Andre and Denise Montminy’s love story started at the Y. They met in 1980 when Andre was a martial arts instructor when the Nashua Y was located on Prospect Street. “He would say we met at the Y when I was one of his students. He really enjoyed teaching at the Y. He had a core following. He was pretty Type A. He was a dentist and also taught at the Nashua Y,” Denise shared.
79-year-old Dr. Andre Montminy passed away on February 12 last year.
The Montminy’s celebrated their 38th wedding anniversary August 5, 2021.
Dr. Montminy retired from his dental practice in Pelham about five years ago. “He had cancer a number of years ago. And it recurred. He was still doing his Tae Kwon Do, until he was unable to continue. He never gave up on his martial arts. He was very, very proud of that,” Denise said.
Denise shared that Andre coveted the YMCA recognition plaque he received “for unselfish service to the YMCA and the community,” dated March 1975. He proudly hung the plaque in his dental office.
Denise is a Nashua native and learned to swim at the Y and attended day camp at the Y on Prospect Street called Summer Scampers. “I went for two or three summers in the late 1960s. I always had a little fear of the water and I can remember swimming lessons in the Y pool. Swimming lessons and making crafts are two memories of Summer Scampers,” she said.
“In 1980 I was going to the Y for Jazzercise and other organized exercise classes. I took these classes after work. I decided to take a karate class. I thought it would be something different. That’s when I met Andre. The class met on Tuesdays and Thursdays.”
“I ended up back at the Y earlier in 2022 after Andre passed. I came to hear a Nashua orthopedic doctor give a presentation at the Nashua Y. I won the door prize of a 3-month YMCA membership. I started coming regularly to the Y. I particularly like the Zumba and Latin rhythms classes and I love yoga! This is what I was missing in my life,” she said. The Y got me through the last 10 months, for sure. I’m going to be going to the Westwood Park Y for intro to pickleball classes soon!,” Denise said. “Y instructors are really nice and I’ve met great people in the classes. There’s a group of women who gravitate toward group exercise classes. They have been such wonderful people just in these short months that I have been coming. I didn’t have that kind of connection, having gone to another gym for quite a number of years before. I find the Y to be a very welcoming place,” she said.
Denise honored her husband’s memory by making a donation to the Y’s annual campaign. Gifts like Denise’s ensure that no one is turned away from the Y, regardless of ability to pay. Together, we improve health outcomes, support education, develop changemakers and strengthen families. Investments in the Y’s annual campaign help keep the Y affordable and provide programs that make our entire community stronger—from chronic disease prevention and wellness support to early childhood learning and mentorship for teens.
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