Robert Theodore Thibodeau

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Robert Theodore Thibodeau
1931 - 2016
HARTWELL, Ga. - Robert Thibodeau, 85, of Hartwell, passed away peacefully on Thursday, July 7, 2016, in his daughter's home with his wife Jeannette, daughter Jill grandson Lee and his wife Alicia, by his side. He just celebrated his 85th birthday and his 57th wedding anniversary.
He was born on June 22, 1931, in Waterville, the son of Anna Richard and Albert Thibodeau. He met his wife, Jeannette Maillet, when she needed a pianist to play for her ballet classes. He and Jeannette directed the Plaza Dance Studio for 40 years, entertaining audiences with original ballets, Nutcrackers, musicals and over 37 recitals. Robert was a self-taught man, always reading and learning new things. He was an entrepreneur establishing businesses: Thibodeau and Son's Chimney Cleaning, a ballroom dance school, and a karate school graduating many black belts. He and Jeannette convinced the karate students to become partners for the ballet dancers, and the Plaza Dance Studio was one of the first and few studios to have pas de deux and partnering.
In the 1970s, he and his wife teamed up with Michael and Tom Poulin and developed "Body Control Discipline for Dressage." He taught several equestrian students competing in high level dressage, and teaching led him all over the country including the American Dressage Institute at Skidmore College in New York.
In 1990, he and Jeannette moved to Hartwell, Ga., where he worked in the Hart County school system until he retired in 2000. He loved being in the garden and continued growing his famous tomatoes until last summer. Robert, Jeannette and his sister-in-law Rita Maillet grew over 200 tomato plants each summer, selling them off the front porch by the honor system. They loved everyone they met. As part of the Athens Church of Christ for over 20 years and the Cedar Creek Baptist church for the last years he never met a stranger and left everyone glad to have met him. He was a tremendous listener, interesting story teller, steadfast husband, supportive father, loyal friend and a servant to the community.
He is survived by his wife, Jeannette Thibodeau; his three children: Clay Thibodeau of Oakland, Troy Thibodeau of Sullivan, and Jill Cuestas and her husband Washington of Tyrone, Ga.
He was preceded in death by his son, Bruce Thibodeau, who passed in 1996.
He was a proud and loving grandfather of Clay's son, Clay Michael; Troy's children, Lee Thibodeau and his wife Alicia, Jessica Roberge and her husband Corey, and Robert Hall; and Jill's children, Elena and Caleb. He was beloved by his great-grandchildren, Landon, Ashley, and Luke.
A Memorial Service and reception will be held on Saturday, July 30, at 2 p.m. in Athens, Ga., at the Athens Church of Christ, 3720 Mars Hill Rd., Watkinsville, Ga.

Religious Service Information
Athens Church Of Christ
3720 Mars Hill Rd
Watkinsville, GA 30677
(770) 725-5955
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Published in Central Maine on July 28, 2016