Wednesday, May 29, 2024



Westport Artist Naiad Einsel, 88 Image
Westport artist Naiad Einsel died April 3 at home. She was 88. She is pictured in 2011 at a Westport Historical Society reception marking the opening of an exhibit called “Art From the Heart,” a retrospective of works she and her late husband Walter created and exchanged during their 47 years together expressing their love and admiration for each other. At left is artist Howard Munce, known as the dean of Westport artists, who died at his Westport home on March 5 at age 100. (See WestportNow March 8, 2016) See Naiad Einsel obituary here.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lynn U. Miller for

Naiad Einsel, 88

Westport artist Naiad June Einsel died April 3 at home. She was 88. Image
Walter and Naiad Einsel: exchanged valentines for 46 years. Contributed photo

Born in Philadelphia on June 6, 1927, her lifelong love of art began in her father’s grocery store, where she drew on the brown wrapping paper.

After attending the High School of Music and Art in New York City, she graduated from Pratt Institute.

She met the love of her life, her late husband Walter, while they were both art directors – Naiad at CBS, and Walter at NBC.  They were introduced when Walter applied for a job at CBS. “I didn’t get the job,” he said later, “but I got the girl.

Remembering Cartoonist Dick Hodgins

By James Lomuscio

Henry, Hagar the Horrible and Half Hitch shed tears today when they learned their father, Richard Hodgins Jr., the man who brought them to life with pen and ink at his drawing board, died Sunday. He was 84, and he loved life. Image
Dick Hodgins Jr. used this image of himself on his Facebook page. Contributed photo

That’s how syndicated comic strip artist and editorial cartoonist Dick Hodgins Jr. said he wanted his obituary to begin when he called this writer in early March to say he had inoperable lung cancer.

Hodgins died at his Wilton home from complications caused by cancer treatments, according to his son Richard Hodgins III.

Dick, as he was known, was one of the last of a winnowing cadre of Fairfield County-based cartoonists who daily kept the funny papers filled with gags.

Hilda B. Cole, 89

Hilda Bloom Cole of Westport died April 4 at home following complications from two surgeries earlier this year. She was 89. Image
Hilda Cole: 20-year Westport resident. Contributed photo

She was a resident of Westport for more than 20 years and an active member of the Westport Center for Senior Activities.

She was a devoted and beloved teacher at P.S. 81 in the Bronx, where she took great pride in her gifted and diverse fourth grade students, retiring in 1991.

In her retirement, she enjoyed gardening, travel, playing bridge, was an avid reader, appreciated opera, musical theater, classic films, public television, and The New York Times crossword puzzle. Her greatest joy was her grandchildren, and recently her great-grandchild.

John B. Baker, 68

John Bruce Baker of Palm Bay, Fla., a former Westport resident, died March 25. He was 68. Image
John B. Baker: native Westporter. contributed photo

He was born in June 1947 at Norwalk Hospital, the only child of Jean (Saxomeyer) and John H. (Cannonball) Baker. He was the 11th generation (on his mother’s side) to be born and raised in Westport.

His father had moved east to Westport from Milwaukee, Wisc. in the 1930s and is credited with introducing fast pitch softball to New England. 

Known as Bru to his family and childhood friends, he graduated from Staples High School in 1965, shortly before enlisting in the U.S. Air Force and serving in the United States and Vietnam from 1965 to 1969.

Chandra C. Allen, 80

Chandra Cecilia Allen of Bloomfield Hills, Mich, a former Westport resident, died April 3 following a courageous battle with brain cancer.  She was 80. Image
Chandra Allen: devoted to family and friends. Contributed photo

She had been in hospice care at the home of her daughter Kelly Allen and son-in-law John Tower of Rochester Hills, Mich. Her husband of 58 years, Jack B. Allen, was by her side.

She was born Oct. 9, 1935 in Chicago to the late Elayne and Wellington “Duke” Camp. She graduated from Chicago’s Immaculata High School in 1953 and Mundelein College (now part of Loyola University) in 1957. 

She had an exciting and unique childhood as a result of her father’s management career in Chicago’s nightclub scene in the 1940s and 1950s, and shared her father’s friendships with entertainment icons of the era.

Mary Jane Stokes, 90

Mary Jane Shepard Stokes, a former Westport resident, died Feb. 29 at the Bayonet Point Hospice in Hudson, Fla. She was 90. Image
Mary Jane Stokes: athlete, artist. Contributed photo

She was born May 5, 1925 in Watertown, N.Y. to the late Ellsworth Shephard and Dorothy Howard.

She worked as a switchboard operator on Sampson Air Base in New York State during World War II, where she met her husband, William During, a marine pilot, in 1945.

She was a great athlete at Watertown High School, a champion swimmer, and later became a very accomplished artist, best known for her animal drawings and land/seascapes.

Cheryl H. Aide, 69

Cheryl Hoggson Aide of Norwalk died March 28 at home. She was 69.

Born Feb. 7, 1947 in Norwalk, she was the daughter of the late Edward and Mary Hoggson. She graduated from Brien McMahon High School in 1965.

She was employed at Nash Engineering Company for many years. After leaving Nash, she went on to work for various car dealerships including Volvo of Westport and most recently Honda of Westport.

She is survived by her children Trisha (David) Tennis of Indianapolis, Ind., and Edward Aide, Jr. (Annie) of Orlando, Fla., and five grandchildren, Morgan and Zachary Tennis, Madison and Carter Aide, and James Lehman.  She is also survived by her sister Rosemary (Charles) Yost of Norwalk, and brother-in-law Kevin Boyd of North Carolina. In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by her sister Sandra Boyd.

Constance R. Ongley, 85

Constance R. (Danneberg) Ongley of Wilton, a former employee of the Westport school system, died March 23 at home. She was 85. Image
Connie and George Ongley.  Contributed photo

She grew up in Sturgis, Mich. and graduated from Western Michigan University. She earned a doctorate in education from Columbia University and worked in the Westport school system for many years as a psychologist and administrator.

She advocated for generations of special education students, helping them get the services they needed.

She was the center of her family’s orbit.

Hector R. Martinez, 89

Hector R. Martinez of Southport, husband of Conchita Martinez, died March 25 in Bridgeport Hospital. He was 89.

He was born in Puerto Rico, son of the late Juan and Basilisa Martinez and has been a resident of Southport for 10 years.

He had a very distinguished 20-year career in the U.S. Army and was a life-member of the Veterans of Foreign War Post 8083. Following his army career, he was employed with the Manhattan Savings Bank until retirement.

Survivors in addition to his wife, Conchita of 70 years, include one daughter, Carmen Sonia Peterson, and her husband, Peter Charles, of Westport; one sister, Ana Felia Munera, of Elmhurst, N.Y.; two granddaughters, Stephanie Del Rios, of Westport, Denise Sheedy, and her husband, Brendan, of Stratford, and two great-grandchildren, Alexis Iannacone and Gavin Gerald Sheedy. He was predeceased by one son, Hector R. Martinez.