Helen Ward Burke, a longtime Rye resident, died peacefully in her home on December 19, 2016. She was 100.

A consummate and charming homemaker, she had the gift of engaging family and friends in the arts, politics, Airedales, and sports, notably, her adored Yankees. She also mastered the art of French cooking. “Les canards gave her kitchen wide birth, lest they end up suitably sauced,” noted her family.

She was born February 5, 1916, in Chicago, to Burt and Elizabeth (Birks) Ward of Madison, Wisconsin.

A Larchmont resident during her formative years, she became a champion swimmer and diver for Orienta Beach Club, setting records that were not bested for 30 years, and only then by her daughter Barbie.

Bernard Tofany, a family dentist in upstate New York for more than half a century, died August 11, 2016, at the age of 93, at The Osborn in Rye, where he had lived in recent years.

During World War II he served aboard a U.S. Navy landing ship in the South Pacific. He was a graduate of Aquinas Institute, St. Bonaventure University, and University of Buffalo Dental School.

Dr. Tofany not only enjoyed being a family dentist but held many positions in his field. He was Assistant Clinical Professor of Dentistry at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, an Adjunct Clinical Professor of Dental Hygiene at Monroe Community College, and a Consultant at the V.A. hospitals in Canandaigua and Bath. He served as President of the Monroe County and Seventh District Dental Societies, as well as on the New York State Board for Dentistry, N.E. Regional Board of Dental Examiners, and the American Association of Dental Examiners, and was a Fellow in the American and International Colleges of Dentists. Dr. Tofany received the Award of Merit from the Rochester Academy of Medicine and the Dr. George D. Greenwood Award from the Seventh District Dental Society.

Gary Denton Fender, 74, died July 10, 2016, at his home in Duncanville, Texas.

Born June 30, 1942 in Austin, he was the son of James and Dorothy Fender. His father’s work with Mobil Oil took the family to Venezuela and then to New York. Mr. Fender spent his high school years in Rye, where he was a star player on the Garnets Football team. After graduating from Rye High School in 1960, he returned to Texas on a football scholarship to Southern Methodist University. A football injury during his sophomore year led to a part-time position with First Southwest Investment Bankers and the discovery of his life’s work.

Marion (“Crystal”) Wallach of Southbury, Conn., passed away on June 14, 2016, after a courageous battle with cancer. A loving wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother, she brought a sparkle to everything.


Born in Scranton, Pa., she was the daughter of Catherine and Rudolph Koelsch. Upon graduating from high school, she moved to Manhattan to pursue her dream of becoming a model. She was soon swept off her feet by Edward Wallach. They were happily married for 60 years. From 1960 to 1978 they lived in Rye, where they raised their family.