William L. Van Alen III ’78

William L. Van Alen III passed away Sunday, January 29, 2023. Will was born to Sydney Purviance Van Alen and William L. Van Alen, Jr. on October 22, 1959. He graduated from Montgomery Country Day School and the Williston Northampton School. Will was an excellent athlete; the captain and high scorer of his lacrosse team at Williston. During the summers of his college years at the University of Vermont, Will taught windsurfing at 3rd Beach in Middletown RI. He came in second place in the Worlds and was featured as the centerfold of Windsurfing Magazine. Early in his life Will’s sheer joy of doing things directly involved with nature and the great outdoors was well established. Lured by the compelling beauty of the lakes, Will moved to Minnesota in the early 1990s and never left. There he found a new extreme sport, namely Sky Skiing. Will loved it and through endless practice, attained a high degree of proficiency. Loving the mountains as well as the oceans and lakes, Will enjoyed going out with friends four-wheeling. He often came home covered in mud with a big smile on his face. In the winter months, Will loved snowmobiling and skiing. Going fast and facing somewhat risky challenges definitely appealed to Will. During those years, Will married, later divorced, and started and ran a successful roofing and siding business. He also loved spending time with his family in Northeast Harbor, ME. He is survived by his mother Sydney Blynn Toland, three siblings, Alexandra Van Alen Frazier, Dina Gibson, and Luke Van Alen, seven nieces and nephews, and two great nieces and one great nephew. In lieu of flowers, please donate to the Wounded Warrior Project or Tee it up for the Troops. Services will be held at St. David’s Church on May 6th, 2023 at 11:00 A.M.

A. Richard Malkin ’49

Albert Richard “Dick” Malkin, 92, of Topsham, Maine died peacefully on February 16, 2023 at his home surrounded by his family. Dick was born January 3, 1931 in Norwalk, Connecticut. He graduated from Williston Academy and Colgate University. Dick was a standout athlete in both college hockey and baseball so much so that he was selected to join an all-star college hockey squad that competed in Japan in 1951. His education continued at Harvard Business School before military experience in Philadelphia as a Contracting Officer for the U.S. Signal Corps. He went on to work for IBM for 33 years including two assignments in Tokyo, Japan as Director of Licensing of Intellectual Property for the Asia Pacific Region. Dick loved to exercise and especially enjoyed playing tennis and golf. Another hobby included building stone walls around his properties. He was also very musical, singing in barbershop quartets, leading the Twin Ridge Singers, a neighborhood group. Before retiring to Maine in 2004, Dick resided in Ridgefield, Connecticut for 35 years. Though he had traveled all over the world, his fondest memories were of Lake Sunapee, New Hampshire, Avalon, New Jersey and Boothbay Harbor, Maine. He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Marjorie, his three children, Mark ’81, Laura and Andrew, as well as his four grandchildren who knew him as “Boomer”. He will be remembered not only for his love of family but also for his grit, modesty, and kindness toward others. A private memorial service will occur at his family’s summer cottage “Cozyholme” in Maine.

Charles Kenneth Burke ’46

Charles Kenneth “Ken” Burke, age 95, passed away peacefully on February 12, 2023 at home surrounded by his loving family. He was born on February 1, 1928 in Lowell, MA, son of the late Charles P. Burke and Alvina (Leblanc) Burke of Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada.

Ken served in the US Army and was a WWII Veteran who served in Occupied Japan. He attended Springfield Technical High School and was a class agent and graduate of Williston Academy in 1946. He went on to graduate from St Michaels College. Ken was Co-Owner and Operator of the family business, Benton Park Package Store for many years before he retired in 2000.

Ken was a communicant of Holy Cross Church in Springfield. He was a member of the Knights of Columbus Council, the Springfield Lodge of Elks #61, Lions Club, a volunteer for the Springfield Association for Blind, and Springfield Sportsman’s Club. He was a member of the National Rifle Association, Pioneer Valley Radio Control Club and the Northern CT Radio Control Club. He shared his love of boating, sailing, skiing and ice skating with his five sons and they created very special memories together.

He is predeceased by his beloved wife Florence Ann (Grise) Burke who passed away in 2018 and also by his brothers James and Donald Burke. He is survived by his five sons, Charles K. Burke Jr and his wife Gwen of Springfield, Robert Burke and his wife Donna of Lyme, CT, Michael Burke and his wife Karla of Old Lyme, CT, James Burke and his wife Teresa of Huntington and Joseph Burke and his wife Gina of Feeding Hills; eight grandchildren, Nick Burke and his wife Julie, Kevin Burke and his wife Danielle, Michaelan Condon and her husband George, Kristen Burke, Chris Burke, Shannon Burke, Celina Burke and Matt Burke along with five beloved great grandchildren, Nolan, Emily and Lauren Burke, and Erin and Daniel Condon.

Calling hours will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2023 from 4:00 – 7:00 PM at the Grise Funeral Home, 280 Springfield St, Chicopee. A Funeral will be held on Thursday, Feb. 23, 2023 from 9:30 – 10:30 AM at the Grise Funeral Home followed by a Mass of Christian Burial in Holy Cross Church at 11:00 AM with burial to follow in St Michael’s Cemetery, Springfield. Memorial contributions may be made to Baystate Hospice, 30 Capital Dr, West Springfield, MA, 01089.

Benjamin L. Liang ’05

Benjamin Lambert Liang, 36, of Salt Lake City, UT, beloved husband, son and brother, died unexpectedly on February 4th, 2023 due to complications from a skiing accident.

Benjamin, called Ben by everyone he ever met, was born at NYU Hospital in Manhattan to Paula and Jim Liang on May 23, 1986, and made his entire family laugh from that day until the day he died. Ben was an only child for three years until the birth of his younger sister Katherine (Kate), whom he strongly disapproved of at the time due to her lack of eyebrows, and Margaret (Maggie) two years later, whom he largely ignored at the time, since she was a baby and he was more into sharks and raccoons.

As a teenager, Ben developed an unquenchable love for the outdoors and adventure sports, which eventually brought him to Middlebury College, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in Mathematics in 2009. While at school, Ben met the woman of his dreams, Melina Ward, and, though there is some debate as to when they actually had their first date, the couple began dating in their sophomore year. Ben and Melina married in October 2015 at the groom’s family home in Londonderry, VT.

After college, Ben worked briefly in investment banking and then moved to advertising technology, for which he was featured on the cover of AdWeek magazine in 2013. He went on to found his own company, Cliques Ads, and served most recently as Group Product Manager at Klaviyo, a marketing automation platform based in Boston, where he and Melina lived from 2013 until relocating to Salt Lake City in April 2022.

Ben was intelligent, persistent and fearless, showing little self-doubt, even when perhaps he should have. Throughout his life these qualities would result in one broken femur, many apologies to then-Vice President Al Gore after slapping him (as a toddler), a grandmother with a broken arm, a flying squirrel thrown out his bedroom window, countless instances of road rash, an overflowing dishwasher full of dish soap, a misunderstanding at Chilean border control, and 15 tires acquired for one car. He was endlessly curious, had obsessive amounts of focus, and always gravitated towards any hobby or sport that would inevitably become quite expensive: fencing, skiing, cycling, fly fishing, etc. Ben had the biggest booming laugh you’ve ever heard, and we’ll miss hearing it dearly.

Ben is survived by his wife of seven years, Melina Ward, his parents Paula and Jim Liang (of Jacksonville, FL and Londonderry, VT), younger sisters Kate Liang and Maggie Liang Marbley, and brother-in-law Aaron Marbley (all of NYC), Finley, his very loyal mini Australian shepherd, and Charlie, a generally grumpy bird who really only loved Ben and blueberries.

A memorial service will be held on February 18th at 1:00 pm at First Church Cambridge, 11 Garden Street, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 02138. Interment will take place in the Spring in a family ceremony in Manchester, VT.

Those who would like to honor Ben with a memorial contribution are requested to do so through either Community Servings at 179 Amory Street, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130 (617-522-7777) or the MSPCA-Angell, attn: Donations, 350 South Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02130 (617-541-5046).

Richard M. Furniss ’61

Richard Marsh Furniss, 81, of Burlington, CT, passed away suddenly on his birthday, January 24, 2023. He was the son of the late Dr. William E. ’31 and Doris (Ireland) Furniss.

Richard graduated from Dartmouth College and had a long career in human resources, retiring from American Savings Bank as the Vice President of Human Resources. He also volunteered on many executive boards for a variety of human service agencies.

Richard loved watching the UCONN girls basketball team, having lengthy conversations with family and friends, attending auctions and working a farm. He was more comfortable in overalls and jeans than suits and ties. Richard thoroughly enjoyed being retired. He traveled often, worked on his tan and enjoyed the sun and surf while the rest of us suffered through cold, snowy winters.

Richard is survived by his son Keith Furniss and his wife Jacquelyn of Bristol; daughter Kathryn (Katie) Beaudin and her husband Adam of TX; grandchildren Alexa, Katelynn and Jack Furniss, Kyle and Abby Beaudin; sister Diane Happy and her husband Richard of NV; brothers David Furniss ’64 of FL, Donald Furniss and his wife Jean of Plymouth and several nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his brother Duane Furniss.

Services will be private.

In lieu of flowers donations can be made to The Yale New Haven Children’s Heart Center, www.ynhh.org/childrens-hospital.

William R. Powell ’61

William R. Powell of Horseheads, NY passed away suddenly of natural causes on January 30, 2023 at the age of 79. Bill was born to Wilkins R. and Anna Powell on October 23, 1943 in Mount Holley, NJ and raised in Worcester, MA.
After graduating from Williston Northampton School in Easthampton, MA, Bill spent an additional academic year of study in England prior to enrolling at Brown University. While earning his BS and MS in Mechanical Engineering there, he also nurtured his love of the outdoors by hiking and camping across New England. He took that passion to new heights on the West Coast while working towards his PhD (awarded in 1971) in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics from Stanford University. After that, Bill spent a year as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Zurich.
Living on the West Coast at a very interesting time in history, Bill developed a passion for ’60s Rock that he kept throughout his life. He saw many of the greats at the Fillmore West, and had a memorable day at the infamous Altamont Speedway Free Festival in December, 1969 where he saw Jefferson Airplane, The Rolling Stones, Santana, and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, among others. A true Deadhead, he also saw the Grateful Dead many times. He regretted never having seen Janis Joplin perform live, but he did get to see Ozzy.
In 1972, Dr. Powell joined the Mechanical Engineering and Mechanics faculty of West Virginia University. It was in Morgantown, WV that Bill met the love of his life, Barbara Ann Nelson. They married in 1977 and Bill embraced his new role as a father to Barbara’s son Brandon Wayne Sodomick. The birth of their son Jef in 1979 completed their family of four. In 1981, Bill joined Corning Incorporated and the family to moved to Big Flats, NY. Bill played a variety of roles at Corning, officially retiring as a Senior Engineering Associate in 2002 but continuing his relationship with the company as an Engineering Consultant until 2017. In addition to authoring almost 100 publications both within and outside of Corning Incorporated, Bill was the holder of 11 U.S. patents.
As accomplished as Bill was in his career, he was a humble man who believed that his contributions to the community were equally as valuable as to his profession. He was an Elder in Big Flats Presbyterian Church, a member and past president of the Big Flats Lions Club, and a volunteer for and board member of the Food Bank of the Southern Tier. With a group of other retired citizens, he applied his engineering skills and built accessibility ramps for homes. He spent hours every summer basting chicken on the grates for the Lions Club’s chicken barbecues, collected donated eyeglasses for the Club, and otherwise extended a hand to help others in his community where needed.
Bill and Barbara also found time to travel throughout the USA and the larger world. Their travel experiences included many destinations in Europe, Russia, Egypt, and a most memorable East African safari.
Bill is predeceased by his parents, Wilkins R. and Anna Powell, brother-in-law Joe Beard, and in-laws Dora and Ralph Nelson. He is survived by his wife, Barbara, sons Brandon and Jef, sisters Nancy Hatfield and Marjorie Powell, brother Richard Powell (Kathy), sisters-in-law Gayle Nelson (Tom Schmid), and Connie Nelson Elder (John), and many nieces and nephews.
There will be calling hours Saturday, February 11th 10:30 – 12:00 at the Big Flats Presbyterian Church, 95 Main Street, followed by a memorial service at noon. A luncheon will be served after the service. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Food Bank of the Southern Tier (388 Upper Oakwood Avenue, Elmira, NY 14903), Big Flats Presbyterian Church (P.O. 454, Big Flats, NY 14814), or any charity of your choice.

Michela Woodbridge-LaMar ’96

The world has lost a shining light with the sudden passing of Michela Elizabeth Woodbridge-LaMar on Friday, January 13 , 2023 at the age of 44. Michela was born in January of 1978 in Bennington, Vermont to Dudley and MaryEllen Woodbridge.

Michela began her successful journey in academic and athletic achievement at Pine Cobble School. A natural athlete with a charismatic-yet-humble leadership style, Michela was elected team captain of the Williston Northampton School’s varsity ice hockey, lacrosse, and field hockey teams. Michela continued her academic and athletic achievements at Emory University playing varsity lacrosse and graduating with honors. Wanting to make a difference, she proceeded to get her Master’s Degree in Public Health from UCLA. Her fast-burning career culminated at Molina Healthcare as the Associate Vice President for Strategy and Transformation.

Michela’s bright, friendly eyes, sharp wit, and infectious, heartfelt laugh could quickly melt the hardest of hearts. You couldn’t be around her without smiling. She met her husband Blake in 2011, and they shared the greatest of life’s gifts: a marriage bound by mutual admiration, adoration, and deep loving respect. They shared a passion for skiing and snowboarding, including heliskiing in British Columbia, yet always called Mammoth Mountain their happy place. A testament to her effortless leadership and thoughtfulness, at Mammoth Michela could lead a group of six people whose skills ranged from beginner to expert across the mountain to runs that matched each of their abilities, yet also had natural rendezvous points, so it seemed the group was always “together.”

The birth of Blake and Michela’s daughter, Ava, in July 2015, was a culmination of their joy. Michela was a loving and devoted mom who poured herself into helping Ava grow into a kind and resourceful person. Michela approached motherhood like all her other endeavors – with a gentle, fun spirit and steady gaze. She committed herself endlessly to sharing with Ava the wonders of the world. And, just like leading groups at Mammoth, Michela used her natural gifts to gently guide and help all family members navigate through the figurative ski runs of their lives, always coming together at the end of each day to rendezvous and share their experiences in the warmth of her presence.

Michela is survived by her husband, Blake LaMar, her daughter Ava, her mother, MaryEllen, her father, Dudley, her stepson Jackson LaMar, her stepdaughter, Tahna Sheek, Tahna’s husband Kyle, their children, Peyton and Parker, her father-in-law Blake LaMar, Sr., her sisters-in-law, Michelle and Yvette LaMar and the entire Woodbridge clan in Vermont.
Michela’s Celebration of Life will be at 2 PM on January 28, 2023 at Green Hills Memorial Park, 27501 S. Western Ave, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA 90275. Viewing: From 1 to 5 PM on Friday, January 27th, 2023; Semi-private Celebration of Life: 2 to 3 PM on Saturday, January 28th, 2023, at the Historic Chapel; Committal: 3:30 to 4:30 PM, on Saturday, January 28th, 2023, at the graveside. An Afterparty will be held at the LaMar residence at 5 PM. All are welcome. Please wear blue, Michela’s favorite color, instead of black.

Christopher S. Diamond ’64

Christopher S. Diamond, 76, of Steamboat Springs, CO, died peacefully in his home on January 12, 2023, a perfect bluebird day and fittingly, the 60th anniversary of Steamboat Ski Resort. Chris was born in Danbury, CT, but spent his childhood in Easthampton, MA. Chris graduated from Williston Academy in Easthampton, where he proudly warmed the bench for Williston’s undefeated 1964 football team. After Williston, Chris attended Middlebury College on scholarship. He served as the social chair and cook for his beloved fraternity, Alpha Sigma Psi, also remembered fondly as “the slughouse.” Chris graduated from Middlebury with a commission from ROTC and he received his notice to report for active duty in January of 1970, interrupting his masters from UMass Amherst. He served in Vietnam with the US Army as a first lieutenant and became platoon leader in a joint unit formed between the Army of the Republic of Vietnam and the 510th Signal Company. As a result of his service in Vietnam, he was awarded the bronze star and commendations. Upon returning from active duty in 1972, Chris completed his master’s at UMass. His interest in academics waning, Chris took a role as the assistant to Killington Mountain Resort founder Preston Smith. In 1977, he became the general manager of Mount Snow in West Dover, VT. Chris would go on to hold multiple leadership positions for S-K-I Ltd. and American Skiing Company before assuming the role of managing director at Steamboat Ski Resort in 1999. He continued his career as president and chief operating officer of Steamboat Ski Corporation until his retirement in 2015. During his career, Diamond also served as chairman of the National Ski Areas Association and of Colorado Ski Country USA. In 2013, he was recognized with an NSAA Lifetime Achievement Award, and he was inducted into the Colorado Snowsports Hall of Fame in 2017. After retiring, he consulted with resorts ranging from the Sun Valley Company to Schweitzer. He also became an award-winning author, writing two books (Ski Inc. and Ski Inc. 2020) chronicling the resort business and his career in it. Chris served on numerous boards in the Yampa Valley including the Routt County Airport Advisory Commission, the Steamboat Chamber (past president), the Yampa Valley Community Foundation, the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club, and Strings Music Festival. In addition to Chris’ passion for skiing and the ski industry, he was an avid cyclist and sailor. He took up sailing in his 20s and went on to compete successfully nationally and internationally. Chris is survived by his wife of 44 years Eileen Diamond; his sister Barbara Diamond; his two children Keenen Diamond and wife Mandy, and Elizabeth Diamond and husband Peter; and his two grandchildren, Kaden and Makayla. Chris was preceded in death by his father James Diamond, a World War II veteran who landed on Omaha Beach; and by his mother Mary Diamond, a social worker who played a lead role at Children’s Aid and Family Services in Northampton, MA. Chris was a beloved father and husband, a faithful friend, a thoughtful leader, and a true visionary in the ski industry. The family will hold a celebration of life at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Strings Music Festival or to the Boys and Girls Club of Northwest Colorado.