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Monday, January 25, 2016
Cody Thomas, 27, Staples Teacher
UPDATE Staples High School English teacher Cody Thomas, 27, took his own life, Superintendent of Schools Elliott Landon told the school community today.
Cody Thomas: popular teacher. Contributed photo
“Mr. Thomas’ death has been declared a suicide and we are all profoundly saddened by this event,” Landon said in an email to Staples parents.
An email from him on Saturday informed them of the death of Thomas, of Fairfield, who was also co-adviser to the award-winning student newspaper Inklings.
Landon said an announcement at Staples today told students: “All of us want you to know that we are here to help you in any way we can. We know that Mr. Thomas’ death has been declared a suicide.
Saturday, January 23, 2016
Seda Kochian of Fairfield, wife of 60 years of Varujan Kochian, died Jan. 21.
Seda Kochian: seamstress at Plumed Serpent. Contributed photo
Born in Sivas, Turkey, she had been a Fairfield resident since 1981 A talented and gifted seamstress, she worked for many years at the Plumed Serpent Bridal Shop in Westport where she was delighted to meet and become friends with many future brides.
She also loved creating clothes for her family and friends.
Survivors in addition to her husband include two children, Markirit Edwards and her husband Simon of Trumbull and Mirijan M. Kochian and his wife Yeva of Southport; four grandchildren, Tigran and Hamlet, Maria Seda Kochian, and Varujan Edwards and; a brother, Manuk Bozoklu: a sister, Satenig Seheryildizi.
Wednesday, January 20, 2016
Douglas Wood, 85, Former First Selectman
UPDATE Douglas R. Wood, who served as Westport’s first selectman from 1989 through 1993, laying the groundwork for creating ball fields at Wakeman Farm, the expansion of the Compo Beach marina and adding 152 railroad commuter parking spaces, died Jan. 8, in Port Charlotte, Fla. after a long illness, family members said. He was 85.
Douglas Wood: First Selectman 1989-1993. File photo
Born April 17, 1930 in Roslindale, Mass., Wood was raised in Needham, Mass., graduating from Needham High School in 1947 before going on to receive a Bachelor of Science degree from Boston University in 1951. He later joined the Air Force, rising to the rank of first lieutenant.
Following his service, Wood joined Alcoa, working there for 10 years before joining IBM, where he remained for 25 years.
Wood, his wife Helen, daughter Suzanne and son Donald moved to Westport in 1970. While in Westport, Wood, a Republican, served on the Representative Town Meeting’s (RTM) Planning and Zoning Committee and later three years as its moderator. He was elected first selectman in 1989.
Monday, January 18, 2016
George Kringel, 73
Longtime Westporter George (Nelson) Kringel, most recently of Fairfield and Marathon, Fla., died Jan. 9 in Atlanta, Ga. He was 73.
George Kringel: submariner. Contributed photo
Born April 4, 1942 in Pittsburgh, Pa., he lived in several locations around the country and around the globe before finally putting down roots in Fairfield County in the early 70s. A veteran of the U.S. Navy, where he served aboard the Balao-class submarine USS Clamagore, he was most at home on—and even under—the water.
An avid sailor and founding member of the Hobie Fleet at Compo Beach, he never strayed too far from the waters of Long Island Sound or his beloved Vaca Key in Marathon, Fla. He was also a licensed pilot and certified scuba diver who will be remembered as a devoted husband, father, brother, stepfather, and all-around gentle soul.
When he wasn’t saving baby rabbits from storm drains or stopping traffic on Hillspoint Road to allow a lone turtle safe crossing, he could most likely be found building and flying ultra-light aircraft, or otherwise tinkering with or conjuring various new inventions and creations.
Sunday, January 17, 2016
Alison D. Gray, 90
Alison D. Gray (formerly Alison G. Murray) of Weston died Jan. 9 at home of complications from dementia. She was 90.
Alison Gray: art teacher. Contributed photo
She taught art for 39 years at the Unquowa School in Fairfield, having retired at the age of 82.
Prior to teaching at Unquowa, she taught art at the Thomas School in Greenwich. She was an accomplished artist and gardener, having exhibited her art throughout Fairfield County.
In earlier years, she designed exhibits and taught at the Mid-Fairfield County Youth Museum in Westport, now Earthplace, and reported for the Westport Town Crier.
Friday, January 15, 2016
Alexandra Street, 75
Alexandra Street, a former Westport resident, died Jan. 11 of cancer in Santa Monica, Calif. She was 75.
Alex Street: former Westporter. Contributed photo
Alex, as she was known, was born Jan. 30, 1940 in New York, N.Y., daughter of the late Wolcott D. Street and the late Ellen Street Ritter and the stepdaughter of the late Ann P. Street.
Her family moved to Connecticut in 1942 and that is where she grew up. She attended schools in Westport and graduated from the University of Connecticut.
After living and working in New York City, San Francisco and Seattle she settled in Los Angeles in 1975. Her career spanned advertising, veterinary medicine, TV, fundraising, events planning and finally working with a private investigator.
Shirley Anne Rendleman, 87
Shirley Anne Rendleman of Westport, wife of the late John David Rendleman, died Jan. 10 at home. She was 87.
She was born June 3, 1928 in Sioux City, Iowa, daughter of the late Joseph and Sudie (Rucker) Heebner and had been a Westport resident since 1956. She was a graduate of Drake University and a longtime member of the Saugatuck Congregational Church.
Survivors include Kimberly J. Rendleman of New York City, Sue A. Rendleman of Silver Spring, Md., and John D. Rendleman and his wife, Patricia, of Tampa, Fla.
Friends are invited to a memorial service on Friday, Jan. 22 at 11:30 a.m. in the sanctuary of Saugatuck Congregational Church, 245 Post Road East.
Thursday, January 14, 2016
David F. Ellison, 78
David F. Ellison of Westport, husband of Mariaolga Ellison, died Jan. 13 at home. He was 78.
David Ellison: Dublin native. Contributed photo
Born in Dublin, Ireland Dec. 1, 1937, he was the son of the late Dr. Charles and Agnes Ellison. He graduated from Dublin University and earned his master’s in electrical and electronic engineering with honors at Cambridge University, where he continued award-winning research.
In 1964, he began a 22-year career with General Electric, transferring his family to the United States in 1979. His work in engineering advanced at Macbeth and Hubbell Inc., where he obtained multiple patents.
Shortly after retiring, he started ZDS Inc., a company that designed and installed security systems for local businesses, homes, and schools in Fairfield County. In addition to invention, he had a passion for classical music, the arts, his faith, and family.
Tuesday, January 12, 2016
Jeffrey L. Block, 71
Longtime Westporter Jeffrey L. Block, an open space advocate and a business consultant with a focus on information technology (IT), died Jan. 12 after a long battle with cancer. He was 71.
Jeffrey Block: cochairman of Save Westport Now. Contributed photo
He and his wife Helen Martin Block were the prime movers with Representative Town Meeting (RTM) member Matthew Mandell, who in 2001 established the Partrick Wetlands Preservation Fund, leading the fight to save the wetlands from development.
“Jeff was not only one of the original members of our organization,” said Mandell. “He became one of the most relied upon for his analytical nature, his rationality and his constant humorous cynicism which aided us at every juncture.
“Jeff was a true believer in open space and worked with me and others to aid our neighbors in Norwalk to save the White Barn Property,” Mandell added. “Even in their latest bout he was there once again for them.”
Sunday, January 10, 2016
Helen P. Kondub, 84
Helen P. Kondub of Westport died Jan. 8 at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Bridgeport after a brief illness. She was 84.
Born in Stamford, she moved to Westport after her marriage to her husband Joseph, to whom she was married for 56 years.
She had many wonderful memories where she lived on Imperial Avenue for more than 50 years.
Her home was the place where her family, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends spent Christmas Day together enjoying laughter and stories.
Friday, January 08, 2016
Ethel A. Ferenc, 96
Ethel A. Ferenc of Westport, wife of the late Charles E. Ferenc, died Jan. 5 in Fareview Health Center of Southport. She was 96.
She was born Jan.25, 1920 in New York City and was the daughter of the late Fritz and Frances (Deneke) Riedel. She lived in the Greens Farms section of Westport for more than 60 years and has been a member of Greens Farms Congregational Church. She was a loving mother and she loved cats and dogs.
She is survived by one daughter; Donna F. Chachakis and her husband Paul of Westport. In addition to her husband and parents she was predeceased by one brother; Fred Riedel.
The family will receive friends on Monday Jan. 11 from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. in the Harding Funeral Home, 210 Post Road East. interment will follow in St. John’s Cemetery, 2610 Nichols Ave. Stratford. Contributions in her memory in lieu of flowers may be made to PAWS, P.O. Box 7428, Wilton, CT 06897.
Wednesday, January 06, 2016
Margaret Joyner Service Set
A graveside service for Margaret Joyner will take place Friday, Jan. 8 at 2 p.m. in Evergreen Cemetery, Evergreen Ave., Westport.
The Rev Alison Patton, pastor of the Saugatuck Congregational Church, will officiate.
She died Sept. 30, 2014 in Gainsville, Fla. She was 72.
See full obituary on WestportNow on Sept. 26, 2015.
Arthur Dixon, 72
Arthur “Bruce” Dixon of Greenwich, husband of Carol L. Dixon, died Dec. 30 in Stamford Hospital. He was 72.
He was born in Wilton on June 9, 1943 and was the son of the late Arthur and Nellie (Thompson) Dixon.
A U.S. Air Force veteran,he worked in the Department of Public Works for the Town of Greenwich from 1978 to 2005. During his tenure as traffic operations supervisor, he was selected by the First Selectman of Greenwich and Commissioner of Public Works to act as liaison between the town and the State of Connecticut on all state projects in Greenwich, including the reconstruction of the I-95 bridge, following its collapse into the Mianus River.
While with the town, he also served as president of the Greenwich Municipal Employees Association. In 1994 he became the Zoning Inspector for the Town of Greenwich; a position he retired from in 2015.
Anthony L. Falotico, 79
Anthony (Tony) L. Falotico of Westport, husband of Concetta J Falotico, died Jan. 5 at Harbor in Ridgefield Crossings in Ridgefield. He was 79.
Born in Far Rockaway, N.Y. on Feb. 27, 1936, he was the son of the late Vincent (Jimmy) and Rose Falotico. He earned a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering from the University of Notre Dame and a master’s degree in engineering from George Washington University.
He enjoyed a 31-year career with IBM with assignments in the United States, London, Paris, Brussels and Tokyo. He was a lifelong golfer and a nationally ranked Gold Master bridge player, but he derived his greatest joy from spending time with his friends and family, (particularly his grandchildren) who will miss his gentle kindness, broad smile, one-of-a-kind belly laugh, and sparkling blue eyes.
He was a devoted father and grandfather. In addition to his wife, he is survived by his sons and their families, Vincent (Angelina, Teresa and Anthony) of Ridgefield, and Anthony (Laura, Bella and Paul) of Brooklyn, N.Y. In addition, he is survived by his brothers Daniel and Vincent and his sister, Mary. He was predeceased by his sister Raquel.
Tuesday, January 05, 2016
Eileen L. Zeller, 91
Eileen L. Zeller of Kennett Square, Pa., formerly a longtime resident of Westport, died Jan. 3 at Crosslands Retirement Community. She was 91.
Eileen Zeller: longtime Westporter. Contributed photo
She was the wife of Andrew F. Zeller, who died in 1994, and with whom she shared 48 years of marriage.
Born in Saginaw, Mich., she was the daughter of the late Oscar M. and Esther Nurminger List. She was a secretary working for various employers in Philadelphia and in Connecticut.
A member of St. Michael Lutheran Church in Unionville, Pa., she enjoyed traveling, collecting antiques and being with her family and friends.