Remembering members of the Williston Northampton community

Persis Brown Smith ’45

On June 16th, 2017 Persis B. Smith passed away after a brief illness at Brookdale Place in Colorado Springs. She was 91 years old.

She was born in Colorado Springs on February 24, 1926. She was the daughter of the late Alfred Brown and Lucy Jones Brown. Dr. Brown was the superintendent of the Colorado School for the Deaf and Blind for many years.

Persis was the granddaughter of Asa T. Jones, a Colorado Springs pioneer who came to cure his tuberculosis from Spencer, Massachusetts. He was a leading businessman in Colorado Springs and “gave birth to many charities” (Sun newspaper, July 24, 1972). He built the Cheyenne Building now home to Phantom Canyon Brewing Company on the corner of Pikes Peak and Cascade Avenue.

Persis went to Columbia Elementary School, North Junior High and the Colorado Springs School before graduating from the Williston Northampton School for Girls in Easthampton, Mass. She graduated from Vassar College and received a Masters Degree at the University of Denver in child psychology. She worked at the Rocky Mountain Rehabilitation Center in Colorado Springs for 15 years.

Persis was married four times to wonderful men. First, to the late Wessel Ruhtencrantz Von Ruhtenberg and then to John Max Wolf of the Wolf Ranch in Black Forest. She later married Myron Wood, the well-known photographer. Finally, she was married to the late Dr. Robert Smith for 22 years. He preceded her in death at 99 years in 2012. He was one of the founding doctors of the Colorado Springs Medical Center.

Persis Smith was an accomplished painter, studying for years under the well-known local artist Herman Raymond. She was a member of the Broadmoor Garden Club, Tuesday Club and the Colonial Dames Society. She volunteered for years at Silver Key, was a member of Grace and St. Stephens Episcopal Church and was an active member of and donor to the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center.

She is survived by her daughters, Lucy Lewis of Colorado Springs, Persis Schlosser of Castle Rock, Colorado, five grandchildren, one great-grandchild and eleven step-children.

Ginger Kahn Stuck ’81

Ginger Michelle Kahn was born on March 10, 1963, in Beverly Hills, California, but she spent her formative years in Chappaqua, New York.
She was one of four children born from the union of the late Lloyd Kahn Jr. and Charlene (Center) Kahn Berman.
After graduating from Horace Greeley High School, she studied Psychology and Education at St. Thomas Aquinas College and Dance at Ithaca College.
Ginger married Jack Williams III in 1988. She later married Charles Stuck on March 25, 2000, in Dearborn, Michigan, and together the couple would raise their family of five children.
A member of the B’Nai Israel Temple in Monroe, Ginger enjoyed staying very active in the community. She was quite instrumental in the expansion of Paula’s House on South Custer volunteering many hours. She was also the founder of Teens with Family Addiction (TFA), assisting at-risk youth.
Ginger was always generous and kind and willing to open her home to those in need. She was extremely charismatic and had a heart for service to others, and everyone knew it.
A confidante to many, Ginger still had a profound sense of humor.
Ginger loved to vacation, and when it came to travel she spared no expense on her family making sure they experienced everything possible and had a few souvenirs to leave with.
Two favorite sayings summed her up: “That’s Just Ginger” and “It’s Ginger’s way or the highway.” For several years she co-owned Cold-Steel and Elysium Tattoo in Monroe.
Ginger Michelle Stuck, age 54, of Monroe passed away unexpectedly at her home on Sunday, July 9, 2017. Her passing was preceded by her father, Lloyd Kahn Jr.
To cherish her memory, Ginger leaves her husband: Charles Stuck; her mother: Charlene Kahn Berman; a daughter: Josephine Stuck; a step-daughter: Nicole (Scott) Fowler; two sons: Jack (T’leah) Williams IV, Ryan Stuck; a stepson: Christopher Stuck; two brothers: David (Jodi) Kahn, Adam (Lily) Kahn; two sisters: Amy Kahn and Michele Hart, and four grandchildren: Easton Williams, Emory Fowler, Connor Fowler, and Killian Fowler.

David Gregory ’57

David Gregory, age 77 of Toney, Alabama, passed away on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2017. He is survived by his wife of 57 years Martha, daughter; Donna (Brian) Fuller, son; Matt (Jan) Gregory, two grandchildren; Alex Fuller and Madison Fuller. Mr. Gregory was preceded in death by his grandson Wesley Fuller. Mr. Gregory retired from IBM after 29 years. He was a U.S. Army veteran and a member of Mt. Zion Baptist Church and an avid Alabama fan.

Henry A. Poirier ’48

Henry A. Poirier, 86, of South Windsor, Connecticut formerly of Manchester, Connecticut beloved husband of 57 years to Bibiane (Cloutier) Poirier passed away unexpectedly Friday, June 23, 2017 at Hartford Hospital surrounded by his adoring family. Henry was born in Adams, Massachusetts, August 29, 1930 son of the late Archie A. and Florence (Molleur) Poirier. He attended local elementary schools, and completed high school at Williston Academy in Easthampton, Massachusetts. Later, he earned his bachelor’s degree from Catholic University in Washington, DC. Henry proudly served his country in the U.S. Army from 1954-1956. He resided in Manchester for most of his life before moving to South Windsor in 2016. He worked at Aetna Casualty and Surety Company for 35 years, retiring as Vice President of Farmington Management, a subsidiary of the Aetna.
As a young man, Henry worked in the Poirier family laundry business, Aladco, in Adams, Massachusetts. In later years, Henry was an active member of the Gilbert & Sullivan theater group in Manchester, Connecticut. He was a communicant of St. Bartholomew Church for many years, and he wrote for St. Bart’s Herald. He also enjoyed many friendships through the St. Bart’s Men’s Breakfast group. Henry loved watching the UCONN Huskies women’s basketball team as well as the Boston Red Sox. Henry played bridge with a group of close friends for many years, and together they had many adventures, including an annual weekend trip to Cape Cod.
After Henry retired, he and Bibiane enjoyed many trips around the United States and the world. What Henry loved most, however, was being surrounded by his wife, children, and grandchildren. Holidays were always a special time for Henry, and he and Bibiane enjoyed planning for the family’s stay at their home. Each year Henry and Bibiane also treated the family to an annual vacation at Cape Cod. This vacation has given the family many treasured memories.
Henry is survived by his loving family, his wife Bibiane, two daughters, Michelle Poirier and her children, Adam Bazenas and Adrian Bazenas of Amesbury, Massachusetts, Martha Tagliaferro and her husband, Dean, and their children, Thomas, Daniel, John, and Libby, of Pittsfield, Massachusetts and his two sisters, Claire Rowley and Alice Shea both of Adams, Massachusetts. He is also survived by several nieces, nephews and their families and numerous sisters-in-laws, brothers-in-law and their families. In addition to his parents, he is predeceased by a sister, Virginia Harvey.

Clarence L. Simpson, Jr. ’51

Mr. Clarence Lorenzo Simpson, Jr., former Associate Justice of the Supreme Court and former Attorney General of Liberia, died January 30, 2016 at his Brewerville, Liberia home. He was in his 83rd year.

Following his return home with a Law degree, Mr. Simpson, son of President Tubman’s first Vice President Clarence Lorenzo Simpson, was appointed Legal Counsel of the Ministry of Public Works.

President Tubman later called young Mr. Simpson as Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Liberia.

Following the death of President Tubman and the accession of Dr. William R. Tolbert as President of Liberia, he named Mr. Simpson as Attorney General and Minister of Justice, a job he held for a number of years.

Mr. Simpson was born on June 15, 1933 to the union of Counselor Clarence Lorenzo and his wife Mrs. Abrametta Stubblefield Simpson. He received his high school diploma from Williston Academy in Easthampton, Massachusetts, and later enrolled at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA. He later took the LLB degree from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.

On July 19, 1961 he married Judith Mars Simpson in Kakata, Margibi County and this union was blessed with seven children.

His survivors include his widow, Mrs. Judith Mars Simpson; children, Clarence L. Simpson III, Mrs. Lorraine Simpson Harvey Mrs. Linda Simpson Emiroglu, Clarine Simpson Vaughn, Cheryl Simpson Cornwall, Christian and Alpha Simpson; several grand children; and sister Amanda Simpson.

Mr. Simpson, Jr., like his father, was a lifelong Episcopalian.

Jay S. Brisk ’54

Jay S. Brisk, 81, died of heart and kidney failure in Boston on June 20, 2017. He is survived by his brother and sister-in-law, Richard and Susan Brisk; sister, Hazel Buchwald; nieces, grandnieces and grandnephew. At age 14, while watching a July 4th fireworks display, he was hit by an errant rocket. Despite a long and difficult recovery, he graduated Great Neck High School while also studying piano and music composition at Julliard School of Music. A dedicated New Yorker, he graduated Columbia University, School of General Studies and later taught writing at NYU and acted in some off-off Broadway plays.

Jorge Ibarra Cuesta ’50

At age 85, Jorge Ibarra Cuesta, died in Havana on Wednesday, June 7, 2017. The influential Cuban historian was  author of works essential to understanding the process of construction of the Nation.

For his merits he was distinguished with the National Prize of Social Sciences (1996), the Ministry of Culture and the Cuban Book Institute, and the National History Award (2008), awarded by the National Union of Historians of Cuba, in both cases For the work of all life.

Born in Santiago de Cuba on August 11, 1931, he studied in that city and then in the United States. On his return, he graduated as a lawyer at the Universidad de Oriente. In the Santiago of the 50 participated in the clandestine fight against the dictatorship.

After the revolutionary triumph he worked in the National Council of Culture, joined the Revolutionary Armed Forces, worked in the ICRT and the Institute of History and was developing a consistent work in which he emphasizes his contribution to the writing of the Manual of Cuban History , Of the Political Direction of the FAR. The University of Havana was awarded the title Doctor in 1997. He was an active member of the Writers Association of Uneac.

His height as an essayist was revealed in Mambisa Ideology (1967); Approaches to Clio (1979); Nation and national culture (1981); A psychosocial analysis of the Cuban: 1898-1925 (1985); Cuba: 1898-1921, political parties and social classes (1993); Cuba: 1898-1958, structures and social processes (1996); And Máximo Gómez in the face of imperialism (2000).

About himself, with modesty, he affirmed: “I have only thought of sketching problems, revising the conceptions of the past and discussing everything. I do not pretend to have created a new school or way of seeing things. If I have made some contributions it has been in the field to stimulate discussion and criticism among my colleagues. It is true that, like every historian, I have brought to light some unpublished facts, but the interpretation I have given it is yet to be discussed. In the end, it is not I who values ​​my work more knowledge of cause, but the new promotions of historians.

When Ibarra dedicated the XVIII International Book Fair of Havana in 2009, his colleague Fernando Martínez Heredia spoke these words to extol the legacy of who now says goodbye: “Jorge has come the long way with the upstanding flag of the social scientist And the difficult militancy of the intellectual, with unshakeable honesty, a lofty and growing prestige, and an ever-fighting spirit. ”

This is a translation of the following page:  http://www.granma.cu/cuba/2017-06-07/fallecio-el-historiador-jorge-ibarra-cuesta-07-06-2017-23-06-41

 

Remembering members of the Williston Northampton community