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WestportNow publishes obituaries without charge. Funeral homes or individuals may submit obituaries to . Photos in jpeg format may be submitted to the same address. Obituaries should indicate full name of deceased, date and place of death, age, and connection to Westport. Please provide a name, telephone number, and email address for verification. WestportNow reserves the right to edit obituaries to conform to our editorial style.

 Harding Funderal Home,Westport,CT

Thursday, August 25, 2011

William P. Baynham, 90

William Patrick Baynham, a former resident of Westport and longtime postal employee here, died Aug. 23 in the Arbors Nursing Home in Shelburne, Vt. He was 90.

Born July 12, 1921 in Westport, he was the son of the late Mary Ellen Convey Baynham and William Baynham Sr. He was baptized in Westport’s Assumption Church and was a parishioner there until May 2002. He graduated from Staples High School in 1939 and attended St. Michael’s College in Colchester, Vt.

He was a soldier with the U.S. Army during World War II. After the war, he returned to Westport and worked for the U.S. Postal Service for 32 years.

He moved with his wife, Mildred Guilfoyle Baynham, to South Burlington, Vt., in May 2002. He lived at Allenwood at Pillsbury Manor and was a member of St. John Vianney parish. His siblings were James Baynham, Mary Baynham Keller and Margaret Baynham Murphy.

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Posted 11:34 PM
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George D. Pils, 80

George Dewey Pils, husband of Virginia (Carr) Pils, died Aug. 24 at Norwalk Hospital. He was 80.

Born Feb. 14, 1931 in New York City son of the late Edward and Barbara (Strohmeyer) Pils, he has been a resident of Westport for 37 years.

He served in the U.S. Marine Corps and was a veteran of the Korean War. He received his Bachelor’s Degree from Pace University and went on to NYU where he received his Masters Degree.

Prior to his retirement in 1993, he was an investor For GE Investments.

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Posted 05:26 PM
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Doris M. Pickering, 88

Doris M. Pickering of Westport, wife of Hugh, mother of Allison and sister of Robert L. Seymour, died Aug. 19 at Wilton Meadows Healthcare facility. She was 88.

She was an accomplished artist and maintained an avid interest in pure bred poodles throughout her life. Her first poodle was a gift from the late actor Marlon Brando.

Survivors also include three grandchildren: Amy Fulmer of Greenbriar, Ark., Rebecca Sealey of Fayetteville, N.C., and Jennifer Shick of Naples, Fla., and four great grandchildren Taryn and Timothy Sealey and Madeline and James Richard Fulmer.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to MentalHealthAmerica 2000 North Beauregard St., Alexandria, VA 22311-1749. Alternately to Poodle Rescue of Connecticut P.O. Box 188, Naugatuck, CT 06770.

Posted 05:05 PM
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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Former Westporter Nick Ashford, Music Legend, Dies at 70 Image
Ashford and Simpson’s 1979 album “Stay Free.”File photo

Former Westporter Nick Ashford, who with wife Valerie Simpson wrote such legendary Motown songs as “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” and “Reach Out and Touch Somebody’s Hand,” died Monday at New York hospital after a prolonged battle with throat cancer, his publicist announced. He was 70.

The couple were 33-year residents of Westport and were married here in 1974 at their 14-room Cross Highway estate on the corner of Bayberry Lane shortly after they purchased it. The 7.53-acre parcel with a main house dating to 1790 included a pool, tennis courts and a barn that doubled as a stable for horses.

They sold it in 2007 for $5 million and WestportNow featured it as the Teardown of the Day on Aug. 5, 2007. It was torn down six months later. (See WestportNow Feb. 25, 2008) The couple also had a Manhattan townhouse.

Neither Ashford nor Simpson took an active part in Westport life although he was often seen jogging along its roadways, stopping in at Coffee An’ on Main Street. Their annual 4th of July parties in Westport attracted luminaries of the music world.

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Posted 12:47 PM
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Monday, August 22, 2011

John Boyd, Key Figure in Longshore Purchase, Dies at 94

John Wetherall Boyd, a former Westport state representative and town attorney who was a key figure in the town’s 1960 acquisition of Longshore Club Park and in preventing Cockenoe Island off Compo Beach from becoming the site of a nuclear power plant in 1967, died Aug. 15 in Amherst, Mass. He was 94. Image
John Boyd returned to the area in April 2010 for the Westport Arts Center chamber music concert at the Pequot Library in Southport in honor of his late wife, Jean M. Boyd, who dedicated much of her life to educating children at the Westport School of Music and supporting the South Shore Music Club. Boyd is pictured with daughters (l-r) Nancy Boyd, Barbara Sternau, and Frances Boyd. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Helen Klisser During for

Born in 1916, he was the son of the late E.F. Boyd and Marguerite Van Voorhis. He attended Westport public schools, won a scholarship to Loomis Chaffee in Windsor and, in l939, graduated from Hamilton College in Clinton, N.Y.

In l942, he received his law degree from Columbia University Law School. He taught military law during World War II and, in the 1960s served two terms in the state legislature.

He had a law practice in Westport and, in addition to serving as town attorney, also held positions on the Beach Commission, Town Court, Republican Town Committee and Planning and Zoning Commission.

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Posted 11:55 PM
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Family Celebrates ‘Tess’s Spirit’

By James Lomuscio

More than 600 persons filled Westport’s Unitarian Church today to for an emotional, almost two-hour service to celebrate the brief but gifted life of Westporter Tess Jacqueline Tanner Meisel, 12, who was killed in a crash in Farmington, Maine. Image
Jacob Meisel, 14, listens with his mother, Suzanne Tanner Meisel, at today’s Unitarian Church service for Tess Meisel. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

“She would have been thankful and amazed at all the people here today,” said Gary Meisel, her father as he addressed the overflow, standing room only crowd that spilled out through open glass doors on to the terrace of the sun-filled, modern sanctuary. He described Tess as a loving, insightful poet beyond her years, “an old soul.”

“She was a truly remarkable child in that sense,” he added. “As I go on with my life, I will keep my daughter in my heart, and I will visit her in my dreams.”

Tess, a Coleytown Middle School student, died Wednesday when the minivan she and three other campers were in was struck by a tractor-trailer carrying sawdust. Tess was the only fatality. One of the passengers, 13-year-old Samantha Galvao of Westport, attended the funeral, her arm in a sling.

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Posted 07:15 PM
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Saturday, August 20, 2011

Marie M. Fowler, 89

Marie M. Fowler (Tina) of Westport, wife of the late Cornelius (Neil) Fowler, died Aug.19 at Norwalk Hospital. She was 89. Image
Marie M. Fowler: 32-year Westport resident.Contributed photo

Born in Roxbury, Mass. the daughter of the late William and Mary Murphy, she had been a Westport resident since 1979.

She received her Bachelors Degree from Regis College. She retired as an executive assistant at the Katharine Gibbs School in Norwalk.

She was a member of the Westport Historical Society, the Gaelic American Club in Fairfield and was very active in the Westport Republican Party. She enjoyed gardening, shopping, dining out with friends and her weekly video group.

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Posted 05:28 PM
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Friday, August 19, 2011

Hundreds Say Goodbye to Manny Margolis

By James Lomuscio

More than 200 family members, friends and colleagues filled the standing-room-only Abraham L. Green Funeral Home in Fairfield today to say goodbye to “a mensch,” Westporter Emanuel “Manny” Margoils, 85, who died Wednesday after a two-year battle with non-Hodgkins lymphoma. Image
An overflow crowd attended the funeral at the Abraham L Green funeral home in Fairfield. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

With tears, humor and musical selections including “Sunrise, Sunset” from “Fiddler on the Roof” performed by his daughter Sarah Margolis Marsh, one of his five children, and her husband Tomas, the funeral service celebrated a longtime civil libertarian whose love for family was only matched by his love for the law.

Josh Margolis, Manny’s son, described his attorney father as a humble, yet a fierce litigator who, when he was not poring over casework in his study at home, was often puttering with flowers in the garden or ready to play ball with him.

Present were the Margolises’ five married children: Elizabeth and David Margolis-Pineo, Cathy and Laurence Margolis Goodman, Abby and Chris Margolis Newman, Josh and Aimee Good Margolis and Sarah and Tomas Margolis Marsh.

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Posted 08:43 PM
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Tess Jacqueline Tanner Meisel, 12

The Meisel family today issued the following obituary:

Tess Jacqueline Tanner Meisel, 12, of Westport passed away due to a tragic accident on Aug. 17. Image
Tess Jacqueline Tanner Meisel: “a natural giver with a humble heart.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

Born Dec. 27, 1998 in Westwood, Los Angeles, Tess was the beloved daughter of Suzanne Tanner and Gary Meisel, of Westport and Los Angeles, adored sister of Jacob Meisel, 15, cherished granddaughter of Mary Tanner and the late Jack Tanner, of Mashpee, Mass. and Harriette and Emiel Meisel, formerly of Westport and currently of San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, valued niece, devoted cousin, faithful friend, and proud owner of her new 7-month old puppy, Celli, named for the orchestra section at Coleytown Middle School, where she was to enter eighth grade.

Tess was first and foremost a healer. Her tenderness, genuine empathy and radiant smile provided her the tools to help others, which she practiced daily.

A natural giver with a humble heart, she offered random acts of kindness and love to all she encountered. She never lacked for creativity or ideas and pursued each of her ventures with determination and zest, including a small business she started selling her handcrafted jewelry to raise funds for the Polar Bears.

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Posted 08:29 PM
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Leon Forman, 82

Leon Forman of Westport died Aug. 11. He was 82. He was the husband of Edith Forman.

Born June 25, 1929, in Brooklyn, N.Y., he served in the Korean Conflict, during which he was awarded the Purple Heart. He worked as a union electrician and a teacher.

Survivors, in addition to his wife, include a daughter, Bettina Jody Ramsey; two sons, Marcus Forman and Michael Forman, and four grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Leon Forman Memorial, c/o Rob Reeves, CEO, Westport Weston Family Y, 59 Post Road East, Westport, CT 06880.

Posted 06:14 PM
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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Manny Margolis, Lifelong Civil Rights Advocate, Dies at 85

Emanuel Margolis, a Westport attorney who had a lifelong devotion to civil liberties and civil rights and joined in a weekly peace vigil in Westport’s center, died today of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, his wife, Estelle, said. He was 85. Image
Emanuel Margolis: “truly one of a kind.”  Larry Untermeyer for

Margolis was a member and partner of the law firm of Wofsey, Rosen, Kweskin and Kuriansky, LLP, in Stamford since 1960 and also taught First Amendment law at Quinnipiac University School of Law.

His wife recalled In 1947 as a returning wounded Purple Heart veteran to the University of North Carolina, he protected a group of early black freedom riders. “The South was still deep in segregation, and there was an active Klu Klux Klan in the area,” she said. “There were no black students at UNC at the time. 

“The riders came by bus to the campus and were offered the church for an overnight stay.  Manny organized all the veterans on campus and stood guard all night. ”

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Posted 09:44 PM
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Martin M. Davidson, 94 Image
Martin M. Davidson: pictured at Scientific American Magazine where he worked for 19 years. Contributed photo

Martin M. Davidson, a Westport resident for more then 50 years, died Aug. 15 in South Palm Beach, Fla. He was 94.

Born in Youngstown, Ohio Feb. 28, 1917, he was the son of (Rabbi) Isadore and Rose Miriam (Ginsburgh) Davidson. He graduated GAR Memorial High School, Wilkes-Barre, Pa. class of 1935.

He attended Harvard University, graduating (cum laude) in 1939. Soon afterwards, he took his first job in publishing with Broadcast Magazine in Washington, DC.

After the outbreak of World War II, he applied for the OCS program in the Marine Corps. Two letters of recommendation were required and one written for him was from the office of John J. Pershing, General of the Armies.

He served with the Third Marine Division in the Pacific and saw action on Bougainville, Guam and Iwo Jima. He retired with the rank of major.

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Posted 05:57 PM
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Richard M. Samose, 69 Image
Richard Samose: 1960 Staples graduate, Contributed photo

Richard M. Samose of Redding, a former Westport resident, died Aug. 14. He was 69.

Raised in Westport, he graduated from Staples High School, Class of 1960. He was the husband of Catherine Finlay Samose for 42 years.

He recently shared his memories of growing up in Westport when Longshore Club Park marked the 50th anniversary of its purchase by the Town of Westport.

He was born on May 13, 1942, in New York, N.Y., the older child of the late Morton Samose and Audrey Fierman Samose. He moved with his family to Westport in 1954.

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Posted 05:47 PM
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Lois Malnati Lenfest, 90

Lois Malnati Lenfest of Lewisburg, Pa., a former resident of Westport, died July 20 in the Riverwoods Nursing Home in Lewisburg. She was 90.

Born Feb. 4, 1921, in Helena, Mont., she was the daughter of the late Flora Simpson and Louis John Malnati. She attended Boise Junior College and earned a bachelor of arts degree from Stanford University.

She volunteered for several local clubs, including the Westport Women’s Club, the Garden Club and Green’s Farms Congregational Church. She and her husband, George Chesley Lenfest of Lewisburg, moved to Huntington and, in 2006, to the RiverWoods Commmunity in Lewisburg.

In addition to her husband, she is survived by two children, Georgia Armstrong of Unityville, Pa., and Janet Antonucci of Somers, N.Y.; four grandchildren, Christopher Lenfest, Martha Kathryn Armstrong and Jaclyn and Robyn Antonucci; and three great-grandchildren, Lily, Atticus and William.

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Posted 05:36 PM
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Regina Barclay Sacks, 91

Regina Barclay Sacks of Fairfield, a former Westport school teacher, died Aug. 3. She was 91.

Born in New Rochelle, N.Y. on Aug. 17, 1919 to the late Clara and Harry Berkowitz, she taught fourth grade for many years at Kings Highway Elementary School.

She was predeceased by her husband, Leonard and her three older brothers. She is survived by sons, Douglas of Wethersfield, his wife Margaret and grandchildren Tyler, Emma and Nora, and Russell of Madrid, Spain and his wife Mar and grandson, Adrian.

There are no calling hours. Interment will be at Arlington National Cemetery with her husband.

Posted 01:32 PM
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