Obituaries

 

Compiled by Robin Jovanovich 

 

Timothy Wall

 

Timothy Wall 1Timothy Martin Wall of Rye, passed away peacefully on July 2, 2016, surrounded by the love of family and friends at Calvary Hospital in the Bronx, after a three-and-a-half year battle with cancer. 

 

He was a fourth generation Rye resident and a 1979 graduate of Rye High School, where he played varsity football. He went on to receive his B.S. from Mt. Saint Mary’s College in Emmitsburg, Md., and lived and worked in North Palm Beach, Florida, before resettling in Rye in 1988.  

 

He married the love of his life, Elizabeth (King) of Spring Lake, N.J., whom he met at his college roommate’s wedding.

 

For over 25 years, Mr. Wall worked in residential and commercial real estate management throughout Westchester County.  

 

He was active in the Rye community, coaching softball and Little League.  He was a lifelong Green Bay Packers fan and loved the New York Yankees and the New York Giants (when the Packers were not playing). 

 

His family and friends extend their deep appreciation to his doctors at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, led by Dr. Miguel-Angel Perales and nurse practitioner Megan Heavey. With the assistance of their care, Mr. Wall saw his eldest son graduate from Loyola University Maryland and move to Boston to begin his career with Pepsi; saw his second son play varsity football at Rye High School and college rugby at Villanova University. He was able to attend his daughter’s high school sporting events, teach her to drive, and visit prospective colleges with her. 

 

While he was constantly challenged by his illness he pushed through pain and other limitations associated with his treatment, remained hopeful, and served as an inspiration to all who encountered him.

 

He loved the Florida Keys and the Jersey Shore and found great joy on any beach vacation. He was an avid reader of non-fiction and loved anything related to United States history, especially the Civil War. 

 

He enjoyed golfing and played in the Annual Cardinal’s Open at Winged Foot Golf Club benefitting Catholic Charities. 

 

“While he is finally at peace, Tim leaves behind his extended family and friends who are heartbroken by the loss of this amazing man,” said his family.

 

Mr. Hall is survived by his loving wife Elizabeth; his children Brendan (Quincy, Mass.); Patrick and Cecilia of Rye; his siblings, Mary Strain (Robert), James Wall (Anne), Catherine Pierce (John) and Margaret O’Dell (Marc); a large extended family from the Jersey Shore; more than 40 nieces and nephews; and his Rye cousins, the Martins, the Grahams, and the O'Keefes.

 

A Funeral Mass was held July 7 at Church of the Resurrection.

 

Donations in Mr. Hall’s memory may be made to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, 1275 York Avenue, NY, NY 1065, or The Brian King Memorial Fund at Edinboro University, Alumni House, 210 Meadville St., Edinboro PA 16444.

 

Charlie Steers

 

Charles Steers 1Charles R.C. Steers Jr. of Rye, died peacefully at home, surrounded by his loving family, on June 22, 2016. He was 89.

 

He is survived by his beloved wife of 67 years, Peggy Hamilton Steers; and his three sons, Charles R.C. Steers III, Robert Hamilton Steers (Lauren Smith), and William Macy Steers (Nancy Wilkinson), all of whom live in Rye. He is also survived by thirteen grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.  

 

Born on September 17, 1926 in New York City, he grew up in Byram, Conn. He was educated at Canterbury School in New Milford, Conn., and was a member of the class of 1950 at Yale University. 

 

During World War II, he served proudly in the United States Army in the Pacific from 1944-1946, and during the Korean War, he served in Europe from 1950-1951.

 

After 30 years of service, Mr. Steers retired in 1978 as a vice president at Russell, Burdsall & Ward and finished his career at Travel Anywhere in the commercial travel industry. 

 

He had an extensive history in public service, having served as trustee, treasurer, and chairman of the Executive Committee at United Hospital in Port Chester. For many years, he was vice chairman of the Westchester Classic golf tournament. He was a longtime member and former president of Apawamis Club, American Yacht Club, Onteora Club, and the United States Seniors Golf Association. 

 

He enjoyed spending time with his extended family and many friends in Rye, and at their home in Onteora Park, N.Y. 

 

A memorial service was held at Church of the Resurrection on June 25. 

 

Donations in Mr. Steers’ memory may be made to the Canterbury School Endowment in New Milford, CT 06776. 

 

Patricia Bauer

 

Patricia Bauer, formerly of Rye, died May 7, 2016.

 

Born in Dayton, Ohio, on October 6, 1937, she was the daughter of Stanley and Daisy Murdoch Dague.

 

She married Godfrey Bauer Jr., who predeceased her in 1994.

 

During her working career, Mrs. Bauer was employed at Bells Answering Service, United Hospital, and, most recently, at Port Chester Nursing Home as a receptionist.

 

She is survived by her five children: Pattie, Judi, Godfrey III, Mary Beth, and Susie; three grandchildren: William, Christopher, and Danielle, daughter-in-law Pat and son-in-laws Louie and Gary.  

 

A religious service was held at Graham Funeral Home.

 

Guy Elmore

 

Guy Crane Elmore, a lifelong resident of Rye and former Rye Fire Department Chief, died peacefully at home the evening of June 28, 2016. He was 73.

 

He is survived by his wife, Meredith A. McConnell Elmore; his brother, Wayne W. Elmore; his daughter, Lynne Elmore Phy; and two granddaughters, Christiane Catherine Phy and Kelley Meredith Phy. He was predeceased by his daughter, Christiane Marie Elmore.

 

The son of William and Olive (Crane) Elmore, he was educated in the Rye Public Schools and later graduated from Mitchel College.

 

Mr. Elmore served as a sergeant in the US National Guard. He also was a volunteer fireman and went on to serve as Fire Chief of the Rye Fire Department. He retired as Supervisor of Transportation of the Byram Hills School District.

 

A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated at the Church of the Resurrection on July 1. Interment followed at Greenwood Union Cemetery.

 

Edith C. Healy

 

EHealyII (2)Edith C. HealyEdith Germaine Corten Healy died peacefully at the University of Vermont Medical Center on May 30, 2016 after a brief illness. The daughter of Marthe and Albert Corten, she was born in Maastricht, Holland, on January 30, 1926.

 

A longtime resident of Rye, she came to the United States shortly after World War II and married Thomas M. Healy in September of 1956 at Apawamis Club. They had four children and lived on Forest Avenue for many years.

 

A loving mother, Edie raised her family and later worked at clothing and knitting shops in Rye and Greenwich. In addition, she regularly volunteered for school activities and was a member of the 25th Twig in support of United Hospital.

 

She was known for her sense of style, wonderful knitting and fine needlepoint.  Her friends and family valued her loyalty, courage, and ready smile.

 

Mrs. Healy was predeceased by her parents; her brother, Guy; her sister, Marthe; her husband Tom; her son, Tommy; and her grandson, Paul. She is survived by her two daughters, Suzanne and Renee, and her son, David, as well as their spouses; and her four grandchildren. 

 

Between these simple lines there was a full life and a wonderful person who will be greatly missed. 

 

A memorial service was held at the Resurrection Church with interment at Gates of Heaven Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to the Arthritis National Research Foundation.

 

Irene Hartigan

 

Irene Hartigan of Rye passed away peacefully on April 29, 2016. 

 

She was born September 4, 1934 to Richard and Victoria Mastrodi. In 1952, she graduated from Roosevelt High School in Yonkers. She went on to work as a legal secretary for Day, Berry, and Howard Law Firm in Stamford. 

 

On July 25, 1959 she married the love of her life, John (Jack) Hartigan, who is a retired Deputy Chief from the New York City Police Department. They were married for 56 years and together raised three children. They were members of Coveleigh Club for 45 years. 

 

In addition to her husband, John, she is survived by her children: Patricia Malmquist (Derek) of Edina, Minn., Lisa Ashton (Pete) of Piedmont, Calif., and Stephen Hartigan (Carmen) of Pelham Manor; her sister, Norma Minicus (Robert) of Armonk; and ten grandchildren: Kaitlin, Kiely, Madison, and Christopher Hartigan; Dylan, Garrett, and Liam Malmquist; Kate, Molly, and Tommy Ashton.

 

A Mass of Christian burial was celebrated at the Resurrection Chapel May 7.

 

Donations in Mrs. Hartigan’s name may be made to the American Cancer Society.

 

Claire Mead

OBITS-CLAIRE MEADA longtime resident of Rye, Claire Hunter Mead died at home on May 31, 2016 after a long illness. She was 94 years old.

 

Born May 5, 1922, in New York City, she was the daughter of Frank and Elsa (Alves) Hunter. After graduating from Mount Holyoke College during World War II, she worked in Washington D.C. for the Army Signal Corps in their cryptanalysis department decoding Japanese messages. 

 

After the war ended, she returned to New York and was hired by American Mercury Magazine, working as an assistant to the editor, Lawrence Spivak, who was then recruiting senators, congressmen, and other prominent figures to appear on his new radio program, “Meet the Press,” which later became a popular television program of the same name.

 

In 1948, Claire Hunter married Donald A. Mead, an attorney. The two had known one another since childhood, as next-door neighbors in New Rochelle.

 

They moved to Rye with their young family in 1962, and Claire became an active member of the 25th Twig of Christ’s Church and of American Yacht Club. 

 

She and her husband shared a deep love of opera and classical music and were keen supporters of the Metropolitan Opera and Carnegie Hall. They also loved to travel and toured many parts of the world. Mr. Mead was a licensed pilot and they traveled extensively around the United States and the Caribbean in their cherished Cessna 310 airplane.

 

After her husband’s death in 1996, Claire became an avid bridge player and spent many enjoyable hours taking lessons and playing with various groups.

 

Mrs. Mead is survived by her daughter, Sandra Allen and her husband Jeffrey of Belchertown, Massachusetts, a second daughter, Patricia Mead and her husband Thomas Spiconardi of Yorktown Heights, her son, Christopher Mead and his wife Maggie of New York City; as well as five grandchildren, two step-grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.

 

Contributions in her memory may be made to Hospice Care in Westchester and Putnam, 540 White Plains Road, Suite 300, Tarrytown, New York 10591. The Mead family is deeply grateful for the compassionate care shown to their mother in the last months of her life.

 

Cathy Culyer

 

OBITS-CATHY CULYERCathy A. Culyer, a longtime resident of Rye, died June 6, 2016. She was 58.

 

Born December 27, 1957 in Port Chester to Pat and Margaret Warlick Amendola, she was raised and educated in Rye, graduating from Rye High School in 1975 and from the College of New Rochelle. 

 

On October 20, 1979, she married James Culyer at Corpus Christi Church in Port Chester.

 

She was a nursery school teacher at Rye Methodist and Christ’s Church Nursery schools, and a parishioner of Church of the Resurrection. 

 

Mrs. Culyer is survived by her husband, Jim of Rye; her mother, Margaret Amendola, of Rye; her children: Jennifer Abbott and her husband John of Rye, J.J. Culyer and his wife Jessi of Henrico, Va., and Maggie Culyer and her wife Deb of Port Chester; and five grandchildren. She is also survived by her brothers Patrick Amendola and his wife Vicki of New City, N.Y., and Richard Amendola and his wife Pamela of Haverhill, Mass. Her father and brother Joseph Amendola predeceased her.

 

A memorial gathering will be held June 10 from 4 to 8 p.m. at Craft Memorial Home, Inc.  A Memorial Mass will be held June 11 at 10 a.m. at Church of the Resurrection. A committal service will follow at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Rye Brook.

 

Memorial donations may be made to Pennies In Action (penniesinaction.org), 3100 Dutton Mill Road, Aston, PA 19014.

 

Brendan Kelly, MD

 

Dr. Brendan Patrick Kelly, 49, died unexpectedly in his sleep on May 25, 2016 in Longmeadow, Mass.

 

 

Born March 17, 1967, he was the son of the late Michael J. and Barbara J. (Trigger) Kelly of Rye. Known as “Beeks” to his childhood friends, he began a lifetime of teaching as a sailing instructor at the Durland Scout Center in Rye. He went on to receive his bachelor’s degree from Swarthmore College in 1989. While there he captained many sailing trips with his classmates, who would become lifelong friends. 

 

 

He earned his medical degree from SUNY Stony Brook in 1994 and completed his residency training in internal medicine and pediatrics at the University of Rochester in 1998. At the time of his death, he was a pediatric hospitalist at Baystate Children’s Hospital and served for the last 18 years as the Associate Director of the Medicine-Pediatric Residency Program.

 

 

Throughout his medical career, Dr. Kelly was a skilled and passionate teacher of residents and medical students, earning a total of 19 medical student teaching awards. He was the founder and director of the first and only national conference for Med-Peds physicians. As a medical educator, he was known as an incredibly engaging and effective teacher, a master of the art of physical diagnosis, and an expert in giving feedback and teaching professionalism. Dr. Kelly was a tireless advocate for all those he cared about: his family, patients, students, colleagues, and nursing staff.

 

 

He is survived by his wife of 17 years, Lisa (Taylor), and their children Duncan, Ian, Meghan, and Rowan all of Longmeadow. He is also survived by his brother, Christopher Kelly (Jeanne Craig) of Rowayton, and their children Kyle and Lauren; and sisters Carolyn Kelly (Jack Podgurski) of Stamford, and Eileen Kelly of Ireland.

 

 

As a gifted storyteller, avid reader, master griller, and passionate sailor, always making time for others, especially his family, he will be very much missed.

 

 

A memorial service was held June 4 at First Church of Christ in Longmeadow.

 

 

Donations in Dr. Kelly’s memory may be made to the Brendan Kelly Family Memorial Trust, c/o Berkshire Bank, 138 Longmeadow Street, Longmeadow, Mass. 01106.

 

 

 

Adrienne Ida Pinto

 

Adrienne PintoAdrienne Ida Pinto passed away at home on May 17, 2016 after a short illness. She was 71.

 

Born in Port Chester, to Thomas and Angelina (Morabito) Rispoli, she was a graduate of Rye High School. She lived in Rye and Manhattan before moving to Mendham, N.J. in 1980.

 

A dedicated volunteer, Mrs. Pinto was president of the Rotary Club of the Mendhams. Her favorite Rotary program was the Dictionary Project. 

 

Mrs. Pinto was the office manager at her husband’s law firm, prior to which she was a realtor with Coldwell Banker in Mendham and worked at Citibank in various positions for 20 years.

 

In addition to her mother, Mrs. Pinto is survived by her husband of 35 years Harry J. Pinto Jr.; her son Joe and his wife Andrea; her daughter Stephanie and her fiancée Mario Favorito; her brother Thomas Rispoli Jr.; and her sister Jean O’Neill. She was predeceased by her brother Robert Rispoli.

 

For family, friends, and colleagues, she was a giver. She always knew the right gift for the occasion; could summon up that something to make an event special; and worked tirelessly to get whatever she was working on complete. She was a wonderful cook and always glad to prepare special requests.

 

“Because she was so thoughtful,” said her family, “we just came to rely on her to be there, to organize, and to make sure everyone had a good time, which we always did.”

 

Donations in Adrienne Pinto’s memory may be made to the Rotary Club of the Mendhams, P.O. Box 312, Mendham, NJ 07945.

 

Warren A. Ransom Jr.

 

OBITS-Warren Ransom-IMG 0522Warren A. Ransom Jr. died of pancreatic cancer on January 8, 2016. He was 85.

 

Born in Rye, he graduated from Taft School and Yale College ‘54. He served three years in Germany with the Army Air Corps, flying observation planes for the artillery. 

 

Following military service, he went on to a 16-year career with The Bank of New York, and then became a real estate broker selling commercial and residential properties. 

 

Mr. Ransom excelled as an athlete and sportsman, participating in the Norway Olympics in 1967, where he raced an International One Design sailboat. He was a ranked squash player, playing competitively for the Yale Club, and competing in invitational matches in the U.S. and Canada. He was also an exceptional tennis player, and relished the sport his whole life.

 

He, his wife, and their three children enjoyed summers in North Hatley, Quebec.

 

Upon retirement, Mr. and Mrs. Ransom moved to Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina. 

 

In addition to his loving wife of 47 years, Laurie (Patrono) Ransom, Mr. Ransom is survived by his three children: Warren III, Nicholas, and Ashley; five grandchildren; and his sisters, Louise Ransom of New York City and Mary Armour Nelson of San Rafael, Calif.

 

A memorial service will be held in North Hatley this summer.

 

Donations in Warren Ransom’s memory may be made to Hospice of Charleston at 4975 LaCross Road, Suite 200, North Charleston, SC 29406, or to St. Jude Children’s Hospital.

 

Sheila Duker

 

Sheila DukerSheila Walker Greer Duker, 84, of East Dennis, Mass., died peacefully at home on April 26, 2016. She was a beloved wife, mother, sister-in-law, aunt, and friend.

 

She was the daughter of Louise Roberts of Liverpool, England, and Henry Kirk Greer of North Adams, Mass., who met representing their respective countries in field hockey games; and when they made their life together in Rye, Sheila (a smashing forward) and her brother John continued in the spirited family tradition. They then encouraged their own families into the camp.

 

Sheila debuted at the NYC Cotillion, graduated The Rye Country Day School, then Bouve Boston College of Tufts University. Rumor has it she got straight A’s. At Tufts, she met Bill Duker from Stafford Springs, Conn. He was smitten with her radiant charm, wit, and beauty; and courted her with trombone solos from the bandstand, and affectionate cartoons. They married upon his return from service in Korea, and raised their family in Rye, in Sheila’s childhood home.

 

Mrs. Duker was an avid tennis player, wonderful cook, and master of desserts. Their life was fulfilled with sports, music, entertaining, and cherished lifelong friendships.

 

She coached and refereed field hockey and lacrosse for Rye Country Day School, School of the Holy Child, and eventually for Rye High School. She later became Director of United Methodist Nursery School, where she was renowned for her fun manner while still maintaining strict order.

 

Along with her wonderful friends, she devoted her talents for decades to the charitable 26th Twig organization which served the United Hospital.

 

The Dukers retired to Cape Cod, where the family had vacationed over the summer since Sheila was a child. There she dedicated herself to the East Dennis Ladies Aid organization, holding many terms of office, and to the Friends of Dennis Senior Citizens, where she was a Director Emeritus. She enjoyed membership in the Paul Revere chapter of the Questers, and also served as its president.

 

Throughout her life, her friendship impacted many. Her family said, “Sheila was refreshingly frank and keenly insightful. She was smart, engaging, adventurous, and often naughty. She directed gatherings of young and old into humorous games and instilled joy into these lives through play.”

 

A steadfast good sport as a matter of manners and character, she found herself chasing loose pigs on her first visit to meet Bill’s family at their beautiful Connecticut farm; and she unfalteringly applauded good plays by the opposition, whether on the tennis court or even against her Patriots. This sense of fairness and reason extended into her political stances: a lifelong Republican, Sheila advocated pragmatism within ideology.

 

While known and admired for her upstanding character, both the depth and height of this character was truly revealed as the foibles of aging took some toll in the last years and she bore this with the dignity of acceptance, heroic sweetness, and nary a complaint. She loved and respected nature, animals, and the bounty of our earth. She understood human place in the greater universe as a unique privilege and an even greater responsibility.

 

Mrs. Duker was predeceased by her brother, John Kirk Greer of Cos Cob, Conn. She is survived and mourned by her husband of sixty-two years, William H. Duker Jr.; her daughter, Dawn Brockunier of Warwick, N.Y., sons Robert F. of Scottsdale, Ariz., William H. (Melissa) of Ventura, Calif., Richard W. (Alexia) of Darien; seven grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; a devoted niece; six nephews, and several adoring “adoptive” nieces.

 

Donations in Sheila Duker’s memory may be made to Jacob Sears Memorial Library, P.O. Box 782, East Dennis, MA 02641, or to the Visiting Nurse Association Hospice and Palliative Care, through Cape Cod Health Care Foundation (support.givetocapecodhealth.org), P.O. Box 370, Hyannis, MA 02601.  

 

Salvatore Cicchiello

 

Salvatore James Cicchiello, a lifelong Rye resident, died May 12, 2016, holding his son’s hand. He was 94.

 

Born at home March 3, 1922, he was the son of James and Rose Russo Cicchiello. After graduating from Rye High School, he joined the Unites States Army Air Corps and served in the United States, South America, and the South Atlantic during World War II.

 

After returning from service he held several jobs in the Rye area. He worked in a garment factory in Port Chester, the Rye Post office, and finally settled into the restaurant business. He worked at the Rye Hotel, Five Points, and, for over 30 years, he tended bar at Belluscio’s on Midland Avenue.

 

He met the love of his life, Marianne Niebuhr, who was originally from Bremerhaven, Germany, in Rye. They were married on August 17, 1961. Salvatore and Marianne were best friends until her death on March 4, 1994.

 

Aside from his war years, Mr. Cicchiello only lived in two places his entire life, 30 Elizabeth Street and 203 Purchase Street.

 

Salvatore, or Chick, as he was known to almost everyone, loved reading, history, politics, and economics. He read the paper cover to cover every day, any magazine he got, and he would finish the Sunday New York Times, no matter how long it took him. He would save sections of the paper for friends and family whom he thought might enjoy them. He would circle and write “READ THIS” on countless articles, making notes on the margins, and underlining what he thought you should pay attention to.

 

As long as the weather was good, he could be found on his front porch, at the table or in his recliner, paper in hand. People were always invited to come and sit, have some wine, coffee, or cookies, and of course, good conversation.

 

Mr. Cicchiello is survived by his son Philip and daughter-in-law Kristin; his grandsons, Ryan and Jack; and numerous nieces and nephews. His brothers, Leonard, Albert, and Victor and sisters, Katherine and Josephine, predeceased him.

 

A prayer service was held at Graham Funeral Home May 13. 

 

Elliot Meister

 

ELLIOTT MEISTERElliot Andersen Meister of Rye passed away on April 27, 2016. He was 20 years old.

 

Born on October 31, 1995, he was the son of David and Lotte Meister. After graduating from Rye High School, class of 2014 as an Academic All American, he went on to enter Vanderbilt University, School of Engineering.

 

He will always be remembered as a bright young man with so many loving friends, who made so many laugh and had so much more life to live. 

 

In addition to his parents, David and Lotte, he is survived by his sister, Holly; his grandparents, Robert and Lennie Meister and Erik and Gerda Andersen; his uncles, Jesper Andersen and Mark (Carla) Meister; his aunt, Marian Tiemann; and many cousins.

 

The family received friends at Graham Funeral Home on May 1.

 

Donations in his memory may be made to the Addiction Recovery Center at Greenwich Hospital, c/o Greenwich Hospital Foundation, 35 River Road, Cos Cob, CT 06807.

 

John Miller

 

OBITS John MillerJohn R. Miller, age 69, died peacefully on April 25, 2016, from advanced stage kidney cancer. He is survived by his wife, Sarah Wise Miller; his children, Jo-El Miller Shea and her husband Declan Shea and their five children; Stephen Miller and his wife, Janet Carpenter Miller and their three children; Abigail Wise and her fiancé, Graham Fisher; and Benjamin Wise and his fiancé, Jenna Mannix. He is also survived by his brother, Alan Miller and his wife MaryAnn and their two children, Justin and Brandon.

 

Jack, as he was known, was born on November 28, 1946 and grew up in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. In 1968, he was awarded a Bachelor of Science degree, cum laude, in Commerce and Finance from Wilkes University.

 

In January 2005, Mr. Miller retired as Vice Chairman of KPMG LLP, a global accounting, tax, and advisory firm, after 36 years of service.

 

During his career, he received numerous awards for outstanding service and was recognized as a leader who exemplified and promoted excellence, outstanding leadership, high ethical standards, and innovative management techniques. In 2002, he received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. Mr. Miller formerly served as Chairman of the United States Comptroller General’s Governmental Auditing Standards Advisory Council.

 

He also had an extensive history in public service, having served as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of The Osborn Retirement Community, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Wilkes University, a Trustee and Regent of the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine, in New York, and as a Vestryman of Trinity Wall Street, as well as Christ’s Church in Rye. Mr. Miller was a member of the Board of Directors, Customers Bancorp Inc. and Customers Bank. When his children were young he served on the PTO of Osborn School. He was also on the board of the Rye YMCA.

 

For 36 years, he and his family lived in Rye, where he enjoyed the small-town community feel. “Even after we decided to downsize and moved to New Rochelle, we kept coming back to Rye,” said his wife.

 

Jack Miller most enjoyed spending time with family and friends, especially when all the children and grandchildren would gather. “He had the most integrity of anyone I’ve ever known,” recalled his wife. “He didn’t know how not to do the right thing.”

 

A funeral service was held at Christ’s Church in Rye on April 29.

 

The family would appreciate donations to Christ’s Church, or The Kidney Cancer Association, P.O. Box 803338 #38269, Chicago, IL 60680-3338. 

 

Constance Corroon

 

OBITS-Constance CorroonConstance Corroon, a successful interior designer, died on April 24, 2016. The longtime Rye resident was 90.

 

Born in Brooklyn on November 23, 1925, she was the youngest of eight children of Florence and Steven V. Duffy. The family soon moved to Manhattan, where she attended Convent of Scared Heart 91st Street. In 1946, she graduated from Manhattanville College of the Sacred Heart. 

 

While a student in the Decorative Arts Business Program, she apprenticed at both an architectural practice and an interior design firm in the city.

 

Brimming with the confidence of youth, she started her own firm, Constance Duffy Interiors, and built a thriving commercial/residential design business. During that time, she volunteered at St. Vincent’s Hospital.

 

In 1947, she met Lawrence Corroon, also of New York City. “Our parents knew one another,” said Mr. Corroon. “We traveled out to the Buck Hill Falls resort in Pennsylvania and we were soon friends, but just friends for many years.”

 

He continued, “I’d ask Connie out to a movie, but not for dinner and a movie. After Sunday morning mass, I’d call and ask her to take a walk around the reservoir in Central Park. I didn’t find out until much later that she didn’t really enjoy long walks.”

 

What put a fire under their chose friendship was the month-long separation when she traveled with her widowed mother to Florida. “I missed her terribly,” he acknowledged.

 

Upon her return, he invited her to dinner and a movie, and that night Lawrence Corroon proposed to Connie Duffy.

 

They were married in October 1954 and moved to Larchmont, where they raised their three children. Mrs. Corroon became active in the Junior League.

 

The couple moved to Rye 43 years ago. When United Hospital started a hospice program, she was among the first volunteers. She also worked for the Reach to Recovery Program. A member of the United Hospital Board of Managers, he later served as secretary of Board of Trustees.

 

In addition to being an extremely creative woman, “Connie loved parties, and any excuse to give a party, including her own birthday party,” recalled her husband, who survives her as do their children Claire and Daniel.

 

Mrs. Corroon was predeceased by her daughter, Anne Grubbs, and siblings Joseph Duffy, Miriam Scavullo, Rev. Stephen Duffy SJ, Sr. Helen Marie SSND, Rev. Edwin Duffy, Florence Doherty, and Jane Burt.

 

A funeral mass was celebrated April 30 at Church of the Resurrection. 

 

Donations in her memory may be made to Hospice of Westchester, 1025 Westchester Avenue, White Plains, NY 10604.

 

Leonard Schindo

 

Leonard F. Schindo, a lifelong resident of Rye, died April 22, 2016, while visiting his daughter in New Port Richey, Florida. He was 92.

 

Born on June 1, 1923, the son of Frank and Clara Schindo, he went through the Rye City school system.

 

During World War II, he served in the Pacific Theatre with the U.S. Coast Guard. After the war, Mr. Schindo served as the Court Clerk for the City of Rye.

 

Throughout his life, he excelled in sports. He was an avid golfer and managed to score fourteen holes-in-one. He enjoyed his days at Rye Golf Club, long morning walks on the Playland Boardwalk, and Tuesday night pizza with his brother Ed and friends.

 

He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Kathleen Schindo; two daughters, Kathie Bender (Louis) and Carol Schindo; a granddaughter, Danielle; a grandson, Louis Bender Jr.; his brothers, Frank and Ed Schindo; his cousins, Mary Savage and Jack Schindo; and many friends. The eldest of five children, Mr. Schindo was predeceased by his sister, Mary Bisignano, and his brother, William Schindo.

 

A Memorial mass to celebrate his life was held May 6 at 11 at Church of the Resurrection.

 

Donations in his memory may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital (st.jude.org).

 

Emanuela Riccio

 

ObitRiccioEmanuela Riccio, a lifelong resident of Rye, passed away on April 1, 2016. She was 97.

 

She attended Rye schools, graduating in 1937. Mannie, as she was known, went on to work as both an insurance and real estate agent for Suzanne Gedney Real Estate on Purchase Street. She continued the business after Ms. Gedney’s death and purchased what is now the Woodrow Jewelers Building from the estate.

 

A longtime member of Ceres Garden Club and the Business and Professional Women Organization, Ms. Riccio was also a former member of the Landmark Advisory Commission.

 

She was born to Gaetano and Antoinette Riccio on November 6, 1918, at home, delivered by a midwife, Mama Ceraci, as was the custom of the time, and raised in the Rye section of “Dublin,” later moving to Purchase Street. She was the eldest of three girls. Her sister, Lucy, was a medical records librarian at United Hospital. Her surviving sister, Valerie Madello, resides in Port Chester.

 

Members of her family continue to live in and serve Rye. Her nephew by marriage is City Councilman Richard Mecca, and her great-nephew by marriage, Michael Harrington, is a member of the Board of Architectural Review.

 

In addition to her sister, Ms. Riccio is survived by her nieces, Adrienne (Richard) Mecca of Rye and Cara (William) Giacomo of Armonk; three great-nieces; and one great-nephew.

 

The light of her life was her great-grandnieces, Grace Elizabeth Higgins of Chicago and Amelia Rose Harrington of Rye.

 

The family would like to acknowledge her longtime friendship with Michael and Robert Woodrow.

 

Dr. Willard Cates Jr.

 

The world lost one of its champions of public health, with the passing of Dr. Willard Cates Jr. on March 17, 2016. He was a pioneer researcher in the fields of HIV/AIDS and women’s reproductive health.

 

Born in Cleveland, Ohio, on November 16, 1942, to Willard and Dorothy Sands Cates, he grew up in Rye, New York. After graduating from Rye High School in 1960, he attended Yale University, from which he earned a Bachelor’s degree in History in 1964. He traveled to England to further his studies during a fellowship at King’s College at Cambridge University.

 

While in England, Ward, as he was called, had two unexpected experiences that shaped the trajectory of his life. First, he met his future wife, Joan, and pursued her throughout the capital cities of Europe. And secondly, he was injured during a rugby game, which subsequently sparked his interest and lifetime passion in medicine and public health. Shortly thereafter, he returned to Yale where he was the first to complete a combined M.D./Master’s in Public Health degree in 1971.

 

After a stint in the United States Army where he achieved the rank of captain, he began a two-year fellowship with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the Epidemic Intelligence Service, a fellowship that helped to launch his long and storied career in reproductive and public health.

 

Dr. Cates began his fellowship shortly after the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision and became engrossed in the field of women’s reproductive health. He served as the first permanent Chief of the Abortion Surveillance Branch at the CDC where he quickly emerged as the world’s leading abortion epidemiologist. After nine years in the Family Planning Evaluation Division, he became the Director of the Division of Sexually Transmitted Diseases at CDC, a position he took at the dawn of the HIV epidemic in the United States. Working on the Kaposi Sarcoma/Opportunistic Infections Task Force proved challenging yet rewarding for Dr. Cates who became an HIV/AIDS expert. This experience helped to shift his career path as he became interested in the international epidemic.

 

In 1994, he was recruited to work as a researcher at Family Health International (now FHI 360), a leading global development organization. Dr. Cates was the President/CEO of its Institute for Family Health and was serving as the President Emeritus of Research at the time of his death. During his time at FHI 360, he worked as principal investigator on many microbicide trials including the CAPRISA 004 trial of 1% tenofovir gel, a trial that showed a 39% reduction in HIV acquisition among women using the gel. From 1997-2002, he was a scientific investigator for the HIV Prevention Trials Network and was a principal investigator for the Microbicide Trials Network. He was a member of the Institute of Medicine.

 

A renowned leader and mentor, Ward Cates inspired two generations of leading scientists, public health officials, and clinical practitioners and provided much guidance for those in the fields of family planning, STD/HIV prevention, and epidemiology. Perhaps the best documentation of his leadership is his co-authorship of eight editions of Contraceptive Technology, widely regarded as the standard textbook in family planning. He was also a regular speaker at the twice-yearly Contraceptive Technology conferences and he co-edited two supplements on family planning and HIV for the journal AIDS.

 

As accomplished as he was in his professional life, he found his greatest joy in his family. Known as Bompa by his grandchildren, he loved hearing about and following the interests of his children and grandchildren. Whether on the sidelines watching his family excel on the fields or on his couch following Duke basketball, the L.A. Dodgers, or Red Zone, he was always the loudest fan cheering for the things he loved.

 

Dr. Cates is survived by his wife, the love of his life, Joan Roberts Cates; two daughters, Deborah Cates Knighton (Tim) and Sarah Cates Parker (Andy); and four grandchildren, Charles Knighton, Henry Knighton, Katherine Parker, and Addison Parker. He was preceded in death by his sister, Margot Cates Kagen.

 

A private interment was held at Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond, Virginia. A celebration of Ward Cates’ life will be held later in the spring. Contributions in his memory may be made to The Guttmacher Institute, 125 Maiden Lane, 7th floor, New York, NY 10038.

 

 

Leonard Schindo

 

 

Leonard F. Schindo, a lifelong resident of Rye, died April 22, 2016, while visiting his daughter in New Port Richey, Florida. He was 92.

 

 

Born on June 1, 1923, the son of Frank and Clara Schindo, he went through the Rye City school system.

 

 

During World War II, he served in the Pacific Theatre with the U.S. Coast Guard. After the war, Mr. Schindo served as the Court Clerk for the City of Rye.

 

 

Throughout his life, he excelled in sports. He was an avid golfer and managed to score fourteen holes-in-one. He enjoyed his days at Rye Golf Club, long morning walks on the Playland Boardwalk, and Tuesday night pizza with his brother Ed and friends.

 

 

He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Kathleen Schindo; two daughters, Kathie Bender (Louis) and Carol Schindo; a granddaughter, Danielle; a grandson, Louis Bender Jr.; his brothers, Frank and Ed Schindo; his cousins, Mary Savage and Jack Schindo; and many friends. The eldest of five children, Mr. Schindo was predeceased by his sister, Mary Bisignano, and his brother, William Schindo.

 

 

A Memorial mass to celebrate his life will be held May 6 at 11 at Church of the Resurrection.

 

 

Donations in his memory may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital (st.jude.org).

 

 

Patricia Carey

 

OBITS-Pat CareyPatricia F. Carey, a local art and music leader, died on March 17, 2016 at Greenwich Hospital. The cause of death was complications following major surgery. The longtime Rye resident was 90.

 

Mrs. Carey was a founder and the first president of the Rye Arts Center. She was the first coordinator of educational programs for children at the Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts and served as a trustee on their board for 35 years, and remained on their Advisory Board. She was also a board member of Hope House in Port Chester.

 

She graduated from Girls High School in Philadelphia and from Swarthmore College, and she studied at both the Art Students League and The Barnes Foundation.

 

Her father, Dr. Victor H. Frank, was president of the American Society of Oral Surgeons and her mother, Lee W. Frank, an artist, also hosted her own radio show, “Tea with Merry Lee.” She grew up in a home founded in a love of family, appreciation for the dramatic and fine arts, the pursuit of world peace, and Penn Football.

 

As a younger woman, she was a member of the Philadelphia Forum, the Student World Federalists, worked in radio with Young and Rubicam, and campaigned tirelessly with lifelong friend Louise Hoffman on the 1952 presidential campaign for Adlai Stevenson.

 

Pat Carey shared her magical smile and twinkle in her eyes with everyone she met. “Regardless of the situation, she was always there to bring hope and apositive perspective to all,” said her family. “Her artistic vision brought out the beauty of every endeavor and helped frame the best path to take.”

 

Her husband John recalled that in 65 years of marriage, “Pat never spoke a harsh or mean word. There was never a moment of unpleasantness.”

 

Her optimism and spirit was and is best captured in her favorite song, “You’ll Never Walk Alone” from the Rodgers and Hammerstein show “Carousel.”

 

Mrs. Carey was predeceased by her brother, Olympian Victor H. Frank Jr., and her second son, John Carey Jr. In addition to her husband John Carey, a former judge and mayor of Rye, to whom she was married for 65 years, she leaves behind three children: Henry (Faye) of Decatur, Georgia, Douglas of Rye, and Jennifer Reichle (Philip) of Fredericksburg, Texas. She was most proud of her five grandchildren: Shenoa Victoria, John Henry, Miho, Caleb, and Nathaniel.

 

A funeral service was held March 26 at All Souls Church in Port Chester, followed by interment at Greenwood Union Cemetery. A celebration of her life will be held in late spring.

 

Donations in Mrs. Carey’s memory may be made to the Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts, 149 Girdle Ridge Road, Katonah, NY 10536.

 

Bill Klein

 

William KleinWilliam Gerard Klein, who served his country during World War II, retired as a Lieutenant Commander in the Naval Reserve, and went on to a long and successful career in life insurance, died March 6, 2016. The longtime Rye resident was 89.

 

He was born on July 27, 1926 in New York City, the son of Florence and William Klein. Following graduation from Fordham Preparatory School in 1943, he served in the Navy in the Pacific during World War II. Upon his discharge, he entered Fordham College, graduating in 1951 with a B.A. in History. While working for the New York State Life Insurance Department, he received an MBA from the Stern School of Business at NYU. In 1965 he received a second Master’s degree, this time in American History, from Fordham University. While pursuing his graduate studies, he also applied for a commission in the US Naval Reserve, where he earned an Intelligence Classification and Top Secret Clearance. He was attached to the Third Naval District Intelligence Unit, New Rochelle Naval Reserve Training Center, and retired as a Lieutenant Commander.

 

In 1966, he married Kathleen (Kate) Rees. “We were looking forward to celebrating our 50th wedding anniversary later this year,” she said.

 

While working for the Life Bureau of the NYS Life Insurance Department, he was promoted from Principal Examiner to Supervising Examiner, and finally to Chief III. During this time he continued his studies at the NY College of Insurance achieving the following designations: Chartered Life Insurance Examiner, Chartered Financial Consultant and Fellow in the Life Management Institute. At the time of his retirement, in 1995, he was the only member of the NYS Life Insurance Department with these five designations.

 

Following his retirement, Mr. Klein devoted his efforts to genealogical research, tracing the Gurnee (his mother’s maiden name) family back to the 1500s in La Rochelle, France. Some of these Gurnees (also spelled Garnier) were the original settlers of the City of New Rochelle. In addition, he was a distant cousin of President Theodore Roosevelt through Resolved Waldron (1610-1690) of New Amsterdam, and grandson of John Waldron of Hampshire, England (1560-1609).

 

All of Mr. Klein’s research has been documented and presented to the NY Genealogical/Biographical Society; the Huguenot Society of New Rochelle; the NY Public Library; the LDS Family History Center in Salt Lake City, Utah; the Family History Library at Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah; the Rockland County Genealogical Society; Iona College Library, New Rochelle; the Theodore Roosevelt Public Library; and the Roosevelt Library at Hyde Park, N.Y.

 

“Because of Bill’s research, he and I traveled all over the country,” recalled his wife. “I can’t tell you how many Revolutionary War graves we visited!”

 

Mr. Klein was a parishioner of Resurrection Church, a member of the NY Genealogical/Biographical Society, the Rockland County Genealogical Society, the Rye Historical Society, the Military Officers Association of America, and the Retired Reserve Officers Association of Westchester.

 

In addition to his wife, Mr. Klein is survived by their sons, William Rhys and Dr. John Curnee (and his wife Marianne); and two granddaughters, Maria and Cianna.

 

A funeral was held March 12 at Resurrection Church. Donations in Mr. Klein’s memory may be made to Fordham Preparatory School. 

 

Janet Becker

 

OBITS-Janet BeckerJanet Ikeler Becker, who served her country during World War II, passed away peacefully at Greenwich Hospital on February 20, 2016. A longtime Rye resident, she was 92 years old.

 

She was born on July 3, 1923, in York, Pennsylvania. Soon after, the family moved to Peekskill, N.Y., where her father took over ownership of the Peekskill Evening Star newspaper. After graduating from Mount Holyoke College in 1944, she was recruited by the United States Navy, and served as an officer in the Waves for the balance of World War II, at the Department of Naval Intelligence in Washington, D.C.

 

After her discharge, she moved to New York City, and pursued a graduate degree in International Relations at NYU, where she met her future husband, Irving Becker. She received her M.A. in International Relations, U.S. Foreign Policy, and International Law from NYU in 1954.

 

In 1957, Mr. Becker was offered a position with the United States State Department, which gave them the opportunity to live in New Delhi, India for the next two years. When they returned to the United States, they eventually settled in Rye, where Mrs. Becker became involved in many community organizations.

 

In addition to serving as president of the Rye chapter of the League of Women Voters, she was an active member of the Rye Human Rights Commission. Her love for travel drew her to working part-time as a travel agent at Haigh-Donovan Travel in Rye Brook. In later years, she served as a volunteer at the Bruce Museum in Greenwich.

 

Her family said, “Jan will always be remembered for her sly wit, intense curiosity, and strong love of family. She never failed to make us laugh.”

 

Mrs. Becker is survived by her sons, Jonathan (and his wife Pat)and D.C. (and his wife Norma); her granddaughters, Rachel Becker and Alexandra Hine (and her husband Chris); and three nephews and a niece.

 

A memorial service for Jan will be held at a later date. Jan was a strong advocate of Doctors Without Borders, and in lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to that organization (doctorswithoutborders.org). 888-392-0392.

 

Jean Behan

 

Jean Edwards Behan, a former longtime Rye resident, died peacefully in the presence of her family on the evening of February 2, 2016.

 

Born on August 25, 1923 in Toronto, Canada, she spent some of her childhood in Sydney, Australia.

 

On September 11, 1953, she married Reginald Behan in Toronto. After the birth of their two daughters, the family moved to Rye in 1959. Mrs. Behan spent many years working as an executive assistant, a real estate agent for Zinsner’s Real Estate, and a travel agent for Travel Anywhere, and as a member of the TWIG organization.

 

An avid Yankee fan, she was known to drive around her daughter’s neighborhood in Tennessee to find good reception on the radio for the evening’s game if it wasn’t televised. She was an avid ice-skater, knitter, and seamstress.

 

In 2012, Jean and Reg Behan moved to Ellicott City, Maryland, where their daughter Jill resides.

 

Mrs. Behan is survived by her husband; her daughters, Jill Schutzman and Lesley Ford; her grandchildren, Justin and Lindsay Schutzman and Jason and Eric Ford; and her brother, Ross E. Edwards.

 

Her wish would be that memorial donations be made to the charity of your choice. Jean’s charities were N.Y.C. Rescue, Habitat for Humanity, UNICEF, St. Jude’s, CARE, and Doctors without Borders.

 

Tom Fitzgerald

 

OBITS-Tom FitzgeraldThomas Patrick Fitzgerald of New Port Richey, Florida, formerly of Rye, died peacefully on February 1, 2016. He was 84.

 

“Fitz,” as he was called, was born in Rye on August 30, 1931, to Winifred and James Fitzgerald. He was a member of the Rye High School class of 1951.

 

During the Korean War, he served with the Eighth Air Force. His love of aviation led to a career as a mechanic in corporate aviation at Westchester County Airport. Mr. Fitzgerald took pride in the fact that he and his crew never missed a departure. 

 

Mr. Fitzgerald is survived by his wife, Betty (Jennings) Fitzgerald; his children, Thomas (Joan Kelley), Debra (Keith Hughes,) and Scott (Patricia Fitzgerald); and his grandchildren, Casey and Ryan Fitzgerald. He was predeceased by his brother, Edward.

 

“Fitz loved and lived life to the fullest. He was always there to help anyone in need,” said his family. He will be remembered as a kind and gentle man that touched the lives and hearts of many.

 

A service will be held April 9 at 11 a.m. at Resurrection Church. In lieu of flowers, please perform a kind deed in his memory.

 

 

William Switzer.300

William Switzer

 

William H. Switzer, a well-known architect who designed schools and athletic facilities in Westchester, died on February 10, 2016. He was 90. 

 

He had a long and varied architectural career and spent seven years with Perkins & Will Architects before establishing a private practice, which he pursued in Westchester County from 1959-1999. Mr. Switzer, along with the Municipal Library in Hastings-on-Hudson, Fordham Preparatory School, the Greenburgh Community Center, and a cottage at The Children’s Village.

 

Mr. Switzer also worked on numerous projects for the NY State Correctional Facilities from 1968-1990. He was a member of the American Institute of Architects, President of the Westchester/Mid-Hudson Chapter AlA in 1971, and Chairman of the AlA National Committee on Architecture for Justice in 1980.

 

He was born in New Rochelle, on November 10, 1925. A lifelong New Yorker, he grew up in Hastings-on-Hudson, his favorite town. He was a commissioned officer in the U.S. Navy where he served in the Philippine Islands at the end of World War II, mine sweeping on PT Boat 15.

 

He spent two years at the Syracuse University School of Architecture, and was a 1950 graduate of the Yale School of Architecture.

 

His civic affiliations included the Hastings-on-Hudson Planning Board, where he was Chairman for ten years. He was also Captain of the Hastings-on-Hudson Volunteer Fire Department in 1967. 

 

He and his wife moved to Rye in 1997. They enjoyed membership at Rye Golf Club. Most recently, Mr. Switzer served as President of the Milton Harbor House Association.

 

Working as an architect was like being able to play each day, he often said. Mr. Switzer had a love of the sea and sailing, and was for many years an active participant in the sport of curling. “Always a gentleman” best describes Bill Switzer, said his family.

 

He is survived by his wife of 37 years, Diane (Abbandonato Gardella); four sons, David (Chris), Steven (Ruthanne), Peter (Sabina), and Matthew (Nisha); two stepdaughters, Adriana Gardella and Suzanne Gardella; seven grandchildren; three step-grandchildren; and one great-grandchild. He is also survived by a brother, Barry Switzer. A sister, Elizabeth Henderson, predeceased him.

 

The family will receive friends on February 22 from 10 to 12 at Graham Funeral Home. A religious service will be held at noon, followed by burial at Greenwood Union Cemetery in Rye.

 

Contributions in Mr. Switzwer’s memory may be made to United Hebrew Nursing Home, 391 Pelham Road, New Rochelle, NY 10805.

 

Jane Waters

 

obit jane waters photoJane Fuller Waters, a longtime Rye resident, died peacefully in New London, Conn., on February 20, 2016. She was 97.

 

Born to Sara and Walter Fuller on May 20, 1918 in Woodbury City, New Jersey, she grew up in Bryn Mawr, Pa. Her father was President of the Curtis Publishing Company from 1934 to 1950, and was Chairman of the National Association of Manufacturers in 1941 when U.S. industry was being converted to wartime production. 

 

A graduate of St. Catherine’s School, Va., she married Somerset Waters in 1940. She traveled the world extensively for many years, assisting her husband as assistant editor in the annual publication of The Big Picture – Travel Industry World Yearbook.  Both she and her husband were fully engaged in the community, especially the Rye Free Reading Room. A member of American Yacht Club and the University Club in New York City, she was a valued 40-year member of The Rye Garden Club and a loyal parishioner of Christ’s Church.

 

Rye Garden Club members said Jane Waters would long be remembered for “her graciousness, wonderful sense of humor, and creative flair. Her sense of style and fun were demonstrated in her whimsical Annual Meeting hats and in the amazing museum-quality doll houses and miniature rooms she created.” Each spring, she and her husband generously shared their dahlia tubers with Club friends. 

 

Her nephew John Waters said, “My aunt was so eccentric and chic in her own original way. She always seemed to have a good-natured chuckle, even when I was a nutty teen; she was one of the few relatives that took it all in stride.” 

 

Another nephew, Wally Ogelsby recalled, “Warm morning sun streaming into the white Rye kitchen, with gentle, welcome conversation and chicken livers on toast. Nothing but good.”

 

Mrs. Waters’ passions were painting, miniatures, music, and writing. She built and exhibited her miniature rooms at the Bruce Museum in Greenwich. She found great solace in playing the piano, especially during the last year. She was published in The New York Times and self-published Tuesday Afternoons at Jane’s. She lived at The Osborn in Rye for ten years until moving to New London last year.

 

Her husband died in 2005. Mrs. Waters is survived by her brother, Dean Fuller; four children: Deane Kysar, Jane Price, Somerset Waters, and Rachel Waters; five grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren. 

 

Funeral services were held at Christ’s Church on February 29.

 

George Leier Jr.

 

George Leier Jr. died peacefully, surrounded by his family in Transitions Hospice House, on February 26, 2016 in Raleigh, N.C. He was 85.

 

Born at home in the Bronx on June 17, 1930, he was the son of George and May Leier. Growing up, he worked for years in his father’s plumbing business before moving on to work at Hertlein Tool and Die.

 

In 1956, he began a long and distinguished career at IBM, where he worked as both a hardware and software engineer. He retired in 1987 but remained as a consultant until 2000.

 

Mr. Leier was a longtime member of Wakefield Grace Methodist Church in the Bronx, before becoming an Episcopalian when he married in 1957 and joined St. John’s Episcopal Church in Larchmont. After moving to Raleigh, he became a member of Church of the Good Shepherd.

 

Mr. Leier raised his family in Rye, where he helped with community organizations such as the Boy and Girl Scouts and was a member of Rye Fire Department’s Milton patrol. He was also a Mason and longtime member of John Stewart Lodge in Mount Vernon. He continued his community service in Raleigh, driving kidney dialysis patients to treatment and supporting World Vision and St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital throughout his adult life.

 

An avid puzzle solver, Mr. Leier was a fan of “Jeopardy” and “Wheel of Fortune.”

 

He possessed a zest for living, a joyful outlook on life, a wonderful sense of humor, and contagious optimism. “George was a truly kind and compassionate man who loved well and genuinely fostered that which was good and decent,” said his family. “He was always willing to help others, often using his uncanny ability to fix anything to rescue those in need.”

 

He and his wife Dorothy were married for 58 wonderful years. She survives him as do his daughters, Margaret Leier of Raleigh and Karen (Tim) Kuhns of Apex, N.C.; his son, George (Vickie) Leier of Elkton, Md.; six grandchildren; and a great-granddaughter. He was predeceased by his brother, William Norman, and his sisters, Martha and Ruth Ann.

 

A funeral was held March 2 at Church of the Good Shepherd in Raleigh.

 

Donations in Mr. Leier’s memory may be made to St. Jude’s Children's Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.


OBITs-SchneiderDick Schneider


Richard H. Schneider, a resident of Rye for 36 years, died on January 29, 2016 after a short illness.


Mr. Schneider (better known as “Dick”) was born in Chicago, on March 9, 1922. He grew up in the suburb of Oak Park, along with his two brothers, Herb and Donald.


In 1943, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and served in the European Theater of Operations. Most notably, he was stationed in a small village in Belgium throughout the duration of the Battle of the Bulge.


Once the victory in Europe was announced, Mr. Schneider was placed on a ship with other troops destined for the Pacific Theater. It was only a few hours before they reached the Panama Canal (the point of no return) when they heard that Japan had surrendered and that they would be turning around and heading to New York for the end of their service.


After the war he married Betty Renfro (also from Illinois) and returned to the Chicago area where he began work for the Walgreens drug store chain in their corporate offices. By the early 1960s he had risen to the position of Director of Public Relations for the chain.


The couple had two children – Peter in 1957 and Christopher in 1959.


In 1969, after 23 years with Walgreens, Schneider accepted a job as Senior Editor with Guideposts magazine in New York City. (Guideposts was founded and managed by Dr. Norman Vincent Peale.) He and his family moved to suburban New Jersey at that point.


In 1976, the Schneiders moved to Lincoln, Va., where they oversaw the running of Chosen Books, a publisher specializing in inspirational titles. It was jointly owned by the Schneiders, John and Elizabeth Sherrill, and Catherine Marshall (widow of Dr. Peter Marshall).


In 1980 Mr. Schneider was asked to return to Guideposts as Executive Editor. It was at this point he and his wife moved to Rye. Schneider worked at Guideposts full time from 1980 up until 2005, when he retired at the age of 83.


During his years in Rye, Schneider wrote and published more than 30 books. These included both adult non-fiction and children’s titles. His large-format illustrated book on the Statue of Liberty (“Freedom’s Holy Light,” Thomas Nelson, 1985) was the first book to feature an Introduction written by a sitting President (Ronald Reagan). He also served as a co-author to several notable people, including Leon Jaworski, the Watergate prosecutor (“Crossroads,” D.C. Cook; 1981); Harold Hughes, former Governor of Iowa (“The Man from Ida Grove,” Chosen Books, 1979); and Max Cleland, former Senator and Director of Veterans Affairs (“Strong at the Broken Places,” Chosen Books, 1980).


Most notable among his children’s books is “Why Christmas Trees Aren’t Perfect” (illustrated by Elizabeth Miles, Abingdon Press, 1988). This title has remained in print to the present day and has sold over 100,000 copies. (The Amazon reviews will bear witness to the long sales history.)


In 2002 Schneider published “TAPS: Notes from a Nation’s Heart” (William Morrow; 2002), a warm-hearted telling of how this wistful bugle cry came to be and the role it has played in our nation’s history. “Stars and Stripes Forever: The History, Stories, and Memories of Our American Flag” followed in 2003 (William Morrow).


For many years, Mr. Schneider was also a regular contributor to The Rye Record, sharing his thoughts on faith and family. When he was not in the office writing books and articles or on the road, interviewing personages such as Jimmy Stewart and Mike Wallace, Mr. Schneider enjoyed sailing his 27-foot sailboat on the Long Island Sound – he kept the Blue Belle berthed in Rye Harbor, until he sold it just before he and his wife moved to The Osborn. Each summer would find the Schneiders and their sons, daughters-in-laws, and grandchildren in the Massachusetts village of Rockport, at the tip of Cape Ann. They loved the wild, rocky shoreline there as well as the adjoining old fishing town of Gloucester. They first visited the area in 1955 (making the long trip from Chicago) and they never missed a summer visit during the intervening sixty years. Rockport will stay a fixture in the lives of their children and grandchildren for decades to come.


In 2009 the Schneiders moved from their home on Oakwood Avenue to an apartment within The Osborn senior residence.


Betty Schneider died on July 11, 2014 after a short illness.


Funeral services were held for Richard Schneider on February 2 with interment at Greenwood Cemetery. Fittingly, a bugler played “Taps” from a nearby hill as he was laid to rest.

 

 

Russell Ruth


Russell Ruth, a lifelong resident of Rye, passed away January 7, 2016 with his family by his side. He was 68.


He was born on September 7, 1947 to Ethel and Joseph Martello of Rye. At Rye High School he was on the Swim team and was an award-winning diver. He worked as a security guard at American Yacht Club.


His family said, “Russ was comical, adventurous, and highly intelligent. There was never a question that he couldn’t answer. We called him ‘Google.’ He enjoyed watching ‘Jeopardy’ and doing crossword puzzles.”


His niece, Renee Drummond, said, “Our favorite spot in Rye was the seat that was closest to the kitchen at Kelly’s. We would talk for hours about all that he knew about the world and its rich history. I saw him live life ‘his way.’ I will always remember his one-liners, Florida tan, cowboy boots, Zippo lighter, and love for animals.”


In addition to his niece, Mr. Ruth is survived by his sister, Doreen Piacitelli and her husband Billy of Rye; his nephews, Jessup Lopez of Rye and Cole Finocchio of Rye Brook; and his former wife, Emilia Tropeano.


A service was held at Graham Funeral Home January 12.

 

 

OBITS-FauncePat Faunce


Patricia Fendler Faunce passed away due to a stroke on January 25, 2016. She was 85.


Born to Donald C. and Ruth Ryan Fendler of Rye on March 24, 1930, she grew up in Rye and attended Westbrook Junior College in Portland, Me.


She was Supervisor of Admissions at Thayer Hospital in Waterville, Me., before moving to Florida.


As a resident and member of the Indian River Club in Vero Beach, Florida, Mrs. Faunce was an avid golfer and participator in club activities. She was a Hospice volunteer, giving a helping hand whenever needed with a smile.


Bingo was her passion and she won often, and laughter was her specialty, said her family. “Pat lived her life to the fullest. She was a ‘people person.” She cherished her family, her friends, and her beloved Maltese, Cupcake.”


She is survived by her children, Dr. Thomas W. Tilton (Kris) of Geneva, Ill., MaryAnn Tilton of Vero Beach, and Donna Pirrotta (Joseph) of Wellington, Fla.; her grandchildren, Taryn and Tory Tilton, Zachary Ware, Carly Tanner, and Christopher Pirrotta; eight great-grandchildren; three bothers and two sisters. She was predeceased by her granddaughter, Lyndsay Pirrotta.


A Mass of Christian Burial was held January 29 at Holy Cross Catholic Church in Vero Beach. An internment will be held in Rye in the spring.


Online condolences may be shared at www.coxgiffordseawinds.com.


Memorial contributions may be made to VNA Hospice, 1110 35th Lane, Vero Beach, FL 32960, or to the charity of your choice.

 

 

OBITS-Arthur-JeffersonArthur Jefferson


Arthur S. Jefferson, known to friends and family as Jeff, passed away at home January 7, 2016 with his loving wife Beverley Underwood by his side. He was 91.


Born in Manhattan on June 1, 1924, to Richard and Alma Jefferson, the family moved to Rye when he was 2. After graduating from Harrison High School in 1942, he entered the accelerated course at New York State Maritime Academy. Upon graduation in 1943, he served in the Pacific Theater as a naval officer aboard USS Thuban AKA19.  Following World War II, he attended Duke University on the GI Bill. He was the first member of his family to graduate college.


Mr. Jefferson’s love for the sea led him to a career in the Merchant Marine. He began with Farrell Lines, was promoted to Captain in 1956, and for the next 37 years he held command of freighters and container ships and sailed the world. Although he worked for several shipping lines, his years with Farrell were those that he held most dear. His career took him to Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Asia, and Europe.  


It was during his time in South Africa that he met and married his first wife, Catherine Marie Millson, known as Marie. They moved to Rye, where they raised their three children. After he retired in 1992, the Jeffersons moved to Sarasota, Florida. They were married for 37 years, until Marie’s death in 1995.  


In 2000, Mr. Jefferson married Beverley Underwood. They resided in Sarasota and vacationed in New Zealand.


Mr. Jefferson was an avid carpenter and gardener and among his many hobbies was the ancient nautical art of scrimshaw. Later in life, he took up woodcarving, creating lifelike animals for his grandchildren and exquisite Nativity figures.


During his children’s high school and college years he was a dedicated fan, never missing the chance to cheer them on at their sporting events. Throughout his retirement, he was an active member of Siesta Key Chapel, which became his spiritual home.


In addition to his wife, Beverley Underwood, Mr. Jefferson is survived by his children, Karen (Tim) Carlisle of Rye, Brett (Catherine) Jefferson of Darien, and Janet Jefferson-Bailey of Jacksonville; and his grandchildren, Jack, Caley, and Paige Carlisle, Emma and Cole Bailey, and Tyler, Reese, and Isabelle Jefferson.


A memorial service was held on January 16 at Siesta Key Chapel in Sarasota, to which donations may be made (4615 Gleason Ave., Sarasota, Florida 34242).

 

 

OBIT-James-JenningsJames Jennings


James A. Jennings Jr. of Rye, died peacefully at home on January 24, 2016. He was 90 years old.  


He was born to James and Elizabeth Kirwin Jennings on November 6, 1925 in Deal, N.J. During World War II, he served honorably as part of the 405th Infantry, United States Army, and received both the Purple Heart and the Bronze Star.


After returning from Europe in 1945, he married his longtime sweetheart, Eleanor Krueger. They settled in New Rochelle, where they raised their three sons. Mr. Jennings graduated from Iona College and enjoyed a distinguished career in the family construction firm.


He was a devoted parishioner at The Church of the Resurrection in Rye, and a member of the Knights of Columbus, as well as the American Legion.


Mr. Jennings is survived by his sons, James A. Jennings III and his wife Pamela, and Mark E. Jennings and his wife Katherine; seven grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his wife Eleanor, his son Scott, his sister Betty, and his brother Frank.


A Requiem Mass was held January 29 at Church of the Resurrection, followed by internment at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Valhalla.

 

 

 

 

 


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