Tag Archives: Class of 1948

Barbara MacNeil Fuller ’48

Barbara Jane Fuller, née MacNeil, departed this world peacefully on June 17, 2020 at her home in Marion, Massachusetts after a brief illness, surrounded by her five daughters and numerous grandchildren. She was 89 years old.

“Bobby” was born on September 2, 1930 in Newton, Massachusetts, the daughter of Ruah and John MacNeil and sister to Jean, Margery, John, Janice, and Marcia ’49. She attended the Northampton School for Girls and Elmira College, where she sang in the choir and earned a BA in education. In 1955, she married William Fuller and together they raised five girls on Beach Drive in Darien, Connecticut. In 1999, they moved to Marion where they renovated the Elizabeth Taber House on Cottage St.

Bobby will be remembered for her loving and generous spirit, her humor and wise counsel, and her dedication to family and community. She was an avid reader who loved history, and she was an ardent tennis player and fan. She was Past President of the Marion Garden Group, and during her life she held positions with the Darien PTA, the Girl Scouts, the Houston Amigos, Post 53 Emergency Medical Services in Darien, and she volunteered at numerous charities. In her younger years, she was a well loved school teacher.

She is survived by her children, Frances Fuller Baldwin of Mystic, CT; Faith Elizabeth Fuller of Oakland, CA; Abigail Fuller (Neil Wollman) of Portland, ME; Ruah Seidel (Erik) of Las Vegas, NV; Jean Fuller Gest of Marion, MA; and grandchildren Jack Madigan, Elian Seidel, Ali Madigan, Jamesin Seidel, William Baldwin, Leonore Fuller, Barbara Nell Gest, Jack Fuller, and Beau Fuller. She was preceded in death by her precious granddaughter Josephine “Scout” Fuller and her husband of 56 years, Bill Fuller.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Marion Garden Group in memory of Bobby Fuller, PO Box 403, Marion, MA 02738

Domenica Margaret Spinelli Duprey ’48

Domenica Margaret Duprey, 100, formerly of Cedar St., Northampton, MA, died May 15, 2020 at the Elaine Center in Hadley. She was born in Northampton on May 8, 1920, the daughter of the late Nicola and Frances (Capadice) Spinelli. She grew up on Market St. and went to Bridge St. School. She attended the Northampton School for Girls, Northampton Community Commercial College, and Holyoke and Greenfield Community Colleges.

In 1937 she went to work at McCallum’s Hosiery Company for four years. She was a WAC in the United States Army during WWII. Domenica was a Medical Aidman who worked in the surgical ward as a Nurse’s Assistant until discharged in 1946. In 1949 she married her husband of 48 years, Louis F. Duprey. Domenica later worked at the Northampton State Hospital until 1968. She worked as a Book Keeper for the University of Massachusetts until retiring in 1983. She enjoyed sewing and crocheting. Domenica and Louis loved to travel to Cape Cod in the summer.

She was predeceased by her husband Louis, her daughter Donna Duprey and her sisters Mary Isaacson and Ann Goodhind. Domenica leaves her son Gary Duprey of Northampton and Nicholas Duprey of Easthampton, her brother Vito Spinelli, grandchildren Spencer, Peter and Alicia, and great grandchildren Gabriel, Lucas and Madilyn. The family would like to give a special thanks to the staff at Elaine Manor who, over these past 10 years, took such great care of “Minnie”.

The funeral and burial at St. Mary’s Cemetery will be private. Czelusniak Funeral Home is in charge.

Audrey Morgan Leaf ’48

Audrey E. (Morgan) Leaf died peacefully on April 9, 2020 with her loving husband, Carlton at her side. She was 89.

She was born on Nov. 13, 1930 in Worcester, to Janet and Charles Hill Morgan.

She and her brother, George were raised in Athens, Greece. Prior to the outbreak of World War II the family returned to Amherst. Audrey attended Northampton School for Girls and upon graduation enrolled at Colby College. After two years at Colby she followed her dream and enrolled at the Cooley Dickinson Hospital nursing program and became capped a registered nurse.

Audrey and Carl were married in Amherst in September 1953 and honeymooned in Chilmark at the family cottage.

Married life began in New York city followed by relocations to Pittsburgh, Washington, D.C., Maryland and Pearl River, N.Y. In 1979, Audrey and Carl moved to Chilmark year round.

Audrey was a homemaker raising their four children and was very active in church and community affairs. She was a communicant and past senior warden at Grace Church in Vineyard Haven. She helped set up and run the early years of lobster roll dinners at Grace Church, served many ice hockey families at the Puck Stop and at the Street Fair. She volunteered at the hospital and Thrift Shop, where she always brought home more than she donated.

Her home was full of laughing children with at least one dog looking for treats, cats running away from the commotion and the birds waiting for their feeder to be filled.

She is survived by her husband of 67 years; her sister Prudence Fitts of Wolfboro, N.H., her brother George of Chilmark; Her daughters Karen, of Putnam, Conn., and Kirstin Labby of North Grosvenordale Conn; sons Eric of Dix Hills, N.Y. and Nils (Gus) of Edgartown; nine grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.

Private interment was held at Abel’s Hill Cemetery on April 14 under the direction of the Chapman, Cole and Gleason Funeral Home, Oak Bluffs.

David K. Conner ’48

David Knox Conner 91, of Westhampton, MA, passed away on Wednesday, January 29, 2020 at Care One of Northampton after an illness. He was born in Easthampton on September 11, 1928, the son of Alfred J. Conner and Isabel Knox Conner. He was a bright student educated at Easthampton Schools, Williston Academy, and Holyoke Community College. He was called to serve in the US Army during the Korean Conflict in 1952 and was stationed in Germany. He was honorably discharged four years later. He was a 60 year member of the American Legion.

For many years “Dave” managed and frequently drove for the former Easthampton – Springfield – Northampton Express, a family trucking business started by his father, until it ceased operation. During his later life he drove for 11 years with Highland Valley Elder services “Meals on Wheels’ Program delivering to area homebound seniors. He also held jobs at Ames Department store and Big Y Bakery in Southampton.

David was licensed as a self-employed Real Estate Agent for a period of time, and was the buyer for the gift and import shop “Suzannes” formerly located on Green Street in Northampton Ma. He and his wife Priscilla owned and operated the store for a number of years until her illness forced its closure. They had many contacts and friends within the Smith College Community. They enjoyed traveling to Maine in the summers, their books, music, an active social life, sharing their home with a number of adopted rescue dogs over the years.

David was predeceased by his beloved wife Priscilla Skinder Conner (2006). He is survived by one brother, Robert G. Conner, and three nephews: Thomas Conner and Charles Conner of Easthampton, and Richard Conner of Northampton.

At David’s request, there are no formal services. A private Celebration of Life reception will be held at Westhampton Woods Community Room in March 2020.

The burial is private, at Brookside Cemetery at the convenience of the family. Mitchell Funeral Home of Easthampton is in charge of arrangements. David donated to a number of organizations in his lifetime. Donations in David’s memory may be made to : Dakin Animal Shelter, Highland Valley Elder Services Meals on Wheels program, or the Wounded Warrior Project.

 

Stanley L. Gedney III ’48

Stanley L. Gedney III, Age 90, of Pearl River, NY passed away on January 9, 2020 in Saddle River, NJ.

Ganz (his nickname bestowed in childhood by his sisters) was born in Orange, NJ to Marion and Stanley L. Gedney, Jr. on February 12, 1929. He attended Clifford Scott High School in East Orange, NJ before graduating from Williston Academy in Massachusetts in 1948. He went on to earn a B.A. from Lehigh University and graduated in 1952. Throughout his academic career, his true love was athletics. He was a gifted athlete and a true three season standout in football, basketball and baseball. One of his most treasured memories was being a member of the 1950 undefeated Lehigh Football team. Included in this great season and the one that followed were dominating wins over Lafayette College.

After graduation, he served his country in the 101st Airborne and ultimately in the Counter-Intelligence Corps of the Army during the Korean War. After the war, he worked in sales for many years starting at Phelps Dodge Copper Corporation before finding his avocation doing estate planning at New York Life from which he retired at the age of 65. He then went on to deliver flowers for Johnston’s Florist in Dobbs Ferry, NY delighting many customers across Westchester County with his singular rendition of Happy Birthday until he was 88 and health issues caused his second retirement.

An active member and VP and President of the Hendrick Hudson (District 3) School Board for many years, his real passion was working with youth baseball. He was instrumental in forming a succession of teams that brought competitive baseball to the Town of Cortlandt for youngsters after Little League. These teams participated and excelled at the Babe Ruth, American Legion and semi-pro levels.

Memorial donations may be made to Good Samaritan Hospital, 255 Lafayette Avenue, Suffern, NY 10901 to which the family is eternally grateful for their warmth and compassion during his final days. A private funeral service was held. A celebration of his life will be held in February. Suffice it to say that this was a man who lived for his loved ones. All of us who loved him were loved back immeasurably by this very special man. As he said many times to each of us – “I love you more than you know.” We were blessed to have him in our lives and are happy and grateful that he has found peace while he lives on in our hearts and memories.

Barbara Seabury Engel ’48

Barbara “Bobi” Seabury Engel, age 89, passed away April 12, 2019 in Naples, Florida. Bobi was born on February 9, 1930 in Springfield, MA. She was the daughter of Raymond M. Seabury of Longmeadow, MA and Laura Barker of Newport, RI. Bobi was predeceased by her sister Margaret (Seabury) Lyman, her brother Raymond Seabury, Jr., her daughter Cynthia Engel and her grandson, Joshua Sasen. Bobi is survived by her husband, Dr. N. Eugene “Gene” Engel. She is also survived by her sons Phillip Johnson of Salem, MA, David Engel of Easley, South Carolina, Donald Engel and his wife Donna of Naples, FL; her daughters Laura Lovell and her husband Ross of East Haddam, CT, Christine Sasen of Springfield, Carolyn Brennan and her husband Thomas of Wilbraham and Zandra Engel of Agawam, MA; ten grandchildren, and several great-grandchildren. Bobi grew up in Longmeadow. She was a resident of Wilbraham and Brewster before moving to Naples, FL in 1995. Bobi attended the Northampton School for Girls and the House in the Pines Junior College majoring in Art History. Bobi was a former member of the Junior League of Springfield, the Dennis Yacht Club of E. Dennis and the League Club of Naples. Bobi served as the Director of Youth Programs for both the Wilbraham United Church and the Dennis Yacht Club. Bobi was a proud member of the Daughters of the American Revolution. She was an avid bridge player, loved to dance, athlete, painter, craft lady, dramatist and had her most fun as a puppeteer. Bobi and her husband Gene were blessed to travel throughout the world after retirement. A Memorial Service will be held at 11:00 a.m. on June 20th at Bethlehem Church, 123 Allen St., Hampden, MA. There will be a private burial service. Memorial donations in Bobi’s name may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, 225 N. Michigan Ave., Fl. 17, Chicago, IL 60601 or at www.alz.org

Melvin J. Tucker ’48

Melvin J. Tucker, of Amherst, NY, a professor emeritus at the University at Buffalo who specialized in English Tudor history, died Feb. 15, 2019 in Hospice Buffalo, Cheektowaga. He was 87.

Born March 3, 1931 in Easthampton, Mass., he was a 1948 graduate of Williston Academy in Easthampton, which he attended on scholarship. He also received scholarships to the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in history in 1953.

He completed a master’s degree in history from the University of Massachusetts in 1954, then served for two years as an Air Force lieutenant in Japan, taking courses at Sophia University in Tokyo.

He went on to receive his doctorate in history from Northwestern University in 1962, having studied with two masters in the field – Lacy Baldwin Smith at Northwestern and S.T. Bindoff, his mentor at Queens College, University of London, which he attended under a Fulbright scholarship in 1958-59.

While completing his doctorate, he taught European history at Colby College and humanities at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, then joined the UB faculty in 1963 as an assistant professor of English and European history. He became an associate professor in 1966, was director of graduate studies in the History Department from 1979 to 1985, and retired in 2005.

His landmark research into Tudor poet John Skelton, published in 1969, determined that Skelton’s most famous work, “The Garland of Laurel,” was written much earlier than previously thought – in the 1490s, not the 1520s – and as a result, the noblewomen mentioned in it had been incorrectly identified.

His first book, “The Life of Thomas Howard, Earl of Surrey and Second Duke of Norfolk, 1443-1524,” published in 1964, was cited by author Richard Marius for the help it provided in writing his definitive biography of Sir Thomas More.

Dr. Tucker helped pioneer the study of childhood throughout history, teaching a popular seminar on the subject and contributing a chapter, “The Child as Beginning and End: 15th and 16th Century English Childhood,” in the 1974 book, “The History of Childhood.”

He also was an early practitioner of meditation and co-authored a book, “Centering: Your Guide to Inner Growth,” with Saunders G. Laurie in 1978.

He was the author of more than 100 book reviews, mostly for the library journal, Choice. Others appeared in the American Historical Review, Albion, Cithra, Journal of Modern History, Renaissance Quarterly and Speculum.

He received numerous academic honors, research grants and fellowships.

He was a contributing editor for History of Childhood Quarterly and The Journal of Psychohistory. He also was a council member for the Association for Bibliography of History.

His family noted that he had a passion for teaching. They said he let his students rewrite papers for better grades and was happy to discover that renowned economist and management expert Peter Drucker did so, too.

His wife of 59 years, the former N. Evelyn “Lynn” Rapalus, who worked in the Personnel Department at Buffalo Veterans Affairs Medical Center, died in 2012.

Survivors include two daughters, Ann Tucker-Jobson and Ellen Tucker-Cohen; a son, Michael; five grandchildren; and two great-granddaughters.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 9:30 a.m. Friday, Feb. 22, in St. Christopher’s Catholic Church, 2660 Niagara Falls Blvd., Town of Tonawanda.

Reginald L. Sylvester ’48

Reginald (Reg) Latimer Sylvester of Auckland, New Zealand, formerly of St. George’s, Bermuda passed away on July 7, 2017 at 87 years of age in Auckland, New Zealand.

Born in Bermuda in 1930, Reg lived and was educated in Bermuda before his family sent him overseas to the US to attend Williston Northampton School to finish the last few years of his school education. He was on the soccer, swimming and tennis teams, an active member of the Radio Club and graduated as a member of the Cum Laude Society in 1948. Reg’s time at Williston was a very special time in his life, he always talked frequently of it and he made a number of lifelong friendships and even attended a few reunions, flying in from New Zealand.

Reg was interested in pursuing a future as an aeronautical engineer and it was perhaps his greatest regret following his success at Williston that he was not able to attend university to pursue this future however, the economic situation of post war Bermuda put a serious damper on his aspirations. He returned to Bermuda to pursue a future in accounting with Esso Standard Oil in Bermuda.

In the mid 1950s Reg met his Irish wife Nancy, a nurse, recently moved to Bermuda with a number of her friends. They married and had two daughters in the 1960s. During this time he had a posting to the Caribbean area but later left ESSO because he did not enjoy the significant travel required with a young family. He then worked for the British Overseas Airways Corporation in Bermuda, which later became British Airways.

In 1970, at a time when Bermuda was undergoing significant political upheaval Reg moved his young family to New Zealand. For a Bermuda island boy this was a huge decision taking him far from his friends and family.

Reg had an interest in amateur (HAM) radio and the family recalls many nights hearing the dots and dashes as he developed his Morse Code skills and the crackle of the radio as he communicated with people all over the world. He had a room full of HAM radio equipment and it was only in the last 5 years that he took down the huge aerial in the backyard and packed away his radio equipment.

He was a very keen gardener and spent his spare time if not on the HAM radio, then in the garden. His family had an endless supply of beautiful roses, homegrown vegetables, citrus fruit, apples, plums and fejoas which he grew so much of that he bagged and delivered a great amount of his produce to the neighbors.

Regardless of the 47 years that he spent in New Zealand, Bermuda was always in his heart, and his true home. Following a service in New Zealand, his ashes were brought back to Bermuda. As he requested, a memorial service and interment of his ashes was (recently) held at the St Peter’s Church Cemetery followed by a Masonic tribute. A bagpiper played Scottish music on the hill above the grave.

Reg is survived by his wife Nancy in New Zealand and his two daughters Lee and Shauna and grandchildren Keagan and Fallon Woolley in Bermuda.

 

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.