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Archive for the ‘Obituaries’ Category

PostHeaderIcon GERALD PATRICK BROPHY of AMHERST, MA, September 11, 1926 – April 2, 2014

AMHERST, Gerald Patrick Brophy passed away on April 2, 2014 following a short illness. Born in Kansas City, Missouri on September 11, 1926 Gerry’s family moved to Westchester County, New York and settled in New Rochelle. He graduated from Iona Preparatory School in early 1944 and enlisted in the U.S. Maritime Service, serving in the North Atlantic region until the end of hostilities. Entering Columbia University, he completed his undergraduate and PhD studies in Geology in 1954 and accepted a faculty appointment at Amherst College where he served until 1998, retiring as Hitchcock Professor of Mineralogy and Geology. During his studies at Columbia (supported by the Atomic Energy Commission) he helped explore the uranium potential of central Utah and discovered a new uranium-bearing ore mineral.  During his tenure at Amherst he also maintained consulting operations with several mining companies in the U.S., Canada and South Africa, in addition to conducting geological investigations in Pakistan, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Mexico. From 1978 to 1980, taking a leave from Amherst College, he managed the Department of Energy programs for potential geothermal resources in the lower 48 contiguous United States. For many years he was a member of the Yellowstone Bighorn Research Association serving as Counselor and President. Other professional memberships included the Geological Society of America, the Mineralogical Society of America and the Society of Economic Geologists. The Geological Society of America established at his urging and request:  1) the undergraduate membership program and 2) a section of the Society encouraging the Northeastern U.S. and adjacent Canada to concentrate on studies within that unique geological region. Gerry is survived by his loving wife of 63 years, Joanne Young Brophy; son Thomas, Daughter-in-Law Laura and granddaughter Katherine of Brooklyn, NY; son James, Daughter-in-Law Evelyn and granddaughters Jennifer of Bloomington, IN and Sarah of Chicago, IL.  His eldest son, William Michael, predeceased him.  Private funeral services will be held soon and a public memorial service will be held at a later date. Obituary and memorial register at www.douglassfuneral.com.

Service details, Social networking, Memorial Guestbook and Slideshow are available here.

PostHeaderIcon LEANDER “TED” FORNAS of AMHERST, MASS, June 18, 1925 – March 11, 2014

Amherst, Leander “Ted” Fornas, 88, passed away at the Center for Extended Care in Amherst on March 11, 2014.  He is survived by his daughters, Laura and Tina Fornas, and his grandchildren, Emily, Robin and Henrietta.

Ted was born in Gardner, Massachusetts, on June 18, 1925.  He enlisted in the Army in 1943 and served as an interpreter with the 85th Mountain Infantry attached to the 10th Mountain Division.  After the war, he pursued his childhood dream of a career in illustration at the Pratt Institute in New York City.  Ted continued his studies at the Kunstgewerbeschule in Zurich, Switzerland, and at the Suomen Taideakatemian in Finland.  During his career, Ted’s work has been shown in major exhibitions in New York, Rome, Athens, Moscow, Goteborg and Sao Paulo.  Today his original prints are included in collections at The Museum of Modern Art and Rockefeller Center in New York City, the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., and The Anteneum Art Museum in Finland, which lists eight of his graphic works in its permanent collection.

Ted married in 1954 and returned to Finland with his wife, Pirkko-Liisa, and two young daughters in 1960.  After divorcing in 1967, Ted returned to the United States, and his wife and daughters moved to Sweden.  This time the move was permanent for Ted, and he became a professor and head of the Art Department at Holyoke Community College in Massachusetts. 

 In lieu of flowers, his family asks that those who wish to remember him make a donation to the Alzheimer’s Association.  Obituary and memorial register at www.douglassfuneral.com

Service details, Social networking, Memorial Guestbook and Slideshow are available here.

PostHeaderIcon HELEN S. ROBERGE of AMHERST, MA, October 25, 1928 – April 1, 2014

AMHERST, Helen (Sanders) Roberge, 85, a long time Amherst resident died on April 1, 2014 at the Calvin Coolidge Nursing and Rehabilitation Center with her devoted and loving husband of 65 years Girard (Jerry) Roberge by her side. Born in Pelham on Oct. 25, 1928 she was the daughter of the late Archibald and Helen (Naylor) Sanders. She graduated from Amherst High School in 1946. Helen worked at A.T.T. for several years and at the former Louis’ Foods for over 30 years. She enjoyed quilting and baking, especially making wedding cakes. Helen was an animal lover. She enjoyed motor homing with her husband to Maine and Florida, skiing and her cottage in Wellfleet on Cape Cod. In addition to her husband, Helen is survived by her sister Janet Sanders, her cousin Nancy Sanders and many in-laws. She was predeceased by her niece Shirley Moors. The family would like to extend a special thank you to the staff at Calvin Coolidge for their attentive care. A graveside service will be Saturday, April 5, at 10:00AM in South Amherst Cemetery. In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made to Care Alternatives Hospice, 100 Locke Drive, Marlborough, MA 01752. Obituary and memorial register at www.douglassfuneral.com.

Service details, Social networking, Memorial Guestbook and Slideshow are available here.

PostHeaderIcon MARY LEE ROBISON of SOUTH HADLEY, MASS, December 17, 1957 – March 24, 2014

South Hadley, Mary Lee {Trompke} Robison, Ph.D.  died March 24, 2014, from complications of leukemia at Mass General Hospital in Boston.  She was born in Holyoke on December 17, 1957, to Marjorie Trompke Graham and Edward Trompke. Mary attended Granby elementary schools and graduated from Amherst Regional High School. She received her AA from Holyoke Community College, in addition to a BA, MA, and Ph.D. from UMass Amherst.  Mary did field work for her master’s thesis at Historic Deerfield and for her doctoral dissertation at Museo Na Bolom in San Cristobal, Chiapas, Mexico. She was formerly married to John Elder Robison of Amherst, with whom she had one son, Jack. Mary was an inventor, building specialty electronics for rock bands including Kiss and Pink Floyd. She was a founder of the science fiction convention Arisia, where she showcased her abilities as an avid costumer and seamstress. A born educator, she was a founding member of the Western Massachusetts hacker space movement and taught at UMass Amherst, Holyoke Community College, Salter College, and the Springfield Renaissance School. She enjoyed trivia and was a successful contestant on “Who wants to be a Millionaire?” in 2005. She is survived by her beloved son, Jack Robison, her mother, Marjorie Graham of Pace, FL, sister, Karen Trompke of Pensacola, FL, brother Edward Trompke of Lake Oswego, Oregon, and many cousins, friends, and former students.  Mary climbed pyramids, read a library’s worth of books, and was dearly loved by friends and family. She will be sorely missed. In lieu of flowers, Mary requests contributions to the Dr. Mary L. Robison Endowment at the University of Massachusetts – Amherst for graduate students in Anthropology. A Mass will be held on Friday March 28, 2014 at 10:00 AM at Our Lady Seat of Wisdom Chapel at the Newman Center, UMASS Amherst, with FR. Gary Daley, officiating, followed by a reception in the Quigley Room at the same location.  A private burial will be in West Cemetery, Granby. There are no calling hours. Obituary and memorial register at www.douglassfuneral .com

Service details, Social networking, Memorial Guestbook and Slideshow are available here.

PostHeaderIcon MARY LEE TROMPKE of SOUTH HADLEY, MASS, December 17, 1957 – March 24, 2014

South Hadley, Mary Lee Trompke, Ph.D.  died March 24, 2014, from complications of leukemia at Mass General Hospital in Boston.  She was born in Holyoke on December 17, 1957, to Marjorie Trompke Graham and Edward Trompke. Mary attended Granby elementary schools and graduated from Amherst Regional High School. She received her AA from Holyoke Community College, in addition to a BA, MA, and Ph.D. from UMass Amherst.  Mary did field work for her master’s thesis at Historic Deerfield and for her doctoral dissertation at Museo Na Bolom in San Cristobal, Chiapas, Mexico. She was formerly married to John Elder Robison of Amherst, with whom she had one son, Jack. Mary was an inventor, building specialty electronics for rock bands including Kiss and Pink Floyd. She was a founder of the science fiction convention Arisia, where she showcased her abilities as an avid costumer and seamstress. A born educator, she was a founding member of the Western Massachusetts hacker space movement and taught at UMass Amherst, Holyoke Community College, Salter College, and the Springfield Renaissance School. She enjoyed trivia and was a successful contestant on “Who wants to be a Millionaire?” in 2005. She is survived by her beloved son, Jack Robison, her mother, Marjorie Graham of Pace, FL, sister, Karen Trompke of Pensacola, FL, brother Edward Trompke of Lake Oswego, Oregon, and many cousins, friends, and former students.  Mary climbed pyramids, read a library’s worth of books, and was dearly loved by friends and family. She will be sorely missed. In lieu of flowers, Mary requests contributions to the Dr. Mary L. Robison Endowment at the University of Massachusetts – Amherst for graduate students in Anthropology. A Mass will be held on Friday March 28, 2014 at 10:00 AM at Our Lady Seat of Wisdom Chapel at the Newman Center, UMASS Amherst, with FR. Gary Daley, officiating, followed by a reception in the Quigley Room at the same location.  A private burial will be in West Cemetery, Granby. There are no calling hours. Obituary and memorial register at www.douglassfuneral .com

Service details, Social networking, Memorial Guestbook and Slideshow are available here.

PostHeaderIcon DR. ROBERTA R. COLLARD of ASHFIELD, MA, October 7, 1917 – March 19, 2014

ASHFIELD, Roberta was born October 7, 1917 in Wheelock Texas of a mother who was an English teacher, educator and one of the first women professors in Texas and a father who had backgrounds in law and engineering and was instrumental in the growth and development in parts of Texas, including Austin.

Dr. Collard was raised by her sisters early in her life at the loss of her mother to tuberculosis and later the loss of her father who traveled and worked across the great state of Texas. Roberta had remarkable intelligence to the extent that by age 15 she had graduated from high school and entered the world of higher education. Her college and university life was very challenging being so young in a world of college age students. The senior librarian at the University of Chicago discovered that Roberta (then a reference librarian technician) was acquiring outstanding grades in the most difficult courses! She was accepted at the

University of Chicago and completed her pre-med course work and began her studies in medicine but due to her limited finances she had to withdraw from her medical program of study and earned her doctorate in Biology and Child Development. Dr. Collard taught at the University of California at Davis, Oregon State University, and was part of the Yale University Department of Human Development and Studies. She finished her academic career as Professor, School of Education, University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She gained Emeritus status and became an Honorary Research Associate at Smith College. Her research and support for undergraduate and graduate students included studies and presentations around the globe including Russia, Japan and Europe. Dr. Collard is responsible for the Infant Study Center at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and Smith College, where she pursued her research interests in infancy. Dr. Collard has published a number of articles and worked on a variety of grants including a collaborative effort with the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

The 2013 National Journal Young Children, the publication of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) featured a tribute to Roberta. One of her greatest qualities has been her philanthropy which has included different national and international causes as well as her more personal support of numerous students through school, art and music programs, nursing and more.

Roberta enjoyed writing poetry and short stories. She loved writing silly poems and limericks. She had a wonderful way of making people laugh which translated into her understanding children. She had a perceptive gift of knowing who young children were, what they needed and how to bring out the best in their learning and play.

Dr. Collard is survived by her nieces Nancy Hilliard, Roberta Jean Collard, Ann Collard Burke, Rosemary Eve, Roxanne King and her nephews Ben Collard, DR. F.R. Collard, and Roy King. Memorial services will be held at Douglass Funeral Service, Amherst, MA on April 3, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. She will be interred at the Collard family burial location in Wheelock, Texas on May 22, 2014. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to UNICEF to honor Dr. Collard’s lifelong commitment to the welfare of children. Obituary and memorial register at www.douglassfuneral.com.

Service details, Social networking, Memorial Guestbook and Slideshow are available here.

PostHeaderIcon CLARENCE “FRENCHY” V. POIRRIER of AMHERST, MA, May 18, 1921 – March 14, 2014

AMHERST, Clarence “Frenchy” Vincent Poirrier of Amherst, MA, age 92, passed away on Friday, March 14, 2014 at the Hospice of the Fisher Home in North Amherst. Born May 18, 1921 in New Orleans, LA, to the late Theresa Maury Poirrier and Charles Poirrier, both of New Orleans, LA.

A WWII Navy veteran, he spent 6 years at sea in the Pacific Rim, aboard the heavy cruiser USS Louisville. He served as a Gunner’s Mate (GM) then as Turret Captain. Frenchy was justifiably proud of his military service, and was rarely seen without his signature USS Louisville hat.

On shore leave in Washington, DC, he was introduced to his future wife, Rose Annette Stratioti, of Duluth, MN, by her cousin, a Navy shipmate. After their marriage in 1947, Frenchy and Rose moved from Washington, DC to nearby Rockville, MD, where they raised two daughters, Janet and Sherry. His employment as an electrical engineer with Western Electric expanded to a career as an electronic technician with the National Security Agency in Fort Meade, MD. At the peak of the Cold War, he worked with early computerized encryption devices, their maintenance, and programming. He retired from the Agency in 1976, and began an enthusiastic avocation as a dealer in antiques and collectibles, especially antique tools. In 1998, he and Rose moved to Amherst, MA to be near their two daughters. Rose passed away in 2008, after 61 years of devoted marriage. Frenchy then moved from their Echo Hill condominium to the Greenleaves Retirement community in Amherst. Frenchy had a life-long commitment to fitness, maintaining regular workout schedules for over 50 years, most recently at the local Planet Fitness.

He possessed engaging personal qualities that made him appreciative of all forms of ingenuity, beauty, art, food and cooking, music, global culture, antiques, and curious tools and artifacts. He loved animals, organic gardening (a pioneer in the 1960s), and nature, especially the sea. He enjoyed the benefits of an inquisitive and open mind, which led him to explore many interests and connected him to diverse people. He was a superior mechanic and handyman, a devoted husband and father. He will be remembered for his steadfast friendship, entertaining stories of his youth and Navy days and his extraordinary personal charm and humor which delighted everyone he knew. His resilient, positive attitude naturally drew others to him, keeping him close to their hearts.

Frenchy is survived by his loving daughters, Janet Poirrier and Sherry Poirrier of Amherst, as well as extended family across the country. He and Rose were members of Most Holy Redeemer Church, Hadley. Douglass Funeral Home is handling the private funeral arrangements and burial in Holy Rosary Cemetery. The family requests that, in lieu of flowers, memorial contributions be made in his name to the Hospice of the Fisher Home, 1165 North Pleasant St Amherst, MA 01002. Please visit a Memorial Website for Clarence “Frenchy” Vincent Poirrier at: http://memorialwebsites.legacy.com/frenchypoirrier/homepage.aspx. Obituary and register at www.douglassfuneral.com.

Service details, Social networking, Memorial Guestbook and Slideshow are available here.

PostHeaderIcon PRISCILLA COBB WINSHIP of AMHERST, MA, February 2, 1924 – February 20, 2014

AMHERST, Priscilla Cobb Winship died peacefully on February 20, 2014 at the Hospice of the Fisher Home in Amherst, Massachusetts.  Born Priscilla Turner Cobb on Feb. 2, 1924, in Oneonta, NY, she was the daughter of Professor J. Stanley Cobb (agronomy, Pennsylvania State University) from West Groton, New York and Elsie M. Johnson from Oakland, Pennsylvania.  She was predeceased by her husband, John Trimble Winship (2000) from Cleveland, Ohio and her brother J. Stanley Cobb Jr. of Martinsville, Virginia (2011).  She is survived by her children, Lawrence Johnson Winship of Amherst, Massachusetts, Carol Winship McNab of Hopewell, New Jersey, and Elizabeth Louise Winship, of South Hadley, Massachusetts; and several nieces and nephews, and three grandchildren. 

Throughout her life Priscilla loved being outdoors and as a young woman, spent many happy hours with her father hiking and hunting on Mount Nitanny, Centre County, Pennsylvania.  She was an avid skier and delighted in paddling around the lake at Whipples Dam in her graduation present from State College High School, a canvas covered open seat kayak.  An excellent botanist, she designed, built and cared for wonderful gardens wherever she lived. 

Priscilla began her education in the public schools of State College, Pennsylvania.  She was always interested in mathematics, science and engineering, so it is not surprising that she took time away from her undergraduate studies at Penn State in 1943 to work for the Curtiss-Wright Aeronautical Company as an Engineer Cadette, training at Cornell University.  The Cadette program was one of many efforts during the World War II that recruited women into formerly all-male professions – these pioneering women made a significant and vital contribution to the winning of the war.  Priscilla graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from the Pennsylvania State University in 1945. While a senior at Penn State, she was awarded a U.S. Department of Agriculture Fellowship, which enabled her to do graduate work in experimental foods and household equipment.   She went on to earn a Master of Science degree in Home Economics from the Iowa State College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts in Ames, Iowa.  She began her career working for International Harvester, where she was the director of research and food testing in the Food, Freezer and Refrigeration Department. 

Priscilla then moved, following her marriage to John Winship, to Cleveland, Ohio, where she joined the Home Economics Department of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, a widely circulated daily newspaper.  At the Plain Dealer, Priscilla was in charge of the testing laboratory, and wrote a weekly column from 1950 to 1952 on food preparation, preservation and homemaking. 

With the birth of her first child, Priscilla left the news business to become a full-time homemaker and mother. She still made time to be actively involved in community and church activities.  In 1962, Priscilla moved with her family to New Jersey so that her husband John could take up a new career in journalism.  They lived in Allendale, New Jersey, where Priscilla was a founding member of the Highlands Presbyterian Church, and a central figure in the life of the church.  All through her time in New Jersey, she could be found serving meals on wheels, leading Girl Scout and Brownie troops, and managing the church finances.  Somewhere in the whirl of caring for her family and her church, she also found time to make dozens of fabulous, much cherished quilts as a central member of a quilting group that met weekly for 30 years. 

When her grandchildren were born, Priscilla moved to Amherst, Massachusetts where she and her husband John lived in the Upper Orchard condominiums.  Her grandchildren, Molly and Grace Winship, have many fond memories of the time they spent with Grandma learning to cook and sew, to garden and to make paper and pine cone turkey place cards for Thanksgiving dinners.  Following her husband’s death in 2000, Priscilla moved into an apartment at the home of her son and his family in Amherst, where the traditions of large happy family dinners, gardening and elaborate, brilliant sewing projects continued.  She will be greatly missed.

Interment will be in the columbarium at the Wildwood Cemetery in Amherst, MA at the convenience of the family. No public memorial service is planned, but as the flowers come again in the spring, think of Priscilla, and rejoice in the renewal of life, as she did every year of her remarkable life.  In lieu of flowers, please send gifts to the Hospice at the Fisher Home, Amherst, MA. Obituary and memorial register at www.douglassfuneral.com.

Service details, Social networking, Memorial Guestbook and Slideshow are available here.

PostHeaderIcon BESSIE HAWLEY RYZNIC of AMHERST, MA, January 11, 1931 – March 10, 2014

AMHERST, Bessie Hawley Ryznic, 83, died on March 10th at her home. Born on Jan. 11, 1931 in Pelham, MA she was the daughter of the late George and Gladys (Sherman) Hawley. Bessie’s purpose and labor of love in her life was her children and grandchildren. One of her favorite sayings about family was that her jewels were not around her neck but are those who follow her. Bessie was predeceased by her husband Joseph Ryznic and two sons, George and Gerald. She is survived by her son Joseph and his wife Julie Ryznic of Amherst, two daughters; Marianne Descavich of Oxford, NE and Darlene Descavich of Amherst, 8 grandchildren, 7 great grandchildren and 1 great-great grandchild. A graveside memorial service will be held at a later date. Obituary and memorial register at www.douglassfuneral.com.

Service details, Social networking, Memorial Guestbook and Slideshow are available here.

PostHeaderIcon SIDNEY J. CLAUNCH, JR. of EASTHAMPTON, MA, April 17, 1922 – February 17, 2014

EASTHAMPTON, Sidney J. Claunch, Jr., passed away peacefully at the Soldiers Home in Holyoke, MA on Monday, February 17, with his wife of 59 years, Pearl (Patty) at his bedside.

Sidney was born in Humboldt, Tennessee on April 17, 1922 to Lura Frances Dungan and Sidney Johnson Claunch, Sr., but spent his youth in Oakwood, Ohio, a suburb of Dayton. After graduation from Oakwood High School in 1940, he worked as an apprentice tool and die maker at National Cash Register in Dayton.

He served in the Infantry in WWII from 1943-1945 in the European Theater and was a Purple Heart recipient. After the victory in Europe he was to be deployed to the Pacific, but halfway across the U.S. by train word was received that the Japanese had surrendered and he was subsequently discharged from service.

After returning home, he entered Ohio University in Athens, where he received a bachelor’s degree in economics. He received a masters and doctorate in economics from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. It was at the University of Wisconsin that he met a fellow graduate student, Pearl Grapel. They were married in 1954 and spent seven years in Reno, Nevada, where Sidney taught economics and management at the University of Nevada, the sole university in the state at the time. The family moved to Amherst, Massachusetts in 1961 where Sidney joined the management department in the School of Business at the University of Massachusetts, now the Isenberg School of Management, where he taught until his retirement in 1986. He and Pearl moved to the Lathrop Retirement Community in Easthampton, MA, in late 2008, where Pearl still resides.

Sidney loved classical music and opera and had a vibrant baritone voice. He was an inventive “maker and fixer” in his home workshop. He loved the outdoors, especially hiking with family and friends. He had a lively intellect and was an avid reader with a particular interest in history, especially American history. His family was a great source of pleasure and joy to him and he will be greatly missed by them.

Sidney was a man of humility and principle, who believed in always doing the right thing, because it was the right thing to do—a commitment he practiced in both his private and professional life.

In addition to his wife, he is survived by his daughters Anne Claunch, Helen Claunch, and Emilie Chmiel and her husband Matthew, all of Connecticut; his sisters, Earline Grice of Kettering, Ohio, and Christine Smith and her husband, Dr. William Smith of Dayton, Ohio; and his sister-in-law Lillian Claunch of Seattle, Washington. He was predeceased by his younger brother Dr. Marion Joseph Claunch of Seattle, Washington.

Sidney was cremated, as was his wish. A memorial service will be planned for later in the spring. In lieu of flowers, his family asks that those who wish to remember him do so in the form of kindnesses to others. Obituary and memorial register at www.douglassfuneral.com.

Service details, Social networking, Memorial Guestbook and Slideshow are available here.

Current Obituaries
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DORIS FINDLAY of AGAWAM, MASS died on September 14, 2014

ARTHUR DANIEL GOODHIND of SHUTESBURY, MA died on September 18, 2014

JOHN J. HANLEY of WARREN, MASS died on September 9, 2014

ZELLA BORST HARRINGTON of AMHERST, MASS died on September 14, 2014

DOROTHY A. IVES of AMHERST, MA died on August 19, 2014

WANDA M. KOKUREWICZ of LEVERETT, MASS died on September 18, 2014

PENNIE H. MARCUS of HADLEY, MA died on July 29, 2014

Gale S. McClung of Amherst, MA died on July 30, 2014

JONATHAN RICHARD QUICK of CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA died on May 13, 2014