Tag Archives: Class of 1955

Daniel M. Doolittle ’55

doolittleDaniel M. Doolittle, 81, of Kennebunk, Maine, originally of Darien, Connecticut, died on Monday, March 6, 2017 at Gosnell Memorial Hospice in Scarborough, Maine following complications from surgery. Mr. Doolittle was born on May 20, 1935 to Dwight N. and Dorothy M. (Smith) Doolittle in Stamford. He attended Darien High School, class of 1953, and graduated from Williston Academy, Easthampton, MA, in 1955. Mr. Doolittle attended St. Lawrence University in Canton, NY. He married Cynthia Crider in 1971 and they lived in Darien until his retirement 2001.

Mr. Doolittle learned how to skate and played hockey on Darien ponds in his youth. He taught youth skating and hockey to local children, some of whom would later join his hockey team at Darien High School. He was Darien High School head coach for a number of years, finally winning the state championship for Darien High in 1969. Mr. Doolittle played hockey for Williston Academy and also for St. Lawrence University. He was also a member of the Home Oilers, a semi-pro team made up of players from Fairfield County.

Mr. Doolittle worked for Pitney-Bowes as a service repair technician before being drafted into the United States Army. He spent two years stationed in France using skills he learned with the U. S. Army Signal Corp and worked installing and repairing phones at his base. Mr. Doolittle was home for almost a year before being recalled into active duty during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Mr. Doolittle returned to Pitney-Bowes as a technical service writer. He became manager of technical publications and continued employment with the copier division.  After 40 years, Mr. Doolittle retired from the company. The next day, he and Cynthia moved to Kennebunk, Maine.

In Maine, Mr. Doolittle belonged to The Church on the Cape in Cape Porpoise and to Laudholm Farm in Wells. He was an avid wood turner and loved creating things out of wood. He was always fixing or building something. Mr. Doolittle loved his family around him and enjoyed his summers on the water in Maine, often kayaking with the loons.

Mr. Doolittle is survived by his wife of 46 years, Cynthia Doolittle of Kennebunk; two daughters: Alyssa M. Doolittle of Newark, Vermont and Robin Illian and her husband Randy of Portland, Maine; six grandchildren: LunaMay Doolittle Waterman, Gordon Simpson Doolittle, Jack Simpson, Francesca C. Illian Sparrow, Leonard Daniel Illian, and Sequoia Shriver Illian; one sister, Donna E. Rajczewski of Darien, Darien’s Town Clerk; two nieces: Lee R. Richardson of Burlington, North Carolina and Dana Turton of Richmond, Virginia; and many cousins.

 

John H. Spencer, Jr. ’55

spencerOn Sunday, February 19, 2017, John Haines Spencer, Jr. passed away. And the world will never be the same. Born September 15, 1936 to John Haines Spencer and Pauline Simmons Spencer, Jack was raised in Adams, Massachusetts. After graduating from Williston Prep School and Amherst College, he received a Masters in Education from Purdue University. While teaching at Williams High School in Stockbridge, he had the good fortune to meet and fall in love with Social Studies teacher Judith Leahey. On February 20, 1965, he had the good sense to marry her and continue a love affair that spanned more than fifty years. Mr. Spencer was an educator for 47 years. He taught Social Studies at Williams High School and Monument Mountain Regional High School and was Principal of Searles Middle School. He encouraged students to be conscious seekers and doers, to be disturbers of the universe. He was chair of the Monument Social Studies department from its inception in 1967. The department created the first Holocaust curriculum for high school students in the country. Jack and Roselle Chartock coedited the anthology that came out of that curriculum. Jack had a love of Stockbridge and its citizens, community activism and participation in government. He served on numerous committees and boards, including the Stockbridge Planning Board (chairman) and Zone of Appeals, The Stockbridge Library (president and member of the Board of Trustees), The Fund for Excellence and School Center, Inc. He was instrumental in writing the zoning bylaws for Stockbridge. Jack is survived by daughters Ann Marie (Scott) Miller, Kathy (Fred) Erickson, sisters Judy Burbank and Cyndie Spencer (Denny Lund), Pat and Buz Hanley, Mike and Sally Leahey, Fred Wigge an exchange student who became part of the family, grandchildren Eric, Kristen and Amanda Miller and Emily Erickson, many close cousins, nieces and nephews and grand nieces and nephews, the lucky 13 and generations of well-educated students, an astounding number of loving friends and a grateful community. He is predeceased by his parents Haines, Pauline and Louise Spencer, his wonderful wife Judy, and his step-mother Pat Swann.

Nancy DerGiragossian Craig ’55

CraigNancy S. (DerGiragossian) Craig of Northampton, and a longtime resident of Amherst, died Monday, Feb. 6, 2017, after a short illness at CareOne of Northampton with her daughter by her side and Frank Sinatra playing in the background.

Born Jan. 27, 1937, in Northampton, she was the daughter of the late Archie and Christine (Bodourian) DerGiragossian.

Nancy was a 1954 graduate of Northampton High School and also attended Northampton School for Girls, Holyoke Junior College and the University of Massachusetts.

She was a 20 year employee of UMass, lastly with the Department of Environmental Health and Safety, retiring in 2007. Before that, she held a variety of administrative positions in and around Northampton, and had also worked in 1960s New York City for the Public Broadcasting System and the Young and Rubicam Advertising Agency.

Nancy was someone who drew people to her because of her empathetic nature and her keen desire to understand the human condition. Everywhere she went, whether it was her favorite Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods or just on Main Street, she kindled interesting conversations and friendships with long-lost and new friends. She was known amongst family and friends for her creativity. A lifelong artist, she painted and sketched cityscapes and landscapes of Northampton and Amherst, memorializing sites such as St. Mary’s Church, Main Street, Northampton, the apple orchards of Atkins Farms, and the waterfall at Paradise Pond. One of her pen and ink drawings of pine trees was used in 1980 by the then Simon’s Rock Early College of Great Barrington, as its official holiday card. Additionally, Nancy wrote a column that reviewed and promoted various local businesses, “Consumer Carousel,” for her family’s 1970s regional magazine, Hampshire County Illustrated. She also used her creativity and people skills to assist her former husband, Paul Craig, in his bid for Mayor of Northampton in 1973.

Aside from her love of art, Nancy was a free spirit who adored the beach. Annual childhood family summer vacations in Narragansett, Rhode Island, began this love, and in later years she was fortunate to spend many holidays in Jamaica. A jazz lover, she combined this with her love of an ocean setting by attending the Newport Jazz Festival when she could. In 2007, she explored the beaches of Sydney, Australia, visiting her daughter, son-in-law and grandsons, and snorkeled at the Great Barrier Reef.

She is survived by her daughter Jennifer Craig Fletcher and son-in-law Thomas Fletcher of Sydney, Australia; four grandsons, William, Benjamin, Thomas and Theodore, also of Sydney; her sister Dawn C. Baker of Northampton; her brother William V. Derian of Deerfield Beach, Florida; her niece Christine D. Baker, M.D., of Northampton; her great-nephew Jay C. Anderson of Northampton; her former husband Paul M. Craig of Northampton; and several adored nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews of Maryland, Virginia and Florida.

 

Mary Louise Hogan Holmes ’55

holmesMary Louise “Mary Lou” Hogan Holmes, 79, of Tinton Falls, N.J., died peacefully at home with her loving family at her bedside on Dec. 21, after a lengthy illness.

The daughter of Harold Hogan and Louise Callahan Hogan, Marylou was born in Northampton, Mass. She was raised in Florence, and lived in Manalapan and Farmingdale, N.J., for many years before moving to Seabrook Village in Tinton Falls in 2013.

She was a registered nurse practitioner by profession, and worked for the State of New Jersey Division of Mental Health Services for 30 years, primarily as assistant director of nursing at the former Marlboro State Hospital and later at Ann Klein Forensic Center in Ewing, N.J., before retiring in 2000. She also was a clinical instructor of nursing for Ocean County College for many years.

A graduate of the Williston Northampton School and the Providence Hospital School of Nursing in Holyoke, Mary Lou earned her bachelor’s degree from Trenton State College (now the College of New Jersey), and her master’s degree in psychiatric nursing from the University of Pennsylvania.

Mary Lou was a passionate volunteer as well. In addition to prominent positions on many committees for the New Jersey State Nurses Association, she also served as a peer counselor at CentraState Medical Center in Freehold Township, coming to the aid of nursing colleagues who struggled with substance abuse issues. She was also a member of many professional nursing associations, including the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing. She also served as a volunteer catechism instructor at St. Catherine of Siena Roman Catholic Church in Farmingdale, where she was a longtime communicant.

Surpassing her deep feelings for her work, faith and personal interests was the love she felt for her family. Surviving are her husband of 57 years, Joel F. Holmes Jr.; her daughter and son-in- law, Theresa Holmes-Stenson and Eric Stenson of Farmingdale, N.J.; her son and daughter-in- law, Joel F. Holmes III and Beth Cannon Holmes of London, United Kingdom; her brother and sister-in-law, Jack and Peggy Hogan of Easthampton, Mass.; and grandchildren Shane and Arianna Stenson, Cooper and Cole Holmes.

Mary Lee Sands Jabri ’55

jabriMary Lee Sands Jabri, 80, of Springfield, MA, died on August 20, 2016 at the Mercy Medical Center in Springfield. Born in Westerly, RI on May 30, 1936, she was the daughter of the late Dr.Harold Collender Sands and Elizabeth (Haynes) Sands Colbath and step daughter of the late Elbridge Percy Colbath of Coventry, CT. She was also the widow of Marwan Anwar Jabri of New York and East Longmeadow, MA. Mr. Jabri had been a Business Editor for the Springfield Republican. Growing up in Northampton, MA, she graduated, in 1955, from the Northampton School for Girls. She attended Rollins College in Winter Park, FL and graduated from the Katherine Gibbs School in Boston, MA in 1958.She spent the next ten years in New York City working in several engineering and stock brokerage firms and became active in the Oratorio Society of New York. Upon settling in Longmeadow in 1970, and eventually East Longmeadow, she became a Worthy Matron, from 1974-75, of the Carona Chapter of East Longmeadow, Order of the Eastern Star. From 1973-76, she was Regent of the Mercy Warren Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution in Springfield. A charter member and Past President of the Lady Arbella Chapter of the Pioneer Valley, Colonial Dames XVII Century, she later became a member of the Sir Richard Saltonstall Chapter of Great Barrington and Edmund Rice Chapter of Dedham, becoming State President, from 1997-99, of the Mass. State Society. She was active in the Alumnae Association of the Williston Northampton School of Easthampton, MA; and gave of her time to the Boys and Girls Club and Shriners Hospital for Children, both of Springfield and the Holyoke Soldiers Home. She was also a longtime supporter of the Springfield Library and Museums Association. She leaves her son, Charles Enver Jabri of Springfield. She is predeceased by members of the Jabri family of Aleppo, Syria, the Elchelebi family of Melbourne, Australia, a cousin Walter Pinto and his wife Pamela of Cobalt, CT, cousins of the Cafazzo family in Maine, Enfield, CT and Coventry, CT and dear family friends, Joseph and Sylvia Dennis of Enfield CT.

Michael Reingold ’55

Michael Henry Reingold '55Michael Reingold lived a life that was based in laughter and love. It is no accident that he made his career in advertising, the profession of great story tellers.

A son of Harold and Thelma Reingold of Boston, he learned the business from his father’s agency, The Reingold Company. Married to Glenda (Danziger) and father to Caren (Francis), Robin (Donegan), and Michael II (Chip), Mr. Reingold moved to New York where he worked with the giants of the golden age of 1960’s advertising at Papert Koening Lois and Lois Holland Callaway.

In the 1970’s the family returned to Boston where Mr. Reingold joined the advertising agency Ingalls, and then really hit his stride at HBM Creamer. After years with the firm, Mr. Reingold branched out on his own as the President and Co-Founder of the acclaimed Lawner Reingold Britton and Partners which became part of what today is Arnold, where Mr. Reingold retired as Vice Chairman.

A gifted athlete as a youth, Mr. Reingold had a life- long devotion to baseball, especially the Red Sox, and Golf. Mr. Reingold also had strong interests in the arts and education, serving as President of the Board(s) of Emerson College and the Huntington Theater Company, as well as the Advertising Club of Boston. One of his proudest philanthropic achievements was as the founder of The Scleroderma Research Fund, which raised millions of dollars and endowed the Scleroderma Research Program at Boston University Medical Center.

Of all his successes, Mr. Reingold’s greatest joy was his family, especially his grandchildren: Rebecca, Hannah and Andrew Francis and Connor and Dylan Donegan.

Deborah Saybolt Merker ’55

SayboltDeborah Saybolt Merker, “Debby” of Haverford, PA, age 78, died unexpectedly in an automobile accident in Cleveland, Tennessee on April 10th.

Beloved wife of 53 years of James J. Merker and loving Mother of Lisa and (John) Allen and Jenny and (Bart) Anthony. She is survived by grandchildren, Tyler Conway and Caroline Hayes Allen and is the sister of Peter M. Saybolt and Janet S. Bowers. Debby was the daughter of W.D. and Marion Saybolt of Haverford, PA.

Debby attended Baldwin School and graduated from Williston Northampton School; attended Brown University and was a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania.

Debby was a stewardess for Eastern Airlines in the 60s. She later joined her husband’s firm, Merker Associates, as a partner.

She was an active member of St. Christopher’s Church of Gladwyne and a long time dedicated member of the choir. One of Debby’s great passions was her love for animals, especially her dogs. She also loved art, design and music. She was an avid gardener. Her generosity and kindness were legendary.

Andrew W. Korts III ’55

Korts '55Andrew W. Korts III, 76, died on Sunday, July 6, 2014 at Albany Memorial Hospital after a brief illness.

Born in Rochester, he was the son of the late Andrew W. Korts Jr. and Helen Louise (Paterson) Korts Sauer. He was a graduate of Williston Academy in Easthampton, Mass. and he earned a master’s degree in education from Xavier University, Cincinnati, Ohio.

He was a U.S. Army veteran. Mr. Korts was an Irish Christian Brother and devoted his entire career to education. He was an accomplished organist and worked with Father Peter Young at Blessed Sacrament Church in Bolton Landing and at Mother Teresa Catholic Community in Albany, handling all of the liturgical music needs at both churches. He also was a secretary for the Peter Young Housing Industries and Treatment Foundation. Mr. Korts was a world traveler.

Survivors include his nephew, Michael Butler of Rensselaer; his “adopted niece” Dawn Dayter of Rensselaer; his cousins from England, Julia and Katie Henderson and his dear friend and colleague, Fr. Peter Young and everyone involved with the PYHIT Foundation.

James Ewing ’55

EwingJames Hildreth Ewing, 75, of Lexington, formerly of Brockton, died peacefully Sunday, Dec. 22, 2013, at the Lahey Clinic after suffering a stroke.

James was born May 11, 1938, to Clifton and Lora Ewing, and grew up in Westhampton.

He was a retired electrical engineer and avid boat enthusiast. James was a graduate of Williston Academy class of 1955 and of Amherst College class of 1959.

He is survived by dear friend and partner Mathilde Wood; his children and their spouses Eleanor Gittelman and husband Arye of Seattle, Wash., Lora Ewing of New York City, N.Y., Ruth Ewing and wife Jennifer Collins of Maynard, David Ewing and wife Teresa of Longmont, Colo, and Jeannette Levitt of Chicago, Ill.; his siblings Margaret Stern, Peter Ewing and Heidi Kapsokavathis; grandchildren Rachel, Juli, Aaron, Scott, Tim, Emily, Amanda, Lily, Nick and Sophie; and several nieces and nephews.

James was predeceased by grandson Andrew Levitt.