Friday, May 14, 2021


Vanessa E. Binder


Vanessa Elaine Binder, 55, of Old Saybrook, passed away on March 1 at Connecticut Hospice of Branford after a valiant fight against breast cancer. Born in New Haven, she was the daughter of Judith A. Burns of Old Saybrook and the late William P. Binder.

Vanessa grew up in Durham and graduated Coginchaug High School Class of 1983 and went on to earn a bachelor’s degree from the University of Hartford in psychology. She relocated to Old Saybrook where she lived for many years. Vanessa was employed at Aetna for more than 20 years and sang in the choir at Saint John Church in Middletown. She loved summer in the pool, Highland Games in New Hampshire, the Durham Fair, New Year’s at Ridin’ Hy Ranch, and casino trips and was a huge music fan who especially loved the Grateful Dead. Vanessa also adored her nieces and nephews, loved vacationing with her family, and will be remembered for her great sense of humor, her loving heart, and her radiant smile.

Along with her mother, Vanessa is survived by her stepfather, Geoffrey Wilcock of Old Saybrook; three sisters, Marla Hinz and her husband Gordon of Portland, Paula Parker and her husband John of East Haddam, and Erica Leonardi and her husband Sebastian of Middletown; nieces and nephews Daniel and Stephanie Parker, Kelsey and Andrew McIsaac, Bridget Hinz, Harris Rosemblum, and Jordan Leonardi; great-nieces and great-nephews Charlotte and Molly McIsaac and Harrison and Maxwell Parker; and her dear lifelong friends, Debi, Michele, and Kayci.

Family and friends may attend a walk-through calling hours from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, March 13, at Doolittle Funeral Home, 14 Old Church Street, Middletown, where masks and social distancing are required. Funeral service will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations in Vanessa’s memory may be made to Connecticut Hospice, 100 Double Beach Road, Branford, CT 06405. To share memories or send condolences to the family, please visit

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