Category Archives: 1940s

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.

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.

Harold H. Kuniholm ’43

kuniholmHarold (“Harry”) H. (Heinrichs) Kuniholm died on Wednesday, February 15, 2017. He was 91. Born in Gardner, Massachusetts, to Mr. and Mrs. C. Harry Kuniholm, Harry attended Williston Academy in Easthampton, MA and later went on to Union College in Schenectady, NY. In the late 1940’s he served in the Navy as a medic and was stationed in Texas. While in Gardner, he met his wife of 61 years, Frances Pearl Gardner, who at the time was a nurse at the Heywood Hospital in Gardner, Massachusetts. The family lived in Petersham before moving to Athol where they resided for over 55 years. Harry spent the better part of his life running Kuniholm Jewelers in Athol and later in life worked for his brother Carl at North American Manufacturing in Holliston. Harry loved to swim and sing and was a talented painter and artist. While in college he was on the swim team and when the family came along built a swimming pool in the back yard. He was an enthusiastic singer and belonged to the Singing Men of Athol and the Yankee Male Chorus. He loved taking trips with Fran to sing at one of his many concerts and taking trips to visit Fran’s family in Nova Scotia. Harry carved birds while Fran quilted and the house quickly filled up with birds that surrounded their house in Athol and ones seen on their trips to Nova Scotia. Harry also enjoyed salmon fishing with his brother Carl. Above all, Harry loved Fran and enjoyed the many years of having family and friends to the house and were totally dedicated to each other after Harold was diagnosed with Alzheimers. Harold is predeceased by his wife Fran and leaves behind his children Alan Kuniholm and his wife Marie Dubois of Portland, ME, Barbara Bellar and husband Don Bellar of Baldwinville, MA, Beverly Abelow and her fiance Steve Pratt of Manchester, NH, James and Marie Kuniholm of Athol, and Erik and Ruth Kuniholm of So. Grafton. He also leaves 10 grandchildren, Kyle Fiske and Chylie Crossley, Jennifer and Jamie Gilman, Ian Kuniholm, Dana Kuniholm, Jeffrey Kuniholm, Matthew Kuniholm, Hannah Abelow, Douglas Abelow, Noah Kuniholm, Ethan Kuniholm, and one great-grandchild Erica Gilman. Harold leaves behind his brother Carl Kuniholm, brother Roland Kuniholm, and brother Thor Kuniholm. The family would like to say a special thank you to Joy Risatti and Frank and Rachel Gonzales who helped Fran and Harry make their last years together in Athol with family and friends possible. The family would also like to thank the staff at Wachusett Manor and Compassus Hospice for their care and support.

Murray S. Silin ’40

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Murray S. Silin, 94, of Acton, MA, formerly of Brookline and Newton, on Sunday, March 5, 2017. For 65 years, the devoted husband of Brenda (Ginsburg) Silin. Loving father of Diane Krasnick and her husband Marty, Joe Silin of Portland, OR, and Amy Silin Freas and her husband, Chris Freas of Seattle, WA. Cherished grandfather of Aaron and Benjamin Krasnick and Toby and Maile Silin Freas. Dear brother of Phyllis Sisson and the late Esther Levenson and Bernice Silin.

Janet Hinds Saunders ’48

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Janet Hinds Saunders, 83, of Cumming, GA died on July 1, 2013 at Northside Hospital Forsyth. Born in Northampton, MA she was the daughter of the late Gailon and Ruth Hinds. Janet is survived by her beloved husband, Alfred Saunders of Cumming, GA; sons, Jeffrey Charles (Allison) Saunders and Stuart Alfred (Leigh Ann) Saunders; and much-loved grandchildren, Will Phillip Saunders, Elaine Saunders, Haylie Rose Saunders and Abigail Leigh Saunders.

Theodore B. Patchen, Jr. ’42

patchenTheodore B. Patchen, Jr., 94, passed away on February 19, 2017. He leaves his wife of 70 years, Connie (Butwell) Patchen; daughters Laine Roundy of Woodbury CT, and Corinne Martin of Peru, MA; three grandchildren, Marguerite McNaughten of Chesterfield, VA; Russell Martin of Windham, NH; and Pam Martin of Dublin, PA; and two great-grandchildren. He was born in New Haven, CT, and raised in Torrington; son of Theodore Patchen Sr. and Maude (Lasher) Patchen of Waterbury, CT. He attended Torrington High School, then Williston Academy, graduating in 1942. Afterwards, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps, where he served as a Captain and navigator on a B-24 bomber during World War II. They flew 26 sorties, and were shot down on April 8, 1945 while targeting a railroad bridge at Vipitano, in northern Italy. He and the surviving crew members were captured and then walked to Moosburg prison camp, south of Munich. He was a POW until liberated by American soldiers at the end of the war. Ted Patchen returned home, married, graduated from Wesleyan University in 1949, and raised a family. He worked for the Traveler’s Insurance Company for over 30 years in Philadelphia, Manchester, NH, and in Hartford, CT. He built a summer cottage at Lake Wallenpaupack in PA, and the family spent summers there for over 30 years. He loved sailing, music and enjoyed nature immensely.

James D. Whitney ’49

James Douglas Whitney 83, died at home June 10, 2014 with Nancy, his wife of 59 years, at his side. He is survived by their sons, Douglas Carter Whitney, Keith John Whitney and James Apel Whitney; their wives, Jeanne Benda Whitney, Jeanne Aulgur Whitney and Laura Scheerer Whitney and five grandchildren, Eva Aulgur Whitney, Sophie Jane Whitney, August William Whitney, Christopher Douglas Whitney and Conrad George Whitney. He is also survived by his younger brother, Dr. Peter Julius Whitney and his wife, Sally Wheeler Whitney. His unique sense of humor and magnanimous disposition will be missed by all who knew him. He was a loving and devoted husband, a caring father, and doting grandfather. He leaves behind a lifetime of happy memories and a caring spirit that he passed on to those who loved him. He was born June 30, 1930 and attended Bucknell University where he met his wife Nancy. He served briefly in the Army and married shortly thereafter. He attended the University of Buffalo Law School and passed both the Arizona and New York State bar. He moved to Arizona where he worked in the Cochise County Attorneys’ Office in Bisbee, Arizona and private practice before joining the United States Attorneys’ Office in Tucson, where he did the work that he loved the most. Although he left the United States Attorneys’ Office for a few years, he was able to return and finish his career there. In the course of his legal career, he presented oral arguments before the United States Supreme Court and the other Federal Appellate Courts. He loved reading, the occasional round of golf, practicing his trombone, and enjoying the beauty of his ranch in Southern Arizona. He will be deeply missed.

Arden Tinti Nicoli ’48

nicoliArden Nicoli, formerly Arden Tinti, from the well-known Tinti family of Agawam, left this life on October 16, 2015. Arden learned the art of cooking through the Tinti’s family restaurant and some of her specialties were Macarungs, spaghetti and tuna, tortellinis, along with her famous cheesecakes, cream cheese brownies and apple pies. A Barnard graduate, Arden taught middle school at West Springfield Jr. High. Arden spent the last part of her life, owning and operating “The Golden Peacock” on Sumner Ave, a vintage resale boutique. An eternal woman of style, she channeled that into her store, with a passion for tag sales and finding the ultimate treasure. She had a collection of antique cocktail purses and vintage tea cups. She was a gifted soprano opera singer and performed at St Michael’s church, East Longmeadow of which she was a member. She raised her children in Longmeadow giving them not only a gifted life but a life with a special mother, indeed. The family traveled to Italy and Canada and spent their summers in Cape Cod. She loved rummy cube and reading and will be remembered for her gentle, nurturing and loving nature. She will be greatly missed by her children; her daughter, Dawn from San Diego; and Mark from Westfield, his wife Michelle and daughter, Molly Rose. Arden and her family would like to thank the staff at Redstone Nursing Home for being so amazingly helpful and caring during her last days here.

Anne Reuther Harris ’47

harrisAnne Reuther Harris, 88, of Rowayton, CT and New York City died at home on February 2, 2017. Born in Buffalo, NY to Bernard Oscar Reuther and Edna Steele Reuther and graduated from Smith College. Active supporter of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, former Co-Chair of the Winter Antiques Show benefiting the East Side House Settlement and former President of the Colony Club. She was predeceased by her husband of 57 years, James Hoban Harris, and is survived by her three sons, Duncan (Beth), Gordon and Andrew (Christine) and grandchildren Jennifer, Amanda, Andrew, Christopher, Katherine and Michael.