Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Pat Coplen, Former P&Z and ZBA Official, Dies at 89
Patricia E. Coplen, a longtime Westporter active in community affairs and former chair of the Planning and Zoning Commission as well as member of the Zoning Board of Appeals, died today at her Westport home. She was 89.
Pat Coplen (l) posed with fellow League of Women Voters members before a 2004 tag sale. Contributed photo
Before and after serving in elected office, beginning in 1964, Coplen was active in the League of Women Voters of Westport, which recently celebrated its 60th anniversary. She served on numerous committees and study groups.
She was also active in the Friends of Sherwood Island State Park where she was instrumental in securing initial funding for the recently opened Nature Center.
“Westport has lost a dedicated public servant,” said First Selectman Gordon F. Joseloff. “Westport is a better town thanks to Pat Coplen. Our deepest condolences to Jack and the Coplen family.”
Christine English Palmer, 85
Christine English Palmer, 85, of Westport, passed away on Saturday, Aug. 22 at Norwalk Hospital after a brief illness.
She is predeceased by her husband, Frank T. Palmer.
Christine was born in Norwalk and lived most of her life in Westport. She was a devoted homemaker, mother and grandmother.
To the delight of her family and friends, she was a talented cook and baker and above all else, Christine loved her family and will be greatly missed.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Cissy Hornung, 76
Cissy Hornung, a longtime resident of Westport, died Aug. 19, 2009.
Cissy Hornung (l) greeted actor Jack Klugman and friend at the 2005 “Broadway on Beachside” cancer fund-raiser at her Westport home. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com file photo
Born in Rochester, N.Y., on Feb. 25, 1933, she was the daughter of Gilbert and Jenny Nusbaum.
In 1961, she and her husband, Don, moved to Westport, where they continued to spend their summers. They reside in Naples, Fla.
Hornung owned Cest Gold, a jewelry store on Main Street in Westport, for more than 20 years. She was first diagnosed with cancer in 1985. Her illness inspired her to support breast cancer research. She started “Broadway on Beachside,” which ran annually for 11 years and raised more than $4.5 million.
Leroy (Lee) Peter McKelvey, 76
Leroy (Lee) Peter McKelvey, 76 of Westport, husband of Angela Arcudi McKelvey, passed away Monday, Aug. 24, 2009 at Norwalk Hospital.
Mr. McKelvey was born Feb. 7, 1933 in Bridgeport, son of Marie Campana McKelvey and James C. McKelvey.
He was a 1950 graduate of Fairfield College Preparatory School and a 1955 graduate of the University of Connecticut. He earned a M.A. and sixth year certificate from Fairfield University.
After serving in the U.S. Army for two years, he was, for more than 30 years, a Latin teacher and administer in the Bridgeport public school system.
Monday, August 24, 2009
Anne Coleman Eyes, 80
Anne Coleman Eyes, loving wife and caring mother and grandmother, died Aug. 20, 2009 at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Bridgeport. She was 80.
Anne Coleman Eyes: Westporter for 45 years. Contributed photo
Born in Stamford, on Nov. 30, 1928, she was the daughter of Wilgar and Patty Coleman of Darien. She attended Cherry Lawn School in Darien, prior to attending the University of Connecticut, where she graduated in 1950. She married Raymond Eyes in December of 1947.
She and her husband moved their family to Westport in 1959, where they raised their four children and lived for 45 years.
She pursued her graduate degrees at Southern Connecticut State University and Fairfield University prior to working at both Silver Hill and Hall- Brooke Hospitals as a researcher.
Saturday, August 22, 2009
Overflow Crowd for Soccer Player Memorial Service
There was an overflow crowd at Westport’s Unitarian Church today for the memorial service for soccer player Preston J. Hirten, a 2007 Staples High School graduate who collapsed and died Tuesday while practicing with his University of Mary Washington teammates in Fredericksburg, Va. He was 20. Family, friends and coaches remembered him as a kind, caring and very competitive youngster. An aunt brought laughter when she recalled that Preston at an early age had trouble with words beginning with “s,” leading him to recount his dog Skippy’s encounter with a skunk as, “Kippy melled a kunk and it was tinky.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Remembering a Friend and Teammate
Tyler Ross, a member of Staples High School Class of 2006 and varsity soccer team player, was among those at today’s memorial service for Preston Hirten at Westport’s Unitarian Church. In addition to a large contingent of Staples soccer players, there were many University of Mary Washington soccer teammates who traveled here from Fredericksburg, Va. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Disney Star, Former Westport Resident, Dies at 90
Virginia Davis McGhee: bread ad led to fame. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Walt Disney Co. photo
Virginia Davis McGhee, a curly-haired Disney child star at the age of 4 who later lived in Westport with her husband and daughters for many years, died last Saturday at her home in Corona, Calif. She was 90.
“I grew up with the girls and spent many hours car pooling and figure skating with them,” said Westporter Ann Karrick in an e-mail message to WestportNow.
“The girls went to public school here They lived at the end of Primose Lane—the house still is there. I’m still in touch with both daughters, but they now live in California and Idaho.”
The Walt Disney Co. announced her death.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Paying Tribute to a Former Westport Policeman
Members of Westport’s Fire and Police Departments joined family members and friends today at the funeral service of John Gudzik at St. Luke Church in Westport. Gudzik, who died Sunday at the age of 92, was a retired Westport police officer and past active and life member of Greens Farms Engine Co. No. 5. A lifelong Westport resident, he served on the Westport Police Department for more than 32 years. Among those paying tribute was Prince, a 2-year-old yellow Labrador owned by Gudzik’s daughter, Judy Wyatt of Fairfield. A family friend with the dog at the funeral said Prince regularly visited Gudzik at a nursing home. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Soccer Player Memorial Service Set for Saturday
UPDATE The family of former Staples High School soccer player Preston J. Hirten said today a memorial service for him will be held Saturday at Westport’s Unitarian Church, 10 Lyons Plains Road, at 2 p.m.
The family also released a statement saying Hirten likely died from an enlarged heart.
“The Hirten family encourages attendees to dress casually — ‘soccer shirts for players is great,’ they say,” said Dan Woog, Staples soccer coach. “The building is not air-conditioned, so feel free to bring fans and water too.”
The family said in lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Preston Hirten Memorial Scholarship, being organized by the Westport Soccer Association. The address is: PO Box 2561, Westport, CT 06880.
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
‘07 Staples Soccer Star Preston Hirten, 20, Dies During Practice
Preston Hirten: “Epitomized Staples soccer.” Staplessoccer.com photoUPDATE Preston J. Hirten, a member of Westport’s Staples High School Class of 2007 where he was a star soccer player, collapsed and died today during a practice at the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Va. He was 20.
CPR was administered immediately, but efforts to revive him failed, said Staplessoccer.com.
In a message posted on the Staples soccer Web site, the Hirten family said: “The Hirten family thanks the many Westporters, Stapleites, and soccer players and fans from around the FCIAC for their kind thoughts and prayers at this very difficult time.”
The family said a memorial service will be held Saturday at the Unitarian Church, 10 Lyons Plains Road, at 2 p.m.
John P. Gudzik, 92
John P. Gudzik, 92, a retired Westport police officer and husband of the late Regina T. (Zygmant) Gudzik, died on Sunday, Aug. 16.
John P. Gudzik: Westport police officer for 32 years. Contributed photo
Born in Westport, John was a lifelong resident. Prior to his retirement, he was a patrolman with the Westport Police Department for more than 32 years where he received numerous commendations.
He also worked as a carpenter in his early years for the Punzelt Co., Bradley Co., and the Godfrey Co.
John was a member and past president of the Westport Police Benevolent Asociation, a member of the Westport Police Athletic League, a member and past president of the Ukranian American Club, a member and past president of the Greens Farms Volunteer Fire Department where he chaired the annual Easter egg hunt for the last 50 years, and, a member of the Knights of Columbus.
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Sylvia Pressman, 83
Sylvia Pressman, 83 of Trumbull and Delray Beach, Fla., died Aug. 7, 2009, at St. Vincent’s Medical Center.
Born in Norwalk, a daughter of the late Fred and Rose (Dunaisky) Sokolow, she was a graduate of Norwalk High School, class of 1942. Pressman was the temple administrator at Temple Israel of Westport for 34 years, and was a long-time volunteer at The Jewish Home for the Elderly of Fairfield.
She was predeceased by her husband, Paul Pressman, in 1999.
Pressman is survived by her sons, Lanny Boles and his wife, Debbie, of Shelton; Bob Boles of Easton; her grandchildren, Jason, Rachel, Michelle and Brian, Brett, Taylor; sister, Jeanette Shohet of Fairfield; and by many nieces and nephews.
Funeral services took place Monday from The Abraham L. Green and Son Funeral Home in Fairfield. Interment followed at Temple Israel Cemetery on Richards Avenue in Norwalk. Shiva was observed at the Pressman residence in Trumbull on Monday following the interment, and on Tuesday.
Memorial contributions may be made to The Pressman Intergenerational Programming Fund at The Jewish Home for the Elderly, 175 Jefferson St., Fairfield, CT 06825; or to a charity of one’s choice.
Lydia Audrey Nadel, 86
Lydia Audrey Nadel (née Bulkin), 86, wife to her late husband Irwin, died Aug. 6, 2009.
With a deep appreciation for the arts, she enjoyed playing the piano, film, theater and listening to classical music. She loved attending the local opera, gardening and reading.
Her passion for reading led to her first job at the Book of the Month Club. Most cherished was the time spent with her long-time and dear friends who often gathered for lunch, great conversations and support. She also treasured her time with her five grandchildren.
Born in New York City on June 26, 1923, she married Irwin Nadel in 1947. In 1954, they relocated to Westport, where they became long-term residents until moving to Fairfield in 1993.
Monday, August 10, 2009
NY Times Makes a Correction, Thanks to WestportNow
Thanks to WestportNow, The New York Times today made a correction to its obituary of Anne Wexler.
The former Westport homemaker who left an indelible mark on Connecticut politics in the ‘60s and ‘70s and went on to become a national political figure and well known Washington lobbyist died Friday at the age of 79
The newspaper’s original obituary said Wexler “did just about everything in politics except run for office — from licking envelopes to running Democratic campaigns to serving as a top aide in the Carter White House before becoming an influential Washington lobbyist.”
In fact, as WestportNow reported in its obituary, Wexler ran twice for the Westport Zoning Board of Appeals—unsuccessfully in 1965 and successfully two years later. WestportNow notified the Times of its error.
Note: WestportNow Publisher Gordon F. Joseloff is also First Selectman of Westport