Category Archives: Class Decades

Vance E. Boyd ’52

Vance Boyd, 85, of Fredericksburg, VA, passed away on Monday, September 17, 2018.  Born in Springfield, MA on March 30, 1933, Vance was the son of Samuel and Mary Boyd. A graduate of Williston Academy in Easthampton, Vance attended Babson College in Wellesley and received his B.S. in Business.
He served in the U.S. Army from 1956-1958 as Specialist Third Class in the Quartermaster division.  He was owner/manager of the Bailey Wagner chain of furniture stores in the greater Springfield area, which his father Samuel Boyd founded. He went on to develop the Best Rental furniture rental company.
His passion/hobby included horse training, racing and showing – both Tennessee Walkers and Standardbreds/trotters.  He enjoyed trying to learn new musical instruments and was proud of his steel guitar – he was a student of Billy Cooper of Orange, VA and loved his lessons.  His other love included billiards and he was an avid Patriots’ fan. He founded the Billiards Club of Falls Run upon his retirement to that community.

Kenneth M. Coleburn ’46

Kenneth Meeker Coleburn died on August 19, 2018, in Redding, Connecticut. He was born in Norwalk, Connecticut, on June 22, 1928, the youngest of three children of Kenneth Meeker Coleburn, Sr. and Emily Eleanor Coley Coleburn.

Ken grew up in Norwalk. He attended Williston Academy in Easthampton, Massachusetts. He graduated from Middlebury College in Vermont in 1950.

At Middlebury, Ken met Carolyn Sackett; they married in 1952. They raised their family in Rye, New York, where they lived for 46 years. Ken was a partner and sales manager at Stiles Business Products, selling and maintaining business equipment in Westchester, Putnam, and Dutchess counties. Ken would say that he drove a car for a living. He knew every mile of those counties, and was appreciated by his customers for his strong handshake and extensive knowledge of his adding machines, calculators, and mailing equipment. Instead of business cards, Ken gave his customers seven-inch rulers printed with his contact information.

Ken and Carolyn moved to Ridgefield, Connecticut, in 2000 and then to Meadow Ridge in Redding, Connecticut in 2015.

Some of his favorite hours, from childhood into his seventies, were spent playing tennis with family and friends. While captain of the Middlebury tennis team, and at public courts, Shenorock Shore Club, and Thompson’s Point, Charlotte, Vermont, Ken was well known for both his powerful forehand and his lack of fashion sense on the court. Ken’s talents with a racquet in his hand extended into his 80s. He was still playing, and winning, at ping-pong at 89.

Ken volunteered with Meals on Wheels in both Rye and Ridgefield. He enjoyed bringing good food and good cheer to people who could not shop or prepare food for themselves. He liked to think of his bringing meals to his elderly clients as extending the time they could stay in their own homes by six months. He also volunteered with the Ridgefield Visiting Nurse Association. He so enjoyed making people happy that after moving to Ridgefield he got a part-time job delivering flowers.

Ken was a devoted and loving husband, father, and grandfather. He will be remembered by family and friends for his sunny disposition and genuine gratitude for what is good in life.

Ken is survived by his children, William, Jacqueline, Robert, and Carolyn; their spouses, Mary Lou Coleburn, Robert McDonough, Robin Coleburn, and Harry Philbrick; and his four grandchildren, Andrew, Cameron, Kara, and Charlie.

 

Harriet S. Heller ’54

Harriet Stone “Hatsy” Heller passed away at the age of 81 at the home of her sister, Mary Heller Smith, on Wednesday, August 22, 2018, in Elmira, NY. She was born in Elmira on October 8, 1936, the middle child of Mary Annetta Trimble and Richard Stone Heller. Harriet graduated from Northampton School for Girls in 1954, and completed her education with a BA from Elmira College in 1958. She was a longtime member of Park Church, the Junior League of Elmira, and a current Board Member and Secretary of the Friends of Woodlawn Cemetery, and Elmira College Club. Always loving sports, she worked many hours for youth tennis in Elmira. Her professional life included Director of Alumni Affairs at Elmira College, Assistant Director of Annual Giving at SUNY Brockport and Event Coordinator for E Entertainment in Hartford, CT. She is survived by her son James Richard Sophia and daughter-in-law Melanie Moran Sophia of Shaker Heights, OH; her daughter Elizabeth Stone Sophia of Marietta, GA, and predeceased by her infant son, David Heller Sophia. She leaves her grandchildren, James Trimble Sophia, Julia Stone Sophia, Michael Louis McClellan III and Sophie Caroline McClellan; her sisters and brother-in-law, Mary Annetta Trimble Heller Smith  (’52) of Elmira and Janet Whyte Heller Howell (’56) and Fred Ellwyn Howell of Amesbury, MA; along with several nieces and nephews. Those of us who loved Hatsy knew she had her first cancer operation when she was 19 years old and had 63 years, most of her lifetime, living under the menacing shadow of this illness. Despite this, Hatsy always liked to have fun, to be out and about wherever she was. Always an excellent correspondent, she kept in touch with close friends and family from all segments of her communities throughout her entire life. She was curious, energetic, generous, and sensitive to the needs of others, always did her part and was a good and thoughtful friend to many. These stellar qualities held her in good stead at the end of her life as many came to help her, to care for her, to love her through the end days.

Nancy Traill Soderberg ’40

Nancy Soderberg, whose life was characterized by her devotion to her family; her commitment to service, especially to public libraries and to the Girl Scouts; and her enthusiasm for outdoor endeavors, particularly swimming, sailing, and picnicking, died on June 23, 2018 in Camden, Maine. She was 96 and had recently moved from her Camden home to the memory care unit at Quarry Hill, where she died. Nancy Traill Soderberg was born on March 16, 1922, to Mabel White Traill and Frederick Balcolm Traill in Spencer, Massachusetts, where she grew up and graduated from David Prouty High School. After a gap year at the Northampton School for Girls, she attended Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts, graduating in 1944. She worked for two years at the Harvard Medical School and then joined the American Red Cross, serving that organization on the island of Okinawa (now part of Japan), South Korea and outside of Hartford, Connecticut. In 1950 she married Carl Richard (Dick) Soderberg, Jr., with whom she had five children. Her husband’s work took the family to many places, including, chronologically, Lincoln, Massachusetts; Old Greenwich, Connecticut; Houston, Texas; New Canaan, Connecticut; Lake Forest, Illinois; Minneapolis, Minnesota; Concord, Massachusetts; and Sao Paulo, Brazil. With every move, Nancy, well served by her unfailingly positive spirit and keen managerial and organizational skills, energetically established the family, connected with the community, became an active member of the local Episcopal Church, and supported the Soderberg family’s love of sailing, on oceans and lakes across the Americas. When living in Minneapolis, Nancy, always eager to learn, earned a master’s degree in children’s literature at the University of Minnesota, which informed her future involvement with libraries and bookstores (and with her grandchildren). Drawn to Maine by the opportunity for great sailing in a beautiful seaside location as well as proximity to family, they moved from Brazil to South Brooksville, Maine when Dick retired in 1988, and to Camden in 2003. In both places Nancy relished welcoming her children and their families to yet another community she called home. Her survivors include her husband of 68 years as well as their five children: Lisa Soderberg (Richard Brown) of Doylestown, Pennsylvania; Carl R. Soderberg of Simsbury, Connecticut; Leif G. Soderberg (Jill) of Lake Forest, Illinois; Inga Soderberg-King (Jeff) of Gloucester, Massachusetts; Erik T. Soderberg of Bedford, New York. Ten grandchildren and one great granddaughter also survive her. She was predeceased by her brother Frederick Balcolm Traill. The family is grateful to the cadre of loving caregivers who attended Nancy in her final years.

Susan Reeves Whalen ’60

Susan Reeves Whalen passed away Monday, August 13, 2018 at her home in Arlington, MA after a long illness. Daughter of Helen Manley Reeves and Dr. Edgar Earl Reeves, she was born May 14, 1942 at the House of Mercy in Pittsfield.

She was a graduate of the Northampton School for Girls and majored in social work at Simmons College in Boston. She nurtured a lifelong passion for caring for the disadvantaged, serving as an outspoken advocate, both professionally and personally, for the rights of children with special needs. Among the many causes and accomplishments of her life, Susan founded and directed the Conway, NH School for People with Special Needs as well as the Conway Regional Day Camp, and she was appointed to the first Board of Directors for Hospice of Berkshire County. She contributed as an editor to the Compassionate Friends Newsletter, a nonprofit organization for the bereaved, and was a recipient of the “Foster Parent of the Year” by Specialized Home Care. She volunteered at the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Baystate Medical Center, where she learned to care for medically compromised infants. In the course of her work and in raising the family that meant so much to her, Susan’s life touched many people, and her deep commitment to be ever mindful of the needs of others will endure as a legacy to those who knew and loved her.

Susan was the beloved wife of the late Kearons J. Whalen, III, whom she married in Pittsfield in 1973. They lovingly raised twelve children on Snow Goose Farm in Lanesborough, where she instilled in her family a love and respect for nature and the care of animals. Later in life, she was rarely seen without the companionship of her pets, especially her devoted dog Maggie. An avid reader and writer, she contributed articles to the Berkshire Eagle Sampler and was the author of a novel, Murder on Houseboat Row, inspired by her second home of Key West, where she was active in the arts and marine conservation.

She is survived by eleven children – Geoffrey (Hilary) of Wayne, PA; Eliza (Marco) and Richard, both of Holyoke, MA; Joshua (Leann) of Ballston Lake, NY; Rachel of Oakland, CA; Oliver (Ellen) of Houston, TX; Kearons (Barrie) of Arlington, MA; Reeves (Jenni) of Castle Rock, CO; Jessie of Pittsfield, MA; Ben, and Prudence, both of Arlington, MA. She was predeceased by a son, Joseph, and her sister Marsha Reeves Snyder of Pittsfield, MA. She leaves two sisters, Sally Reeves Edmonds of Cambridge, MA and Robin Reeves Colt (’57) (Sam) of Walnut Creek, CA, as well as fourteen grandchildren.

David A. Stewart ’50

David Andrew Stewart passed away peacefully at home surrounded by family on August 5, 2018. He was 87. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, he was raised on the Gulf Coast in Pass Christian, Mississippi where he was an avid sailor, a passion he held for his entire life. Dave was the youngest child of the late J. Norton Stewart, a commercial illustrator and the late Elizabeth Stewart (Lockett), a writer. After World War II, Dave’s family relocated from Pass Christian to Pelham Manor, New York. David attended Williston Academy in Easthampton, MA and Lehigh University. In 1951, he joined the U.S. Navy and served aboard the USS Point Cruz as quartermaster and signalman during the Korean War. He was honorably discharged in 1953. Dave pursued his love of sailing and went to work for his good friend Bill Luders as an assistant at the Luders Marine Construction Co. in Stanford, Connecticut. David met and married his wife, Flora MacPherson Church from Montreal, Canada in 1962. They settled in Barrington, Rhode Island and David began a long career as the head of his own business, Systematics, Inc. where he designed and built instrumentation systems for the jewelry plating industry. In 1970 Dave was hired as the coordinator for the 12 meter “Intrepid” America’s Cup campaign in Newport, Rhode Island. He was instrumental in Intrepid’s skipper Bill “Ficker is quicker” Ficker’s victory over Gretel II to retain the America’s Cup David was a lifelong member of the New York Yacht Club and a former member of the Barrington Yacht Club. David was predeceased by his older brother, J. Norton Stewart, Jr., a merchant marine who was lost at sea during World War II, and his older sister, Anne (Nancy) Stewart Dana, who passed away earlier this year. He is survived by his wife, Flora, his children, Mary Stewart Gibbs, of Barrington and Sarah Stewart of Brooklyn, CT and grandchildren Flora Gibbs of Walla Walla, WA and Daniel Gibbs of Barrington. David was loved dearly and will be missed by all who knew him.

Edward D. McHugh ’50

Edward D. McHugh, M.D. of Holyoke, MA, passed away on Friday, August 10, 2018 at Baystate Medical Center. Edward was born in Holyoke, son of the late Catherine “Kay” (Delaney) McHugh and the late Edward J. McHugh, M.D. He was a 1950 graduate of Williston Academy, a 1954 graduate of Dartmouth College, and a 1958 graduate of Georgetown Medical School. Dr. McHugh served in the United States Air Force prior to starting his private practice, which began with a surgical fellowship in New York City. He subsequently worked at Holyoke Hospital, Providence Hospital, where he was Chief of Surgery and Chief of Staff, and his own private practice. He was a former communicant of Holy Cross Parish for many years. Dr. McHugh is survived by his wife, Janice C. (Carey) McHugh; three sons: Edward McHugh (’77) of Holyoke, Bruce McHugh (’78) of Snead’s Ferry, N.C., and Michael McHugh (’79) of Littleton, MA; and a brother, David McHugh of Connecticut. He was predeceased by a brother, John McHugh, M.D. in 2010.

Elisabeth Ward Gilroy ’46

Elisabeth Ward Gilroy of Marco Island, Florida, and Bedford, New Hampshire passed away at her home in Bedford on July 31, 2018, after a lengthy illness. She was born in Brooklyn, New York on October 14, 1929, the daughter of Henry C. Ward and Marion (Nicholson) Ward. She attended the Northampton School for Girls and graduated from Wellesley College, class of 1950. She married Gordon, her husband of 65 years, in 1953. Gordon and Liz originally lived in New York and moved to New Hampshire in 1976. She was devoted to her friends and family, raising three children. Liz participated in many volunteer roles. She served as president of the Wellesley Club of Naples for many years. She was an avid bridge player and a devoted crossword fanatic. She was famous in the family for completing the New York Times Sunday puzzle in ink in less than an hour. She was predeceased by two children, Gordon “Chip” Gilroy and Elisabeth van Duren. She is survived by her husband, Gordon C. Gilroy, her son Scott N. Gilroy and nine grandchildren and two granddaughters-in-law.

James A. Openshaw, Jr. ’51

James Arnold Openshaw, Jr., 84, of Edinburgh, IN, formerly of Ellicott City, MD, died on Saturday, July 28, 2018 at his home after a long illness.

Born November 14, 1933 in Newport, RI, he was the son of Dorothy Harvest and James Arnold Openshaw. The family moved to Southampton, MA, where he spent his boyhood years. Jim attended the Williston Northampton School, Class of 1951 and was captain of the ski team. He matriculated with the Class of 1955 at Virginia Military Institute and graduated with distinction in civil engineering.

He received a commission in the US Army and was assigned to the 1st Engineer Battalion (Combat), with duty at Ft. Belvoir, Ft. Benning, Ft. Riley and Verdun, France. He was honorably discharged in 1959 and returned to the DC area with his young family to begin a civilian career in the construction industry.

After several years managing federal building construction projects for the Arthur Venneri Construction Co., he joined Cherry Hill Sand & Gravel Co., Inc. as General Manager and later as President, establishing it as a civil construction business with headquarters in Jessup, MD. He purchased the company in 1978 and changed its name to Cherry Hill Construction, Inc. Under his ownership and leadership, the company flourished and grew to become a major highway and heavy construction contractor in the mid-Atlantic region.

Jim is survived by his wife, Pamela Openshaw, his first wife Barbara Falge Openshaw, his two sisters, Mrs. Walter Findeisen (NSFG ’50) of Killington, VT and Mrs. Benjamin Naylor (NSFG ’56) of Calais, VT, his three sons, James A. Openshaw, III of Norfolk, VA, David B. Openshaw of Annapolis, MD and Mark F. Openshaw of Jacksonville, FL, and his daughter, Ann O. DeLawder of Bel Air, MD. He had 14 grandchildren and one great-granddaughter.

Hubert H. Cadle ’43

Hubert Haskell Cadle, 93, passed away on Wednesday, April 25, 2018 at the SECU Jim & Betsy Bryan Hospice Home of UNC Health Care in Pittsboro, NC. He was born on April 8, 1925 in Westfield, MA to Hubert Attwater Cadle And Hazel Rust Cadle. He was a U.S. Army veteran and retired as a mechanical engineer from the Naval Training Device Center in Orlando, FL. Hubert was a previous member of Heidelberg United Church of Christ in Thomasville and a present member of United Church of Chapel Hill. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife of 69 years, Virginia Trott Royce Cadle on February 13, 2017. Surviving is his son, Robert and his daughters, Barbara and Patricia, two grandsons, and four great-grandchildren.