Tag Archives: Class of 1938

Robert W. Searles ’38

Robert Wallace Searles passed away on Monday morning, April 26, 2021 surrounded by his family. He was one hundred and one years old. Born September 4, 1919, he grew up in Pomfret, Connecticut and resided in Brooklyn, Connecticut for most of his life. Mr. Searles was a graduate of Williston Academy, class of ’38 and received a BS degree in Civil Engineering from Worcester Polytech Institute in 1942. He served in the U.S. Navy as a Lieutenant J.G. during WWII and he was a serving member of the Mystic Flotilla Coast Guard Auxiliary for over 55 years. Active as a patrol coxswain early on, Bob was also an instructor, teaching boating safety classes for many years. He was honored in 2019 by the Auxiliary District Commodore celebrating his many years of service. He founded and operated Searles Ready Mix Concrete in Wauregan, Connecticut until retiring in 1983. Bob was an avid boater and boat builder. He spent every summer cruising Long Island Sound with Audrey, his wife of 56 years. Bob was predeceased by Audrey in 2007. He leaves a son, John Searles with wife Lynne and grandson Jonathan; daughter Janet Gill with husband Jeremiah; and daughter Judith Baker with husband Ralph, grandson Robert Baker, granddaughter Megina Baker with husband Johannes Mark, and great grandchildren Tova and Carl Mark. He lived a very long and active life. In lieu of flowers, donations in Bob’s memory may be made to The Coast Guard Foundation at coastguardfoundation.org. A private memorial service for family members will be held at a later date.

Vicary Gratton Clark ’38

vicaryMatriarch of the Clark Family, age 96, of Falmouth, Massachusetts, and long-time resident of Glens Falls, New York, died March 15th, 2017, surrounded by her family. She was raised in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, daughter of the Reverend John Gratton and Esther Stone Gratton. Graduating from Simmons College in 1942, she worked for General Electric, and served in government intelligence in Washington, DC during World War II. She moved to Boston and worked for MIT where she met her husband, William T. Clark who was attending Harvard Business School. After several years on the North Shore of Boston, they moved to Glens Falls in 1953. Her husband, William, ultimately became chairman and CEO of the First National Bank. Vicary devoted herself to raising and nurturing her five children. She was active in the First Presbyterian Church and the Glens Falls Hospital Guild. She had an active and inquisitive mind and a sharp wit. She was a voracious reader and an aficionado of cross word puzzles and Jeopardy. She loved spending summer months on the coast of Maine and at Lake George. In 1988 she moved to Falmouth, Massachusetts, which became the location of the family gatherings – especially the annual Thanksgiving celebrations. She loved paddle tennis, golf, romantic classic movies, schmaltzy music, sunshine, chocolate, and tuna fish sandwiches on Bowermans Beach on Cape Cod. But most of all, she was fiercely devoted to her family, which included: Children -Vicary Clark Thomas (Peter Thomas), Caroline Clark Ceglarski, Christine Clark Edwards (Thomas Edwards), William Merritt Clark (Kendall Clark), and Cynthia Clark Lipsky (Howard Lipsky); Grandchildren – William Thomas, Carter Thomas, Sarah Ceglarski, Ted Edwards, Abra Edwards, Kelsey Clark, William Clark (Coco Zephir), Mimi Clark, Anna Georges, Elizabeth Kelley (Sean Kelley), and Jamie Lipsky Myers (Jason Myers).

Esther Winn Krebs ’38

KrebsGREENFIELD – Esther Winn Krebs, born August 2, 1920, died peacefully at home on July 3, 2016, just one month shy of her 96th birthday. She was born in Karuizawa, Japan, the daughter of Presbyterian missionaries Rowena (Hudson) Winn and Merle Winn.
Esther lived in Kanazawa, Japan until she was seven and then returned to the United States when her father became ill. Upon his death, her mother settled with Esther and her two brothers, Hudson and Peter, in Northampton, MA. Esther graduated from Northampton School for Girls (now Williston – Northampton) and then went on to Smith College, graduating in 1942 with a degree in economics.
On August 8, 1942 in Carmel, CA she married her true love, Max Vance Krebs. He was a Princeton University honors graduate, whom she met during her freshman year of college while visiting her mother in Cincinnati, OH. During World War II, the couple lived in Oakland, CA where Max was stationed with the army.
After the war in 1947, Max was accepted into the U.S. Foreign Service and for the next 29 years Max and Esther served as a “”diplomatic team””, living and working in 9 different countries. Their first post was Montevideo, Uruguay where their daughter Marlynn was born just 3 months after they arrived. From there they went to Bogota, Colombia and Antwerp, Belgium. In 1955, they moved to Bethesda, MD for a “”home duty”” stint at the Dept. of State. This was where their son Timothy was born in 1957. Their home duty was extended due to Max’s assignment as special assistant to Secretary of State Christian Herter.
In 1961, they returned to their diplomatic life abroad, moving to Manila, Philippine Islands, then Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, followed by Guatemala City, Guatemala, then the Panama Canal Zone, Panama and Buenos Aires, Argentina. In 1973, Max was appointed Ambassador to Guyana where they lived in the capital city of Georgetown. This post was the culmination of their distinguished career. In 1976, Max and Esther retired from the Foreign Service and settled in the quiet golf community of Foxfire Village, NC, located near Pinehurst, NC.
Esther was deeply invested in her life as a diplomat’s wife. She and Max strongly believed that they were equal partners in this career, a dedicated and interdependent team. This was the Foreign Service ethos in those days and Esther had all the qualities that made her a successful example of what the diplomat’s wife could contribute. Esther took on the many challenges of this life with her characteristic gusto, strong sense of humor and positive, take-charge attitude. She saw any challenges as adventure. She once said about this Foreign Service life, “”I made up my mind I would enjoy it, and I did!””
She was skilled at gracefully adapting to the nuances of a new culture, finding a new home, settling her family and setting up a household, all while learning a new language, which she did with almost every new post. She was an accomplished hostess, conversationalist, event planner and cook. Entertaining was a primary way that diplomats established relationships with important people in the country. Esther planned events for over 500 people, often teaching the cook how to prepare special dishes. She was accomplished at putting people at ease and her conversations with dignitaries showed her knowledge of the country, the culture and current events. She was known for her honest and intelligent interactions that showed care and respect for other values and cultural backgrounds. Esther was also an excellent leader, organizing and running many large charity events that benefited the infrastructure and those most in need in the country where she was posted. Her leadership style was to empower the people she worked with and build their skills and competence.
In her retirement years, Esther continued her life of service. As part of the Woodrow Wilson Fellow program, Esther and Max visited 9 small liberal arts colleges for a week at a time, talking with students about the pleasures and perils of living and working overseas. She loved the arts and served on the board of The Arts Council of Moore County in Southern Pines, NC for more than 10 years. She also served as its president for several years. She was instrumental in supporting the start of her local North Carolina chapter of NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) and was its president for several years.
Esther was a multi-talented woman with many interests that filled her life. She was an accomplished singer and performer. She was a member of the Smith College Glee Club, sang with her church choir wherever she was, performed for charity events abroad and at home, and organized female barbershop quartets whenever she could. She was an excellent seamstress and knitter and made many clothes for herself and her family through the years. She loved the game of tennis and played it most every day in retirement. She was an avid and dangerous bridge player as many can attest. She loved to cook and when she retired she was thrilled to be able to finally grow her own garden! In spite of 29 years of travel, Esther and Max continued to have wanderlust and toured many of the parts of Europe and the Middle East that they had never visited. Through Esther’s love of art and her years of travel abroad, she was able to collect beautiful and interesting artifacts, art and furniture. Her home was like a museum.
In 1998, Esther and Max moved to Belle Meade Retirement Community in Southern Pines, NC. In 2006, Max, her husband of 63 years, died after suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease for 9 years. During those very difficult years Esther was devoted to caring for him. In 2010, Esther moved back to Massachusetts to be with her daughter and son. She was very fond of saying that after traveling the world, she had now come full circle, returning to the home where she began as a young girl.
Esther was an elegant woman who lived a rich and full life yet remained unpretentious and generous. She so often thought of others first. She was loved and admired by all those whose lives she touched, and she touched many. Once in reflecting on her life she said, “”It was exciting and rewarding while full of hard work, but as the Bible says ‘everything I have given, I have received a thousand times.'”” That was Esther Winn Krebs.
Esther leaves her daughter, Marlynn K. Clayton and her husband Garry Krinsky of Greenfield; her son, Timothy Krebs of Greenfield; her grandson, Sasha Clayton of Washington, DC; and her favorite adoring grandpuppy, Frankie. In addition to her husband, she was predeceased by her two brothers and their wives, Hudson and Nancy Winn of Slingerlands, NY and Peter and Sylvia Winn of Cambridge, MA.
Her family would like to thank Hospice of Franklin County and especially Debbie Piela for their care and support in these last months; the Eventide Singers for bringing Esther the peace and joy of music; and her wonderful caregivers from the Arbors, her devoted private care team, Linda Clarke, Shirley Underwood, and especially, Nancy Wheeler who took care of her with great love for 6+ years.

John Laliberte ’38

LaliberteJohn P. Laliberte, 94, died peacefully on Friday, November 21 at Renaissance in Holyoke.

Born on August 8, 1920, he was the son of Amedee and Irene (Lavoie) Laliberte.

He attended schools in Holyoke’s Highland Grammar School which was constructed by his paternal grandfather Joseph, president of the Laliberte Construction Co. and then Williston Academy, graduating in 1938.

John proudly served his country in the US Army during WWII. His military service was followed by 40 years of service with the Fisk Tire Co, U.S. Rubber Co & Uniroyal Tire Co as chief chemist in the technical and quality control division. He and his family enjoyed membership for 50 years at the Holyoke Canoe Club, where he served on the board of directors.

He will be forever missed by his sons, David and his wife Jean and Paul Laliberte all of Troy, AL. He also leaves a grandchild Jennifer Gruber and husband Nick, great grandchildren, John Harrison Gruber and Hawkins David Gruber all of Lincoln, Nebraska and brother-in-law, Chuck Viens of South Hadley. He was predeceased by his wife Lois, son Donald and sister Annette Viens.

Elizabeth Roberts Shaw ’38

Roberts ShawElizabeth (Roberts) Shaw, 82. Of Wareham, MA, formerly of Millbrook, NY and New York City, died on Tuesday, February 4, 2003 in Wareham on congestive heart failure.

She was the wife of Samuel P. Shaw. Born January 16, 1921 in NY, NY, the daughter of Lawrence L. and Margaret (McLean) Roberts. Mother of Chris Ann Affleck of Cambridge, MA and Linda Boldt of NY, NY. Grandmother of Benjamin Affleck, Casey Affleck and Jason Fleetwood Boldt.

Elizabeth was a freelance writer and former director of public relations for New York City’s Museum of Modern Art who later handled public relations at Christie’s Auction House. Retiring after more than 30 years at the museum, Mrs. Shaw worked for Christie’s Auction House in New York, handling public relations and helping to keep the organization afloat in the recession of the early 1980s.

Margaret Mohler Sheehan ’38

Mohler SheehanMargaret Alice Sheehan, 96, died peacefully, Oct. 1, 2014, at Pen Bay Medical Center in Rockport.

Born in Kowloon, China, on May 1, 1918, she was the daughter of Frank and Ethel Yaksol Mohler. Margaret attended Springfield College and studied teaching.

On December 18, 1942, she married Burt Charles Sheehan in Springfield, Mass. Together they had three children, Gary, Candy and Shari. Margaret was known by many names, Migs, Moppy, Mop-Mop and Mopster, and had many roles: wife, mother, friend, teacher, grandmother and great-grandmother. She was predeceased by her beloved husband, Burt, in 1981; as well as her brother, John.

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William Maginnis, Sr ’38

Maginnis '38William T. Maginnis, Sr., 93, passed away Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2014, at The Cooley Dickinson Hospital, Northampton.

A graduate of Williston Academy, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Northeastern University with degrees in electrical and mechanical engineering respectively, he went on to become the chief engineer at Prophylactic Brush Company in Florence, then retired from Osley-Whitney Engineering in Westfield. Because of his lifelong interest and commitment to the field of engineering, he was highly regarded for his knowledge and called upon frequently for private consulting.

He was a pioneer in the plastics industry and an avid reader, especially technical magazines. Other interests included working on exotic cars, particularly Fiats, and spending time reading with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Predeceased by his parents, William and Eunice Maginnis, wife Roslyn (Black) Maginnis and a son Michael, he leaves his children William, Jr., (Theresa), Timothy (Patricia), Stephen (Betsy), Dianne (William Dostal) and Katherine (Brian Begley) Maginnis, 11 grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren