Friday, June 10, 2011
Steven J. Markus, Sr. of DeLand, Fla. died May 28 at Kindred Hospital-North Florida in Green Cove Springs, Fla. He was 77.
He was born in Norwalk on July 16, 1933 and lived in Westport for several years before moving to South Kortright, N.Y. and then to DeLand. Steve (also known as Pete) worked as a heavy equipment operator for Kowalsky Brothers for more than 30 years.
Steve was predeceased by his wife Lillian of 53 years on May 18, 2011 as well as his brother Joseph. He is survived by his brother, Alex, his wife Doris, and their children of East Merideth, New York; his son Steven, Jr. and his wife, Robin; grandchildren Joey and Kristina (Lulu) of DeLand, Kimberly and her Fiance Matt of Streamwood, Ill., and Gregory of Glen Ellyn, Ill.
Online condolences may be made at http://www.allensummerhillfuneralhome.com.
Thursday, June 09, 2011
Carol Anne Beirne of Westport died June 8 in Yale-New Haven Hospital after a lengthy battle with cancer. She was 67.
Born Aug. 18, 1943, in New York City, she was the daughter of the late Urban and Marie Marano. She settled in Westport to raise her family after having lived in several parts of the country.
“Carol will be sorely missed by her family and close friends and will be remembered for her infectious smile, positive attitude, gift of humor, and her loving and caring nature,” her family said.
In addition to her husband James, to whom she was married almost 50 years, she is survived by five sons, James and wife Pam, Christopher, Michael and wife Kristina, Brian and wife Cicelia, and Keith; seven grandchildren, Meghan, James, Kellie, John (Jack), David, Brenna and Kaitlyn; and a sister, Barbara. In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by a brother, Robert.
Calling hours are 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, June 10, at the Collins Funeral Home, 92 East Ave., Norwalk.
Bruce Warren Kessler of Bridgeport, previously of Westport, died June 6. He was 63.
He grew up in Brooklyn, N.Y., a son of Dorothy Mermelstein Kessler and the late Samuel Kessler, and worked his way through college and graduate school as an New York City taxi driver.
Throughout his professional life as a social worker and psychotherapist, he made a difference to countless people, his family said.
“He loved collecting and dealing art, particularly the work of Al Hirschfeld. Bruce was a terrific singer and artist, and he could fix just about anything,” his family said.
Wednesday, June 08, 2011
Blanche (“B”) Eleanor Lebhar, a 61-year resident of Westport until 1994, died May 19 in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. She was 93.
She was the eldest daughter of Capt. Haswell C. Herbert, American Expeditionary Force, who was attached to the famous Lafayette Escadrille squadron, and of the Paris-born Anaïs-Madeleine Haasé, both of Scarsdale, N.Y.
In 1933, the family moved to Westport where she graduated from Staples High School in 1935, achieving academic honors as class valedictorian and athletic successes in basketball and tennis, which became her lifetime sport. She graduated from Vassar College in 1939.
A great loss in March 1944, at the of 26, was her high school sweetheart and then husband, Thomas R. Finnegan, a first lieutenant in the U.S. Army Air Force who died while a pilot in a B-25 Mitchell bomber on a raid over the Imperial Japanese Army bases on the north shore of New Guinea.
Tuesday, June 07, 2011
Bruce Campbell Graham died Jan. 19 in Blueberry Hill Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation in Beverly, Mass. He was 86.
He moved to Westport in the early 1970s and for the past six years had been living near his son’s family in Hamilton, Mass.
Born Aug. 24, 1924 in Patterson, N.J., he was the son of the late John and Jean Graham. Having spent his youth in Bergen County, New Jersey, and Rockland County, New York, Bruce graduated from St. Andrew’s Episcopal School in Potomac, Md.
Upon graduation, he served in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II as a first lieutenant and B17 pilot. Thus began his life-long love of flying.
Wednesday, June 01, 2011
Joseph Thomas (Pappa) Sylvia, a longtime resident of Westport, died May 30 in Norwalk Hospital. He was 82.
Born May 12, 1929, in Norwalk, he was the son of the late William and Carmella Sylvia.
He was a veteran of the U.S. Army and a member of Teamsters’ Local 1040. He enjoyed traveling, fishing, camping, golfing, country music and playing guitar. He also donated blood every month to the Red Cross.
He was predeceased by two brothers, Manuel Sylvia and William Sylvia, and a sister, Rita Saenz.
Gordon B. Gruber, a native of Westport and a resident of Robertsdale, Ala., died, May 31. He was 66.
Gruber served in the U.S. Army, serving two tours in Vietnam as a helicopter pilot. He was an air traffic controller, retired and traveled with his wife “RVing” before settling in Robertsdale.
He is survived by his wife of 43 years, Peggy J. Gruber of Robertsdale, daughter, Jessica R. Hardy of Naperville, Il., son, Max D. Gruber of Maui, Hawaii, twin brother, Charles A. Gruber of Lawrence, Kansas; brother Harris E. Gruber of Rhode Island, sister, Sara B. Egol of San Jose, Calif., and two grandchildren, Devyn C. Gruber and Cameron D Gruber.
Funeral services will be Friday, June 3, 2011, at 10 a.m. at Mack Funeral Home Chapel with the Rev. Jason Smith and Chaplain Cindy Still officiating. Graveside services with military honors will be held at 11:45 a.m. at Barrancas National Cemetery, Pensacola, Fla.
Richard Salwen, a clinical psychologist raised in Westport and who was a longtime Ridgefield resident and active community member, died May 26 after a prolonged illness. He was 53.
Born in New York City, he graduated from Staples High School in 1969. He attended Northwestern University and earned a doctorate in clinical psychology from Fordham University.
After a fellowship at New York Hospital, he began his career working with cancer patients at Memorial Hospital Sloan Kettering Cancer Institute in New York. While there, he coauthored many research articles on the impact of cancer treatment on cognitive functioning in children.
In 1986, he began a long career at Danbury Hospital, culminating in his position as director of behavioral health.
Saturday, May 28, 2011
Gordon J. Fow of Fairfield, a former Westport business operator, died May 28. He was 85.
Born in Waterbury to the late Joseph and Kathleen Fow, he was a lifelong area resident. He was a U.S. Marine Corps veteran having served in World War II.
He had a successful career in electronics and was a sales representative for many years with Panasonic and Motorola. He eventually started his own business, Alpha Audio-Electronics Distributor, Inc. in Westport.
The most important aspect of his life was his family. Since childhood, he enjoyed going on family trips to Cape Cod, especially North Truro and Provincetown.
Thursday, May 26, 2011
William (Bill) F. Codeanne died May 22 at St. Vincent’s Medical Center in Bridgeport after a brief illness. He was 73.
Born in New Haven Nov. 5, 1937, he was the son of the late John H, and Josephine (Liguori) Codeanne and has been a resident of Westport for 35 years.
He attended New Haven schools, graduated from Hillhouse High School in 1956, and from Fairfield University in 1960.
Prior to retiring in 2003, was employed as a manager for IBM for 36 years. He is a member of St. Luke Parish, the Y’s Men of Westport Weston, the President’s Circle at Fairfield University, and enjoyed sailing and walking the Westport shoreline.
Monday, May 23, 2011
Patricia Ann Rampino Provenzano of Trumbull died May 21 at St. Vincent Medical Center, Bridgeport. She was 72.
Born April 19, 1939 in Bridgeport, she was a daughter of Michael J. Rampino of Bridgeport and the late Lena A. Pugliese Rampino. Patricia was an AVON representative for over 45 years as well as many years at Internal Medicine Associates of Westport.
She enjoyed spending time with her family, antiquing, knitting and playing bingo.
In addition to her father, survivors include three daughters, Linda Sullivan and her husband David of Madison, Karen Newell and her husband Randy of Fairfield, Lisa Markelon and her husband Chuck of Trumbull, her companion John Corba of Trumbull, a sister, Nancy Bonitatibus of Florida, a brother Michael Rampino of Milford, six grandchildren, Hilary, Alyssa and Brianna Sullivan, Matthew, Ryan and Christopher Newell as well as several nieces and nephews.
Sunday, May 22, 2011
Cleanthes Stephen Tsorvas, a 43-year resident of Westport, died May 19. He was 82.
The son of Stelios and Maria Tsorvas, he was born Oct. 26, 1928 in Peabody, Mass. After graduating Peabody High School in 1945, he continued his studies at Tufts University, graduating in 1949.
Upon completing his U.S. Army service during the Korean War, where he was stationed in Washington, D.C., he went on to receive a masters degree in Business Administration from Boston University, followed by a law degree from Portia Law School in Boston, Mass.
Cleanthes retired in 1989 after a successful 37-year career at General Electric Co. working as a manager of employee benefits and insurance at the corporate headquarters in Fairfield.
Saturday, May 21, 2011
Enrique “Rick” Garcia, owner of Rick Garcia Salon in Westport, died May 14 in Norwalk Hospital. He was 64.
Enrique Garcia: owned Westport salon. Contributed photo
Born Aug. 9, 1946, in Havana, Cuba, he was the son of Maria Luisa (Herrera) Garcia of Milford, Pa., and the late Alex K. Garcia.
He was a resident of Wilton for the past 25 years and founded Rick Garcia Salon on Post Road East more than 20 years ago. His sons, Justan E. Garcia and Alex K. Garcia, both of Wilton, will continue to manage the business.
Before opening the Rick Garcia Salon, he worked at a number of New York City salons and was a freelance stylist for magazine and film productions, as well as the style director for Paul Mitchell Superhair Salon.
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Cynnie Moll of Westport died May 8 at Norwalk Hospital where she worked many years as a volunteer. She was 82.
Cynnie Moll: longtime Westporter. Contributed photo
Born April 22, 1929 in Limestone, Maine, she grew up in Charleston, R.I. She attended the University of Rhode Island where she joined the Delta Zeta sorority, played varsity basketball, and met her future husband, Charlie. She graduated in 1951, and they were married in 1952.
A longtime resident of Westport, Cynnie worked as a volunteer at the Norwalk Hospital for 32 years providing comfort to patients. She also was active in the Westport Woman’s Club, the Westport Nature Center, and was a past president of Westport New Neighbors.
She was a member of the Long Island Sound Catalina Association, the Minuteman Yacht Club, and enjoyed sailing with Charlie along the New England coast. Cynnie also was a New York Times crossword puzzle aficionado and an ardent New York Yankees fan.
Mary Morrison Clarke of Westport died May 7 while visiting family in Burgess Hill, England. She was 63.
Mary Clarke: special ed advocate. Contributed photo
Born in Savannah, Ga., the only daughter of Dr. Howard Jackson Morrison and Mary Lane Morrison, she graduated Queens College in Charlotte, N.C. with an undergraduate degree in French.
She married her husband Nicholas in 1972, and helped him start and run The Bold Strummer, an independent publishing company. She was diagnosed with cancer in 1975, but survived it and went on to raise three children, James, Angela, and Jennifer, of whom she was very proud.
Mary survived cancer again in 2000, was a tireless advocate for special education, and was an active member of her Church’s Alter Guild and Pastoral Care Committee.
Robert (Bob) V. Goldstein, a 41-year resident of Westport, died May 12. He was 71.
Born in New York City, he started his career in the garment center and then worked for Tyco International for 35 years.
He leaves behind his wife of 44 years, Sondra; a daughter Traci; a son Davin and daughter-in-law Sara, and a newborn grandson.
A memorial service will be held at a later date.
Monday, May 16, 2011
UPDATE (adds memorial service information) Beatrice Milwe, a longtime Westport resident who was a documentary filmmaker and activist in movements promoting civil rights, women, and international peace, died Saturday. She was 97.
Bea Milwe: filmmaker and activist. Contributed photo
After growing up in Hoboken, N.J., she graduated with a teaching degree from the Jersey City Normal School. She began her career as a social worker in New York City and became very active in many social causes.
At the age of 57, she graduated from Sarah Lawrence College in 1971 and was a member of the first class of women in the Continuing Education program at the school.
Milwe was extremely active in the civil rights movement, the women’s movement, and the international peace movement. Her daughter Liz said she believed that everyone, especially women, should work towards peace because it is the children who suffer the most from war.
Sunday, May 15, 2011
Bruce A. Hodges of Mesa, Ariz. died May 4 six months after being diagnosed with cancer. He was 43.
Born in Norwalk, he was an employee of Qwest Communications and a member of CWA Union 7019.
He is survived by his wife Grace Calise of Westport and two children, daughter Caitlin and son Nicholas, all currently residing in Mesa. He also is survived by his parents, Sheila and Jerry Hodges, two brothers, one sister and many nieces and nephews.
In lieu of flowers, the family has designated a fund for the education of Caitlin and Nicholas Hodges. Contributions to this fund can be made at Wells Fargo Bank with reference to account number 7143334030.
Ann S. Amato, formerly of Westport, died May 13 at her home in Charlotte, N.C. She was 80 and had ovarian cancer.
Born Oct. 24, 1930 in New York City to Anna and Anthony Stingo, she was predeceased by her husband Carmine Amato, her parents, brother Joseph and sister Mary.
She is survived by her sister Mickey Falcone and her daughter Patrice Conlon and son-in-law Robert Conlon. She is also survived by her grandchildren Christian, Paul and Alexa Pantazonis and numerous nieces and nephews.
She was a member of STARS senior group at St. Matthew Catholic Church.
Friday, May 13, 2011
Norman Davis, a former Westport resident, died May 8. He was 82.
Norman Davis: former Westporter. Contributed photo
Born in Boise, Idaho, he grew up as a Red Sox fan in New England, spending his early years in the Foxboro, Mass. area where he developed his love for the outdoors. As a young boy he spent time on relative’s farms raising chickens, geese and turkeys and swimming in leech-infested ponds in the Cape Cod area.
During his teens, he moved to Stamford, where he graduated from the local vo-tech high school.
During his teens and 20s, he loved to live the good life. He cherished his big black Lincolns with the super wide white walls and fins on the back. He would wash and wax his prized possessions every day, so they would catch every girl’s eye as he rode around town.
Thursday, May 12, 2011
Dr. Morton S. Brod, 85, a former Westport resident, died May 8 at Mesa Vista Care Center in Boulder, Colo.
Born April 19, 1926, in Brooklyn, N.Y., he was the son of the late Joseph and Celina Brod.
He graduated from Brooklyn Technical High School in 1943 and enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps, where he became a B-17 and B-29 bomber pilot, rising to the rank of captain. He was awarded the Purple Heart, the Air Medal and the Distinguished Flying Cross.
After the war, he attended the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and graduated from Adelphi University on Long Island, with a major in biology and minor in chemistry.
Robert B. Medeika, 37, a former Westport resident, died May 10 in Washington, Maine. He was 37.
Born Sept. 23, 1973, in Bridgeport, he was the son of Roger and Patricia Ford Medeika and grew up in Westport. After moving to Maine with his family, he attended and graduated from Medomak Valley High School in Waldoboro.
Living on the pond, he grew to love fishing, having landed many trophy-worthy trout over the years. He also enjoyed working with computers.
Robert was predeceased by his father, Roger Medeika in 2009, and a brother, Joseph Medeika in 1992.
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
Veteran television news producer Jeff Gralnick, who worked for CBS, ABC, NBC and CNN during a half century in broadcast news, died Monday night at his Weston home. He was 72.
Jeff Gralnick: worked for all networks. File photo
Gralnick spent 20 years at ABC and most recently was a consultant to NBC News president Steve Capus. Earlier at NBC, he served for three years an executive producer of the “NBC Nightly News With Tom Brokaw,” helping make the broadcast the top-rated evening news show.
At CBS, Gralnick wrote for Harry Reasoner and Walter Cronkite, covering the moon landing, reported from the field during the Vietnam War and was an early producer of “60 Minutes.”
After working for a year as George McGovern’s press secretary, Gralnick joined ABC News in 1972 as a producer and rose steadily to serve two stints as executive producer of “World News Tonight With Peter Jennings.”
Marianne S. Butler of Fairfield, beloved wife of Robert M. Butler, died May 8 at Connecticut Hospice in Branford. She was 75.
The daughter of the late Charles and Elizabeth Schick, she was born in Budapest, Hungary and left Hungary during the 1956. She lived in Paris, France for three years before immigrating to the United States in 1959.
Marianne married her husband, Robert, in 1963. Together they ran the family business, Butler Business School, where she served as vice president and director of financial aid. Over the last several years, she enjoyed working at both The Family Album and Silver Ribbon Jewelry Store in Westport.
She and her husband were former members of the Black Rock Yacht Club.
Margaret T. Tucker of Westport, wife of the late John Tucker, died May 8 in Norwalk Hospital. She was 92.
Born July 21, 1918 at home in Westport, she was the daughter of the late Patrick and Mary Troy and has been a lifelong resident.
After graduating from Staples High School, she attended two years secretarial school and upon completion was employed as an executive secretary for Perkin Elmer for more than 30 years.
Following her retirement from Perkin Elmer, she served as the parish secretary for Saint Mary’s parish in Stamford. She also enjoyed traveling.
Cliff Ross, longtime resident of Westport, architect and builder, died May 4 after living with pancreatic cancer for three years. He was 59.
Cliff Ross: 1969 Staples grad. Contributed photo
Born in Woodmere, N.Y., to Alan and Leona Ross, he moved to Westport in 1963. He graduated from Staples High School in 1969 and received a master’s degree in architecture from Tulane University.
After traveling and living in various parts of the country, he returned to Westport in 1977 to build his first house with his brother and father, forming Ross Builders.
The houses designed by Cliff have enhanced the landscape of Westport, expressing the highest level of refinement and aesthetics, and ultimately incorporating true livability.
Those who knew Cliff as a friend or relative knew how fortunate they were as Cliff was a kind and noble man, filled with joy. In business and in sport he was fair, honest, and successful.
Sunday, May 08, 2011
Dr. Joseph J. Okon died May 6 at his Westport home. He was 61.
Born in New York City to Esther and Sol Okon, he was the beloved brother to the late Dr. Paul Okon.
Dr. Joseph Okon attended Columbia University and earned his medical degree at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He devoted his career to obtaining funding for the advancement of medical education, and devoted his life to his family and his friends.
After completing his doctorate and then residency training in social medicine in 1976, he served in the U.S. Public Health Service administering educational research and development projects.
Saturday, May 07, 2011
Madeline Remlin Colby, 81, a native of Westport and a resident of Milford for the past four years , died May 5 at Yale New Haven Hospital. She was 81.
Born Jan. 1, 1930 at home in Westport, she was daughter of the late Vincent and Lucy (Lynch) Remlin. Prior to retiring, she was a bookkeeper and formerly held a pilot’s license with a certification for air and sea.
She loved to sail and spend time in her garden and her greatest joy was the time spent with her family.
Survivors include her children, Hank, Susan, Patrice, George and Tom, her 15 grandchildren, four great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews. She is also survived by her brother, Robert Remlin and sister, Margaret Marshall.
Arthur “Art” Dean Reinhart, 50, of Fairfield died April 2 in Portsmouth, N.H. He was 50.
Art held a bachelor’s degree in psychology, graduating summa cum laude, and also held a master’s in library science from Southern Connecticut State University.
Art was a grant administrator and records management specialist for New York State Archives in Albany, N.Y. He also was a library director for the Pember Library and Museum of Natural History in Granville, N.Y.
Throughout his extensive career, he worked at libraries in Westport and New Haven. Most recently, he was a valued member of the top-producing real estate team of Jonathan Deak and Associates at Prudential Connecticut Realty in Westport.
Friday, May 06, 2011
Ethel Mariani Giunta, formerly of Westport, died April 3 at her home in Fallbrook, Calif. She was 85.
She was the wife of the late Albert Giunta and the daughter of the late Joseph and Maria Battistini Mariani. Ethel was a first-generation American, born Sept. 12, 1925, her parents having emigrated from Ancona, Italy in 1921.
She was a graduate of Ben Franklin Jr. High and member of the National Honor Society at Norwalk High School, class of 1943. Ethel had been employed at Nash Engineering Company and also the Town of Westport. She was an active member of the Assumption Church in Westport.
She was a resident of Westport from 1948 until 2006 when she moved to Fallbrook to live near her son, Tom.