Wednesday, April 17, 2024



Janice Macauda, 97

Janice Biazzo Macauda of Westport died July 5 at Jewish Senior Services in Bridgeport. She was 97. Image
Janice Maccuda: former Bridgeport resident. Contributed photo

She was the wife of the late James J. Macauda to whom she had been married for 71 years. Born in Bridgeport on Jan. 11, 1922, she was a daughter of the late Giuseppe and Bennedetta Laterra Biazzo and was a longtime resident of Bridgeport before moving to Westport.

She was a graduate of Central High School, Class of 1940. Janice and her husband James owned and operated Macauda’s Market in Bridgeport and most recently she worked at the nursery at Saint Luke Church and the Westport Library.

She worked until her 92nd birthday. She was devoted to her family and was a great cook who enjoyed cooking for family gatherings and holidays. The love she had for family was also shown in her love for animals.

Peter J. MacLean, 65

Peter John MacLean of South Dennis, Massachusetts, a former Westport resident, died July 7 after a four-year battle against glioblastoma, a form of brain cancer. He was 65. Image
Peter MacLean: former Black Duck bartender.  Contributed photo

Peter remained optimistic throughout this journey and touched all those he met along the way.

He was born Dec. 12, 1953 in Boston to Alexander and Barbara (Phelan) MacLean. He lived in Belmont, Massachusetts before moving to and being raised in Westport.

He was a bartender for many years at The Black Duck Café before becoming a finish carpenter.

Jessica P. Seymour, 83

Jessica Palmer Seymour, a former Westport resident, died July 6. She was 83. Image
Jessica Seymour: artistically gifted. Contributed photo

She was born in Brooklyn, New York to the late Warren and Neta Palmer and was a longtime area resident. She was the wife of the late Russell Seymour.

She was a graduate of Norwalk High School where she was crowned Miss Norwalk High and Miss Valentine. She was the longtime owner of Ragtime Revival Consignment Store in Westport.

She was artistically gifted and loved to paint and write poetry. She also had a deep passion for music.

Suzanne F. Crolius, 89

Suzanne Fetterold Crolius of West Chester, Pennsylvania, a former Westport resident, died July 4 after a short battle with Parkinson’s disease. She was 89.

She was born on July 12, 1930 in Philadelphia to Allen and Alice Fetterolf of Chestnut Hill. She graduated from Ogontz Junior College in 1947 and married Allen Potter Crolius, also of Philadelphia, in June of 1950.

During their 69 years together, Allen and Suzanne traveled extensively and lived in Europe for six years where Allen was employed as an executive with Radio Corporation of America (RCA) and Newsweek Magazine.

After returning to America, they settled in Westport where Suzanne was active with the Westport Historical Society and the Westport Garden Club. Her professional career was centered around her position as a teacher at the Westport-Weston Cooperative Nursery School where she taught for over 35 years.

Cecelia J. Scher, 96

Cecelia J. Scher of Westport died on June 23. She was 96. Image
Cecelia J. Scher: artist, gallery owner, Contributed photo

Born in Bridgeport in 1923, and a Westport resident since 1963, she was a lifelong painter and owned River Gallery in Westport in the 1980s.

Her paintings were shown in exhibits at the Wadsworth Atheneum, the Slater Museum, and the National Arts Club, among other venues.

Through her gallery she was supportive of local  painters and also championed the work of many Spanish contemporary artists, who often came to Westport to attend their shows.

Eleanor B. Weigle, 88

Eleanor B. Weigle of Westport died July 2. She was 88. Image
Eleanor Weigle: retired Westport teacher. Contributed photo

Born in Norwalk, she received her Bachelor of Arts degree in music from West Virginia Wesleyan College and her teaching certificate from Danbury State Teachers College.

She started her teaching career at Roosevelt Elementary School in Norwalk before moving to Bedford Elementary School in Westport. After her children were born, she became a private tutor.

Eleanor was predeceased by her husband George Weigle, legendary choral director at Staples High School for 35 years and founder of the Orphenians. He in died August 2018 at age 90. She is survived by her daughters Kimberly Weigle of Westport, Robin Magda and her husband Mark and their sons, Steven and Nicholas of Riverside, and Kristen Witt and her husband Rick and their two children Madelyn and Nathaniel of Redding.

David L. Schmerzler, 54

David Laurence Schmerzler, a lifelong resident of Westport and Fairfield, died June 30. He was 54. Image
David Schmerzler:  Staples graduate. Contributed photo

He was born Nov. 2, 1964. He was a 1983 graduate of Staples High School and a 1987 graduate of Syracuse University, where he served as president of Phi Delta Theta fraternity.

He was the third son of Barbara Harlib Schmerzler and Seymour B. Schmerzler. They lived at The Glen in Westport, where his mother still resides.

David was vice president, sales at Lindenmeyr Central, a paper company in Southport. His brothers and friends envied his short and convenient commute -— but why would David waste time on the train? He had too many other things to do.

William F. Brown, 91, Tony-Nominated Writer

William F. Brown of Westport, a Tony-nominated writer best known for his libretto to the long-running Broadway musical “The Wiz,” died June 23 at Norwalk Hospital. He was 91. Image
William Brown: Broadway, TV writer. David Gordon photo

His death was confirmed by his longtime wife and collaborator, Tina Tippit.

Brown was born in Jersey City, New Jersey on April 16, 1928. After attending Princeton University, he moved to New York City and landed a job writing for Look Magazine in 1950.

After a year in the U.S. Army, he worked from 1952 to 1954 as a television producer for the advertising agency Batten, Barton, Durstine and Osborne (BBDO), while also starting a freelance career as an author, illustrator, cartoonist and TV writer. See full obituary HERE from

Joan Shea, 81

Joan Elaine Shea of Hilton Head, South Carolina, a former Westport resident and teacher in the Westport school system, died June 21. She was 81. Image
Joan Shea: former Westport teacher. Contributed photo

She was born in New York City, New York, on March 3, 1938, to William and Carol Bergener, of Eastchester, New York.

She graduated from St. Gabriel High School, New Rochelle, New York in 1956 and the College of New Rochelle in 1960. In 1963 she married Gerald P. Shea.

After living in several places in the U.S. and Warsaw, Poland, she and her first husband settled in Westport, where they raised their family and where Joan taught elementary school for 25 years,

John F. Ashton, 89

John Felton Ashton, a resident of Darien and former Westport resident, died June 20. He was 89.

He was born in Bronxville, New York and for most of his adult life lived in Darien and Westport,

He was the son of the late Henry Rusling Ashton and Ruth Felton, residents of Bronxville for more than 40 years.

He attended the Harvey School in Hawthorne, New York and in 1947 graduated from Phillips Exeter Academy in Exeter, New Hampshire. He received an AB degree in physics from Harvard College in 1951 and J.D. degree from Yale Law School in 1954.