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    Saturday, April 01, 2023

    Jody Nazarchyk, known as ‘Waterford’s mom,’ has died

    Waterford Selectwoman Jody Nazarchyk

    Waterford – The public servant and selectwoman described as “Waterford’s mom” died early Saturday morning.

    First Selectman Rob Brule announced Jody Nazarchyk’s death Saturday on the town website. She was 71.

    “It is with a heavy heart and profound sense of loss that I share the sad news of the sudden and untimely passing this morning of Selectwoman Jody Nazarchyk, our beloved friend, colleague, and town matriarch,” he wrote online.

    The cause of death was not disclosed.

    Brule told The Day Nazarchyk was considered the town mom for a reason: “She loved everybody.”

    A 25-year member of the Board of Education and a fixture at the high school concession stand long after her children graduated, Nazarchyk was known as a champion for young people.

    “Most notably, she spent many thousands of hours leading the Waterford Boosters, creating beneficial athletic opportunities for our children,” Brule said in a message on the town’s website. “She then shifted her energies from the field to the classroom by serving first as a member and later chairwoman of our Board of Education so these same children could enjoy and benefit from an educational excellence in our community's schools.”

    Brule, a Republican, and Nazarchyk, unaffiliated, were elected to the Board of Selectmen in 2019 as running mates.

    “Personally, I have lost a dear friend and unfailingly reliable colleague who was always ready to accept any assignment, initiative or challenge that stood to make our town stronger and better,” he said. “She willingly took on these roles, not for attention or adulation, but because she loved our community and because it was the right thing to do.”

    Nazarchyk’s death comes as the third selectman, Democrat Beth Sabilia, is set to resign her seat on the Board of Selectmen before she takes the helm of the fledgling Center for Housing Equity and Opportunity in Eastern Connecticut in March.

    Nazarchyk’s volunteerism in town included seats on the School Building Committee, multiple school organizations and the Youth and Family Services Advisory Council. She also taught catechism at St. Paul Church for 15 years and was a longtime Little League softball coach.

    She was inducted into the Waterford Sports Hall of Fame in 2018.

    “Across decades of service, Jody cared about and looked after everyone in the town she loved, ensuring both short-term and long-term benefits for all of our citizens, especially our children, veterans and senior citizens,” he said.

    Brule described Nazarchyk’s legacy as the community service she has inspired in generations of volunteers.

    “Waterford is, without question, a vastly better, more welcoming place,” he said.


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