Thursday, December 27, 2007
George Michael Lowell, 75
George Michael Lowell born Feb. 15, 1932, died on Wednesday Dec. 26, 2007, of pancreatic cancer at the Richard Rosenthal Hospice Center in Stamford.
He celebrated 75 wonderful years of life and was grateful for each day.
George, most recently a resident of Ridgefield, also had resided in Weston, Houston Tex., and Tendoy, Idaho, over the years.
His love of people and his photography gave him much joy. His happiest moments were spent taking pictures of the mountains in Idaho and of his many experiences out West.
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
Barbara B. Kuhn, 64
Mrs. Barbara B. Kuhn, 64, wife of Gasper F. Kuhn, passed away Saturday evening at Saint Vincent’s Medical Center, Bridgeport.
Mrs. Kuhn was born May 15, 1943, daughter of the late Ernest and Mary (Northrop) Billings and has been a lifelong resident of Fairfield. Prior to retiring in 2003, Mrs. Kuhn served as the Parish Secretary at Christ and Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Westport for 18 years.
A sports enthusiast, she was a devoted New Yankees and New York Giants fan. Mrs. Kuhn also enjoyed traveling, especially her trip to Australia, as well as a return trip to Australia, which included New Zealand. While she enjoyed sports and traveling, she loved most the time spent with her family.
Survivors in addition to her husband of 41 years, include one daughter, Gretchen Kuhn and one son, Alex Kuhn both of Fairfield, one sister, Martha Ford of Naples, Fla., one brother, Robert Billings of Yarmouth, Maine, several nieces and nephews, along with several cousins.
Friday, December 21, 2007
Virginia “Jinny” Milnes Recor, 88
Virginia “Jinny” Milnes Recor, 88, formerly of Westport, died Sunday Dec. 16 at her home in Round Pond, Maine.
Virginia Recor: lived in Westport 20 years. Contributed photo
She was born April 17, 1919 in Rahway, N.J., a daughter of Clarence and Ada Milnes. She grew up in Rahway and graduated from Tufts University in Medford, Mass. She had a brief career with Liberty Mutual Insurance Company.
In 1941, she married a fellow Tufts graduate, Kip Recor. Together they made their home in many states including, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, Alabama, New Brunswick, Canada, and Maine while following Kip’s career in the paper industry.
She lived in Westport for 20 years and was active in the Red Cross, Westport Garden Club, and the Saugatuck Congregational Church.
Longtime Westporter Michael Horelick Dies at 95
Longtime Westporter Michael Horelick died Thursday after a brief illness at the age of 95. In April 2006, he celebrated his 94th birthday at the Westport Center for Senior Activities with his daughter, Mary Gail Gristina (c), and Sue Pfister, center director. Funeral services are set for Saturday. See full obituary on WestportNow’s new obituaries page. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dana Johnson for WestportNow.com
Michael Horelick, 95
Michael Horelick, 95, of Westport, died Thursday morning after a brief illness.
Michael Horelick: longtime Westporter. Contributed photo
Michael was born on April 9, 1912, at home in Westport. His parents were Serafina Poproska and Thomas Horelick, immigrants from Bielorussia, who met in Westport, and married in Assumption Church in 1910.
Michael graduated from the “old” Staples on Riverside Avenue in 1930. He was a first-rate athlete and turned down several offers of college athletic scholarships to study electrical engineering at Pratt institute.
Michael was employed for almost 60 years by the Dorr Company of Westport (later Dorr-Oliver Laboratories of Stamford) as shop superintendent. He continued his athletic activities all his life: he was a Compo Beach lifeguard in the 1920s and 30s and played baseball and basketball in various Westport leagues.
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Charles John De Stefano, 88
Charles John De Stefano, son of the late Charles De Stefano and Gertrude DelColle, died in Norwalk Hospital on Dec. 17, 2007. He was 88.
Mr. De Stefano was born on March 21, 1919 in Bridgeport. He was a graduate of Warren Harding High School in Bridgeport where he excelled in track and field.
During WWII, Mr. De Stefano served with the 88th Infantry Division, named the “Blue Devils” by the Germans who were taken with the division’s ferocity during the Italian campaign. He was among the first to enter Rome following its liberation. Mr. De Stefano was a recipient of a bronze star for valor after spending nearly two years in combat without respite.
After his return from service, he married Phyllis Ancona and settled in Westport, where they would live for the rest of their lives.
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Westporter Leonhardt W. Scheffler Dies at 97
Westporter Leonhardt William Scheffler, a World War II veteran, former oil company executive and father of well known Westport attorney William Scheffler, died at home Saturday, two months shy of his 98th birthday.
Leonhardt W. Scheffler: area resident for 50 years. Contributed photo
Until a year ago, Leonhardt Scheffler regularly worked out at the Westport Weston Family Y where he was the Y’s oldest active member. (See WestportNow Feb. 11, 2005)
The son of Max and Mary, Scheffler was born on Feb. 13, 1910, in Philadelphia, Pa. He graduated from Bucknell University in 1935, magna cum laude in economics, having been elected to Phi Beta Kappa.
He was proud of being the first in his family to attend college, and prouder yet of his ability to support Bucknell his entire life.
Friday, December 14, 2007
Janet Susan Welch, 59
Janet Susan Welch, 59, of Westport, beloved wife of Gary R. Schick and Westport resident for the past 17 years passed away Saturday, Dec. 8 in Westport.
Janet was born in Boston, Mass., daughter of the late James and Mildred (Silver) Welch. Janet grew up in New York City. She moved back to Boston then Berkley, Calif., and Woodstock, N.Y. She returned to New York City where she met her husband and continued her education. Janet earned a degree in Biology at the City College of New York, a degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences at St. Johns University and a Doctorate in Biopsychology from the Graduate School of the City University. She did research work at the American Museum of Natural History and Rockefeller University and worked as a pharmacist while earning her degrees. Janet combined disciplines to do work in Pharmacovigilance: evaluating information from healthcare providers and patients on the adverse affects of medications; and she assisted many pharmaceutical companies in assessing product issues. Janet was an unusually intelligent, gifted, incredibly witty, thoughtful, kind, determined, preserving and humane women. She contributed to numerous social services, and self-help programs, environmental and conservation causes and did volunteer work for animal protection and peace organizations.
Survivors in addition to her husband include one brother, John Welch and his wife Wilma, one sister, Lauren Welch and two nephews James and Elsja, her mother in law Jessie Schick, her brother in law Sandor, brother and sister in law Teri and Art and their children Carrie and Daniel, her cousins Donna, Paul & Lisa Marchetti and their families.
Friends are invited to attend a memorial service Monday, Dec. 17 at noon in the Saugatuck Congregational Church, 245 Post Road East, Westport. There will be no calling hours. The Harding Funeral Home, 210 Post Road East, Westport, is in charge of the arrangements. Memorial contributions in memory of Janet may be made to NARSAD; memorial gift; 60 Cutter Mill Road, Suite 404; Great Neck, N.Y. 11021; (800) 829-8289 or WTCARES c/o Lyn Hollis; 64 North Forrest Ave., Camden, TN 38320; (731) 584-6530. Flowers and cards may be sent to the church.
Sunday, November 18, 2007
Martha Kostyra, Martha Stewart’s Mother, Dies at 93
Martha Stewart and “Big Martha.” File photoMartha Kostyra, the mother of Martha Stewart who lived in her daughter’s Westport home for a time and frequently visited the Westport Weston Family Y for aquatic exercise classes, died Friday in Norwalk Hospital. She was 93.
Kostyra, a Weston resident since 1986, was often credited by her daughter with teaching her everything she knew about cooking and housekeeping.
The Polish family recipes of “Big Martha,” as she was affectionately called, despite her diminutive stature, were the earliest inspiration for the woman who would turn a small Westport catering operation into an international business empire.
Stewart broke the news of her mother’s death on her Web site blog, asking fans to post memories.
Friday, November 16, 2007
Barry McCabe, Navy War Vet, Community Activist, Dies at 83
Barry McCabe: honored as parade grand marshal in 2005. Contributed photoBarry McCabe, a longtime Westport resident and dedicated community volunteer with a distinguished military record as a World War II Navy Frogman, died Wednesday. He was 83.
McCabe, who was active in many community groups including the Westport Weston Y’s Men, served as the grand marshal of Westport’s Memorial Day parade in 2005.
McCabe began his military career with enlistment in the Navy’s V-12 officer training program in July 1943. He was commissioned an Ensign at Columbia University in October 1944.
Just prior to his commissioning, he volunteered for Underwater Demolition Teams (UDT), precursor of today’s Navy SEALs. After training at Fort Pierce, Fla, and Maui, Hawaii, he joined UDT 21 in the Pacific as assistant platoon leader.
Friday, October 05, 2007
Mitch Kurman, Camp Safety Advocate, Dies at 86
Mitch Kurman, a longtime attendee at Westport Town Hall brown bag lunches and an advocate of reforming summer camp safety laws following the death of his son in a 1965 canoe accident, has died. He was 86.
His family said he died Monday in Seattle, where Kurman, a onetime furniture salesman, and his wife, Betty had moved to a year ago. They had been Westport residents more than 40 years.
Kurman’s 15-year-old son David died during a canoe trip in Maine sponsored by the Rochester, N.Y., YMCA. His canoe was in white water when it became swamped. The family said the boy did not have a life jacket and the group was using canoes with flat hulls designed for lakes and not rivers
Kurman was instrumental in passing safety laws in Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, New York and several other states. He served on Connecticut’s Camp Safety Advisory Board.
Monday, September 24, 2007
News 12 Sportscaster Bill Gonillo Dies at 44
Bill Gonillo, the sports director at News 12 Connecticut and familiar face at Westport sporting events for more than a decade, was found dead Sunday in his Woodbridge home, the station said. He was 44.
Bill Gonillo: familiar face at Westport sporting events. File photo
No cause of death was announced. The New Haven Register said Gonillo was a diabetic and has suffered from bouts of diabetic shock in the past. Gonillo had been sports director at News 12 for the past 12 years.
Prior to taking his job with News 12, Gonillo had worked at WELI-AM in New Haven and was Yale football play-by-play announcer in the mid-90s.
He had also worked as sports anchor on WVIT-30 and was a pregame and postgame host for Hartford Whalers hockey and Boston Celtics basketball on WTWS-TV in New London and WTXX in Waterbury. Gonillo was a graduate of the University of Hartford.
Monday, September 17, 2007
Actress Brett Somers Dies in Westport Home at 83
Brett Somers at a Westport Historical Society exhibit in November 2003 in front of a picture of herself upper right. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo ©WestportNow.com Brett Somers, an actress and comedienne best known for her years as a panelist on “The Match Game,” has died at her Westport home of stomach and colon cancer, her son said today. She was 83.
Somers’ son, Adam Klugman, said she died Saturday at her Willow Walk home near Staples High School.
She married actor Jack Klugman, star of the television shows “Quincy” and “The Odd Couple,” in 1953. The two separated in 1974, but never divorced. Somers appeared on several episodes of “The Odd Couple,” playing the ex-wife of Klugman’s character.
Later in her career, she appeared in a cabaret show, “An Evening with Brett Somers.”
Saturday, July 28, 2007
Longtime Westporter Lorna B. Christophersen Dies at 76
Lorna B. Christophersen, a former member of Westport’s Board of Education and Representative Town Meeting (RTM), died today in a Wilton health care center, a funeral home spokesman said. She was 76.
Christophersen served on the RTM twice—from 1971 to 1977 and from 1982 to 1995, making her among the longest serving members on the legislative body. She was on the Board of Education from 1977 to 1981.
A longtime member of the Republican Town Committee, Christophersen was often brash and outspoken in her quest to make Westport a better place to live.
A memorial service will be held at noon Saturday at Westport Town Hall, according to the Harding Funeral Home.
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Thomas Danbury, Former Westporter, Dies at 71
Thomas Danbury, a former Westporter who served on the Representative Town Meeting for several terms in the 1970s, died July 11 in Kansas City, Mo., his family said. He was 71.
Since 1992, Danbury had lived in Kilauea, Hawaii, and Venice, Fla. Memorial services were held July 14 in Kansas City, where his mother-in-law lives.
Danbury was born on April 29, 1936, in King City, Mo., where he grew up. He received a degree in journalism from the University of Missouri-Columbia, and did post-graduate studies there, and at Michigan State in communications research.
He married Rosalie A. John in 1959 in Grandview, Mo. In 1977, Danbury founded Survey Sampling, Inc. in Westport with Beverly Weiman. Now based in Fairfield, with offices worldwide, SSI was the first commercial sampling company. Danbury was considered a pioneer in his field. He retired in 1992.
Note: WestportNow Publisher Gordon F. Joseloff is also First Selectman of Westport