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Archive for the ‘Obituaries’ Category

PostHeaderIcon RONALD KENETH HAMBLETON of AMHERST, June 27, 1943 – April 28, 2022

 

 

Ronald Kenneth Hambleton was born in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada on June 27, 1943, the elder son of Kenneth Hobson Hambleton and Ethel Marion Ralph.  His father was serving in Hamilton, Ontario with the British Royal Air Force and his mother, Ethel, had immigrated to Canada with her parents from England as an infant. When Ron was one year old, he traveled to England with his mother and his younger sister, Carol (Carr) in a naval convoy, returning to Canada in 1950.  He grew up in a world of hockey, soccer, church groups, the Boy Scouts, and the RAF Club. He was a Queen’s Scout.  He received a B.A. in mathematics from the University of Waterloo in 1966 and a Ph.D. from the University of Toronto in 1969. He was hired at the University of Massachusetts as an assistant professor in 1969 and taught psychometric theory until retiring as a Distinguished University Professor when he was 75 and COVID made being in the classroom impossible. 

Ron married Else Lee Knudsen in 1966. They were very happy together.  They felt they had two families: their sons Kenneth and Charles and all the graduate students who became psychometricians with whom they have retained close ties.    

One of Ron’s greatest pleasures was coaching for the Amherst Youth Hockey Association.  He scheduled games for the entire association in order that he would not have to miss any of his own team’s practices or games because of his academic consulting schedule.  He didn’t have a lot of ego tied up in winning; he took pride in ensuring that each player, regardless of ability level, got equal ice time and he never sought an easy schedule.  He felt that playing higher-ranked teams gave his team valuable experience and that they played up to t

heir competition.  He was very proud of them all.

Professor Hambleton is widely regarded as one of the greatest psychometricians of all time. He won the Career Award from the American Educational Research Association, the American Psychological Association, the Association of Test Publishers, the International Test Commission, and the National Council on Measurement in Education. He served as President of the latter two organizations and received honorary doctoral degrees from the University of Oviedo in Spain and the University of Umea in Sweden. He founded the psychometrics doctoral program at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where he published over 300 journal articles and books, and supported the careers of hundreds of doctoral students who became leaders in educational measurement and research. As Executive Director of the Center for Educational Assessment at UMass, he brought in over $10 million in external funding for research at UMass.

He leaves his wife of 56 years, Else, his sons, Charles (Liz) and Kenneth, his grandson, Dylan, and his sister, Carol.

A memorial service will be held Monday May 16th at 11am in the South Congregational Church in Amherst, Massachusetts.  A reception will follow. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in his honor to the Ronald Hambleton Legacy fund, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, established to support UMass graduate students with assistantships and travel. Memorial guestbook at www.douglassfuneral.com

PostHeaderIcon SUSAN DIENER of MASS, July 29, 1946 – May 4, 2022

Susan T Diener was the beloved daughter of the late Blanche and Stanley Diener, sister of Jim Diener, sister-in-law of Nathalie Diener, aunt of Ken, Lakshmi, Sam, and Ruth, great aunt of Claire, Jesse, Mason, Joe, Sasha, and Allison.

Susan was born on July 29th 1946, in Cleveland, Ohio and died Wednesday May 4th 2022. Susan spent her early childhood in Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio.

Susan was a graduate of Shaker Heights High School. She attended Carnegie Mellon University and then moved to Sugarbush, Vermont. Susan spent most of her adult life in the Amherst, Massachusetts area, with short periods of time in Oregon and California. Susan worked at various jobs including being a nanny and house and dog sitting. She greatly enjoyed playing the piano, composing her own music, yoga, and dancing. She died May 4, 2022 in JGS Lifecare in Longmeadow, Massachusetts, where she received excellent care.

Contributions in her memory should be donated to the Sunny Meadow Sanctuary, 260 Chapman Rd., Barre, MA 01005 or JGS Lifecare, 770 Converse Street, Longmeadow, MA.

PostHeaderIcon STANLEY L. MITCHELL JR. of LEVERETT, January 24, 1954 – May 4, 2022

Stanley L. Mitchell, Jr., 68, of Leverett passed away on May 4th surrounded by family. He was predeceased by his parents Stanley L. Mitchell Sr. and Dorothy (Wanczyk) Mitchell and his younger brothers Walter and Paul. He leaves behind his loving wife of 35 years, Nancy (Field) Mitchell and his loving children Raymond and Jennifer, as well as his brothers Joseph, John and Thomas Mitchell, many brother and sister-in-laws and nieces and nephews.  He was cherished by all.

Stanley was born January 24, 1954 in Northampton and grew up in North Amherst on his family’s farm where he worked hard but also found time for fishing and swimming with his brothers at Jones swimming hole during the summers. 

Stanley was in the Laborers Union in his younger years and had his own cordwood business and worked for the Town of Amherst tree and parks division for 29 years before retiring in 2015

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Saint Brigid’s Roman Catholic Church 122 North Pleasant Street Amherst, Massachusetts 01004. Calling hours will be Tuesday May 10th from 4 – 7pm at the Douglass Funeral Service, Amherst. Services and Burial will be private. Memorial guestbook at www.douglassfuneral.com

 

 

PostHeaderIcon JOHN HANCOCK SUTLIFF JR. of AMHERST, May 16, 1942 – April 9, 2022

John Hancock Sutliff Jr., of Amherst, MA passed away on April 9th, 2022.   John was born in Albany, NY on May 16, 1942.  John attended West Virginia University where he met Ann Burton.  In 1966, after both had graduated from WVU, John and Ann married, and John entered the military.  During those early married years, John and Ann were based in Fort Belvoir, VA, as well Bangkok, Thailand, where John served as a 1st Lieutenant in the Army Corps of Engineers.  After John left the military, he worked as a production manager in the corrugated paper industry, a profession that resulted in multiple moves across several eastern states.  But their two children, Susan and Trey, primarily grew up in Amherst, MA, the place all four Sutliffs call “home.”  After leaving his position as a Production Manager for Packaging Corporation of America in Northampton, John worked for Tarnow Nursery in Chicopee where he put his passion for forestry to good use.

In his spare time, John could be found golfing, whether it was playing with his friends and family at Amherst Golf Club, walking a billy goat course in Sunapee NH, or traveling throughout New England to try out as many beautiful courses as possible.   During the winter months, John and Ann would head south to Siesta Key, FL where John spent his days walking the beach, playing golf, dining with friends, and watching the beautiful sunsets with a gin and tonic in hand.  

John is survived by his wife Ann, his children, Trey and Susan and Susan’s husband Michael, and four grandchildren: Sam, Olivia, Sophie and Lila.  Pre-deceased by his parents John (Jack) and Elizabeth (Betsy) Sutliff, John is also survived by his four siblings:  Pam, Patsy, George, and Louise.

Both John and Ann have been so fortunate to have built such a strong community of friends in Amherst spanning 40+ years.  He loved his friends and family, and he will be missed every day.  A celebration of John’s life will be held on John’s 80th birthday, Monday, May 16th, at 11 am at Grace Episcopal Church, Amherst, followed by a reception at the Sutliff home.  In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Sara’s Wish Foundation, 23 Ash Lane, Amherst, MA (www.saraswish.org).     Memorial guestbook at www.douglassfuneral.com

PostHeaderIcon OLIVIA ABUI AMPIAH-BONNEY of MASS, May 1, 1969 – April 12, 2022

Olivia Abui Ampiah-Bonney died at the Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, MA on Tuesday, April 12, after putting up a long and courageous fight.  She was born in Takoradi, Ghana, to Edward Kwaku Ahelegbe and Anna Ameyo Ahelegbe.  She was predeceased by her father and older siblings Sarah and Edwin. She is survived by her mother Anna, her husband of 25 years, Richmond, her five children; Kodwo, Joojo, Noah, Adwoa, Ekua, and many nieces and nephews.

Olivia graduated from Holy Child School in 1988, and earned her BSc degree in Chemistry from the Kwame Nkrumah University in 1992 and it was there that she met her future husband, classmate Richmond. She went on to receive a Masters Degree in Wood Technology & Management (1998), becoming the first woman to earn that degree in Ghana. She was appointed Lecturer in the Civil Engineering Department at Takoradi Polytechnic.  Moving to the US, she received a Bachelors and then a Masters degree in Nursing from UMass Amherst and was working on her PhD. 

Olivia worked for many years as a drug rehabilitation nurse in Springfield, as a tutor at the Westover Job Corps, Chicopee, and as an instructor at the School of Nursing, UMass Amherst.   She loved mentoring, especially young ladies and young men.

Visitation will be Saturday from 10 – 11 AM at the Wesley United Methodist Church, Hadley. A celebration of life will be held at 10:00 am, with burial following in South Cemetery, Belchertown. Memorial guestbook at www.douglassfuneral.com

 

PostHeaderIcon ISABELLE “BILLIE” M. CALLAHAN of AMHERST, January 7, 1927 – April 15, 2022

Amherst, MA Isabelle “Billie” M. Callahan, 95, author, artist, and Town Meeting member, died April 15, 2022, at the Elaine Center in Hadley. Billie was born in New Salem and spent her first year of life in Prescott. Prescott was one of four Massachusetts towns inundated in 1938 to form the Quabbin Reservoir. Her parents’ early life in Prescott, along with their letters during World War I, and Billie’s own poetry, formed the basis for Billie’s 2002 book, This Lovely Valley, Chosen Place. The youngest of four daughters of Frank and Emma (Currier) Bowen, Billie grew up in Cushman, a village of Amherst, with sisters Helen (Canney), Shirley (Streeter), and Louise “Punky” Bowen. Billie graduated from Amherst High School then worked at Bates’ Store and Butler and Ulman nurseries. In 1945, while working at the Callahan farm in Sunderland, she met the love of her life, James W. Callahan, who was home on leave from the Army. Jim and Billie married in 1947, enjoyed more than 55 years of marriage, and raised four children. Jim was an Associate Professor at the Stockbridge School of Agriculture at UMass. When her last child entered elementary school, Billie went to work part-time for UMass’ Food Service. She later became Manager of the UMass Copy Centers, working in the Whitmore Administration Building until her retirement in 1996. All of their children graduated from UMass. Billie loved everything associated with Amherst and UMass Amherst, as evidenced by her participation. She was an elected Town Meeting member for more than 40 years, representing South Amherst, until Town Meeting was replaced by a Town Council. She served on and chaired the town’s Finance Committee. Billie was a member of Amherst’s 1976 bicentennial committee, where she recorded oral histories and painted watercolors of buildings established on or before 1776. In retirement, she was an election worker at the Munson Library in South Amherst. She served on Amherst’s 250th parade committee and volunteered in the Town Clerk’s Office and at the Amherst Senior Center. She joined a memoir group and authored an unpublished memoir entitled “My Eighty- Two Years in Amherst.” At UMass, Billie and Jim volunteered at campus barbecues and in the Athletic department. Watercolor paintings were Billie’s trademark. From photographs Billie painted homes, farms, and churches. Her paintings went as far as Hokkaido, Japan to UMass’s sister university. Billie presented a painting of the Dickinson homestead to actress Julie Harris, who had portrayed Emily Dickinson in the play, “The Belle of Amherst.” Billie also painted watercolors of homes that had been relocated from the four Quabbin towns. It was important to Billie to stay in touch with her Quabbin roots through participation in Swift River Valley Historical Society activities. Billie loved sports. She participated in candle-pin bowling and was a member, and occasional champion, of the Amherst Golf Club. Billie and Jim were season ticket holders for the UMass football and basketball programs since the 1970s; Billie added on hockey in her later years. She rooted for all of the Boston professional sports teams and disliked any team from New York. Billie was a proud member of the greatest generation. She is survived by her four children, six grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren, and numerous nieces and nephews on both sides of the family. Jim died in 2003. Billie’s children are Mary Thompson-Leary (Ken Leary), Patrick Callahan (Janis Gray), Sharon Callahan King, and Kathleen Callahan. The grandchildren are Yusef King, Rory Thompson, Derek King, Shannon King, Claire Villa, and Rosemary Callahan-Gray. Wherever Billie went, people knew her. The Amherst and UMass communities have lost a treasure in Billie Callahan. She will be dearly missed by her family. Appreciation goes out to the staff at the Elaine Center, to Billie’s roommate Suzy, and to Compassus (hospice care) for their kind assistance during a most difficult time. Calling hours will be from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. on Monday, April 25, 2022 at the Douglass Funeral Home, 87 North Pleasant Street, Amherst, MA. The funeral Mass will be Tuesday, April 26, at 10:00 a.m. at St. Brigid’s Church in Amherst. Masks at all services are respectfully requested. Burial will be private. Donations in Billie’s memory may be made to the Swift River Valley Historical Society, 40 Elm St., New Salem, MA 01355 or to a charity of your choosing. Memorial guestbook at www.douglassfuneral.com

PostHeaderIcon OLIVIA ABUI AMPIAH-BONNEY of MASS, May 5, 1969 – April 12, 2022

Olivia Abui Ampiah-Bonney died at the Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, MA on Tuesday, April 12, after putting up a long and courageous fight.  She was born in Takoradi, Ghana, to Edward Kwaku Ahelegbe and Anna Ameyo Ahelegbe.  She was predeceased by her father and older siblings Sarah and Edwin. She is survived by her mother Anna, her husband of 25 years, Richmond, her five children; Kodwo, Joojo, Noah, Adwoa, Ekua, and many nieces and nephews.

Olivia graduated from Holy Child School in 1988, and earned her BSc degree in Chemistry from the Kwame Nkrumah University in 1992 and it was there that she met her future husband, classmate Richmond. She went on to receive a Masters Degree in Wood Technology & Management (1998), becoming the first woman to earn that degree in Ghana. She was appointed Lecturer in the Civil Engineering Department at Takoradi Polytechnic.  Moving to the US, she received a Bachelors and then a Masters degree in Nursing from UMass Amherst and was working on her PhD. 

Olivia worked for many years as a drug rehabilitation nurse in Springfield, as a tutor at the Westover Job Corps, Chicopee, and as an instructor at the School of Nursing, UMass Amherst.   She loved mentoring, especially young ladies and young men.

Visitation will be Saturday from 10 – 11 AM at the Wesley United Methodist Church, Hadley. A celebration of life will be held at 10:00 am, with burial following in South Cemetery, Belchertown. Memorial guestbook at www.douglassfuneral.com

 

PostHeaderIcon BARBARA E. JACQUE of WARREN, December 5, 1932 – April 10, 2022

Barbara Elizabeth (McKemmie) Jacque, 89, passed away peacefully on Sunday April 10th, 2022. Born in South Amherst, MA on December 5th, 1932 to the late John E. McKemmie, Sr. and Ebba (Tidlund) McKemmie, Barbara worked in the group pensions department at MassMutual Life Insurance Co. and Pension Associates in Springfield, MA, as well as the emergency room at Johnson Memorial Hospital in Stafford Springs, CT.  An avid hometown sports fan who enjoyed the Celtics, Red Sox, Bruins, Patriots and UMass Minutemen, Barbara also was a golf enthusiast who participated in many golf leagues in the area.  She also enjoyed crocheting and playing cards, even participating in a bridge league. Her greatest joy was her family and spending quality time with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren and watching them participate in their sporting and extracurricular activities.  Barbara is predeceased by her loving husband of 71 years, Louis O. Jacque, their son Dennis, their daughter Deborah, her brothers John E. (Grace) McKemmie Jr., Richard “Gus” McKemmie, Thomas McKemmie, and her sisters Dorothy (Harold) Bray, Ruth (Edward) Miller, Edith (Norman) Campbell, Janet (William) Fraser.  Barbara’s memory will be forever cherished by those she has left behind, including her beloved children, Martin (Angelina) Jacque, Diane (Carl) Croteau, and Kimberly (Vincent) Lombardo, her sisters Louise Micka and Virginia Downey, her sisters-in-laws Audrey McKemmie and Katherine McKemmie, and her many beloved grandchildren and great-grandchildren.  Funeral Services will be held on Friday at 11:00 AM at the Douglass Funeral Home in Amherst, a calling hour will precede the service from 10:00 to 11:00. She will be interred with her husband at South Amherst Cemetery following the service.

PostHeaderIcon Michael Arthur DiCola of hadley, August 29, 1953 – April 4, 2022

          It is with the heaviest of hearts that we announce Michael Arthur DiCola (68) passed away in the early hours on April 4th, 2022 surrounded by his two children. We are comforted knowing that Michael was warmly welcomed into the sky by his late wife Bonnie Lou DiCola, whom he’s been navigating life without for 359 days.

            Michael was born on August 29, 1953 in Bangor Maine to his biological mother Beverly (Bickford) Mick of Brewer ME, and biological father Durward A Rogers also of Brewer, ME. A few years into his childhood, Michael was adopted by his mother Verna M (Boyea) DiCola and George DiCola, who graciously, respectfully, and devotedly raised Michael to become the selfless, humble, courageous, and noble man we all love. After Verna’s passing in 1988 from Huntington’s Disease, George remarried to Eileen Goff in 1990.

            In 1971, Michael was introduced to Bonnie Lou DiCola, and in the years to come would fall into a love that ultimately left them inseparable.  This led them to navigate the next 50 years together. The only time the two spent apart were when Michael would go to races, and Bonnie would wait by the door patiently (sometimes impatiently) for his return. The love these two shared is the kind you read of in books, and so powerful that Michael’s heart couldn’t withstand a full year without his wife by his side again.

            In 1985, they happily welcomed their first-born son, Michael Dustin DiCola. 6 years later, in 1991, they welcomed their daughter Angela Rose DiCola. Some may say they waited a very long time to begin to start their family, but Michael’s thought’s on beginning a family weighed heavily on him coming from having been put up for adoption and then adopted. Michael knew he wanted to be financially stable, on the same page as his wife, and in a comfortable position so that he would  be able to provide love and security for his children and never face the possibility of having to give them up.

            Professionally Mike was a world-class mechanic and a restorer of vintage cars.   He was also a dedicated racing mechanic, preparing vintage racing cars that competed successfully all over North America.  A wizard at engine tuning and chassis set up, Mike made sure his drivers could get the best out of their mounts and run them as successfully as the cars’ original designs would allow.  He was an expert on any number of racing and sports cars but, possibly best known, for his expertise in getting the best performance from the British Allard racing cars.  This aspect of Mike’s life was well known and he was profiled a few years ago in “Hemmings Sports and Exotic Cars” Magazine, a world wide publication.  The writers of that article allowed how Mike likely knew more about setting up and running these cars than anyone else in the Northeast.  Mike was an active member of the Vintage Sports Car Club of America, where he served on the car classification committee as well as acting as a technical inspector from time to time at racing events.  His advice at the race track was often sought by other mechanics. Mike not only gained all of this knowledge regarding cars, but something worth so much more- friendships with several close confidants, and a bond that held strong for 40+ years with his best friend Jim Donick. If you were ever curious what true, unconditional, supportive, humble and effortless friendship looked like- this was it. 

            Michael was first diagnosed with renal cell cancer on February 4th 2017, the same day he watched his greatest joy, his grandson Karter Michael Robert Gotay come into this world. Initially, Michael was given 2 years for a prognosis- which absolutely devastated his family. In search of second opinions, he reached out to Dana Farber Cancer Center.  Their involvement proved a life changing decision for him, his family, and his dear friends. The staff at Dana Farber managed his illness, supported his family, and worked  diligently to give him a full 5 years,  three more than he had anticipated. His family and friends can not find enough words, or signs of gratitude to offer  his team of doctors and nurses for giving them the additional years and quality of life with Mike.

            Michael DiCola was predeceased by his wife Bonnie Lou DiCola who greeted him in the stars with a cold beer, Santana music, and a kiss straight from the movies. He is also predeceased by his parents Verna M (Boyea) DiCola and George DiCola, his biological mother and father, Beverly (Bickford) Mick, and Durward A. Rogers, and his dearest brother Dana DiCola.

            He leaves behind his son Michael Dustin DiCola, wife Bonnie and grandson Jayden, his daughter Angela R. Gotay-Cheverez, husband Kevin Gotay-Cheverez and grandson Karter Michael Robert Gotay.  He also leaves behind his niece Christine (DiCola) Collamore and husband Ken Collamore, nephew Jason DiCola and fiancé Kim Nelson Harrington. Michael additionally leaves behind his half siblings Victoria Reynolds, Mark Rousseau, Todd MacEachern, Kelly Rogers, Cindy Amenta, Candy Woodward, their significant others and children.   Michael also leaves behind several nieces, nephews, great nieces and great nephews, and countless friends.

            “He never looked for praise; he was never one to boast; he just went on quietly working for the ones he loved the most. His dreams were seldom spoken; his wants were very few; and most of the time his worries went unspoken too.    

            He was there, a firm foundation through all of our storms of life. A sturdy hand to hold on to in times of stress and strife. A true friend we could turn to when times were bad or good, one of our greatest blessings, he was the man that always would.”

 

            In lieu of services & flowers, we ask that you hug your family, friends and confidants a little bit longer and tighter today. We will host a celebration of life in August 2022.  

 

PostHeaderIcon WESLEY MASON OLDS of AMHERST, MASS, January 23, 1933 – March 11, 2022

 

Wesley Mason Olds passed away of cardiac failure on March 11, 2022 at the age of 89.    He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Marjorie, daughter Catherine, son D. Mason and grandson Cameron as well as two sisters, Kaye Tolbert and Ann Matthews. He was predeceased by his mother, Ruth Snyder and brother, Warner Olds.

Mason grew up in Cordele, GA and graduated from Cordele High School, where he led his high school to be Georgia State Champions as their quarterback and middle linebacker. Mason received an undergraduate degree from Mercer University, BD from Colgate-Rochester Divinity School and Ph.D. from Brown.  Mason spent his early career as a minister and in 1964 participated in the March on Washington.  Mason was a professor of Religion and Philosophy at Springfield College from 1966-1996.  In 1986, he taught at Richmond College in London for a semester.   He also taught courses at Smith and Mount Holyoke while at Springfield College.  

Upon retirement, Mason moved to Highlands, NC, and then settled in Johns Island, SC, where he taught courses as an adjunct professor at the Citadel and College of Charleston.  In 2019 he moved back north to Amherst, MA, where he passed away after one of his daily walks.  

Mason enjoyed sports, traveling, opera and spending time with his family and friends, who miss him dearly.  Mason edited the journal, Religious Humanism, for a number of years in the 1990s.  He published a number of academic books and articles and in his later years wrote fiction for pleasure.  In lieu of flowers, gifts may be made to: College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Mercer University, 1501 Mercer University Drive, Macon, GA 31207 or https://www.mercer.edu/give/.

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

JAMES E. BODMER of AMHERST died on May 7, 2022

DWIGHT W. DORRELL of HADLEY died on May 10, 2022

SIDNEY FESHBACH of AMHERST died on May 11, 2022

RONALD KENETH HAMBLETON of AMHERST died on April 28, 2022

BARBARA "BOBBI" MITCHELL of AMHERST died on August 27, 2021

KENNETH F. O'BRIEN of HADLEY died on May 8, 2022

HELEN W. PERRON of AMHERST died on May 17, 2022

BONNIE A. QUINLAN of AMHERST died on May 5, 2022

MARGARET "PEGGY" ROBERTS of AMHERST died on April 24, 2022

JOHN HANCOCK SUTLIFF JR. of AMHERST died on April 9, 2022

MARTHA H. TIDLUND of AMHERST died on May 12, 2022


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