Category Archives: 1950s

Nicholas G. Andreson ’51

Nicholas G. Andreson, 86, of Worcester, MA, passed away peacefully on Friday, September 20, 2019 at Saint Vincent Hospital. He was surrounded by his loving family in his final days.

Nicholas was born and raised in Worcester, the son of Greek immigrants, George Nicholas and Mary (Polyzogopoulos) Andreson. As a youngster, he attended Bancroft School and Williston Northampton School, and completed his undergraduate studies at Suffolk University in Boston. He went on to obtain his law degree at New England Law School in Boston. Nicholas served in the United States Army from 1958-1960, stationed in Heidelberg, Germany.

Nicholas practiced law for nearly fifty years in the Worcester area. He was actively involved in his community, serving as a member of the Worcester Zoning Board of Appeals, and was on the Board of Governors of the Shriners Hospitals for Children in Boston. He was a 50-year member of the Quinsigamond Lodge of Masons A.F. and A.M., and a long time member of the Scottish Rite Valley of Worcester Royal Arch Masons, the Hiram Council of Royal and Selected Masters Knight Templar, the Bohemians, and the Cairo Shriners in Rutland, Vermont. He also served as Vice President of the DeMolay Association.

In addition to his community involvement, Nicholas excelled at tennis, winning local and regional championships and took particular pride in his 40-year membership at the Worcester Tennis Club. He was an avid Red Sox fan, who never missed a game, and was eternally grateful that he witnessed not just one, but four World Series Championships. Above all, Nicholas cherished his family. He celebrated their big achievements, but took equal, if not greater joy, in their small accomplishments. In his later years, he relished his daily, early morning coffee gatherings with his friends at Panera Bread, where they would discuss and, at times, vigorously debate the headlines of the day in the worlds of both politics and sports. As those who knew him can attest, Nicholas loved the finer things in life, from good food and wine to social gatherings of all kinds. He will be sorely missed, but there is great comfort in knowing that Nicholas led a full life and, in the end, was peaceful as he passed on.

He is survived by his son, G. Derek Andreson of Darnestown, Maryland; his daughter, Nicole Andreson and her husband, Michael E. McCune, of South Burlington, Vermont; his former wife and devoted friend, Christine E. Andreson of South Burlington, Vermont; his five grandchildren, Tristan C.Y. Andreson, Aspen Lily Andreson, Alexis A. Andreson, Sierra T. McCune, and Luke M. McCune; his beloved sister, Irene A. Camougis of Worcester; many faithful cousins, nieces, and nephews; and numerous loyal friends. He was predeceased by two sisters, Constantina A. Nassikas and Phyllis A. Nassikas. The family will hold a graveside service at Hope Cemetery, followed by a reception for family and friends to celebrate Nicholas’ life on a date to be determined in the near future. Arrangements have been entrusted to the care of Callahan, Fay & Caswell Funeral Home, 61 Myrtle Street, Worcester, MA. In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Nicholas may be made to the Shriners Hospitals for Children in Boston.

Sloane Barker, Jr. ’55

Sloane Barker, Jr., age 80, died on Tuesday, February 6, 2018 at Casa Hospice at the Hacienda in Tucson, AZ. Born on March 20, 1937 in New York City, Sloane lived a life that was defined by love and dedication to family. As an only child, Sloane grew up in Bronxville, New York and attended Allegheny College with his high school sweetheart, Donna Larrimore Stevens. He was a member of the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity while at Allegheny and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Economics. Sloane and Donna were married on September 13, 1959 in Ford Memorial Chapel on the Allegheny College campus before moving to Pittsburgh where he attended the University of Pittsburgh, earning a master’s degree in Retail Management. Spending most of his career with companies like Saks Fifth Avenue and Lord & Taylor, Sloane managed retail clothing stores in Palm Beach and Miami Beach, FL, Stamford, CT, New York City, and Palo Alto, CA. Sloane and Donna were married for 58 years and raised three sons, Chip, Scott, and Glenn. Sloane was an avid sports enthusiast, and lifelong Dodgers fan. He loved golf and served on the Board of Directors at Alta Sierra Golf & Country Club in Grass Valley, CA and was a Legacy Donor at Oro Valley Country Club in Oro Valley, AZ. Sloane is survived by his wife, Donna; their three sons, Chip, Scott, and Glenn; and their four grandchildren, Camille Linda Barker, Dustin Glenn Barker, Rachel Lee Barker, and Adam Joseph Larrimore.

Joan (Taylor) Wilson Turner ’55

Joan Wilson Turner, of Modesto, CA, was born on June 27, 1937, in Brooklyn, NY, to Charlotte Taylor and Dr. St. Elmo Taylor. A graduate of the Northampton School for Girls, Smith College and Boston University, Joan was trained as a teacher of the deaf and blind and later went on to work in the public school system in Washington, DC. Embarking upon a second career as an entrepreneur in the 1970s, Joan owned clothing stores in Brooklyn, NY and Fort Lauderdale and Miami, FL. She also sold many health and wellness products in her later years and most recently was a representative for ViSalus. Joan passed away on August 31, 2019.  Her memory will be cherished by her husband Lewis Turner, daughter Jan Abernathy, son-in-law Jerome Abernathy, stepchildren Louis Turner and Lorraine Little, grandchildren Alyce and Sam Abernathy, niece Lee Nelms, nephew Michael Taylor, and many friends throughout the world. She was preceded in death by her parents and brother Eugene Taylor. She was a faithful member of the Wellspring Anglican Church in Modesto. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Community Hospice Foundation in Modesto.

Lois Schubach Meyers ’53

Lois Meyers, 82, passed away Saturday, Aug. 10, 2019 at Avalon Heath Care Center at StoneRidge in Mystic, Connecticut.

She was predeceased by her husband of 54 years, Theodore Meyers, in 2012. Lois is survived by her daughter, Toby Flanagan and her husband, Kevin Flanagan; three grandchildren, Patrick Flanagan and his wife, Kerri Flanagan, of Waterford, Timothy Flanagan of Key West Fla., and Katelyn Livingston and her husband, Grant Livingston of Waterford. She also leaves two great-grandchildren, Thomas and Trey Flanagan of Waterford.

Born in Northampton, Mass. Nov. 11, 1936, Lois was the daughter of the late Julia and George Schubach of Easthampton, Mass. Lois graduated from Northampton School for Girls, Westfield State College, and then went on to earn a master’s degree from Springfield College. She taught music in Agawam, Northampton, and Boylston, Mass. She then relocated to Connecticut, where she taught in Waterford and Ledyard, and was named Teacher of the Year in 1989. Her full-time teaching career spanned 37 years. Lois was also an adjunct professor at Sacred Heart University where she developed a Multicultural and Human Diversity curriculum.

After retiring to Key West, Fla., she continued to teach music at Mary Immaculate Star of the Sea and at Wesley House Early Childhood Center. Lois was also the choir director of Metropolitan Community Church and was an active member of Literacy Volunteers of America in Monroe County, Fla. where she served as board president for many years.

Since moving back to Conn. in 2016, Lois continued with her love for music and teaching and started a Chimes Choir in which many residents of StoneRidge participated.

Throughout her life, Lois enjoyed entertaining friends and family, was an avid traveler, and a lifelong learner.

The family wishes to thank the entire StoneRidge Community and staff, including Top Sail and Avalon Health Care Center for their support and kindness over the past few years.

A Celebration of Life for family and friends will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 14 in the Chart Room at StoneRidge at 186 Jerry Browne Rd, Mystic, CT.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Lois’ memory to the StoneRidge Scholarship Fund, 186 Jerry Browne Rd. Mystic, CT 06355.

Burton J. Landau ’50


Burton J. Landau, microbiologist, medical educator and Associate Dean at Drexel University; loving husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather, died in his home on October 23, 2018. He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Ellen Segal Landau, his sons Jim (Lesly) Landau and Richard (Hiromi) Landau, his sister Lois Landau Berman and his brother Peter (Roberta) Landau and his brother in-law William (Joanne) Segal. He was the cherished grandfather of Emily (Jared), Jessica, Andrew (Jennine), Katherine, Joey and his great-grandson Gavin, all of whom will miss his many stories and words of wisdom and love. Family and friends are invited to a Memorial Service, Monday, October 29, 3:00 PM, at Joseph Levine & Sons Memorial Chapel, 4737 Street Road, Trevose, PA. In lieu of flowers, please donate to the American Cancer Society in Burton’s memory (www.cancer.org).

 

Thomas H. LaBelle ’53

Thomas H. LaBelle, 95, of Easthampton passed away peacefully surrounded by his family July 2, 2019 at the Elaine Manor in Hadley. He was born in Holyoke, April 2, 1924, the son of the late Henry and Marie (Tagliolato) LaBelle. Tom was educated in the Easthampton schools and was a graduate of the Williston Academy. He was a WWII US Army Air Corp Veteran serving as Radio Operator. Tom owned and operated The Camera Shop as well as Jessie’s Taxi Co., both in Easthampton, for many years. Additionally, he was a self-employed freelance photographer working independently and contributing to the Daily Hampshire Gazette. He was a member of the Easthampton Lions Club, the Easthampton Chamber of Commerce and sang with a local Barber Shop Quartet. Thomas was a scratch golfer belonging to many local country clubs and had eight holes-in-one to his credit. Tom’s beloved wife for 54 years June (Ladnier) LaBelle passed away in 1999. He leaves his daughters, Sandy M. Colpack (Jim) and June “Jill” Prosciak, both of Easthampton, and Barbara “Bonnie” Johnson (Cliff) of Southampton, his 6 Grandsons Thomas, Jarrett, Heath, Michael, Kyle, and Chris, his 8 Great Grandchildren, his sister Shirley Slavas of Belchertown, and his many nieces and nephews. Tom was predeceased by his daughter Janice LaBelle and his son-in-law John Prosciak. Funeral services will be private, the O’Brien Funeral Home has been entrusted with all arrangements. Memorial gifts can be made to Riverside Industry 1 Cottage St. Easthampton, MA 01027 or to the Hospice of the Fisher Home 1165 North Pleasant St. Amherst, MA 01002.

Irwin Kelman Cohen ’53

Irwin Kelman “Kel” Cohen, M.D., died on June 9, 2019, in Richmond, Virginia, at the age of 84. He passed away peacefully at his home with his wife at his side. Kel held confidently to his belief that life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a well preserved body, but rather that one ought to skid in sideways, with the body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and while screaming “Wow – what a ride!” Kel is survived by his wife, Gayle Williams; his children, David (Candace) Cohen of Madison, Wisconsin and Nancy (Mike) Kotz of Kensington, Maryland; and his grandchildren Hunter, Lowell, Anna and Hannah. He is also survived by his wife’s daughter, Alison (Carl) Meadows and their children, Clara and Libby. He was preceded in death by his parents, Morris and Ida Kelman Cohen; and his brother, William Cohen. Kel was born March 30, 1935, in Troy, New York. He grew up in Massachusetts and on the shores of Lake Winnisquam in New Hampshire, where his lifelong love for the Boston Red Sox was sparked. After graduating from Williston Academy in Massachusetts, he went on to his beloved Kenyon College and then graduated from Columbia University. He earned his M.D. from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill School of Medicine. Kel continued his training at Dartmouth, The Johns Hopkins Hospital and the National Institutes of Health, after which he realized he wanted to pursue an academic career because of the influence of his mentors at Kenyon and UNC. Kel came to Richmond in 1972 to the then Medical College of Virginia, now the Virginia Commonwealth University Health System and founded the Plastic Surgery program as well as the first Wound Healing Laboratory for research in the United States. His many years at MCV were a source of great fulfillment and satisfaction. He continued to support the university and its programs in any way he could long after retirement. As an educator, Kel served on the Board of Plastic Surgery and was an editor of its journal. He founded the Wound Healing Society, served as its president and was the founding president of the Wound Healing Foundation. He lectured on wound healing and plastic surgery throughout the world, published over 125 papers and edited a definitive textbook on wound healing. His awards include Physician of the Year by the Richmond Maimonides Society and Lifetime Achievement Awards from the Wound Healing Society, The Society for the Advancement of Wound Care and the World Union of Wound Healing Societies. Prior to his death, he spearheaded the organization of the Wound Healing Coalition to give wound healing its proper place in medical science and its deserved recognition with the NIH, FDA, United States Congress, CMS and the public. Kel loved the residents and students he guided and felt a deep satisfaction in the good work they did in health care, knowing that his influence made a difference. He was loved in return by them and also by his countless patients, whom he always treated with respect, kindness and genuine caring, for his hope was to make a meaningful difference in their lives. Despite the rigorous demands of his career, Kel still found time to embrace life with zest and zeal, often while enjoying a memorable meal accompanied by a fine wine. He loved music, photography and cooking, and traveling the globe. He was a lifelong learner with curiosity about everything. He was a true blue Carolina Tar Heel fan. Kel embraced a wide circle of friends from many different occupations, countries, languages and backgrounds and he enjoyed keeping in frequent touch with all of them. Still, far above his career was his family and although at times work kept him from them, he agonized when it did. The accomplishments of which he was most proud are his children and grandchildren. Kel believed strongly that life was eternal because his children and grandchildren carried his DNA and he would always live through his offspring. To Kel, his children and grandchildren made him immortal and death would never be the victor. He loved the line from the poet E.E. Cummings, “How do you like your blue-eyed boy Mister Death?” A Celebration of Life will take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to a charity of one’s choice.

W. Kirkland Taylor ’53


Westervelt Kirkland (“Kirk”) Taylor passed away on May 7, 2019 at Swedish Medical Hospital in Seattle, Washington. He was 85 years old. A Seattle resident since the mid-1970’s, Kirk came to Seattle from New York to pursue his career as a civil rights and criminal defense attorney. Admitted to practice in Washington in 1977, Kirk joined the Seattle Public Defender office and soon became a senior attorney supervising and mentoring up-and-coming public defense attorneys. Thereafter, Kirk went on to practice privately handling criminal and civil rights cases as well as assignments in intellectual property, real estate and business law matters. Kirk’s nearly 50 years in the legal field began with his engineering expertise and tenure as a patent examiner in the United States Patent Office, followed by his years working at IBM in Fishkill, New York. The New York State Attica Correctional Prison riot of 1971 marked a pivotal professional turning point for Kirk who had made the decision to shift focus to civil rights and criminal defense. His activism and defense work for inmates caught up in the Attica uprising reflected his passion to combine a zest for the law and legal training with a desire to fight for the rights of individuals, including those downtrodden, marginalized or however challenged by the justice system. While sparring with adversaries, Kirk’s unassuming demeanor masked his talent for negotiating and unrelenting spirit to win. And, guided by a humanitarian ethos, his approachable style resonated with many clients who have shared accolades and heartfelt thanks for his work. Kirk earned his Juris Doctor from American University’s Washington College of Law. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania’s Moore School of Electrical Engineering, he held a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering. Before college, Kirk graduated from The Williston Northampton School in Massachusetts. An outdoorsman, Kirk swapped leisure time spent on Martha’s Vineyard for a joyful life in the Pacific Northwest, often remarking on its beauty and sharing tales of his sailing, fishing, camping and hiking pursuits. He cherished his regular jogs along Lake Washington, workouts at the YMCA and quite a few other favorite pastimes, such as playing poker and chess with his inner circle of friends and colleagues. While his reading list was broad, Kirk was a devotee of the detective genre. And, his overseas travels to Southeast Asia, Brazil and Europe provided even more enchanting stories to tell. Forever an animal lover, Kirk always had a spirited canine companion at his side. Born in New York City on December 20, 1933, Kirk was raised in the St. Albans area of Queens, New York. His father, Westervelt A. Taylor, was a Queens County district attorney and MIT (class of 1927) and Fordham Law graduate, and mother, Zenaide Anderson Taylor, a teacher. A jazz music enthusiast, he recalled during his youth a home filled with music as Mom played piano and at times close St. Albans friends and neighbors, some of whom revered as jazz legends, would visit and join in. In a ceremony officiated by his uncle, the Reverend Jesse F. Anderson, Sr. of Philadelphia, Kirk married Dorothy H. Anderson in the spring of 1959 and is survived and will be missed greatly by their children Kevin, Karen and Todd Taylor. In 2015, Kirk married again and is survived by his wife of 4 years, Patricia Espey. Grandchildren, along with the rest of his family and friends, will remember him fondly as well.

Maria Burgee Dwight LeVesconte ’52

By day, a barefooted Mimi Dwight sang along to Joni Mitchell as she drove a station wagon full of her five children and a shedding Saint Bernard around the streets of Holyoke, Massachusetts. In the evenings, she met in back rooms to organize for social justice in her community and beyond.

Born and raised in Holyoke, she was the youngest daughter of Henry and Marcelle Burgee. Her adolescence at the Northampton School for Girls earned the comment on her report card that “Mimi is a good student, but she seems inordinately interested in boys.” They were interested back.

At Bryn Mawr College in the early 1950s, she joined her first protest march. Her zeal for social justice led her inadvertently to the field of gerontology, which became her passion and profession.

In Massachusetts she was known as Mimi Dwight. Under that name, she co-founded the Urban Ministries (a multi-faith coalition dedicated to participatory government within the inner city of Holyoke); she served on the Commission on the Status of Women, the State Welfare Commission, and the Housing Finance Agency, among others. In the early 1970s, she braved local and state politics to create the nation’s first municipal Geriatric Authority, spearheading the successful effort to turn an outdated Municipal Home into a groundbreaking geriatric rehabilitation center. The building was later named in her honor.

Propelled by her interest in the challenges she saw in the field of aging, she enrolled at Hampshire College to finish the bachelor’s degree she had postponed in favor of marriage and children. When she learned that Hampshire would not accept any credits from her two years at Bryn Mawr, she resolutely set out to complete her Hampshire degree in one year.

After graduating, she loaded her two youngest into a quirky car and drove cross-country to get a master’s degree in Gerontology from the University of Southern California. In Los Angeles she became Maria Dwight, a single mother raising two boys and beginning a career that would see her rise to become a world-renowned visionary in the field of aging.

She joined Gerontological Planning Associates as vice president in 1975 and in 1982 formed her own company, Gerontological Services Inc. GSI became a national advocate for participatory planning for services and facilities for older adults. Focusing on primary data collected directly from older people, GSI developed operational, design and marketing plans for innovative approaches for its clients, who included LGBTQ, Born Deaf, Chinese-American, Japanese American, Native American, Religious Women, expatriates in Mexico and Costa Rica, faith based long term care and housing providers, hospitals, developers, architects, cities, towns, day centers, CCRCs and moderate-income housing projects.

Among achievements too numerous to list, she served on the Board of Overseers of Brandeis University, on the Boards of Centura Health System (Denver), Stonewall Communities (Boston), Wise and Healthy Aging (Los Angeles), the Williston Northampton School and, most recently, Friends House in Santa Rosa, CA.

For 30 years, Maria taught at Harvard’s Graduate School of Design’s summer session; she presented at Harvard’s Schools of Medicine and Public Health; at MIT, UMass, Boston University School of Medicine; at California University of San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego and Irvine; and her alma mater, the USC School of Gerontology. She testified before the United States House of Representatives Committee on Education and Labor and the United States Senate Committee on Housing and Urban Affairs.

She was a frequent speaker at international conferences including AHSA Asian Conference India, Asian Health Conference Singapore, International Association of Homes and Services for the Aging Conferences, as well as “Quo Vadis” in Berlin. Maria was appointed to the White House Conference on Aging, National Advisory Committee in 1981 and also served it as a delegate, advocating for the integration of housing and services. Her work was recognized with countless awards, culminating in the “Continuing Care Hall of Fame Lifetime Achievement Award” in 2017.

She was an intrepid traveler who migrated with the reindeer in the Arctic and marched with the penguins in the Antarctic (as well as lots of warm and exotic places in between).

Maria’s small rented bungalow in Santa Monica was never empty. She fed and mothered a vast extended family of skate rats, actors, hard-core musicians, activists, surfers, students, co-workers, artists and writers, as well as her own brood. She was equally comfortable with Senators, Governors and CEOs as with members of the Flesh Eaters, Dream Syndicate and Sonic Youth. And she was admired and adored by them all.

Maria leaves four children: Bill Dwight (Lida Lewis) of Northampton, Lili Dwight (Byron Coley) of Deerfield, Valle Dwight (Phil O’Donoghue) of Florence, and Ryan Dwight of Huntington Beach, California, as well as eight grandchildren: Eli Dwight, Hudson and Addison Coley, Tim and Aidan O’Donoghue, and Ella, Liam and Dylan Dwight. She is also survived by her sister, Paula Gallup ’49 (John Gallup), of Longmeadow, as well as many nieces and nephews. Her husband, Edward LeVesconte; and her son, Timothy Monk Dwight, pre-deceased her.

The family is planning memorial services for later this summer; one at her home in the redwoods of Northern California, and the second in her childhood haunts of western Massachusetts.

Donations in her honor may be made to Whole Children, 41 Russell St, Hadley, MA 01035; www.wholechildren.org.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that you elect a woman President in 2020.

Read more about Maria in the Spring 2016 issue of the Bulletin.

Rodney C. Farnham ’56

Rodney C. “Rod” Farnham, 82, passed away Friday, April 26, 2019, after a long illness. He leaves his wife of 59 years, Phyllis (Underwood) Farnham; his son, James T. Farnham and his wife Linda of Ipswich; his daughter, Merideth J. Farnham of Orlando, Fla.; and his son, Stuart T. Farnham and his wife Julie of Colorado Springs, Colo. He is survived by seven grandchildren, Benjamin, Nathaniel, Elizabeth, Rachel, Hannah, Cole, and John Farnham; and one great-granddaughter, Halie. He is also survived by his sister-in-law and her husband, Grace and Bob Varney; and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his brother, John R. Farnham. Rod was born and raised in Northampton, the son of the late F. Russell and Irene (May) Farnham. He spent his early years between Lake Dunmore, Vermont, and western Massachusetts. He attended Williston Academy and was an alumnus of the University of Massachusetts. He met his future wife, Phyllis, at UMass, marrying in 1959. They lived in Conn., Mass., and N.H., throughout their marriage, residing in Hingham for over thirty years. Rod was a retired Reinsurance Executive and was an avid golfer, gardener and cook. He and Phyllis loved to vacation in Vermont, Cape Cod, and Canada. No funeral services are currently scheduled. A private burial may occur at a later date. Donations in memory of Rod can be made to the Norwell Visiting Nurses Association and Hospice via the NVNA and Hospice Charitable Fund, 120 Longwater Drive, Norwell, MA 02061, 781-610-1409.