Tag Archives: Williston Academy

Richard I. Wrubel ’53

Richard Isaac Wrubel, 85, of Middletown, CT, passed away on December 23, 2020. Born on March 30, 1935, to Arthur M. and Mildred S. Wrubel, he lived in Middletown for 85 years. He graduated from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, Class of 1957 and was a member of Pi Lambda Phi fraternity. A talented clarinet player, Richard led a top traveling Dixieland college band, The Quaker City Six. He then went into the US Army, finishing as a staff Sergeant. Richard joined Wrubel’s department stores-a business started by his grandfather Isaac Wrubel in 1899, and ultimately opened his own retail store in 1976, called Richard Wrubel. He retired from retail in 1992, going into the residential real estate business where he acquired a portfolio of condominiums throughout Middlesex County. Being civic-minded, he remained an active participant in the Downtown Improvement Committee for Middletown Chamber of Commerce. He was also Vice President of the Middletown Concert Association. Throughout his life Richard was an exceptional and avid musician. He generously donated his time playing for local audiences around the area. In his later years, his daily piano playing brought him and his listeners much joy. He was a true champion of Middletown, CT. Richard loved his family more than anything and was truly the family historian, recounting tales from the time his grandfather arrived here in 1898, perpetuating the Wrubel legacy. He was a die-hard Red Sox fan throughout his life and was fortunate enough to attend the 2004 World Series to see them break their nearly 100-year curse. In later years, Richard organized a bi-weekly Friday lunch gathering with his best pals, called the ROMEOs – Retired Old Men Eating Out. Richard will be remembered for his optimism and generous spirit, his infectious laugh and wonderful sense of humor. In the words of his favorite composer George Gershwin, “The fundamental things apply, as time goes by…” Richard will sadly missed and always in the hearts of his loving wife of 56 years, Marcia, his daughter Susan, his son Arthur and daughter-in-law Melanie and their children Wesley and Ava, and his older sister Constance Carrigan of New Jersey. Due to current health concerns, the family held a private graveside service at the Indian Hill Cemetery in Middletown on Sunday, December 27, 2020. The family will organize a memorial service in Richard’s honor at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Richard’s name: Amazing Grace Food Pantry, SVD Middletown, Attn: Peter, PO Box 398, Middletown, CT 06457, The Rabbi’s Discretionary Fund at Congregation Adath Israel, PO Box 337, Middletown, CT 06457, or Alzheimer’s Disease Research at the Mayo Clinic.

Douglas E. Kelner ’68

Sunday, May 14th, 1950 – Sunday, July 31st, 2022

Douglas Kelner, Beloved husband of Christine Kelner née Kubera. Loving brother of Jan Kelner Nemeth. Cherished uncle of Alissa (Ed) Blumenthal. Dear uncle, cousin, and friend to many. Graveside services Wednesday 1:00 PM at Oak Woods Cemetery, 1035 E. 67th St, Chicago. Family and friends who will not attend the services can view the services live Wednesday, August 3, 2022, at 1:00 PM CST or any time after at www.MitzvahFunerals.com. In lieu of flowers, remembrances to www.wellnesshouse.org would be appreciated.


Shiva Information:
The Kelner Residence
721 Ontario Street, Unit 110
Oak Park, Illinois 60302
708-524-4727
Wednesday upon return from the services until 9PM
Thursday 6:30PM-9PM

David E. Sirman ’56

David Elliott Sirman died Tuesday, July 19, 2022 at his home in West Simsbury, CT. David was the son of Emory Thomas Sirman and Pauline Humphrey Sirman. He was born in Springfield, Mass. on March 30, 1938. He grew up in West Hartford and graduated from Williston Academy and Colby College. He received a Master’s Degree in Education from Central Connecticut State University. Before going into business for himself, he taught at the Pleasant Valley School in Barkhamsted. In addition to his parents, David was predeceased by his two older brothers, Donald Stainthorpe Sirman and John Humphrey Sirman. He leaves his wife of 60 years, Elise Hooker Sirman; two sons, Russell Hooker Sirman of West Hartford and Thomas Hathaway Sirman of East Hartland; two grandsons, Joshua David Sirman and Emory Russell Sirman of West Hartford; a daughter-in-law, Mami Nishimune of West Hartford; his sister-in-law, Barbara Hooker Thorp of West Simsbury and a niece, Donna Sirman Ramsey of Tennessee. David’s family would like to thank the staff at McLean Hospice, and Companions and Homemakers for their help. The family especially wishes to thank the team of Juliana Arcala, David Bernadino, Greg Brown, and Shenelle Rochester for the exceptional care they gave David. They made a big difference. All arrangements are private and at the convenience of the family. Carmon Windsor Funeral Home has care of the arrangements.

George J. Dargati ’52

George J. Dargati, 90, of Tolland, CT, devoted husband to his college sweetheart, the late Elizabeth “Betty” (Hannon), passed away with his family by his side on July 20, 2022. Born in the “Greek Village” section of North Grosvenor Dale, CT on June 12, 1932, the son of the late Dimitri “James” and Andronica (Fatsi) Dargati. George was an enthusiastic and engaging individual who excelled as an educator, coach, mentor, leader and family man. His credo was faith, family and friends. He loved to tell stories and had a wonderful sense of humor. He loved everyone he met along life’s journey and connected in a very deep and personal way with the people he touched. George lived life with passion and purpose. He had a great competitive spirit, an infectious personality and a big heart that drew people in wherever he went. His deep friendships knew no bounds. He was genuinely interested in all people as he asked questions, listened with an open mind and heart, and offered a hand to help. He’d often engage a stranger, introduce himself, and ask about their life. Inevitably he’d discover someone in common, and soon he’d have a new friend. “The Jet’ was a basketball, baseball, and track star at Tourtellotte Memorial High School, earning 12 varsity letters. Playing basketball for the legendary Jim Canty, he led the Tigers to back-to-back state championships. During his senior season, Tourtleotte recorded a perfect 28-0 record with George leading the state in scoring and winning All-State and State Tournament MVP honors. After a year of prep school at Williston Academy he turned down a professional baseball contract offer with the New York Giants organization to accept a basketball scholarship to the University of Connecticut. After a successful freshman season at UConn, he joined the US Army and proudly served his country during the Korean War. While stationed in Germany, he excelled playing basketball and baseball all across Europe and received All-Armed Forces honors. After being honorably discharged, he enrolled at Willimantic State Teachers College where he went on to a Hall of Fame basketball and baseball career. He was a prolific left-handed hitter as a baseball player and one of the top scorers in the country during his basketball career and set multiple school scoring records that still stand today, including single-season average (25.8) and career scoring average (24.5), while leading the Warriors to the first ever post-season tournament title. He was elected as a charter member of the Tourtellotte High School Hall of Fame, Eastern Connecticut State University Hall of Fame and the New England Basketball Hall of Fame. One of the most memorable highlights of his athletic career occurred when he was selected to play in the 25th Annual Maurice Stokes NBA All-Star Game at Kutcher’s Country Club in New York. He played alongside the likes of Bob Cousy, Oscar Roberson and Wilt Chamberlain and shared game-high scoring honors with Jack Twyman. Of all his accomplishments, he would tell you the greatest was landing his adoring wife of 53 years, Betty. George’s intensity was grounded by Betty’s genuine sweetness. Together they were a perfect blend, raising a close-knit family of three children and seven grandchildren. George leaves behind his son James Dargati and his wife Tori of South Windsor, his daughter Kaileen Colgan and her husband James of Boston, MA, and his daughter Jennifer Wood and her husband Kevin of Tolland. He also leaves seven grandchildren, who were his pride and joy: Ryan, Allie and Michael Colgan, Kaitlyn and Mackenzie Wood and JP and Drew Dargati. He was predeceased by his two sisters, Ida and her late husband Don Menzone, and Viola Dargati; and brother-in-law Dave Hannon. Surviving are his sister-in-law Mary Hannon, brother-in-law Dave Shea and wife Dottie, brother-in-law Bill Hannon and wife Shirley, and sister-in-law Nancy Hannon. George leaves behind many nieces, nephews, and wonderful friends. George was a man of faith and was an active parishioner at St. Matthew Church as well as a member of the Rockville Elks, Veterans of Foreign Wars and the American Legion. He taught for 35 years as a science teacher within the Vernon School System and had the pleasure of working with a wonderful group of life-long friends at VCMS. He was a mentor and a role model and over the course of his career in education he made a positive impact on the young lives of countless students and athletes. Upon his retirement from teaching, George became active in fund raising projects for charitable organizations such as St. Jude’s, Day Kimball Hospital, and the Franciscan Sisters of the Eucharist. He also traveled with friends and greatly enjoyed yearly trips to Fenway Park, the Frozen Four and Florida to visit Ted Williams. George’s star perhaps shined brightest when he began his last career; that of a doting and loving grandfather. “Poppy” as he was affectionately called by his seven grandchildren, was a constant presence in their lives and provided them with his support, wisdom, humor, and love. Annual family vacations on Cape Cod with all of his grandchildren were the highlight of every summer. He will always be their “Poppy,” from whom they learned unforgettable life lessons. The Dargati family would like to thank George’s caring neighbors and the entire staff at Vernon Manor for their outstanding and compassionate care. There will be no calling hours. Funeral services will be held at 10 AM on Saturday, July 30th at St. Matthew Church, 111 Tolland Green, Tolland. He will be laid to rest in St. Bernard Cemetery, Rockville. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in George’s memory to the Franciscan Sisters of the Eucharist, 405 Allen Avenue, Meriden, CT 06451. Samsel & Carmon Funeral Home has care of the arrangements.

John G. Sheehan Jr. ’58

John Gordon Sheehan Jr. of 1140 Florence Road, Florence, MA, died July 11, 2022 at the age of 84. He was born in New Brunswick, Canada, March 22, 1938. At the age of two he came and lived the rest of his life at the family farm house. John took great pride and sharing stories of the 162-year-old property giving everyone the true history of Florence from early farming days to what it has become today. He attended Williston Academy in his early years and was well known as a lifeguard and good swimmer. He then attended Smith Vocational High School where he learned another one of his great passions of automotive training. John worked for Labbee Chevrolet for many years and then eventually became a 32-year employee of the VA medical center in Leeds, MA, working in the motor pool and grounds facility. You could ask John anything about a Farmall tractor and he could tell you style, year and model and it showed with all the many he owned through the years at the farm. Same could be said for race cars; he didn’t own any but he could share tons of stories about all the races he attended at Riverside Speedway. He leaves behind his wife and special person Margaret Powers Sheehan of Florence, MA. Together they would attend many country western bands and dance the night away. He also leaves behind his stepson Dean Powers and wife Kristin Powers and his two step-grandchildren Opal Powers & Jarred Powers. Some people would say step but John would always say my son and grandchildren. Preceded in death by his brother Gordon (Sandy) Sheehan. A private memorial service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers donations can be made American Cancer Society. John loved life and people; he never met a stranger. A lesson John leaves behind and how he lived his life every day is “the most important thing in life is to learn how to give out love and let it come in.”

Schuyler W. Sweet ’66

Schuyler Wallace Sweet, age 74, passed away unexpectedly on June 14, 2022 at Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor, Maine. Schuyler was born in Utica, N.Y. on Sept. 25, 1947 to the late Wallace Schuyler Sweet and Janis Jones Sweet. He graduated from the Williston Academy in 1966 and attended Syracuse University and Utica College. Sky was Vice President and President of Central NY Coach Lines, Inc. and President of BEQ, Inc. in Yorkville, N.Y. He also served on many boards including Union Bank and the Indium Corporation. Schuyler was honored to serve on the Board of Directors of the Indium Corporation for over 50 years, and most recently as the Chairman of the Board. He was very active in his community and served on what seemed like every non-profit or advisory board that he could help with. Sky served as director of the Littleton Area Chamber of Commerce, President of the Littleton Rotary Club Charitable Fund, Member of the Littleton Industrial Development Corp, Chair of the Northern Region Advisory Board for the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation, President of Ammonoosuc Community Health Services and Trustee for The Mayhew Program which helps at-risk boys. As a lifelong duck hunter and fly fisherman, Sky was very involved with Ducks Unlimited and with Trout Unlimited; he served on local and national boards for both organizations. In 2015, Sky was appointed to the Littleton Select Board to fill a vacancy and was then elected to a three-year term as Selectman. He also served a three-year term as Littleton Water and Light commissioner from 2018 to 2021. Sky was returning from a fly fishing trip, having caught the biggest trout in 10 years of fly fishing trips in Maine when he suddenly fell ill. His family is comforted knowing that he was doing what he loved to do with his long-time friend, Ron Thomson shortly before he passed. Schuyler enjoyed maple sugaring in New Hampshire first with his late wife Deborah Sweet and in later years with his good friends, especially Chris Knapp the last few seasons. Schuyler is survived by his two children, Jolyn (Jeff DeStefanis) Sweet of Saratoga Springs, N.Y. and Wallace (Emily) Sweet of San Diego, California, and five grandchildren, Avery DeStefanis, Clara Sweet, Alexa DeStefanis, Annelise DeStefanis and Harrison Schuyler Sweet. He is also survived by his sister Sandy Partlow and brothers Brent Sweet and Stephen Sweet, nieces Janis Randolph and Heather Sweet and his nephews Colton Partlow, Harrison Sweet, Jarrett Sweet and Bryant Sweet. Upon Sky’s direction, his ashes will be scattered in his maple grove in Littleton, N.H. and in the St. Lawrence River at a later date. There will not be any funeral services. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Ducks Unlimited or buying a bottle of pure New Hampshire maple syrup to support the locals.

Rodney H. Hawkins ’63

Rodney Hepburn Hawkins died peacefully in his home surrounded by his family and pets on June 22, 2022, in Williams Lake, British Columbia, after a two year battle with cancer.
Rod was born in Claremont, New Hampshire, on April 3, 1944. He attended Williston Academy, for five years. He always credited Williston with giving him an excellent education and many memorable times including playing soccer and performing as part of the choir. Some of the friendships he made there lasted a lifetime. He never forgot the opportunity afforded by Williston when he was selected as an exchange student to Germany in 1963. He lived a year with the Rau family and kept in contact with them over the years. A Rau grandson spent a year living with the Hawkins family in Williams Lake, as an exchange student in 1996-1997.
In 1964, when Rod was sailing to the United States, returning from his exchange, his ship made a stop in Galway Bay, Ireland. He met his beloved Sandra, when she boarded the ship. They were married in 1965.
Rod attended Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, from 1964-1968 and graduated with a degree in German literature. Just before graduation, he was surprised to be recruited by the CIA, but turned them down.
In 1969, Rod and Sandra moved to Canada and happily made it their home. They first lived in Vancouver, where Rod attended law school at the University of British Columbia. He was called to the Bar in 1974.
Rod and Sandra moved to Williams Lake, British Columbia, in 1975, where Rod opened and ran a Legal Aid Office for seventeen years. He then went on to work as Crown Counsel. He was appointed Administrative Crown and supervised prosecutions in Williams Lake and a vast area around it for twenty years. He reluctantly retired in 2012.
Benefits of retiring included daily walks with his beloved golden retrievers; planting even more trees and lilacs on his property; kayaking and other recreation the lake offers; trips to Scandinavia, Iceland, Germany, and the U.S.A.; time for reading the many books he collected in his library; researching and putting together an extensive family tree; and, most recently, bee keeping.
Volunteer work included serving on the Board of Directors of the Child Development Centre, serving as an advisor to the Williams Lake Community Council for Restorative Justice, teaching law courses in Elder College, and helping to get the community’s Indigenous Court up and running.
The family wishes to honor Rod’s memory by quietly spending time together, being grateful for the time they had with Rod. If you wish to honour Rod’s memory consider planting a lilac, giving a dog some special attention, and, perhaps, raising a glass of wine.

Robert D. Kalter ’63

Dr. Robert Kalter passed away from pancreatic cancer at White Plains Hospital. He was loved and respected by his family, friends, and colleagues.

He was raised on Long Island, the son of Henry Kalter, a doctor who had fled Nazi Germany as a young man, and Rose Dorrance Kalter, the principal of PS 133 in Queens for many years.

Bob graduated from Columbia University magna cum laude​​​ in 1967 and received his medical degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1971. He interned at Pennsylvania Hospital and then served in the US Public Health Service as a commissioned officer. From 1974-1976, he completed an Anatomic Pathology residency at Cornell and then, from 1976 to 1978, a Clinical Pathology residency at Downstate.

His first full position was as Assistant Director with the New York Blood Center (1978-1981). He went on to become an esteemed and trusted pathologist, serving in a number of capacities, including as Chief of Clinical Pathology at NYU Winthrop Hospital (1981-1992), Chairman of Pathology at The Brooklyn Hospital Center (1992-2000), Director of the Blood Bank at NYU Lutheran Medical Center (2000-2015), and as a pathologist at Maimonides Medical Center (2000-2020)—first as Chief, then as Chairman, of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, and finally as a Consulting Pathologist. After retirement, he continued to work as a per diem pathologist for Northwell Health Laboratories (2020-2022).

Bob’s colleagues knew him as an especially dedicated doctor. He was certified in Anatomic and Clinical Pathology, Blood Banking, and Immunopathology, and he voluntarily recertified with the American Board of Pathology in 1997 and 2008. A fellow medical professional recently described him as “the most complete pathologist I have ever known.” He was valued as a mentor to many young physicians, and in retirement, he volunteered to teach in medical school pathology labs.

In addition to his professional pursuits, Bob was known and loved for his passionate interest and deep knowledge in history, philosophy, science, and the arts. He was an avid reader of everything from ancient Roman history to the fiction of Marcel Proust. And friends and colleagues alike will remember his wit—what Ken Gibbs, President of Maimonides Hospital, called his “dry and playful sense of humor.”

Bob adored his family and friends. He was a devoted husband, father, grandfather, brother, and uncle, always present to debate, tease, and offer advice, and interested in everyone around him.

He is survived by his wife Nancy Glass, his children Jeffrey and Julie Kalter, his son-in-law Dave Turner, his grandchild Miles Turner, and his brother-in-law David Glass, as well as his sister Joanmarie Kalter, his nephew Gram Hill, and his niece Faith Hill.

Donations can be made to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, where he was treated, or to Gilda’s Club of Westchester.

A funeral service will be held at Larchmont Temple (75 Larchmont Ave.) at 11 a.m. on Friday, June 17, 2022. Family and friends who are unable to attend the service in person may watch via livestream at: http://larchlink.pub/live

James W. Curran ’46

James W. Curran, a resident of Stamford, VT for 87 years died on May 29, 2022 at the Vermont Veterans’ Home in Bennington, under the care and compassion of the VVH staff and the Bennington VNA Hospice. Jim was born in North Adams, MA on October 1,1927, the second of seven children born to William L. Curran, M.D. and Bernice Curran.

The family moved to Stamford, VT in 1935. There Jim learned to swim in the icy waters of the North Branch of the Hoosic River, went tobogganing and sledding on the country roads and gentle hills and skated on the small frozen natural ponds in town. He was given a basic introduction to farming as his physician father had a working farm with milking cows and other livestock.

He attended Stamford Elementary School and Drury High School. He was a graduate of Williston Academy in Easthampton, MA. Jim enlisted in the U.S. Army serving with the 25th Infantry, 35th Regiment. He was assigned as a military policeman in the city of Otsu during the occupation of Japan. He was honorably discharged following his service. He attended Champlain College in Plattsburgh, NY and later Denver University in Colorado. His favorite authors were Robert Service and Rudyard Kipling.

Jim was always interested in sports; he followed closely the teams of Northern and Southern Berkshire high schools.

As an employee of Petricca Industries in Pittsfield, MA for 37 years (retiring in 1992), he found many of his coworkers resided in the small towns surrounding Pittsfield so he became familiar with their families and kept track of those youngsters as well as the North Berkshire athletes.

Jim was an excellent skier. He was on the former Dutch Hill ski patrol and later directed the Dutch Hill Ski School on weekends. He also enjoyed golf, living three minutes from the Stamford Valley Golf Course. He always held an annual membership and enjoyed early morning tee times with his golf buddies. He golfed until age 87.

He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Rosemarie, and nine of their ten children; Maureen, Jim, Kathryn, Patricia, John and his wife Cindy, Susan and her husband Jonathan, Jennifer, Robert and his wife Erin, and Neil. Their daughter Andrea died in 1983. He leaves 14 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren.

Also surviving are two sisters, Sally Smith and Sandy Johnson. His brothers, William L. Curran, Jr. M.D. and Edward A. Curran and his sisters, Marijane Green and Catherine (Nan) Sanford are deceased. He also leaves many nieces, nephews and cousins.

There are no visiting hours. A memorial service will take place at the convenience of the family.