Tag Archives: Northampton School for Girls

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.

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.

Pamela Arnold Meadows ’63

Pamela Meadows of Amherst, MA, passed away on July 28, 2018, at the age of 72, surrounded by her loving family, after a brave battle with Parkinson’s disease and Lewy body dementia.
She was truly loving to all: daughter of the former Dr. Gordon Arnold and registered nurse Florence Arnold; the passionate and devoted wife to Craig Meadows; the nurturing and attentive mother of Sarah Morton of Amherst, Willow Love of Long Beach, California, Gordon Meadows of Northampton and Lily Meadows of Amherst; grammie to Nikki Love, Casey Morton, Cole Morton, Jaxon Love, Jack Driscoll and Finn Driscoll; sister of Bruce Arnold (deceased), Mark Arnold of Worthington, Marcia Arnold of Orting, Washington, and Bonnie Arnold Vossbrink of Killingworth, Connecticut; as well as mother-in-law to Alan Love and Jay Driscoll; and dear friend to many more.
Pam was a master gardener who loved her flowers, crocheting, baking with her kids and grandkids, the ocean, and the sunshine. Though she has now passed on, she will live forever in our hearts and in those she touched, in the beautiful flowers and sweet smells of summer, the soft whisper and gentle touch of the ocean breeze and the loving embrace of the sun’s joyful warmth.
She was born on Feb. 10, 1946, in New York City, and grew up in Northampton, where she attended Bridge Street School, the Northampton Junior High School and Northampton School for Girls. She earned a Bachelor of Science in health education and a Master of Education with a concentration in counseling from the University of Massachusetts. Pam devoted her life to helping others as a teacher and a counselor. She worked at UMass in the Peer Sexuality Program, Planned Parenthood and the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, where she helped women and their children to develop self-confidence and find safety from abusive relationships. Most recently, she worked as a teaching assistant at Crocker Farm preschool, where her work will live on in the lives of the children whom she loved so dearly.

Pauline (Polly) Eskenasy McGilvra ’65

Pauline (Polly) Eskenasy McGilvra, 70, died June 21, 2018.

Born in Holyoke, MA, Polly was a proud graduate of the Northampton School for Girls and Harvard University. She earned her Ph.D. in Near Eastern Languages and Culture from Harvard and was a dedicated scholar, educator, and life coach. She taught at Blue Ridge Community College in Hendersonville, NC, for many years, and became a pastoral counselor in Hendersonville and in Atlanta.

Polly’s productive life was interrupted by early onset Alzheimer’s Disease. She retained her sweet personality, good humor, and love of family and chocolate throughout her debilitating illness.

She leaves her son Jonathan McGilvra and his wife Heather, granddaughter Alaina of Apex, NC, her mother Edith Eskenasy, sister, Diane, and her husband, Tim Aldrich, all of Hendersonville, NC, and many loving cousins and friends.

She was predeceased by her father Isaac Eskenasy, maternal grandparents, Jacob and Adeline Barowsky, and paternal grandparents Max and Pauline Eskenasy.

A memorial service will be held at Agudas Israel Congregation in Hendersonville, NC at 2 p.m. on October 12, 2018.

Memorial contributions may be made to The Southern Poverty Law Center, 400 Washington Avenue, Montgomery, AL 36104 (splcenter.org), to MANNA FoodBank, 627 Swannanoa River Road, Asheville, NC 28805 (mannafoodbank.org) or to a charity of your choice.

A note from Polly’s sister, Diane Eskenasy Aldrich ’70

Polly loved NSFG and WNS and would have participated in every event and reunion had she been able. She loved her classmates and teachers, and spoke of them often throughout the years (especially Mrs. Cantarella). We cheerily sang the first part of the NSFG alma mater together many, many times as that was so important and deeply ingrained in her memory. Her obituary suggests memorial contributions to other organizations, but the family would,  of course, be thrilled and honored if anyone wished to make a donation to Williston Northampton School in her memory.

Martha Peck Burgess ’48

Martha (Mardy) Burgess, age 86, of Annapolis, MD, passed away peacefully at home on Thursday, May 10, 2018, surrounded by family and loved ones.

Mardy was born May 24,1931 to George Francis Peck and Edith Gertrude Peck in Scranton, PA. She married Newton A. Burgess in 1952, and from that union she was blessed with her beloved children Cynthia and Kenneth.

Dr. Burgess received her PhD and Masters degrees in Education from the Union Institute in 1993 and BA from Middlebury College in 1952.

In 1976 she met Albert Brown, the love of her life. Initially, they resided in Bethesda, MD, and then moved to Baywoods of Annapolis. They shared many interests and traveled extensively throughout their lives together.

She used her interests in the environment, conflict resolution, science, and spirituality to make the world a better place. She was a dynamic member of Annapolis Friends Meeting and an active member of her Baywoods community.

Mardy is survived by her devoted life partner Albert Brown, her daughter Cynthia Cosbey (Steve); son Kenneth Burgess, stepsons Geoffrey Brown (Patria) and Michael Brown, six grandchildren, and five great-grandchildren.

Sarah Sessions Chapin ’49

Sarah Sessions Chapin, born in Massachusetts in 1931, who lived most of her life in Concord, died peacefully on December 6th, 2017. She was raised on the family farm in Hadley, Mass. and earned a B.A. from Smith College and later in life an M.Ed. from Harvard. Sarah was a music teacher, educator and the author of several books, which include a history of Concord. Sarah had many pursuits and interests including art, botany, social work, support and work at the Concord Library. She leaves a son, grandson, sister, niece, many cousins, and dear friends. Her wit, humor and fierce spirit will be greatly missed.

Lynn Harrison Cheney ’71

Lynn was born on February 5, 1954 in St. James, New York. It was there she spent her childhood, excelling at school and athletics. She was a member of the first graduating class of Harbor Country Day School in St. James where she was the top scholar and athlete, earning the Trustees Prize at her graduation. From there she attended the Northampton School for Girls, achieving the highest academic rank in the school and recognized as a National Merit Scholar. She attended Colorado College, graduating with a B.A. in Political Science, Summa Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa. Lynn was never one to bring any attention to her remarkable accomplishments. She was reserved, genuine and without guile. She had a radiant smile that powered a quick and infectious sense of humor that she instinctually used to spark laughter or to diffuse difficult situations.

Lynn was unabashed about expressing her point of view with disarming frankness and insight. Her sense of values and integrity were unassailable. She was well respected for her leadership as Chairman of the Cornwall Consolidated School Board in northwest Connecticut, and on the Boards of the Cornwall Conservation Trust and the Cornwall Library Association. Her membership in two local book groups and weekly Scrabble games were evidence of her love of words, reading, and the expression of her thoughts that were out of the ordinary and well-stated. It was a common day for Lynn to play tennis with friends, work hard in her beautiful gardens, and purge the day with a long swim across Cream Hill Lake. Evenings were spent either immersed in a book, working a crossword puzzle, or pestering her husband.

Of all aspects of this life that brought her joy, Lynn’s greatest pleasure was her family. Lynn met Hugh at Colorado College and they married in 1976. Their children Hope, Rusty, Ted, and Tyler soon followed. Lynn’s children and her husband received the benefit of being raised by a mother and a spouse who combined her humor and strong sense of values to develop individuals who are kind, honest, and loving as she was. Her love of her husband, children, and grandchildren had no bounds, a love she expressed by a loyal and active interest in their lives. While Lynn made them work and study, she tempered her discipline by playing board games, pitching baseballs, and rolling about on the ground with her children or several of her eight grandchildren. Lynn intuitively knew when to intervene or stand aside to let mistakes educate. She was fiercely competitive, even with her children, and they loved her for it. It was a wonder to see Lynn together with her three sisters Gay, Sandy, and Marian and the love they held for each other. They easily fell into childhood rank and mannerisms, yet Lynn would scatter them in terror when her competitive nature surfaced over some slight she felt in a game of cards or Scrabble.

It is difficult to convey the core of this extraordinary woman who endured two of life’s most daunting challenges. With unfailing grace and remarkable courage, Lynn shouldered the death of her son Rusty in 2015 and the glioblastoma that took her life on May 7, 2018. Lynn was not in a battle with her brain cancer. Rather, she treated it as an inconvenient intrusion in her life, and she simply adapted to it with resilience and without complaint. While these two events cast a shroud over the last three years of her life, there is so much more about her that defined how she lived.

Lynn’s death has unraveled some of the fabric that held her close-knit family together, and we feel diminished by her absence. Her deep love of family and our love for her have made this a hard grief. In time, however, we trust that our memories of her remarkable life will eclipse grief. At times, we will miss her more than we can bear, yet we are thankful for this life she shared so generously with us all. Now may she be at peace, with no more hard challenges to conquer.

Our family would like to thank a large community of friends and neighbors for their consistent kindness, care and support of us over the past three years. We are convinced that, as a result of all the love that embraced us, Lynn far outlived her prognosis. We felt secured by all of you and lifted above the worries. We have experienced the best of humanity.

 

Miriam Goldstein Sommer ’46

Miriam Hilda (Goldstein) Sommer, age 89, of New Haven, Conn., died peacefully on May 9, 2018, at The Connecticut Hospice. She was born on May 2, 1929, in Springfield, Mass., to Nathan and Annie (Ginsberg) Goldstein. Mimi, as she was known to many, attended Northampton School for Girls and Wells College and later earned a master’s degree in art history at Southern Connecticut State College. For many years, she worked in the Department of Music at Yale University. She was proud of her second career as a freelance journalist; her interviews and stories were published in The New York Times and in various travel magazines. She was a champion of the arts and a devoted cinephile. For many years she held a weekly “story hour” for her neighbors’ children. She leaves behind many loving and devoted friends and relatives, including her “French family.” She was predeceased by her three older brothers and is survived by her daughters, Babette, of Forest Hills, N.Y., and Annie (David Rabinowitz) of Hamden, Conn. She was previously married to Leonard Samuel Sommer of Key Biscayne, Fla.

Dorothy Alexander Gaylord Phillips ’45

Dorothy “Dodo” Gaylord Phillips passed away on December 30, 2016.  She was born May 5, 1926 in Binghamton, NY.
She married Frank Gaylord July 12, 1945 and they raised four children in Spokane, WA. Dorothy was involved in antiques most of her life and was well known in the community. In 1976 she married Bob Phillips and they opened Dodie’s Collectibles. She loved her large garden and fed the squirrels and birds for years. She was a member of the Mayflower Society and an active member of the Manito Presbyterian Church for most of her life. Church members cheered her up with visits and cards the past couple of years. Dorothy had a great sense of humor and loved people for who they were. She is survived by her children, Sue Patneaude of Seattle, Chuck (Deloris) Gaylord of Spokane, Sally (Scott) Brand of Woodinville, WA and Linc (Della) Gaylord of Spokane; many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Margaret Hill Greenberg ’51

Margaret “Maggie” Greenberg, 83, died on April 10, 2018 at her home. She was the daughter of Smith College English professor Charles Hill and his wife, Ruth, of Northampton, MA.
Mrs. Greenberg graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Smith College, where she also won the history prize, and later received an M.A. degree in history from the University of Maryland. Subsequently, she was awarded the Diplome de Langue Francaise with highest honors from the Alliance Francaise in Paris, France.
Mrs. Greenberg traveled extensively in Europe, spending two years in Greece and two years in France. As a result, she became fluent in French and was able to converse in German, Italian, and Greek.
An accomplished classical pianist, Mrs. Greenberg studied under professor Sklarevsky, a Russian pianist at the Peabody Institute in Baltimore, MD. After moving to Mount Gilead, OH in 2005, she enjoyed giving piano lessons to her younger grandson.
Following 18 years of teaching history and French at college preparatory schools in the Washington, D.C. area, Mrs. Greenberg moved to Sanibel Island, FL. During her 20 years on Sanibel, she played team tennis in Florida’s “A” league, was Tennis Director at Sanibel’s largest resort, became very involved in local civic affairs, and began a new career as a freelance writer. The publication of over 200 articles and six books earned her a listing in “Who’s Who in U.S. Writers, Editors & Poets.”
Mrs. Greenberg endowed two academic scholarships for students at the Williston Northampton School in Easthampton, MA and at the American College in Athens, Greece. She was also a generous contributor to the Mt. Gilead Public Library, the Morrow County Hospital Foundation, and United Way of Morrow County.
Mrs. Greenberg was predeceased by her husband, Louis M. Greenberg, a history professor at the University of Maryland. She is survived by her daughter, Alison Hirt of Mount Gilead, and grandsons Jaccob Hirt and Stefan Showalter, also of Mount Gilead.