Roger P. ChampagneJune 8, 2017
Roger P. A. Champagne, 96, of Norwood Rd., died peacefully on June 8, 2017, in the Bethany Home, Providence. He was the husband of the late Edith (Miller) Champagne. Born in Woonsocket on June 12, 1920, he was the son of the late Ovila and Edwina L. (Girard) Champagne.
A SignalMan for the Navy in WWII, Roger was best known as the Co-owner and Operator of Champs Diner in Woonsocket with his brother, Gerry. Champs Diner was purchased by Ovila in 1926 and was located on Park Ave. It was run with friendly enthusiasm by Roger and Gerry until 1989 when they both decided to enjoy their retirement years. Upon the sale of the diner, Roger “didn’t miss the work but miss(ed) his customers”. He still had hockey, golf, woodshop working, card playing, gardening, bird watching and occasional travel which kept him busy and gave him outlets to spread his special brand of joy and smiles for everyone.
He has been described as “the kindest man one could ever know” and was consistently generous with loved ones as well as strangers with his time, talents and treasures. One year in the midst of a snowstorm, as his car was in need of repair, Roger was walking in to the diner in the early morning darkness. He came upon a homeless man who looked very cold. Roger gave the man his coat and continued on the few miles to the Diner in shirtsleeves. In his later retirement years, he helped his granddaughter and her husband move several tons of wood from the home they were building. He enjoyed mowing lawns, raking and shoveling for neighbors and friends into his late eighties. Roger lived a long, full, interesting, life and positively impacted everyone with whom he came into contact.
He is survived by his son, Dr. Robert G. Champagne of Riverside, his sister, C. Madeline Laflamme of Woonsocket, two grandchildren, three great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephew as well as countless and beloved dear friends and neighbors. Roger was predeceased by his brother, Girard Champagne, sister, Benjamine Lajoie, brother in law, George Miller, sisters in law, Edna Miller, Ruth Tisdell, and Gertrude Hoyle and special friend, Marcelline Kurzon.
His funeral will be held Wednesday, June 21, 2017, with a service at 10 AM in the Holt Funeral Home, 510 South Main St., Woonsocket. Burial will follow in Union Cemetery, Smithfield Rd., North Smithfield. Calling hours are Tuesday from 4 -7 PM. Memorial contributions may be made to Kindred Hospice, 2374 Post Rd., Suite 206, Warwick, RI 02886.
2374 Post Rd., Suite 206, Warwick AB 02886