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Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Robert H. Smith
Robert H. Smith, Jr., a former Westport resident, died Dec. 18 at the VNA Hospice House in Vero Beach, Fla.
He had lived alone since the death of his wife Marilyn, who died in 2007. After graduating from the Taft School in Connecticut, he attended Yale University until the family business called for his help.
He ran the family mechanical contracting business for 49 years. He also found time to be the commodore of the Saugatuck Harbor Yacht Club in Westport, commodore of the Harborside Yacht Club, president of Windmill Club in Armonk, N.Y., and president of the Moorings Club in Vero Beach.
He was also on the board of the River Mews Condo Association for 12 years serving as president for most of those years.
Wrenn B. Richardson, 81
Wrenn Bradford Richardson, a former Westport resident died Nov. 24 at her home in St. Simons Island, Ga. She was 81.
She was born in New York City on April 22, 1931 to the late Russell Bradford and Margaret Middleton Bradford. Her father died when she was a child, at which time the family moved to Southport,, where they lived until she was married to the late John Page Richardson in 1953.
The couple moved down the street to Greens Farms in Westport where they raised their family and where she resided until 1995.
She was a woman brimming with optimism and energy who made many lifelong friends, her family said. She had a great love of the water, always living near the ocean and vacationing on Nantucket and other islands.
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Raymond E. Walch, 88
Raymond E. Walch, a former principal of Westport’s Staples High School, died Oct. 21 in Palm City, Fla. He was 88.
He was born in Waterbury on March 18, 1924, the son of Roy and Edith Walch. Extended road trips were popular in the Walch household, and by the time he turned age 13, he had traveled to all the lower 48 states and Mexico.
His education at Middlebury College was interrupted to serve two years in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II, where he trained to become a navigator/bombardier. With the war’s conclusion, he returned to Middlebury College, and graduated with the class of 1946.
He married his wife of 62 years, Marion Hubbell of Norwalk in 1950, and began his teaching career in Norwalk. The family then moved to Westport in 1960, where he became director of mathematics for the Westport school system, and founded of the Westport Credit Union.
Monday, December 10, 2012
Anna M. Falsone, 88
Anna M. Falsone of Westport died Dec. 8 at Notre Dame Convalescent Home in Norwalk. She was 88.
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y. the daughter of the late Philip and Catherine (Monticciolo) Mandracchia, she was the wife of Dr. Jack Falsone for almost 67 years.
She was a graduate of Hunter College and during World War II, she was a translator for the Free French Government of Madagascar in New York City. She taught Italian for Norwalk evening classes and was a volunteer for Norwalk Hospital’s Treasure House.
In addition to her husband, she is survived by her daughters Meg (Bob) Browder of Pace, Fla., Catherine (Dave) Swan of Westport, granddaughters Allison Swan and Christina (Michael) Thomas, grandson Jay Browder, a brother Dr. Vincent (Elaine) Mandracchia of Spring Lake, N.J., and brother-in-law Anthony J. (Betty) Falsone of Whitestone, N.Y., as well as many loving nieces and nephews.
Saturday, December 08, 2012
Robert E. Peterson, 95
Robert Edwin Peterson of The Cedars, Chapel Hill, N.C., formerly of Westport, died Dec. 6. He was 95.
Robert Peterson: 37-year Westport resident. Contributed photo
Born in Harvey, N.D.., he was director of commercial and industrial patent licensing for RCA Corp. in New York City until his retirement in 1987.
Receiving his degree in electrical engineering from North Dakota State University in 1942, he also attended graduate programs at Harvard, MIT, Stevens Institute of Technology, and Rutgers University.
He was awarded five patents for his inventions in the fields of electronics and light sources. After retirement, he founded Altherin Associates, a patent licensing consulting firm and later became vice president, licensing, for the Patent Enforcement Fund.
James F. Meagher, 88
James “Jay” Francis Meagher, a resident of Westport for 49 years, died Dec. 6. He was 88.
James Meagher: longtime Westport resident. Contributed photo
Born in 1924 in Mineola, N.Y., he served as an officer in the U.S. Navy for nine years, much of that time as a lieutenant aboard the USS McNulty, a destroyer escort during World War II. He graduated from Ursinus College then Temple University with a law degree.
He was a professor of law at Brooklyn Law School, received an honorary doctorate at California American University in behavioral science, worked at Mobil Oil Co. for more than 30 years as an attorney, and later had a successful management education consulting business run from his Westport home.
While attending college he met and later married the late, Leonora “Lee” F Meagher, “his bride,” in 1944. The family moved to Westport in 1963.
Richard J. DeAngelis, 85
Richard “Rocky” Joseph DeAngelis, a retired Norwalk police officer and special police officer in Westport, died Dec. 6 at Norwalk Hospital. He was 85.
Born March 18, 1927 in Norwalk, he was son of the late Mario and Amelia DeAngelis.
A life-long Norwalk resident, he served in the U.S. Navy during World War II in the Pacific Theatre. He joined the Norwalk Police Department in 1957 and rose through the ranks to sergeant.
He retired in 1987 and worked for the halfway house in Norwalk and as a sheriff at the Stamford Courthouse. He went on to serve for another 17 years as a special police officer in Westport until 2005.
Wednesday, December 05, 2012
Dave Brubeck, 91, Jazz Great
Jazz great Dave Brubeck died today in Norwalk. A Wilton resident, he would have turned 92 on Thursday.
Dave Brubeck: Wilton resident dies in Norwalk. Davebrubeck.com photo
One of the most popular jazz musicians of the 1950s and ’60s, Brubeck died while on his way to a cardiology appointment, according to Russell Gloyd, his producer, conductor and manager for 36 years.
Brubeck’s quartet produced the first jazz album that sold more than 1 million copies and was best known for the melodic composition “Take Five.”
His cool, West Coast sound defied traditional forms by playing in two keys at once, a harmonic approach that gave jazz a new angle. The band stayed together for 16 years and was one of the most popular in jazz history, winning a cult following among students through regular performances on university campuses.
Henry W. Coley III, 86
Henry Wakeman Coley III of Sunderland, Vt., a former Westport resident, died Dec. 4 at the Southwestern Vermont Medical Center in Bennington. He was 86.
Born Feb. 7, 1926 in Norwalk, he was the son of Lucy Langzettel and Henry W. Coley Jr. Growing up in Westport, he graduated from Staples High School in 1944 at which time he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force.
After serving four years, he continued his education, receiving a BS degree from Johnson Sate College and master degree from Union College and Michigan State College.
He was married to Janice Vaughn in 1955 with whom he had three children. She died in 1969. Later in 1974, he married Thelma Jolivette.
Sunday, December 02, 2012
Daniel H. Adler, 92
Daniel Adler: physician served Westport and Weston. Contributed photo
Daniel Harvey Adler of Weston, a physician who delivered thousands of babies over four decades serving Westport and Weston, died Dec. 2 of natural causes at his Weston home, his wife Susan Adler said. He was 92.
A pioneer in his field, Adlerr was an early practitioner of the use of midwives in deliveries and in-office procedures like laparoscopy.
An outspoken advocate of women’s reproductive rights, he provided pro bono care to indigent patients in Norwalk while operating a private OBGYN practice in Westport, from 1954 until 1985.
He was named the first chairman of the OBGYN department at Norwalk Hospital in 1980, a post he held until 1985.
Friday, November 30, 2012
Gloria Hirtz, 89
Gloria Hirtz, a former Westport resident, died Oct. 24. She was 89.
She resided mainly in New York, but also lived in Palm Beach, Fla. and Westport.
The daughter of Ben and Betty Gordon, she was predeceased by both her husbands, Martin Hirtz, to whom she was married for 42 years, and Jerome Strumpf, for 12 years.
She is survived by her daughters, Deborah of Chevy Chase, Md., and Robin of New York City, and their husbands, Daniel Waterman and Roger Meltzer; her grandchildren, Justin, Lizzie and Martin Meltzer, and Ben, Andrew and Charlie Waterman and their wives Stacey, Kristen and Jessica; step-daughter, Jean Sommerfield; step-granddaughter, Sarah Sommerfield; three great-grandchildren; and nieces and nephews. She was also predeceased by a sister, Barbara Joseloff Cohen.
Services were private. Memorial contributions are requested for Alzheimer’s Association-Rita Hayworth Gala, 225 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60601.
Thursday, November 29, 2012
Richard V. Kilbride, 83
Richard “Dick” Vincent Kilbride of Wilton, former Town of Westport purchasing officer, died Nov. 26 at Danbury Hospital. He was 83.
Born Nov. 11, 1929 in Norwalk, he was the son of late Sidney and Anna (Dunn) Kilbride. He graduated from Norwalk High School and the University of Connecticut (Storrs) with an MBA.
Throughout his life he had been employed at Perkin Elmer, Electrolux, and in 2010 retired as purchasing officer for the Town of Westport.
He was a loving husband and uncle who cherished time with his family, his family said.
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
James J. Ullrich, 61
James J. Ullrich of Westport, husband of Janice Marshall (Pepin) Ullrich, died Nov. 25 at home. He was 61.
James J. Ullrich: CPA/financial analyst. Contributed photo
Born April 10, 1951 in Howard Beach, N.Y. he was the son of the late Thomas H. and Mary Ullrich. A resident of Westport for nine years, he formerly lived in Norwalk.
He was a CPA/financial analyst for Semi-Conductor Inc. in Stamford. He was also formerly employed by Chemical Bank of New York, Pan American World Airways, Salabello and Broder CPA firm, Nine West, Starwood Properties and Workflow One. He founded TaxPro, LLC and CFOPro, LLC.
A graduate of Pace University, he served as board chair of Christian Community Action, treasurer of Toastmasters, and member and treasurer of the United Methodist Church of Westport.
Monday, November 26, 2012
Barbara J. Wagner, 85
Barbara Jane Wagner, a longtime resident of Weston and former First Selectman of the town, died at her home on Nov. 21 after a brief illness. She was 85.
Barbara Wagner: former Weston First Selectman. Contributed photo
Born in New York in 1927, and raised in Riverdale, N.Y., she graduated from the High School of Music and Art, and then attended Finch Junior College. She met her husband, Walter Wagner, in New York, and they married in 1952.
After a brief stint in Chicago, the couple moved to Weston in 1955. She lived in the same house for the 57 years. The Wagners raised four children there, all of whom attended the Weston Public Schools from kindergarten through 12th grade.
Her love of Weston was evident in many ways over her lifetime. Most notably, she served as First Selectman of Weston from 1973 to 1975, and her election marked the first time in the state’s history that a woman was elected to lead town government as mayor or selectperson.
Sunday, November 25, 2012
Rebecca A. Merrilees, 90
Rebecca A. “Becky” Merrilees, a former Westport resident whose father was a celebrated Westport artist whose works she donated to the Town of Westport two months ago, died Nov. 14 in Northfield, Vt. where she was a longtime resident. She was 90.
Rebecca Merrilees: donated father’s works to Westport. Contributed photo
Born in New York City, she was raised in Westport in an artistic family with, as she would say, “a pencil in her hand.” Her father, Ralph L. Boyer (1879-1952), was a celebrated artist, creating many large-scale murals during the Works Progress Administration (WPA) years, and was recognized as an important member of the Westport School of Art.
On Oct. 19, Merrilees donated 20 works by her father and other well known artists to the Westport Schools Permanent Art Collection. (See WestportNow Oct. 19, 2012)
Merrilees’s mother, Rebecca Hunt Boyer, was also an accomplished painter. Merrilees received her art education at the Boothbay Studios Summer School of Art, American School of Design, Pratt Institute, where she later taught some classes in drawing,, and the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture.