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Monday, May 30, 2016

H. Elliott Netherton, Jr., 83

Henry Elliott Netherton Jr. of Westport died May 26. He was 83. Image
Elliott Netherton: WHS finance executive. Contributed photo

He was active in the Westport Historical Society, where he served as a longtime board member and vice president-finance/chief financial officer.

Announcement of his death was made by Robert Mitchell, WHS president.

He was also active in the Boy Scouts of America, beginning with his becoming a Boy Scout as a youth in Kentucky and later serving as a Scout Master for a year in Germany while in the Army.

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05/30/16 05:11 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Paul R. Yoder, Jr., 89

Paul R. Yoder, Jr., of Norwalk died May 26 at his home. He was 89. Image
Paul Yoder: opto-mechanical engineer. Contributed photo

A former longtime resident of Wilton, he was the husband of the late S. Elizabeth Yoder (Betty Yoder) for 58 years.

He was predeceased by his wife, his sister Miriam Y. Brumbaugh (Gene) of Pensacola, Fla. He is survived by his four children David L. Yoder (Evelyn) of Monroe; Martha A. Yoder of Newtown Square, Pa.; Carol S. Yoder, of Norwalk, and Alan D. Yoder (April Anne) of Norwalk, both longtime former employees of Westport Emergency Medical Service; his five grandchildren, Jill M. Yoder of Norwalk, Emily Y. Reed (Stefan) of Boston, Rachel T. Yoder (Dan Usen) of Cranston, R.I.; Sarah Beth Y. Romanik (David) of Ardmore, Pa., and Devan R. Yoder of Norwalk, and his two great-grandchildren Cecilia A. Romanik of Ardmore, Pa., and Myers C. Reed of Boston.

Born Feb. 6, 1927, he was a prominent opto-mechanical engineer who designed optical components and instruments used by the U.S. military, NASA, the .U.S government for spy satellite intelligence gathering during the Cold War (the now declassified KH-9 Hexagon spy satellite project), and the medical community for laser eye surgery.

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Sunday, May 29, 2016

Hugh B. Sweeny, Jr. , 101

Hugh B. Sweeny, Jr. “Jim"of Redding a former Westport resident, died May 21 following a very brief illness. He was 101.

He was born Sept. 24, 1914 in Plainfield, N.J. He later resided in Fanwood, N.J., where he served on the Town Council, and after 1975 in Westport.

He graduated from Princeton in 1935 and served as a field artillery officer in the Army from 1940 to 1945, reaching the rank of lt. colonel while in Germany.

In his long career as national program director for Junior Achievement in New York, he helped thousands of teenagers to learn the fundamentals of American business, a number of whom kept in touch with him until his death. He directed the annual summer conference that grew from 60 in 1949 to 3,000 in 1977 under his guidance.

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Friday, May 27, 2016

John J. Saviano III, 62

John J. Saviano of Norwalk, husband of the late Marlene (Calitri) Saviano, died May 26. He was 62. Image
John J. Saviano: Staples grad.Contributed photo

He was born in Norwalk on Feb. 27, 1954, the son of Hazel (Lewis) Saviano, and the late John J. Saviano. 

He was a 1973 graduate of Staples High School in Westport and worked for many years as a groundskeeper at Stauffer Chemical. He was a lover of nature.

In addition to his mother, Hazel, he is survived by three sisters, Marie Saviano Richards and her husband Robert, Melinda Saviano Bonin and her husband Glen, and Cheryl Saviano Petrone and her husband Thomas, his sister in-law, Debra S. Saviano, and several nieces, nephews, grand nieces and grand nephews. In addition to his father, he was predeceased by his brother, Lawrence S. Saviano.

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Thursday, May 26, 2016

Robert I. Ganeles, 83

Robert I. Ganeles of Westport died May 24. He was 83.

Born in Far Rockaway, N.Y. in 1933, he attended HILI yeshiva, Far Rockaway High School and was a biochemistry major at Brooklyn College. He excelled at Baylor School of Medicine in Houston, Texas and completed his internship, residency and fellowship in psychiatry and was board certified in psychiatry and neurology.

He was a pioneer in the field of psychopharmacology. He was on staff at North Shore University Hospital for over 50 years, and served as the president of the medical board, supervising over 1,500 physicians, and was the first from any minor service.

He was known as the “physician’s psychiatrist” and taught through Cornell University for decades. Over his career, he was credited with saving thousands of lives. He served honorably as a captain in the U.S. Air Force from 1962 to 1964.

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05/26/16 01:32 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Andrew J. Veno, Jr., 57

Andrew J. Veno, Jr. of Westport, the son of Marie Veno and the late Andrew J. Veno, Sr., died May 25. He was 57. Image
Andy Veno, Jr.: took over father’s business. Contributed photo

Born in Norwalk, he was a graduate of Staples High School. He was the owner of Andrew Veno Excavating Company for over 25 years, a family business that he took over from his father.

He liked to build things and was a perfectionist in everything he did. He also liked to cook at all of his family’s parties and picnics. He will be remembered as a very kind hearted and giving person.

He was a member of the Westport Volunteer Fire Department, a member of Westport P.A.L., and a founder of Stubby’s Softball team.

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05/26/16 01:19 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

William V. Pietsch, 92

The Rev. Dr. William Vincent Pietsch died May 19 in New Hampshire. He was 92.

In 1963, he became the associate minister of the First Presbyterian Church of New Canaan. He then became a licensed individual, marriage, and family therapist with an office for many years in Westport.

In 1988, he married the Rev. Dr. Louise Parsons Weld. They retired in New Hampshire, where he died after a long illness.

He is survived by his wife, his son James, daughter Patricia, and three grandchildren

05/26/16 09:50 AM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Monday, May 23, 2016

Klaus Soennichsen, 69

Klaus “Sandy” Soennichsen of Westport died May 22. He was 69.

Born in Bavaria, Germany in 1947, he immigrated to the United States in 1950.

He grew up in Weston and graduated from Staples High School in 1965. After joining the Air Force during the Vietnam War, he later finished his college degree at AIC before eventually settling in Westport in 1979.

Since retiring as a high stakes supervisor at Foxwoods Casino, he enjoyed spending any time he could with his family, and having coffee with his friends at Oscar’s in Westport. 

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Nancy Lou Mickune, 78

Nancy Lou (Pardon/Paul) Mickune of Westport, wife of Dermott Mickune, died May 22. She was 78.

She enjoyed anything that involved her faith, family and her friends. She was active in many groups within Assumption Church and was a past president of the Women’s Guild.  She loved spending summers at Hidden Acres with Derm and their many lifelong friends there.

Survivors in addition to her husband include six children; Kyle Mickune-Santos, Kim Sparano, Lisa Wheaton, Kevin Mickune, Sean Mickune and Nancy Mickune, 12 grandchildren: Brooke VanDeusen, Mike Calise, Christy Calise-Hall, Raelyn Santos, Keanna Santos, Johnny Sparano, Jamie Sparano, Sierra Santos, Morgan Columbo, Mack Columbo, Maddie Mickune, Katie Mickune and six great-grandchildren: Austin, Madison, Wyatt, Trae, Oliver and Niyah.

Viewing hours will be held on Wednesday, May 25 from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Harding Funeral Home 210 Post Road East. Friends are invited to attend a funeral on Thursday May 26 at 10:30 a.m. in Assumption Church, 98 Riverside Ave., for a Mass of Christian Burial.

05/23/16 04:05 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Friday, May 20, 2016

Etta Mae Mikhael, 100

Etta Mae Mikhael of Southbury, formerly of Westport, died May 9. She was 100.

Before moving to Southbury, she was a resident of Westport for 64 years and active in various community affairs.

She was a member of the Bahá’í Faith,and served on many national and international committees pertaining to Bahá’í Faith life.

She was a former member of the Westport Woman’s Club, the Westport Community Theatre, and was for many years a volunteer at Norwalk Hospital.

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Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Nicholas Mastrogiovanni, 86

Nicholas (Nick) Mastrogiovanni of Westport died April 10 in California. He was 86.

The husband of the late Philomena (Lorenz) Mastrogiovanni was a Westport resident for more than 50 years.

He was born Sept. 22, 1929 in New York City and was the son of the late Vito and Francesca (L’Abbate) Mastrogiovanni. 

He worked as an engineer for many years at Norden Systems and was a member of the Norden Retirees Club.

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05/18/16 05:25 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Stanley Roth, 85

Stanley Roth of Westport died May 1 after a brief illness. He was 85. Image
Stanley Roth: Navy veteran. Contributed photo

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., with his white hair, white mustache, and silver Jeep, he was recognized and known by most Westport residents for his ability to talk to anyone and everyone.

He served in the both the Korean Conflict and Vietnam War as a seaman on a destroyer and as a sonar technician on a submarine.

Professionally, he co-founded Townsley Ltd., a clothing import company which had him traveling extensively in the Orient for many years. Wherever he traveled, he made many friends, all of whom sorely miss him.

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Celebration of Life Gathering for Naiad Einsel

The family of Naiad Einsel announced that there will be a celebration of life gathering for the late Westport artist on Sunday, June 5 from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Westport Historical Society, 25 Avery Place.

EInsel died April 3 at age 88. See obituary here.

05/17/16 02:15 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Catherine R. McAleenan, 89

Catherine Rita Keehan McAleenan of New Bern, N.C., formerly of Westport, widow of former Westport and Weston police officer Joseph A. McAleenan, died May 17 at home. She was 89. Image
Catherine McAleenan: wife of former police officer. Contributed photo

Born in Westport on Jan. 21, 1927, she was the daughter of the late Leo and Isabel (Remlin) Keehan. She had been a lifelong resident of Westport until 1994 when she and her husband retired to New Bern. Joseph McAleenan, who rose through the Westport police ranks to lieutenant before serving 15 years as Weston police chief, died in September 2014 at age 86. (See WestportNow Sept. 15, 2014)

She was an accomplished bridge player and quilter and also enjoyed playing golf with “Mac” and their friends.  Prior to retiring to North Carolina, her main focus was raising her family, after a successful career at Burndy Corp. in Norwalk. 

Survivors include two daughters, Sheila Baker and her husband Jim of Bolivia, N.C. formerly of Fairfield, Kathleen Lucas and her husband John of Trumbull, one son, Shaun McAleenan, and his wife, Bonnie, of Loveland, Ohio, eight grandchildren, and three grandchildren-in-law, James and Kristen (Walsh) Baker, Matthew and Katelin (Koebbe) Baker, Ryan and Kelly Lucas and William, Glenn and Erin McAleenan and Shannon (McAleenan) and Ken Rutz and three great-grandchildren, James H. Baker IV, Madeline, and Jack Rutz.  She was predeceased by her husband, Joseph Austin, her parents, and one sister, Mary Jane (Keehan) Hanley, and one brother, Edward Keehan.

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Monday, May 16, 2016

Family, Friends to Celebrate Leon Tec’s Life Image
Leon Tec: was doctor in Israeli War of Independence.  Phyllis Groner for

Though it has been more than three years since he died (see WestportNow Jan. 19, 2013), noted Westport psychiatrist Leon Tec, who gained worldwide recognition with his best selling book “The Fear of Success,” will be memorialized next month in Westport.

The event will take place on Sunday, June 5 at 3 p.m. at the Unitarian Church at 10 Lyons Plains Road.

Friends say the event designed to celebrate the life of Tec, a 53-year- Westport resident, is open to the public.

Born in Poland in 1919, Tec escaped during World War II to Palestine.

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Sunday, May 15, 2016

Harry P. Engel, 83

Harry P. Engel, husband of Nancy A. Engel and 38-year resident of Westport, died May 13 in Westport. He was 83.

He was born July 3, 1932 in Prague, Czechoslovakia, the son of the late Ernst and Sabina (Knorr) Engel. He graduated from the University of Durham Medical School, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, England and completed his residencies at Boston City Hospital and Bridgeport Hospital and his Fellowship at National Hospital for Nervous Diseases in London.

He was board certified in neurological surgery, a fellow of the American College of Surgeons, member of the Harvey Cushing Society, the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, the Congress of Neurological Surgeons, the New England Neurosurgical Society, the Connecticut State Medical Society, the New Haven County Medical Association, and president of the Milford Medical Society.

He retired in 2008 from neurosurgical practice but remained on staff at Milford Hospital. He was a senior aviation medical examiner and an instrument-rated single engine pilot.

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Friday, May 06, 2016

Henry M. Kolbusz, 89

Henry (nee Henryk) Michael Kolbusz, Sr. of Weston and formerly of Fairfield, died May 4. He was 89. Image
Henry M. Kolbusz: area builder. Contributed photo

He was the president of Kolbusz Building and Land Developing, a family-owned and operated building and real estate business since 1960 that built homes in Westport, Weston, and Fairfield.

Born in a village outside of Kolbuszowa, Poland, he was a member of the Polish Underground Resistance during World War II. 

He was contracted to the U.S. Armed Forces, American Sector in Germany as a guard of prisoners of war accused of war crimes at the Nuremberg Trial. 

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Michael Meszaros, 49

Michael Meszaros of Westport died May 2. He was 49. Image
Michael Meszaros: partner at Advanced Radiology . Contributed photo

Raised in Lynbrook, N.Y., he was a graduate of the University of Scranton, Adelphi University, and Boston University before receiving his medical doctorate from SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse.

After completing his residency and fellowship at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center in New Hampshire and his surgical internship at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Fla., he joined Advanced Radiology, where he was a partner.

An avid outdoors man, he enjoyed skiing, fishing, running, biking, and especially, cheering on his children’s team sports. He had a quick engaging way with people, and could not resist entering into political banter.

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05/06/16 12:15 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Mary Patterson Devine Leopold, 80

Mary Patterson Devine Leopold of Wilmington, N.C., a former Westport resident, died May 4 at home, She was 80. The cause of death was lung cancer. Image
Mary Patterson Devine Leopold: former Westporter. Contributed photo

She was born Dec. 7, 1935 in New York City.  She and her late husband Bob were married in 1971 on Memorial Day weekend in New York City and honeymooned at The Thousand Islands.

Her parents were Jean and Charles Devine of Westport, and she was a 1953 graduate of Staples High School. Her many friends and family were her pride and joy.

She was a talented salesperson who worked at the flagship Fifth Avenue showroom of Steuben Glass in New York Ciy, and later as a real estate salesperson in her hometown of Westport.

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05/06/16 11:36 AM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Services Set for Westport Police Sergeant

Services have been set for Westport Police Sgt. Robert Myer, 48, a 23-year member of the force who died an “untimely death” on Wednesday. (See WestportNow May 4, 2016)

The family will receive friends on Monday, May 9, from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Honan Funeral Home, 58 Main St.,  Newtown.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Tuesday, May 10 at 11 a.m. at St. Rose of Lima Church, Church Hill Road, Newtown. Interment will be private.

In lieu of flowers, the family said donations can be made to the Lindsay Myer Scholarship Fund, c/o Union Savings Bank, 1 Commerce Road, Newtown, CT. 06470.

05/06/16 10:33 AM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Westport Police Mourn Sgt. Robert Myer, 48

UPDATE The Westport Police Department today announced the ”untimely death” of Sgt. Robert Myer, 48, a 23-year member of the force. Image
Robert Myer (at Easter egg hunt in March.) Dave Matlow for

According to a news release from the Newtown Police Department, where Myer lived, police were called to his home at 6:42 a.m. “for a medical assist and then determined that it was an untimely death.”

Myer, who was a member of the Newtown Police Department Board of Commissioners, was widely known to many Westporters, where he grew up. His late brother James was a 30-year Westport firefighter.

“The medical examiner’s office will determine the cause of death,” Newtown police said, adding, “There is nothing criminal at this point.”

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Saturday, April 30, 2016

Anne S. Timm, 92

Anne Stovall Timm of Longboat Key, Fla., died March 28. She was 92. Image
Anne S. Timm: real estate broker. Contributed photo

She was born in Kentucky and graduated from the University of Arizona. She left for New York City to pursue a career with Mademoiselle magazine. She spent much of her life in Weston and Westport where she was a top real estate agent for 23 years.

She was featured on “Women’s Watch” show for her real estate achievements. She was a member of Aspetuck Country Club, where she golfed and organized the tennis team.

She and her husband Ralph moved to Longboat Key to retire in 1995. She enjoyed duplicate bridge, and became a life master.

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Friday, April 29, 2016

Albert F. Pfister, Sr., 88

Albert Frank Pfister, Sr. of Norwalk died April 28 at Norwalk Hospital. He was 88. Image
Al Pfister: Army veteran. Contributed photo

He was born Sept. 26, 1927 in West Haven, the son of the late Sebastian and Lena Pfister. He was a graduate of West Haven High School and Providence College, Class of 1952. 

Following college, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and proudly served his country in Okinawa, Japan.  He had a successful career as personnel director with AT&T, formerly Western Electric Co.

A friendly, kind gentleman, he will be remembered for his love and commitment to his family, friends, faith, the New York Rangers and most of all his sailing days on his boat “Janal.”

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Joseph P. Makravitz, 98

Joseph P. Makravitz of Rock Hall, Md.,  a former Westport resident, died April 25 at University of Maryland Shore Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Chestertown, Md.  He was 98.

He was born in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., the son of the late Peter and Katherine Martin Makravitz.

He was a machinist supervisor for the DuPont Co., where he retired after 25 years of service.

He was a member of the Church of the Assumption in Westport for more than 70 years.

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Wednesday, April 27, 2016

David I. Weiss, 69

David I. Weiss of Fernandina Beach, Fla., a former Westport resident, died March 31. He was 69. Image
David Weiss: former IBMer. Contributed photo

Born Nov. 6, 1946 in Cleveland, he spent his youth years in Cleveland and Florida before serving in the Navy on the USS Wright.

After his service, he moved to New York and attended New York University. He spent a successful career as a business manager in the technology industry, working for Satellite Business Systems and then IBM while living in Westport for more than 30 years.

After retiring from IBM, he moved to Fernandina Beach, where he enjoyed reading, golfing and spending time with close friends. He was a Mason, founder of SPIRITS and a friend of Bill W.

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Ronald Vigars, 86

Ronald (Ron) Vigars of Westport died April 20 at Norwalk Hospital. He was 86. Image
Ronald Vigars: active in Greens Farms Associaton. Contributed photo

He was born May 20, 1929, in Port Arthur, Ontario, to Richard and Shirley Vigars. His professional career spanned all across the transportation sector.

His first job was with the Maritime Bus Company in 1949, after which he worked for the Canadian National Railways. He spent 38 years working for Air Canada (1953 - 1991).

During his time with the airline, he was a passenger on the first Canadian flight to ever be hijacked at gunpoint, an experience that never left him.

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Saturday, April 23, 2016

Joanna ‘Jan’ Vosburgh Zak, 73

Joanna “Jan” Vosburgh Zak of Madison, a former Westport resident, died April 18 at St. Raphael’s Hospital in New Haven. She was 73. Image
Jan Vosburgh Zak: former Westporter.  Contributed photo

Born Aug. 16, 1942, she was the daughter of the late Gerald and Joan Vosburgh of Westport. A lifelong Connecticut resident, she attended Sacred Heart School in Westport and Boston College (Newton) in Massachusetts.

In her early years, she was a prominent executive in Connecticut and New York in the areas of specialized meeting planning and conferences.

She was predeceaed by her husband, Kenneth “Ken” Alan Zaks. She is survived by, her two daughters, Christine “Ceci” Zak and Sarah Zak Borgman, as well as her three grandchildren, Ella Bree, Tate Thomas, and Wyatt Alan Borgman.

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Friday, April 22, 2016

Richard D. Paul, 66

Richard Dana Paul of Branford, a former Westport resident, died Feb. 16 at home. He was 66. Image
Richard D. Paul: former Westporter. Contributed photo

He was born Oct. 12, 1949 at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, the son of the late Beverly McLeod Paul (Komp) and Richard Rea Paul. He graduated Norwalk High School in 1968 and received B.S. in journalism from Suffolk University in Boston in 1974.

He began his career with Bechtel Alyeska working on the Alaska pipeline in the mid 1970s. When he returned to the lower 48, he met and married Dale Schmid of Greenwich in 1990. They later divorced.

He continued his career in transportation training and logistics until his recent retirement. He was loved and respected by all who had the opportunity to know him.

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04/22/16 11:39 AM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Josephine M. Woog, 89

Josephine Mildred Woog, a 60-year resident of Westport, died April 19. She was 89. Image
Jo Woog: 60-year Westport resident. Susan Woog Wagner photo

Her son, Dan, who writes the 06880 blog, paid tribute to his mother in this posting:

“Jo Woog — who died yesterday, at 89 — was a Westporter for 60 years. In those six decades, she did so much. She was a PTA mom, a volunteer for countless causes, and a strong supporter of arts programs — particularly music. She played piano whenever she could, and taught it for a decade. She also played a mean game of tennis — and stopped only a few years ago.

“She was a member of the Y (aerobics!), Y’s Women, the Democratic Women of Westport, and several book clubs. She went to Long Wharf, the Quick Center and Westport Country Playhouse — and kept going, until a month or two ago.

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Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Donna Mae Malin, 82

Donna Mae (Halloran) Malin of Westport died April 8 after a lengthy illness. She was 82.

She was born and raised in Northampton, Mass. the daughter of John and Mary (Duffy) Halloran.

She graduated from Northampton High School in 1952 and received a B.A. in sociology from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, in 1956.

At UMass, she was a member of the KKG sorority and participated in its singing group and other activities.

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