Tag Archives: Williston Northampton School

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.

Charles E. Jabri ’83

Charles Enver Jabri, of Springfield, Massachusetts, passed away on December 15, 2022 at Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton. Son of the late Marwan Jabri and Mary Lee (Sands) Jabri ’55, Charles was born April 10, 1965 on Staten Island, New York. Growing up in Longmeadow and East Longmeadow, he graduated, in 1983 from the Williston Northampton School, Easthampton, and attended the University of Massachusetts and the University of Minnesota. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Western New England College, Springfield. Charles was active in the alumni associations of WNEC and Williston Northampton School and gave of his time to the Boys and Girls Club and Shriners Hospital for Children, both in Springfield, and the Holyoke Soldiers Home. He was also a long-time supporter of the Springfield Library and Museums Association. He leaves a cousin, Walter Pinto, and his wife Pamela, of Cobalt Connecticut; cousins of the Jabri family in Aleppo, Syria, the Elchelebi family in Melbourne, Australia, and Cafazzo family in Maine and Connecticut; and dear friends the Joseph Dennis family of Enfield, Connecticut. Gracious thanks to the staff at Capuano Home Care, East Longmeadow, for their caring services the past many years and for the attentive and compassionate care of the Nurses and Doctors at Cooley Dickinson. A private burial will be held at the Founders Cemetery of Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, New York. There are no calling hours. Byron Keenan Funeral Home of Springfield is attending to arrangements. Memorial donations may be made to the Boys and Girls Club of Springfield, 481 Carew St, Springfield, Ma 01104 or Shriners Hospital for Children, 561 Carew St, Springfield, MA 01104.

Austen Eadie-Friedmann ’02

Austen Eadie-Friedmann, beloved husband, brother, son, and friend, died at his home in Thompson, Connecticut on December 1, 2022 after a hard-fought three-year battle with ALS. He was 39. Autumn was his favorite season, and he was happily able to experience one last colorful changing of the leaves in the home that he loved so much before his passing.

Born in New York, Austen spent his formative years in New Jersey, Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, and Massachusetts, where he attended the Williston Northampton School. In 2006, he received a degree in history from Tufts University and worked for law firm Proskauer Rose before receiving a Master’s in Human Resource Management from Rutgers (2012). Most of his subsequent career was in human resources for the pharmaceutical industry, at Bristol Myers Squibb in New Jersey and London and Alexion in Boston, with a brief foray into luxury fashion at Chanel in New York.

It was at Tufts where he met and fell in love with his partner of 17 years, William (Billy) DeGregorio, 36, a fashion historian. The two formed a civil union in 2012, and married in 2017.

His peripatetic childhood laid the groundwork for a passion for travel and history that he would nurture for the rest of his life. As a teenager, he did charity work in Honduras and studied abroad in Spain (where he picked up a stomach flu and a lifelong antipathy for manchego). He saw all but two of the United States and 12 countries, including the UK, Belgium, Latvia, Poland, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Italy, France, Turkey, Egypt. Some of his happiest moments were vacations spent with Billy on Cape Cod.

Diagnosed with ALS two days before his 36th birthday, Austen’s ability to travel and ardent professional ambition came to a sudden end, as the disease quickly robbed him of mobility. The disease cheated him out of the long career he had envisioned, but he chose to transition to patient experience at Alexion, bringing the clarity and compassion defined his professional demeanor to patient and caregiver advocacy. Towards the end of his life, when daily remote work became impossible, he volunteered his expertise to nonprofits organizations like I Am ALS and EverythingALS, where he served as an industry consultant.

Austen was a man of contrasts: decorous but irreverent; haughty and formal, but with a dark and often dirty sense of humor that delighted his friends. Human resources executives are not often the most popular members of an organization, but Austen’s mixture of clarity, calm, and compassion made him so. He was often the go-to man for the dreaded task of firing, not because he enjoyed it, but because he communicated with kindness and honesty. Afterwards, those on the other side of the desk would often thank him. He deeply regretted that at precisely the moment where he was entering his stride professionally, he was obliged to shut down his hopes of a more illustrious career.

It was his prosaic determination in the face of ALS that disarmed those accustomed to a more Pollyannaish attitude towards terminal illness. He often said that he did not consider his life a tragedy, though his loved ones may have felt differently. While he knew that ALS was a cruel and unfair fate, his mantra was “It is what it is,” a characteristically matter-of-fact perspective that helped him navigate the emotional rollercoaster of the disease. He even asked that one of his favorite songs, drag queen Alaska’s “It Is What It Is,” be played at his memorial service to remind those in attendance that his life was neither a catastrophe nor a triumph; it simply was what it was: full of love, laughter, and a heaping dose of cynicism.

One of Austen’s most fervent personal dreams was to own a house. In 2020, after a long search, he and Billy purchased the historic Alpheus Russell house (built ca. 1795) in remote Thompson. In the following two and a half years, they enlarged their collection of art and antiques, of which Austen thoroughly enjoyed directing the arrangement, even as he lost bodily function. His eye for the placement of pictures and objects was always spot on, and it gave him enormous pleasure to create a home for Billy and the couple’s beloved cat, Lily, whom the two had adopted in 2008.

Never a religious man, Austen instead worshipped the pantheon of great divas of the twentieth century. He appreciated the melodrama of Dinah Washington, Nina Simone, and Diana Ross, and the sheer raunchiness of Nicki Minaj, Rihanna, and drag queens like Alaska and Willam. (He and Billy never missed a season of RuPaul’s Drag Race.) Late in life he developed an abiding passion for Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey, much to his husband’s delight. He particularly enjoyed the latter’s “Someday” and “Prisoner,” while a video of Houston performing “How Will I Know” live in 1986 became a sort of mood enhancing drug, watched periodically in order to make him smile.

His love of strong female characters extended to films and television as well. Kirsten Scott Thomas and Maggie Smith in Gosford Park (his favorite film); Rosalind Russell and Coral Browne in Auntie Mame; Bette Davis in All About Eve, Anjelica Huston in The Witches: these performances were near and dear to him always. He loved quoting lines from Russell in particular: “Does this make me look like a Scarsdale midge?” “The problem of labor in India is gargantuan,” and “Agnes, I wonder…”

Austen loved the finer things in life, particularly fine dining and wine. While the pandemic put a sudden halt to the former, he could enjoy wine until quite recently. When he was no longer able to eat or drink, much of his will to live quietly dissipated.

Austen is survived by his husband Billy; father Craig Friedmann ’71 of Reston, VA, mother Alexandra Eadie-Friedmann of Waterford, CT; sister Anna Friedmann of New York; and kittens Mariah and Whitney. Lily predeceased him in May of 2022. A private memorial is planned for the spring. In lieu of flowers, please consider donations to the organizations Austen championed most: Compassionate Care ALS, Death with Dignity, and the Nature Conservancy.

It is what it is, but it will never be the same.

John J. Swierzewski ’92

John Joseph Swierzewski, D.P.M., died suddenly at the age of 49 in Beaufort, South Carolina. Born at Providence Hospital in Holyoke, Massachusetts, to Maureen and Stanley Swierzewski, M.D., John graduated from the Williston Northampton School, in Easthampton, received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and his Doctor of Podiatric Medicine from the Temple University School of Podiatric Medicine, in Philadelphia. John specialized in podiatry and podiatric surgery in Holyoke, Massachusetts, at Comprehensive Foot Care Inc. and was affiliated with Baystate Medical Center, Baystate Noble Hospital, and Holyoke Medical Center. John invented an alkaloid-based foot- and skin-care treatment called All Natural pHeet Wipes to treat his life-long eczema condition, and was the founder and chief executive of pHeet Wipes seller PH Select. He was an avid golfer. John is predeceased by his mother, Maureen, and is survived by his four sons, Cian, Davin, Tagh, and Luke, his father, Stanley, his brothers Stanley ’76, Mark ’78, Paul, James and David, his sister Ann Corcoran, and numerous nieces and nephews. A Mass of Christian Burial will be at 11:00am on Monday, September 26, 2022, at Blessed Sacrament Church, 1945 Northampton Street, Holyoke, Massachusetts, with a private service to follow.

Christopher S. Maller Jr. ’04


Christopher S. Maller Jr. (“Chris”) passed away unexpectedly while traveling, September 1, 2022, at the age of 37. Chris was born on Mount Desert Island, at MDI Hospital.
Chris graduated from schools that could not satisfy his restless curiosity and wanderlust, and worked 9-to-5s that suited him even less. What his resume lacked in gravitas, his passport made up for. It was an unapologetic testament to a life lived well and fully, without fear or hesitation.
While most of us say “someday” when it comes to traveling to an exotic location or ticking an item off our bucket list, Chris never let a day pass unfulfilled. He ran with the bulls in Pamplona. He drove ATVs in the desert in Morocco. He danced in the streets of Mexico City in celebration of Dia de los Muertos. He biked Mount Hood. He free-climbed the Flatiron in Boulder. He paraglided over the statue of Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro.
Chris’ favorite pose in travel photos was facing the camera, big grin on his face, his arms thrown wide open. Reveling in the chaos. And inviting everyone to join him.
That is Chris’ legacy: buy the ticket. take the ride. embrace the chaos. In that spirit, please submit your own photos posed like Chris to chrispics207@gmail.com, which will be compiled and shared at a later date.
Chris is survived by his beloved bull terrier Nova (a/k/a Super Nova); father Dr. Christopher S. Maller, Sr. and his partner, Sandra S. Henderson; his mother, Isabelle Birdsall Schweitzer and her husband Dr. Peter Schweitzer; his big sister Meredith M. Maller, her husband Sam Cocks, and their son–Chris’ nephew–Charlie Curran Cocks; Chris’ little sister Emily Schweitzer and her partner Blake Hagberg; his aunt Marie Birdsall Chaffee and husband Tom Chaffee; his uncle Paul Gorky and aunt Donna Gorky; and cousins Tyler Gorky and Kendyl Gorky. Chris was predeceased by his cousin Brett Gorky and grandparents Natalie and Gregg Birdsall.
Chris was the consummate wanderer, but his true north was Mount Desert Island, where his ashes will be scattered in the waters so dear to him:
“We all end in the ocean
We all start in the streams
We’re all carried along
By the river of dreams.”
In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that remembrances be made in the form of contributions to the Mile High Bull Terrier Club or Maine Coast Heritage Trust.

Richard J. Harris Jr. ’83

Richard John Harris Jr., 57, of Medway, Massachusetts, passed away unexpectedly at his home on Thursday, August 25, 2022. Born in Vernon, Connecticut, he was the son of Joanne (Kells) and Richard Harris Sr. He was the loving husband of 29 years to Jane (Urlage) Harris and the devoted and proud father to his four children, Taylor, Emily, Meghan, and Alyssa of Medway.
Rich was a graduate of Saint Michael’s College in Vermont. He spent his earlier years at Eaglebrook Boarding School and Williston Northampton School. He enjoyed working as an IT system administrator for several technology companies for over 30 years, including Digital, Thompson Financial, Intel, Raytheon, Draper, and most recently, Stevenson Technology Corporation.
Rich was an avid spectator of New England sports and loved watching NASCAR and going to races with his father and son. Most importantly, he spent hours watching his children play at all competitive levels. Rich even volunteered as President of the Girls Hockey Board. Rich enjoyed working as a ski ranger at Wachusett Mountain, playing lacrosse, and playing hockey well into adulthood, including several International hockey tournaments. He always looked forward to kayaking with his family down to Secret Beach in Mashpee. He loved barbecuing, grilling and smoking meats for friends and family.
Everyone who knew him saw him as a genuine, caring friend and loved his sense of humor. Rich was your go-to-guy who put everyone ahead of himself and was always willing to lend a helping hand. Most importantly, he loved his family and his time spent with them.
Rich is survived by his sister, Debbie Dalkas; his nieces and nephews, Courtney, Amanda, Sarah, Nicholas, Jessica, Reagan and Ryland and his beloved dog, Colby.
Rich will be deeply missed by all who knew and loved him and will never be forgotten.
Visitation will be held on Monday, August 29th from 4:00-6:00 p.m. at the Chesmore Funeral Home of Holliston, 854 Washington St. A funeral Mass will be celebrated on Tuesday, August 30th at 12:00 p.m. at Saint Joseph’s Parish in Medway. Burial will follow in Saint Joseph’s Cemetery on Oakland St.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to: The Harris Children education trust. In care of Middlesex Savings Bank 81 Main Street Medway, MA. 02053

C. Scott Bevins ’72

After more than a 10-year battle with Early-Onset Alzheimers, we lost our beloved Christopher “Scott” Bevins on Tuesday, August 23rd, 2022 at the age of 69. His humor, love of family, of music, of sports, of friends, and of life were with him to the end. His wife Sarah Hoit and his devoted children, Wesley (21) and Samantha (19), visited faithfully, bringing out a putting mat for golf, throwing around a ball, cuddling together with his little dog, looking through beloved family photo albums, and singing the words together to his favorite songs. He laughed and sang, and until a month ago he would even “dance” with Sarah when she came to visit his memory care community that he entered almost two years ago.
Scott was born on June 10th, 1953, and he grew up in Marblehead, Massachusetts. Early on Scott graced the world with his joy and many talents: earning 15 varsity letters from Marblehead High School (1967-69) and Williston Academy (1969-1972), making the second team All-America as a football player in high school, breaking Williston Academy’s record for most hockey points in a season with 65 points, leading his tennis and hockey teams as captain, sailing in the summers, sculpting for fun (including ice sculptures), writing poetry, and most importantly telling stories in his Scotty way.
Scott graduated from Lake Forest College in 1976 with a degree in psychology. At Lake Forest, Scott played hockey, football, and tennis, and he was also the President of his fraternity. His career was focused first in the hospitality business, helping manage both hotels and restaurants. Scott spent the majority of his career in Executive Search, helping people find their dream careers, which he continued to do as he transitioned into happily being a full-time dad and working from home once Wesley and Samantha were born.
The job he loved the most was coaching, he created and led the Northeastern men’s tennis team. He also coached hockey his whole life beginning in college, and he especially loved coaching the hockey teams his two kids played on, where he made every practice, shot pucks with the kids in the driveway, and even built a homemade rink in the backyard each year to skate on with Wesley and Samantha. Scott also taught Sarah, Wesley, and Samantha to ski and golf, which the family did together. Skiing at Stowe and playing golf at our beloved Eastward Ho! Country Club.
His love for his children and his enormous pride in their accomplishments was the center of his life. He always wore the St. Lawrence and Dartmouth hats and shirts they brought him, followed their triumphs, cherished each moment with them, and broke out into joyful noises every time Sarah and the kids arrived to visit him in his memory care community, never forgetting who they were. His illness has inspired the family to hold several very successful fundraisers for Alzheimer’s causes, and has inspired Sarah’s career both in founding Connected Living, a senior communications technology company, and now her work in biotechnology focused on finding solutions to Alzheimer’s and neurodegenerative diseases.
Scott was a great father, husband, and friend who knew the meaning of time and cherished being with his family. As a family, we are dedicated to being a part of the solution for Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases. Scott also lost his father Wesley Bevins Jr. at 71 to Early-Onset Alzheimer’s. Sarah, Scott, and the kids have worked with and supported CaringKind and UsAgainstAlzheimers for years, which are organizations working to find a cure, and Sarah and the kids are part of starting a global non-profit together “Social Impact Partners” with other leaders that will bring together the global players to bring more awareness, resources, and collaboration to solving the disease.
Please join us in being part of the solution!

Heidi Bubel Allen ’77

Heidi Bubel Allen died suddenly of natural causes on June 29, 2022 in Deerfield, Illinois. Born August 21, 1959 to Curt and Marilyn Bubel in Cincinnati, Heidi graduated from the Williston Northampton School in Massachusetts, and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She is survived by her husband Robert Allen, her mother Sammie Bubel, and her brother Peter Bubel (Patti). Service will be held at the Chapel of Christ Church Cathedral, 318 East Fourth Street at 11:00 a.m. on July 15, 2022.

Richard B. McKinley ’72

Richard B. McKinley of Prospect Heights, Illinois, age 68, passed away May 8, 2022 after a brief illness. Beloved husband for sixteen years of Nian Zhen Zhao; dear brother of Gail Donovan (late Paul); Maryl Hook (late Phil); Jane Gardner (Lee) and Kyle Esh (Mike); fond uncle, cousin and friend of many; preceded in death by loving parents Gerard Alan McKinley and Helen Sullivan McKinley. After earning a B.A. from University of Wisconsin-Madison and J.D. from DePaul, Rick practiced law and was a court-appointed arbitrator. He was a kind and devoted man of many interests, with an amazing encyclopedic knowledge of music, sports and history. Visitation Saturday, June 4, 9:30 a.m., St. Norbert Catholic Church, 1809 Walters Avenue, Northbrook, IL, followed by 10:00 a.m. Mass. Inurnment All Saints Cemetery, Des Plaines, IL. In lieu of flowers, donations to American Cancer Society will be appreciated.