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Jane (Burgess) Fitting

SALISBURY — Jane (Burgess) Fitting died peacefully at home Aug. 3, 2018, following a five-year battle with cancer.

Born in Stamford, Conn., on May 6, 1958, she was raised in Darien, Conn., then moved at 14 with her family to Salisbury. She attended Housatonic Valley Regional High School for one year before becoming part of the first year of girls admitted to The Hotchkiss School, graduating in 1976.

Jane earned her bachelor’s degree in art history from Wellesley College in 1980. A break year before her planned move to law school brought her under the wing of the Harneys at The White Hart, a move that completely changed her life’s direction.

The following year she went to Cornell to study for a master’s degree at the hotel school. She also met Peter and married him on June 25, 1983. They moved to Ithaca, N.Y., where she finished her studies.

They moved 11 times over the next nine years, including to Greenwich, Conn., where she began the renovation of the historic Stanford White house as a B&B; to Egremont, Mass., for a year, managing the Egremont Inn; back to Salisbury for a year and a half managing The White Hart; on to Hamilton, N.Y., and the creation of Garibaldi’s restaurant; to Garnet Hill, a ski lodge in the Adirondacks; and finally back to Salisbury. 

In the middle of all this, son George was born. 

Returning to Salisbury, she worked at the Scoville Memorial Library as children’s librarian, where she ran a winter cocoa hour and summer literature-and-lemonade program, developed a mother/daughter book club, and decided this would be the next step in her life. After obtaining a master’s degree in library science at SUNY Albany, she worked at Hotchkiss for the next 13 years.

An avid knitter, baker, foodie and craftswoman, she was a member of the knitting club at Hotchkiss and Dining for Women, and she was a donor to the annual Festival of Trees at Noble Horizons, knitting tree ornaments and Christmas decorations. A prodigious reader, Jane was a longtime member of the Hawthorne Club. She was on the board of directors of the Historic District and a Cub Scout Den Mother. She ran the Holley-Williams House summer camp for several years and was an active member of the Unitarian Fellowship.

Above all, she was devoted to her family and friends.

A memorial service will be held Saturday, Aug. 18, at 1 p.m. at The Hotchkiss School chapel, with a reception to follow.

In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Cancer Care Fund of the Litchfield Hills, Inc., P.O. Box 1801, Litchfield, CT 06759. 

Arrangements are under the care of the Newkirk-Palmer Funeral Home in North Canaan.