Scheduled Services

Archive for the ‘Obituaries’ Category

PostHeaderIcon CHARLES BESTOR of AMHERST, MASS, December 21, 1924 – January 16, 2016

Amherst, the composer and educator Charles Bestor died in his sleep at his home in Amherst, Massachusetts January16.  Born December 21, 1924 in New York City to Arthur E. and Jeanette L. Bestor, Charles spent his childhood at the Chautauqua Institution where his father was President and in New York City where he graduated from the Lincoln School.

 

He met his future wife, Ann Elder, at the International House in New York City and on their first date they watched Bobby Thompson hit his legendary home run.  After their marriage in 1951 at the First Congregational Church in Amherst, Massachusetts they went on to have six children who joined them on their various adventures in New York, Colorado, Oregon, Alabama and, finally, Massachusetts as Charles pursued his parallel careers in music administration and composition.

 

He studied with Paul Hindemith at Yale University and later with Vincent Persichetti and Peter Menin at the Juilliard School and, independently, with Vladimir Ussachevsky.  He held degrees from Swarthmore College (Phi Beta Kappa), the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a Doctorate from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

 

He began his career at the Juilliard School where, in 1958, he and Ann along with their three sons accompanied the Juilliard Orchestra on their State Department sponsored European tour, acting as manager of the Orchestra.  He then accepted a faculty position at the University of Colorado at Boulder and from there went on to become the Dean of the Music School at Willamette University in Salem, Oregon followed by appointments as Head of Music at the University of Alabama and the University of Utah.  In 1977 the family returned to the east coast and Ann’s hometown of Amherst where he became Head of Music and Dance Department at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. While Charles spent many of his hours composing and, while in Utah received commissions from the Utah Symphony and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, it was during his tenure at UMass that he was able to fully embrace his role as composer.  Through time spent at the artist colonies Yaddo, MacDowell, Ragdale, the Virginia Center for the Arts and the Tyrone Guthrie Centre (Ireland) Charles was able to write many of the compositions performed so beautifully by his colleagues at UMass and elsewhere.  At the time of his death he was working on a double CD set of his music entitled “The Summing Up”.  The CD, to be released by Albany Records in the spring of 2016, features local artists Estela Olevsky, Nigel Coxe, Paulina Stark, Lynn Klock, Eduardo Leonardo, Astrid Schween, Jon Humphries and Dana Lynne Varga.

 

Charles also collaborated on many installation pieces, the first of which, Pathways from the Dream Spell Series, with Sherry Healy, was installed at the Chicago International Art Expo at Navy Pier.  He went on to a long and fruitful collaboration with the visual artist Barbara Cornett and the lighting designer John Wade on the installations Cycles and Time and the River’s Flow,  both of which were commissioned by the Maier Museum of American Art.  He subsequently collaborated with Ms. Cornett and Mr. Wade on the installation Into the Labyrinth, commissioned by the Fine Arts Center of the Virginia Museum in Lynchburg and The Unfound Door, commissioned by the College Music Society.

 

Charles served in the Navy during World War II.

 

His wife, Ann, died in 1999 after 47 years of a successful and loving partnership.  Their commitment, passion and love for their family is part of their enduring legacy as parents and individuals to their children who have strived to live by their example of honesty and integrity.  Charles of Washington DC, Geoff of Washington DC, Phill of Pittsburgh, PA, Leslie Ann of Amherst, MA, Wendy of Taiwan and Simsbury, CT and Jenner of Amherst, MA join with Phill and Wendy’s spouses Janice Watkins and Lee Zalinger and Charles’ grandchildren Zachary, Gavin and Josh Zalinger, Amanda Bestor-Siegal and Cady Bestor and his companion Barbara Cornett of Lynchburg, VA.  The family will hold in a private ceremony this weekend followed by a public memorial in the Fall of 2016 to honor his life and legacy.

 

Donations in his honor may be made in his honor to the Ann Elder Bestor Memorial Scholarship in Music, c/o Jessica Usher, College of Humanities and Fine Arts, 104 Dickinson Hall, 155 Hicks Way, Amherst, MA 01002. 

 

 

PostHeaderIcon MARIAN L. FRAZIER of HOLYOKE, MASS, February 11, 1925 – January 20, 2016

Holyoke, Marian (nee Looney) Frazier, 90, peacefully left this world on January 20, surrounded by love, both from her family and the extended community of the Mont Marie Health Care Center. 

 

She was born in Cambridge MA in 1925 to Irish immigrants. Her father educated her in the Irish struggle for freedom while her mother taught her the importance of caring for the poor and forgotten.  

 

She was the eldest daughter among four children who grew to adulthood during the Great Depression. She met and married flyer ace and war hero Gerald R. Frazier. They were blessed with eight children. 

 

Marian was introduced to the civil rights movement after moving to the deep South as a young bride. It was here where her lifelong commitment to social justice began.

 

She worked with Dorothy Day of the Catholic Worker Movement, anti-war priests, Phil and Dan Berrigan, and the international peace group, Pax Christi. Marian was a friend of Bill W. which led her to a prison ministry in local jails. She was politically active in the Democratic Party, serving as a local coordinator in John F. Kennedy’s presidential campaign.

 

Her spiritual life was deeply influenced by the Christian monastic, Thomas Merton.  Marian was a faithful parishioner at St. Mary’s of Longmeadow, St. Brigid’s and the Newman Center of Amherst.

 

She was predeceased by her husband, Gerald and her two sisters, Marjorie Ray Hayes and Patricia Campbell.  She is survived by her brother Richard J. Looney.

 

She leaves behind her children and their spouses, Michael and Susan of Hadley, Maureen of Longmeadow, Kevin and Angela of York ME, Eileen of Scarborough ME, Gerry and Lisa of Scarborough ME, Daniel of Amherst, John of Amherst and Kathleen and Mark Blakeman of Longmeadow.

 

She also leaves behind her grandchildren, Sarah, Kathleen, Teresa, Dylan, Grace, John Paul, Trent, Christian Frazier, Mary Kate, Patrick and Meghan Blakeman, and Caitlin Casali.  She leaves two great-grandchildren, Kaiden and Mackenzie.  

 

Calling hours will be Monday January 25, 2016, from 5-8pm at the Douglass Funeral Service, Amherst.  A liturgy of Christian burial will be held at Monte Marie, in Holyoke, Tuesday at 11am. Burial will follow at 1:00pm at St. Brigid’s Cemetery, Hadley.

 

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to: 

 

Sisters of Saint Joseph Retirement Fund, 577 Carew St. Springfield, MA 01104, Doctors Without Borders or The Catholic Worker Movement.

 

 

 

 

PostHeaderIcon ADAM GAMBLE of AMHERST, MASS, September 7, 1983 – January 12, 2016

 

 

AMHERST, Adam Gamble, 32, died suddenly, Tuesday January, 12, 2016. He was the son of Mary Lou Madigan and Henry Gamble.  Originally from Amherst, he attended Amherst Public Schools at a young age, later graduating from Belchertown High School.

 

Adam leaves behind 14 brothers and sisters Todd Palmisano and his wife Ansley Palmisano, Brandi Gamble-Lucas, Brandon Gamble, Danny Rodriguez,  Mandi Hawkins, Valerie Gamble, Daryl Gamble, Keith Gamble,  Kim Gamble, Kevin Gamble and his wife Linda Gamble, Ava Ward and her husband Jim Ward, Shelda Lavalle, Kim Burell and Sherri Oconnor. He is also survived by his special nieces and nephews, Sierra, Madison, Tawreak and Deshean Gamble and Savannah DeChristopher.  He was predeceased by his brother Ryan Gamble in 2013.

 

A graveside service will be Monday January 18, 2016 at 12:30 PM at St. Brigid’s Cemetery, Hadley, where Adam will be laid to rest beside his beloved brother and best friend, Ryan. Calling hours will preceded the service on Monday at the Douglass Funeral Service, Amherst from 10 – 12:15 PM.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PostHeaderIcon DONALD E. CATLIN of AMHERST, MASS, April 29, 1936 – January 11, 2016

Amherst, Donald Catlin, of Amherst, MA, died peacefully on Monday, January 11th after a short illness. Don was born on April 29th, 1936, in Erie, Pennsylvania, son of the late Marian Carlson and F.H. Catlin. 

Growing up as an only child with an English Teacher and Electrical Engineer as parents, he was precocious and curious. He made elaborate cards for his mother whenever she was ill, and entertained them both with magic tricks. Magic was one of his lifelong interests, and he was talking with friends about current magicians just two weeks ago. 

Don attended Academy High School in Erie, graduating in 1954. While still in high school he met his wife of 53 years, Mary, at a 4th of July beach party on Presque Isle. The photos we have from that time show what an elegant young couple they were. After a summer job which included changing truck tires and “running numbers”, Don moved on to Pennsylvania State University, where he earned his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering in 1958, followed by a Masters in Mathematics in 1961.  Clearly he had overcome the dislike of mathematics he had during his grade school years. 

 

Married in 1961, Don and Mary moved to Gainesville, Florida so that Don could pursue his Doctorate Degree. One might think working on a PhD would be enough to keep one busy. Not true if you are Don Catlin. Don’s hobbies and interests included cave diving (with full scuba gear), French cooking, weight lifting, and fancy cars.  He was probably slowed down a bit with the birth of his son Jeffrey in 1964, but not too much, as he went on to successfully earn his PhD in Mathematics in 1965.  He and Mary moved to Amherst in 1965, and Don’s daughter Jennifer was born in 1968. 

Don became a professor of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Massachusetts in 1965, and stayed there until his retirement in 2002. While a professor, he continued to pursue his passion for French Cuisine, and his family and friends benefited greatly from his enthusiasm for “all things gourmet”. During his sabbaticals, he worked for TASC in Reading, MA, and while he was not allowed to tell his family at the time, he designed submarine guidance systems for the government.  At the other end of the spectrum, he also worked as a consultant to the casino industry concerning game design and results. After retiring from teaching, he was able devote more time to this passion, and was a regular contributor to Casino City Times and Rolling Good Times.  

After retiring he took more time for travel, and he and Mary made a trip to Australia and New Zealand, cruised to Alaska, and traveled extensively in the Southwest and West Coast of the U.S. He made his final trip to Las Vegas in the summer of 2015 with his friend Mary Jane. 

Don was predeceased by his wife Mary in January 2015. He is survived by his son Jeffrey and his wife Andrea; his daughter Jennifer and her husband Larry Burcroff; his grandsons Scott, Tyler, Nathaniel and Jacob. Don was very proud of his family, and during the last year commented often about his terrific family and wonderful grandsons. 

Don was a determined, kind, generous and intelligent man, who always loved to entertain those he met with a joke and a story. He was loved dearly and will be missed.

Calling hours will be held at the Douglass Funeral Home in Amherst, MA on Thursday, January 14th, from 5 -7 PM and a memorial service will be held on Friday, January 15th at 10:30am at the Douglass Funeral Home in Amherst, MA.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the VNA & Hospice of Cooley Dickinson.

 

 

 

PostHeaderIcon LOUISE WOJTOWICZ of AMHERST, MASS, February 29, 1920 – January 3, 2016

 

 

Amherst, Louise Wojtowicz, 95, passed away January 3, 2016 at the Center for Extended Care in Amherst. She was born in Holyoke, MA on Feb. 29, 1920, attended schools in Holyoke, and was a life long resident of Amherst. She is survived by her son, Richard, many nieces and nephews that she was extremely fond of, as well as many dear friends. She was predeceased by her husband, Edward, to whom she was married for almost 64 years. She was also predeceased by her sisters, Sidonia Ironside and Catherine Demski, as well as her brother, John Hlystek. She was a “stay at home” mom and homemaker who worked hard to provide family and friends delicious home cooked meals, desserts, and canned goods that were a result of her husband’s one acre bountiful garden. She knitted dozens of afghans, some of which adorned her home and many of which were cherished gifts given to family and friends. She was a loving, kind, humble person who will be missed by family, friends, and anyone who came to know her.

 

She was a member of St. Brigid’s Parish in Amherst.

 

The family wishes to thank the nursing staff and caring aides at the Center for Extended Care in Amherst for the high quality of care provided to Louise, as well as for the many acts of kindness and love shown to her. As the engraved, embedded stone at the front door of the nursing home reads; “Caring for people with God’s help,” Louise was a fortunate recipient of that special kind of care that led to her longevity.

 

Funeral services will be Thursday, January 7, 2016 at 9:00 AM from the Douglass Funeral Service, Amherst, with a Mass of Christian Burial at 10:00 AM at St. Brigid’s Church, Amherst. Burial will follow in St. Brigid’s Cemetery, Hadley. Calling hours will be Wednesday from 5 -7 PM at the Douglass Funeral Service.

 

 

PostHeaderIcon RUTH M. SMITH of AMHERST, MASS, June 26, 1926 – December 22, 2015

 

Northampton, Ruth M. Smith, 89, passed away December 22, 2015 at the Center for Extended Care Amherst, MA. Her daughter was with her.

Ruth, daughter of the late Arthur and Hazel (Stryker) Jaques was born June 26, 1926 in New Brunswick, NJ.

She was also the wife of the late Eugene F. Smith, who passed away March, 2000.

She leaves behind her loving family including her daughter Judy Strassner and her husband Stephen Strassner.  Ruth was a Grandmother to S. Michael Strassner and his wife Susan Strassner, Thomas E. Strassner and his wife Brenna Strassner.  She also had five Great Granddaughters which she would speak of often: Chloe, Julianna, Charlotte, Lexi and Chelsea.

Calling hours will be Tuesday, December 29, 2015, from 9:30 to 10:30AM at the Douglass Funeral Home, Amherst, MA.  A Liturgy of Christian Burial and a celebration of her life will be held the same day at 11:00AM St. Brigid’s Church, Amherst MA (directly across the street from Douglass Funeral Home).  Burial will follow at St. Brigid’s Cemetery, corner of North Maple St and Rocky Road, Hadley, MA.

 

 

PostHeaderIcon FRANCIS B. LYMAN, JR. of AMHERST, MASS, May 15, 1929 – December 13, 2015

 

 

Amherst, Francis B. Lyman, Jr. died peacefully on December 13, 2015 after a long illness. Francis was born May 15, 1929 in Pelham, MA., to the late Brainard and Dorothy {McKnight} Lyman. He graduated from Amherst High School and attended the Stockbridge School of Agriculture.

 

Francis enjoyed working his whole life on the Lyman farm and orchard in South Amherst. He was also a long time mail carrier for the United States Postal Service. After he retired, he enjoyed working at Stop & Shop.

 

Francis is survived by his wife Margaret {Webster} three daughters: Cynthia Durkee, Janet Lyman, and Ruth Barrett and her husband Steven; his brother Edward of California; his seven grandchildren: James, Meagan, Kimberly, Andrew, Jeffrey, Aaron, and Nathaniel; and his great grandson Mason.

 

Calling hours will be Wednesday December 16, 2015 from 4 – 6 PM at the Douglass Funeral Service, Amherst. Private burial will be in South Amherst Cemetery.

 

In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made to the American Heart Association or a charity of one’s choice.

 

 

 

 

PostHeaderIcon LAURA B. SANTOS of PELHAM, MA, August 9, 1919 – December 11, 2015

 

Laura B. Santos passed away on December 11, 2015. She was born on August 9, 1919 in Webster, MA.

Laura leaves behind four children: Frank Santos (Barbara) of Prescott, AZ, Jacque Running (Stephen) of Phoenix, AZ, Lori Olson (Mark) of Phoenix, AZ, and Mark Santos (Holly) of Pelham, MA. She is also survived by her sister Beatrice Swistak of Chicopee, MA. She leaves behind 10 grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren. Laura is predeceased by her husband Frank Santos. Laura was a devoted mother and grandmother, and she will be sorely missed.

Calling hours will be Thursday, December 17, 2015 from 4-6PM at the Douglass Funeral Service, 87 N Pleasant Street, Amherst, MA. The funeral service will be Friday, December 18, 2015 at 10:00AM at the First Baptist Church, 434 N Pleasant Street, Amherst, MA.

PostHeaderIcon GEORGE R. AUBREY of AMHERST, MASS, April 19, 1931 – December 9, 2015

 

 

AMHERST – George Robert Aubrey, 84, of Amherst died peacefully on Wednesday, December 9, 2015, at the Center for Extended Care after a stay of just five days.

 

George was born in Norwich, CT to the late John A. and Alicia (Bellows) Aubrey, the middle of their nine children.  The family moved from Norwich to Florence, MA, where George attended school, graduating from St. Michael’s high school in 1949.  He began his schooling for Pharmacology at Mass College of Pharmacy in Boston, MA, but was drafted and served two years in the US Army, stationed in Germany, from 1953 to 1955.  He completed his pharmacy training when he returned from Germany and started his career as a pharmacist in Northampton.  He married his late wife, Nancy (Butler), in 1957 and they had three children, David, Susan and Kevin.  The family moved to Amherst in 1963 and George continued his career at the College Drug Store in Amherst and then managed his own store, University Pharmacy in Hadley.  He retired from CVS in 1996. 

 

George was most proud of his home and his beautiful gardens and spent many hours enjoying the outdoors.  He will miss watching the bluebirds and other wildlife in his backyard and he will miss his wonderful neighbors on Valley View. 

 

George was predeceased by his wife, Nancy, in 1999 and is survived by his three children and six grandchildren, David Aubrey and his wife, Nancy, of Northborough (Matthew and Meghan), Susan Clark and her husband, Jerry, of Belchertown (Jennifer and Christopher) and Kevin Aubrey and his wife, Margaret, of Montague (Alysha and Natalya).  He also leaves his brother, Robert Aubrey and his wife, Shirley, of West Springfield and very dear friends, Robert and Louise LaPointe of Medway and many nieces and nephews. 

 

There are no calling hours, private burial will be in Wildwood Cemetery, Amherst.

 

 

 

PostHeaderIcon AVTANDIL MAKHAROBLISHVILI of SHUTESBURY, MA, December 29, 1924 – November 24, 2015

 

 

Avtandil Makharoblishvili, most adoring father of two daughters Marina and Tamara (Tamuna), and a dedicated grandfather to Lawrence, Nino, Ilya, Salome and Gio, died at Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton on November 24th, 2015.  Avtandil was 90 years old. He was born and brought up in the Republic of Georgia.  He served in the Soviet Army during World War II, and was a very successful civil engineer, important to the modernization of Georgia’s capital city after the War. He was loved deeply by his wife, Babilina Dolidze (d. in October 2001), by his elder brother Vakhtang, and by his large extended family. He moved to the USA to be with his daughters and their families in 2002.  All of us – his colleagues, his friends, and his family members, will always remember Avtandil as the most loyal friend, loving parent, devoted brother and doting grandfather.  He made a difference in all our lives.

 

 

Marina, Tamuna, Stephen, Gogi, Dato, Manana, Darejan, Levan, Kathleen, Lawrence, Nino, Ilya, Salome, Gio, Vato, Atuka, Datuna and Tornike.

 

 

Current Obituaries
To view full obituary details and/or sign the Memorial Guestbook click desired individual below.

KENNETH "KENNY" COOK of HADLEY, MASS died on May 16, 2016

JOHN M. GALLAGHER JR. of AMHERST, MASS died on May 20, 2016

MONA SYMONDS KEEDY of AMHERST, MASS died on February 24, 2016

SHIRLEY MENTIN of HADLEY, MASS died on May 11, 2016