount Tremblant in Canada, that she met her husband, Harold Krueger. Harold later wrote several poems describing this meeting, all focused on the view he had skiing behind her!
After marrying in 1963, they settled in East Orange, NJ where she continued to teach until her three sons came along. First Bill, followed closely by Tom, then James. In the very few spare minutes they allowed her, Jan kept busy with other projects focused on the environment and animal welfare. She was an early adopter of solar power and recycling, driving her three sons around in a giant Pontiac station wagon collecting newspapers from neighbors. The town recycling center paid pennies on the pound for the used paper and we all thought we were making a fortune.
As her kids got a little older, Jan began ice dancing as a member of the U.S. Figure Skating Association at Mennen arena and working as a skate guard during public sessions. As her children began to leave the house, she worked as a real estate agent for Weichert Realtors. After both she and Hal retired, they relocated to the best place they ever lived: Newbury NH, where they spent 18 years. They were back on a lake with ski slopes next door! When not in water or on snow, she kept very busy as an active member of the League of Women Voters, country line dancing, and traveling: safari in Kenya, sailing in French Polynesian Islands, mingling with penguins in South Georgia and Antarctica, petting gray whales in the Sea of Cortez. They also spent a month in Alaska where Jan personally met Maggie, the elephant she helped free from captivity in Anchorage and who now lives in a sanctuary in California.
Through it all, family was most important to Jan. She took great pride in her sons and grandchildren all of whom survive her.
Services will be at The First Baptist Church in New London at 10:00 am on Saturday, September 23, with a graveside committal to follow at 11:30 at Marshall Cemetery, Newell Road, South Newbury. Join the family for lunch at The Flying Goose at 12:30. Memorial contributions may be made to the New Hampshire SPCA (https://nhspca.org/donate-today/)
Saturday, September 23, 2023 10:00 AM The First Baptist Church 461 Main Street New London, NH 03257