Category Archives: 1950s

William D. Clark Jr. ’53

William “Bill” Clark Jr. of South Windsor, CT, formerly of Enfield and East Windsor, died on September 5, 2020 at Saint Francis Hospital. Bill was born in New Haven on December 18, 1934, to the late William Clark Sr. and Gertrude (Stocking) Clark. Most of his youth was spent in Windsor. He went to junior and senior high at Williston Academy (now known as the Williston Northampton School) and graduated in 1953. He graduated from Bates College in 1957 and then served in the Army Reserves. Bill was an English teacher at East Windsor High School for 23 years and then ran a computer lab there for 12 years. He retired from the school system in 1994. After a few months, he joined the IT department at the Dexter Company (now known as Ahlstrom) in Windsor Locks. He retired from Ahlstrom in 2005.
Bill was kind, gentle and generous. His brother-in-law, Dick Kowalsky, wrote a beautiful reflection of Bill’s life which says a great deal about him: “Bill could be a quiet sort of guy. I noticed that he used his ears more than his mouth. I’d say, a good example for us all. One of his passions was minerals, especially those which were rare or had a gem-like quality. Besides being a rockhound, Bill was a hound for life. He was interested in many things but spent a great amount of energy as a family man and high school teacher where he spent much of his professional life. Bill had a special gift for relating to young people and had a positive impact on many of them. Many times, as I walked in town with him, we would encounter someone who knew him, several were former students. I was always amazed at how well-known Bill was in the community. Bill’s love for minerals led him to learn how to make fine jewelry and he and Evelyn had a jewelry business for several years. His creative eye also was expressed in photography. His photos exhibited fine composition and were exhibited throughout his home. He had a zest for food and when he was not in his craft shop, he could be found in the kitchen making wonderful daily meals for his family and guests. His son, Billy, is carrying on the culinary talent. Bill could turn prose into poetry. When I read some of his work, I experienced many emotions, a sign of his gift to see the world in ways unseen by others yet touching senses I could identify with. Beyond his personal interests, Bill had an abiding passion for social justice. Along with Evelyn, he was quick to become involved with local and international issues. Once when they were visiting my family in North Carolina, we told them about a local protest regarding a job-related issue associated with the father of a friend. They immediately said, ‘Let’s go support that.’ Bill’s focus on the needs and concerns of others was a good example for everyone. Bill made the best of life as a son, husband, father, grandfather, and friend to many people. He loved everyone and left the world a better place because he lived in it. God speed Bill. It was great to know you.”
Bill was compiling his writing into a book when he became ill. His daughter, Marie will complete it for him. Bill is survived by his wife of almost 62 years, Evelyn (Vezina) Clark of South Windsor; daughter, Marie Clark of South Windsor; son, William Clark III of Hamburg, New Jersey; granddaughters, Leidi Clark and Flor Clark of South Windsor. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at Saint Patrick – Saint Anthony Church, 285 Church St., Hartford, on Saturday, September 19, at 10:30 a.m. Please observe Covid 19 precautions. The funeral mass will also be live-streamed. You may use the following link: https://venue.streamspot.com/event/MjMzJDAyMQ
Burial will be private. Ample free parking is available in the Saints’ Lot across the street from the church. Memorial donations may be made to Doctors Without Borders, P.O. Box 5030, Hagerstown, MD 21741, or online: donate.doctorswithoutborders.org.; or Franciscan Center for Urban Ministry, 285 Church St., Hartford, CT.

Diane Warner Wojtowicz ’52

Diane Linda (Warner) Wojtowicz passed away peacefully in her sleep on August 28, 2020. Born June 29, 1934 in New York, the daughter of the late James Warner and Mary (Zywar) Warner, as a child she grew up in the Bronx, NY and Easthampton, MA. She attended St. Michael’s High School and the Northampton School for Girls. She had a lifelong love of dancing and met her soulmate, Clarky Wojtowicz, at a Chicopee dance in 1954. They married in 1955 and together owned and operated multiple businesses in Chicopee over the next 30 years, including Clarky’s, Market Square and The Kendall. In 1984, they purchased Wyckoff Country Club in Holyoke, which they and their family owned and operated for 36 years. Those close to her will miss her love of children and animals, her unexpectedly bursting into song, and especially her laugh. She famously “never let the truth get in the way of a good story” and would happily regale anyone with many tales about her and her husband’s lives in the service industry or her childhood. The last years of her life were spent in well earned retirement in Marco Island cared for by her daughter Tami. She is predeceased by her parents, stepfather (Francis “Frannie” Wodicka), and her husband Clarence “Clarky” Wojtowicz. She is survived by her four children: Lynn Stebbins and her husband Kenneth of Belchertown, Clark Wojtowicz of Chicopee, Tami Kelley and husband Tony of Marco Island, FL; and Jay Wojtowicz and his wife Caroline of Easthampton. She also leaves 9 grandchildren (Amy, Mark, Kris, Grant, Brooke, Paige, Kyle, Hunter, Lucas), 4 great-grandchildren (Graham, Thaddeus, Grayson, and Kimber), many former employees who became family (Linda), and cousins with whom she kept in close touch. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. A celebration of life will take place at a future date.

Lawrence H. Herzig ’56


Lawrence H. Herzig (U.S. Army Ret.), 84, of Castle Pines, CO, died Friday, August 14, 2020, at Legacy Village of Castle Pines with family by his side.

Larry is survived by his wife of 44 years, Joan (Pellerin) Herzig; a daughter, Catherine (Herzig) Crowley and her husband Ralph of Leominster, MA; a son, Philip Herzig and his wife Holly of Mesa, AZ; a sister, Linda (Herzig) de Laveaga, of Star, ID; two stepsons, Rob Matson and his wife Elizabeth of Castle Rock, and Glenn Matson and his wife Stephanie of Las Vegas, NV; a stepdaughter, Elizabeth Van Vechten and her husband Brian of Castle Rock; 14 grandchildren and 7 great grandchildren; a niece and a nephew; and his dog, Lexi. He was predeceased by his father, Elgin Herzig, in 1973; his mother, Doris (Reynolds) Herzig, in 1974; and his brother, Russell Herzig, in 2013.

Larry was born to Elgin and Doris of Pittsfield, MA, in 1936. Before graduating from Pittsfield High School in 1954, Larry was a two-time all-Berkshire and all-Western Massachusetts guard in football, a standout sprinter and shot-putter in track and field, a top-ranked speedskater, and a letterman in hockey and baseball. He attended prep school at Williston Academy in Easthampton from 1954 to 1955, where he again starred on the gridiron, on the track, and in the pit. He attended Stetson University in Deland, FL, from 1955 to 1956, where he played fullback until a knee injury ended his playing days. He would later earn his associate’s degree from Mt. Wachusett Community College in Gardner, MA.

Larry enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1958, attending basic training at Fort Dix, NJ. After several years in the enlisted ranks, he entered the warrant officer ranks after earning his aviator wings as a helicopter pilot. He would serve two tours in Vietnam, flying Hueys his first tour and Cobras his second. His awards included the Bronze Star, the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Air Medal with “V” device, the Air Medal with 32nd award, and the Army Commendation Medal with second Oak Leaf Cluster. He would also receive a Purple Heart. His tours of duty included France, Texas, Massachusetts, then-West Germany, Hawai’i, and eventually Colorado, where he would retire from the service in 1984 with more than 26 years of steadfast service.

Thereafter, he worked mostly as an independent contractor until 2015. Larry was an avid reader who enjoyed golfing, bowling, crossword puzzles, painting, music, travelling, playing with his family members, testing his vast knowledge during Jeopardy, and rooting for the New England Patriots. He was intelligent, articulate, witty, selfless, and the epitome of a patriot. Above all, he was a devoted family man, a loyal son and brother, and a trustworthy friend who will be missed immensely.

Upcoming Events Graveside Aug 27. 2:30 PM (MST) Ft. Logan National Cemetery 4400 West Kenyon Avenue Denver, CO, 80236

Cherry Copeland Gillespie ’56

Cherry Copeland Gillespie, age 82, of Greenville, Delaware passed away peacefully on the morning of May 31, 2020. Born May 19, 1938, Cherry grew up in Holland, Michigan. Sailing was a favorite pastime in her youth and something she enjoyed as an adult whenever the opportunity arose. Cherry attended Bradford Junior College in Haverhill, MA, where she made several lifelong friends. From there she studied at Katherine Gibbs Secretarial School and worked in New York City until she and her roommates were enticed to attend a dance in Connecticut hosted by some boys from Yale that were short a few dates. That night she met the love of her life William (Bill) F. Gillespie III, whom she married in 1960.
Bill’s career with DuPont brought them to Wilmington, DE at first, then on to Evanston, IL, Kansas City, MO and Lake Forest, IL before settling permanently back in Delaware in 1969.
In each city, Cherry took great pride in making her homes places of comfortable, tasteful elegance. Her knack for interior design led many friends to ask her for guidance, and she eventually got her decorator’s license working part-time in affiliation with Plain & Fancy in Centerville, DE. Her love of design extended into her gardens as well. Cultivating plants and flowers was a year-round interest. She was a long-time member of the Wilmington Garden Club and held several leadership roles over the years. Besides these activities, raising two children, and enjoying many wonderful times with the dozens of people in her circle of friends, Cherry enjoyed playing golf. She and Bill were longtime members of Bidermann and the Vicmead Hunt Club. Much of their travel in later years revolved around opportunities to play golf. This passion led Cherry and Bill to South Carolina in the early 1980’s where they became founding members of Spring Island in Okatie, SC. Many other wonderful friendships were formed there. Their legacy lives on at Spring Island through the Gillespie Nature trail. After Bill’s untimely death in 2004, Cherry continued going to Spring Island seasonally before eventually selling their home to be in Greenville DE full-time. In recent years, her life centered around playing bridge, participating in Garden Club, visiting friends and her children and grandchildren.
Cherry was preceded in death by her sister Sally Copeland Horrax, and her husband William F. Gillespie III. She is survived by her son Brook J. Gillespie (Kathy) and granddaughter MacKenzie Gillespie of Chester Springs, PA, and her daughter Sally H. Gillespie, granddaughter Emily C. Boettger and grandson William “Gunner” Boettger of Sun Valley, Idaho.
The family is planning a memorial service to be held in Delaware in the fall. Those wishing to honor her memory are encouraged to donate to The Garden Club of Wilmington – PO Box 3855 Wilmington, DE 19807 or The Spring Island Trust – 40 Mobley Oaks Lane, Okatie, SC 29909.

Robert A. Alden ’50

Robert A. Alden, a Washington Post news and layout editor for 48 years who helped design the inside pages of the newspaper’s first section, died June 7, 2020 at his home in McLean, Va. He was 87.

The cause was complication from Alzheimer’s disease, his wife, Diane Alden, said.

Mr. Alden retired from The Post in 2000. His career included the design and layout of newspaper pages containing stories, photographs and headlines about happenings that ranged from routine procedures of local governing boards to airplane crashes, natural disasters and historic events including the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in 1963 and the resignation of President Richard M. Nixon in 1974.

On busy nights, the page designs and layouts had to be changed several times to keep up with fast-breaking events.

Mr. Alden was also president of the National Press Club in 1976, and he was a co-founder of the National Press Foundation, which supports educational programs for journalists. He was among the early advocates of the admission of women to press-club membership, which came about in the 1970s.

Mr. Alden had lived in McLean since 1953 and saw it evolve from a rural community of dairy cows and farms into a bustling suburb of shops and expensive houses. He was a longtime civic activist who helped plan McLean’s downtown, including a park and community center. The 386-seat community theater is named in his honor.

Robert Ames Alden was born in Washington on Feb. 5, 1933, and he spent part of his childhood in Rocky River, Ohio. As a high school student, he worked part-time at the Cleveland Press from 1947 to 1951 as a writer and reporter.

Returning to Washington after high school, he was a statistician at the Office of Price Stabilization before joining The Post news staff in 1952.

While working at the paper, he attended George Washington University, where he received a bachelor’s degree in 1965 and a master’s degree in history in 1968.

In 1958, he married Diane Heidkamp. In addition to his wife, of McLean, survivors include four children, William Alden of Princeton, N.J., Thomas Alden of Manchester, Vt., Jennifer Alden of Chesterfield, Va., and Martha Alden of Reston, Va.; four grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

A. Michael Saaf ’58

Allen Michael Saaf, age 80, passed away peacefully on June 1, 2020 at Hospice of Dayton located in Ohio. He was the son of the late Allen E. Saaf and Marguerite K. Saaf, of New Canaan. Known to most as Mike, he was raised and lived in New Canaan for the first 60 years of his life. Mike attended New Canaan schools, Williston Northampton School and Hobart College. He spent many years working in New York for J. Walter Thompson, American Home Products, Uniroyal Tires, and Manoff Advertising. Mike then shifted to Real Estate by taking over the family business, Saaf Realtors, located in New Canaan. He was as an active member in various groups including Roton Point Beach Club, Ox Ridge Hunt Club (Polo Captain and New England Champion), Rombout Hunt Club, Lions Club, Men’s Club, New Canaan Bridle Path Association, YMCA Health Club, and New Canaan Indoor Tennis Club. He was a longtime supporter of the local Town Players and in 1952 took the stage himself in the show “Life with Father.” An equestrian enthusiast, Mike could be found riding in local and regional horse shows, as well as an avid participant in various fox hunts. Mike’s love of the outdoors was apparent from his passion for sailing, swimming, bike riding, and skiing. In early 2000, he moved to Fort Lauderdale and joined a local real estate brokerage while spending his days swimming in the ocean or riding his bike. He is survived by his former wife Barbara Bonham also of New Canaan with whom he had three children: Shelly Saaf and husband John Talk of Southern Pines, North Carolina and their 5 children, Jason and wife Denise Saaf of Portland, Maine and their 1 child, and Jennifer and husband Chris Hudson of Yellow Springs, Ohio with 2 adult children; as well as 1 great-grandchild. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Hospice of Dayton and the Greene County ASPCA.

Justin Howland ’51

Justin “Bill” Howland, 86, of Emmett, ID, formerly of Redding, CA, passed away on June 4, 2020.

Bill was born on July 1, 1933, in Northampton, Massachusetts, as the third son for Willard and Dorothy. After elementary school he attended and subsequently graduated from Williston Academy in 1951. He went on to Yale University where he majored in German and graduated in 1955. While attending New York Medical College he married Cynthia (Cindy) Hayward on June 16, 1956 in Andover, Massachusetts. He graduated from New York Medical College on June 9, 1959. He then interned at Kaiser Foundation Hospital in San Francisco. After completing one year of internship and one year of residency at Kaiser he enlisted in the Army. During his 7 ½ years with the Army he was stationed near Paris, France for 3 of the years. After his release from the Army in January of 1969 he established a private medical practice in Redding, CA, specializing in Orthopedics. He retired from his medical practice in 1997. He was involved in Redding Rotary for 45 years as well as numerous years volunteering with the Mt Shasta Ski Patrol.

Bill is preceded in death by his parents and two of his three brothers, Allan and John.

Bill is survived by his wife of 64 years, Cindy; his brother, Richard ’47 (Miriam); his sons, Keith (Brenda), David (Lori), Scott (Cindy), Craig, and his daughter, Tracy (Chris): along with 13 grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Memory of Bill Howland to Redding Rotary.

Robert W. Graham ’56

Jackson, Wyoming resident Robert “Bob” Graham died peacefully March 19, 2020 at his home with his wife, Karen, and their dog, Luna, by his side. He was 84.

Bob’s love for Jackson was limitless, and his legacy of service and generosity will forever be imprinted on this community. Bob started his career in Jackson in 1970 working at the Crystal Springs Hotel and later transitioned into real estate by starting a property management company in 1972 called Underground, Inc., which later became Real Estate of Jackson Hole. After the sale of Real Estate of Jackson Hole, Bob went on to be one of the founders of Jackson Hole Real Estate Associates in 2009. He represented some of the most iconic and record-breaking transactions in the region and was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Teton Board of Realtors in 2005. He was an accomplished businessman, effective community leader, philanthropist and friend.

He is survived by his wife, Karen; children Monica, Tait, Duncan and Andrew; and grandchildren Robby, Olivia, Tatum, Finnegan, Greta, Greyson and Thea.

There will be a celebration of Bob’s remarkable life this summer; details will follow.

David W. Chase ’56

David W. Chase of Scottsdale, AZ, formerly of Cotuit, MA and Wellesley, MA, died peacefully in Scottsdale, AZ on April 30, 2020 after a brief illness.

Dave was a graduate of Williston Academy and Trinity College. Dave had a successful career at Honeywell Industries, Keane Associates and Digital Corporation. He loved his home by the ocean and enjoyed sailing and collecting antiques. He was a past member of the Hyannis Yacht Club. Dave was very active in the “Church of Pies of Cape Cod” with the Mashpee Congregational Church and the Barnstable Newcomers.

Dave leaves behind his wife, Joan and daughters Cathy and husband, John Kozak of Phoenix, AZ and Chris and husband Dave West of Ponce Inlet, FL, grandchildren Chelsea, Chase and Zachary, his brother Dick Chase and wife Marty of Ipswich, MA and nephews and nieces, Brian, Nancy, Paul and Karen and brother-in-law Dana Walston and wife Andrea of Weymouth, MA and nephew and nieces, Katie, John and Beth. A service will be held in Cotuit, MA later this year.