Ilion High School
Class of 1939
Digitized Class Yearbook....
The Mirror for 1939 from the New York Heritage digital Ilion Free Public Library Yearbooks collection. Link opens in new browser tab. (added March 24, 2021)
Now everything you wanted to know about the IHS Class of 1939 is at your fingertips....as published in the 1939 Mirror Class History.
Class Roster, Officers and Honor Students, as published in the "The Mirror for 1939", are available on the 1939 Class Roster page. (added December 4, 2021).
Class Historical Newspaper Articles....
Newspaper articles about the IHS Class of 1939 (added January 17, 2022)
Senior Pictures, from the 1939 Mirror, are available on the links below. Images were provided by Paul McLaughlin, Class of 1941. (June 20, 2005)
Class Officers - (Hall, Myers, Prosser, Rudd)
Class Valedictorian - Donald Morgan Watkin MD
IHS 1939 alumnus, Valedictorian, Dr. Donald Watkin, was among the graduates who pursued a career in medicine and was added to the feature Alumni Physicians. His education, career and family background were published as IHS Class of 1939 Donald Morgan Watkin, M. D.. (July 27, 2021)
1939 Alumnus James Morris....
IHS 1939 Alumnus, James Morris, was recently featured in a newspaper article by The Buffalo News on January 17, 2016.
This is a great story from a 95 year old Ilion World War II Veteran and well worth reading.
"After serving stateside instructing bombardiers, Jim Morris says, "I wanted a piece of the action," so he went on to 32 bombing missions in Europe."
Jim Morris is one of EIGHT Ilion Morris brothers. (January 31, 2016 - updated February 6, 2022)
Class of 1939 - 70 Year Reunion Plans....
Oneita Bluett Bouchard '39 is organizing a 70th year reunion for the Class of 1939. A reunion is planned for a FREE Reunion on June 14, 2009 at the VFW Post 542. Members from the classes before 1939 and up to 1943 are invited. Contact Oneita Bluett Bouchard at 3 Warren Road, Mohawk, NY 13407 - (315) 866-6785 for more information. Please pass this information on to anyone you think would be interested in attending this reunion. (Feb 27, 2009)
The Class of 1939 gave birth to The Beavers, a group of 8 IHS fellows [from the classes of 1939, 1940 and 1941] who had much fun together during and after high school days. The lore of The Beavers now warrants its own page including a newspaper article from World War II with photos. Visit Ilion High School Classes of 1939, 1940, 1941 - Eight Ilion Beavers. (updated Feb 20, 2005)
Florence S. (Shaw) Baker, IHS 1939 and School Nurse, age 96, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, July 4th, 2017 in the Seigenthaler Center, New Hartford, NY, surrounded by her loving family. She was born in Ilion on January 24th, 1921, daughter of the late George B. and Alma Edwards Shaw. Florence was united in marriage with Charles R. (Dick) Baker on September 26th, 1942 in Ilion, NY. They celebrated a loving and devoted 66 years of marriage until his passing on September 29, 2008. She was and forever will be 'his Bride'. Florence leaves behind her four children; daughter and son-in-law Cheryl and Werner Kleemann of W. Henrietta, son and daughter-in-law Terry and Judy Baker of Attleboro, MA, and daughters, Kathy Murphy of Ilion and Patricia Skinner of Cedarville. Her twelve beloved grandchildren; Amy (Kevin) Wilson, Kristen (John) LaBombard, Brian (Linda) Kleemann, Lyndi Baker, Jason Baker, Karen Romeo, Kim (Paul) Passionino, Katie Murphy (fiancé Gary Dellacerra), Krissy Murphy, Matt Skinner, Jackie (Matt) Nentarz, and Dan Skinner (Brooke Hecker). Her 19 cherished great-grandchildren; Ally and Robbie Wilson, Jenna, Alex, and Ryan LaBombard, Cole and Jack Kleemann; Elizabeth Marcos, Lauren and Lillianna Toxavidis, Paxton and Hudson Baker, Grace and Michael Romeo, Ava, David, and Kaden Passionino, and Natalie and Norah Nentarz. Florence was always accompanied by her faithful grand-pup Kloey. She also leaves behind several special nieces, nephews and friends. Florence was predeceased by sons-in-law Paul Skinner and David Murphy, brother Charles Shaw and brother and sister-in-law John (Pauline) Shaw. Florence attended Ilion Central Schools graduating in 1939. She then earned her RN degree from Nathan Littauer School of Nursing in Gloversville, NY. While Dick served in WWII, Florence put her degree to use by serving as a private duty nurse. At War's end, Florence and Dick returned to their home on Prospect Ave., Ilion where she was employed as an industrial nurse with Remington Rand. She then took time off to start a family. After raising her four children through their elementary years, Florence undertook the challenging task of completing her School Nurse teaching degree from Oneonta State. Upon completion, she began her employment with the Ilion School system. This was a job Florence truly loved until her retirement in 1976. Florence's greatest joys in life came from time spent with family. You only needed to enter her home to know how deeply she loved them. As the years passed and her family grew, her walls and table tops overflowed with her treasured family photos. Florence was her family's number one fan. She took great pride in attending her children's, grandchildren's and great-grandchildren's many activities and games. She could always be found, front row on the sidelines, in her green lawn chair, wearing a visor, cheering the loudest and being the proudest. Florence was also a devoted fan of the NY Giants, Syracuse Orange, and the NY Yankees, watching them at every opportunity. At an early, age Florence developed a love of camping in the Adirondack Mountains which began at her parent's camp in White Lake. This enjoyment continued throughout her married life with her husband and their family; from tenting with four small children in the early years at Raquette Lake, to pulling a trailer to Moffitts Beach, to finally establishing a permanent spot at Bonnie Brae, Piseco Lake. Florence and her family shared many camping experiences from; sunny days at the beach, waterskiing, feeding the "chippies", picking blueberries for homemade pancakes and ending the night around the campfire. These camping traditions are forever etched in her family's hearts and continue to this day. Florence loved spending the winters with her husband in Myrtle Beach, SC. Although she dearly missed her family back home she looked forward to the spring break when they all would come to vacation. There are so many memories to share but among her favorites include; long walks on the beach gathering shells and sharks teeth, hours of swimming in the ocean and pool with her grandchildren, and shopping for bargains to send home to the kids. Florence's family continues to enjoy their spring breaks in Myrtle Beach. Through all her travels, Florence's favorite place was always home. It was here she could be found crocheting her kitchen towels, knitting hats and hair bobs, baking homemade banana bread and tending to her plants and garden. Her home on Prospect Ave. was truly the heart of her family and was a gathering place for all holidays and celebrations. Florence had an unconditional love for her family; she put them above all else. She lived a rich life most would be so lucky to have. The traditions and foundation of family will be celebrated and continued throughout the lives of her children and grandchildren. This will be Florence's greatest legacy. The family would like to extend our deepest appreciation to the entire staff at the Siegenthaler Center. Words cannot express our gratitude for the wonderful care, love and devotion shown to our mom during her time spent in Suite One. We would especially like to thank Michelle, Laurie, Justin and Georgia who cared for our mother as if she were family. In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to The Siegenthaler Center 4277 Middle Settlement Road New Hartford, NY 13413. A memorial for Florence will be held on Tuesday July 11, 2017 at 2pm at the Whiter-Hendrix Funeral Home Inc. 100 Otsego St in Ilion. Rev. Jill Farnham will officiate, interment will follow in the Armory Hill Cemetery. Friends may call on Tuesday from noon until the time of the funeral. To send an online condolence please go to www.whiter-hendrix.com. (July 16, 2017)
Vivian A. (Caple) Casey, IHS 1939, passed away April 23, 2017 at the Folts Home, Herkimer. She was born January 27, 1920 in Denver, Co. the daughter of the late Arthur W. and Rose (Thierfelder) Caple Sr., she attended schools in Old Forge, Frankfort and graduated from Ilion. Vivian was united in marriage with Robert J. Casey on April 11, 1942 in Ilion, Bob passed away April 21, 1992. Vivian was an active member of St. Augustine's Episcopal Church having served as secretary under Fr. George B. Greene, she was also a member and past President of St. Augustine's Guild. She was also a member of Chapter 82 O.E.S. Vivian is survived by her daughters Diana Lyn Shoen of Ilion, Dale-Lee and Robert VanFleet of Waterford, MI, her son Robert of Port Orange, FL., three grandchildren Brian Shoen, Andrew and Heather VanFleet and three great grandchildren Briana Shone, Hunter and Marianna VanFleet. Vivian was predeceased by her brother and sister in law Arthur and Pat Caple and her son in law Allan Shoen. Vivian's calling hours will be held TODAY, April 28, 2017 from 11:00 to 1:00PM at the Whiter-Hendrix Funeral Home, Inc., 100 Otsego St., Ilion, and her funeral will follow at 1:00PM, with Bishop Daniel Herzog officiating. Interment will follow in the Mohawk Cemetery. The O.E.S. Chapter 82 will conduct services at 12:45. Friends are asked to consider memorials to St. Augustine's Church in Vivian's memory. To leave an online condolence please go to www.whiter-hendrix.com. (June 6, 2017)
James Philip Morris IHS 1939, age 95 of North Port, Florida died on March 12, 2016. Jim was born in Ilion, N.Y. on November 21, 1920 one of eight sons of Thomas and Margaret (Curley) Morris. He attended Cornell University where he studied Industrial Engineering. When World War II broke out Jim left school to enlist and was given a job stateside as a bombsite maintenance instructor. Anxious to go overseas he asked for a crew assignment and got the job as a ball-turret machine gunner in a B-17 Flying Fortress with the 15th Air force, 301st bomb group. His squadron was stationed in Foggia, Italy. They flew 32 missions and crash landed twice.
IHS 1939 Alumnus, James Morris, was recently featured in a newspaper article by The Buffalo News on January 17, 2016.
"After serving stateside instructing bombardiers, Jim Morris says, "I wanted a piece of the action," so he went on to 32 bombing missions in Europe."
When the war ended Jim returned to Cornell on the G.I. Bill and graduated in 1948. Upon graduation he worked at General Electric as a supervisor in Manufacturing Engineering. He went on to General Dynamics where, among other projects he helped to develop the guidance and control system for the reentry stage of the Minuteman III nuclear missile. Jim later worked at Bell Aerospace in Wheatville, N.Y. where he was a manager for mechanical process research and development. A proud accomplishment at Bell was working with a team of engineers to develop the thrust chamber for the lift-off engines of the lunar modules for the Apollo missions. Jim was an active member of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) and also served as President of the Western N.Y. chapter. He retired from Bell in 1986 after 18 years of service. After retiring Jim moved to Harbor Cove with Gladys, his wife of 50 years. He stayed very busy. Among his accomplishments he served as: President of the Civic Association, Commodore of the Boat club and President of the Homeowners association. The Civic association awarded Jim their Father of the Year award and the Boat club named him Old Man of the River. He was instrumental in helping buy the Park from CWS. Jim was active in a wood working group and a proud and active member of the Harbor Cove Writers club.
He was predeceased by his wife, Gladys Rosinski. He was predeceased by his brothers, Thomas, Edward, John and Richard Morris and his sister, Margaret (Peg) Morris Marley. Survivors include his children: Michele (Bill) of Akron, NY, Brian (Ann Marie) of Katy TX; brothers, Robert (Anne) Morris of Venice, Florida, Al (Sue) Morris of Ilion, and Don Morris of Pensacola, Florida; two grandchildren, seven great grandchildren and many nieces and nephews. Services were held on Mon. March 28th 10 am at St. Pedro's Catholic Church in North Port. Interment with military honors followed at Venice Memorial Gardens. Farley Funeral Home in North Port, Florida handled the arrangements. (April 3, 2016)
Oneita L. (Bluett) Bouchard IHS 1939, 94, passed away at home with her family by her side onSaturday June 13, 2015. Oneita was born April 28, 1921 the daughter of the late Damon and Rose Levigne Bluett, she was a graduate of Ilion Schools with a perfect attendance record. On March 30, 1940 she was united in marriage with William G. Bouchard he passed away May 10, 1989. Oneita was employed at several local super markets as a cashier, meat and deli clerk, retiring from Great American in 1983. She was a life member of the V.F.W. Post 502 Auxiliary, a life member of the V.F.W. National Home For Children and an avid bowler. Oneita is survived by two daughters Linda Roemer and her companion Richard Ulin of Mohawk and Claudette and Bruce Williams of Ilion, six grandchildren, numerous great grandchildren and two great great grandchildren, she is also survived by several nieces and nephews and several special friends, she also leaves her canine companion Chewie. Oneita was pre deceased by her son Gene and two brothers Ralph and Theodore. In keeping with Oneita's wishes there will be no public calling hours or funeral service. Arrangements are with the WhiterHendrix Funeral Home, Inc., 100 Otsego St., Ilion. In Lieu of flower friends are asked to consider memorials to their favorite charity. To leave an online condolence and light a candle please go to www.whiterhendrix.com. (June 28, 2015)
Frank G. Hart IHS 1939, age 92, of 8 Harriett Ave., Ilion, passed away on Tuesday, March 5, 2013, at Valley Health Services, Herkimer He was born on April 11, 1920, in Ilion, the son of George and Anna (Krause) Hart, and graduated from Ilion High School. Frank was a veteran of WW II, serving in the US Navy. On June 27, 1952, he was married to Jean De Lavergne in Ilion. Mr. Hart was employed as a mechanical engineer at Remington Arms Co. of Ilion for over forty years, retiring in 1981. Much of his life revolved around the game of golf. In 1960, he won the club championship at Doty's Golf Course, where he also had three holes in one. Frank was also fond of his seven schoolmates known collectively as 'The Beavers'. They stayed in touch for over sixty years, and he is survived by two of these cherished friends. Survivors include his wife, Jean; his son and daughter-in-law, Thomas and Teresa Hart, of Ilion; his granddaughters, Kelly Wilkerson and Amy Antonio, of Greensboro, NC; six great-grandchildren; and two nieces. He was predeceased by his son, Donald J. Hart, and two sisters, Lucille Beck and Marie Edgett. A Contemporary Funeral Service will be held 7:00 p.m., Friday, March 8, 2013, at the Applegate-Day & Enea Family Funeral Home, 4309 Acme Rd., Ilion. Spring burial will be in St. Agnes Cemetery, N. Ilion, NY. Visitation will be held Friday, 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., prior to the funeral home service. Special thanks to Dr. Ward and staff at Valley Health Services for care and support. Anyone wishing to share a memory of Frank, or add to his online memorial, may go to www.applegateandday.com on the Internet. In lieu of flowers, as an expression of sympathy, memorial contributions may be made to Herkimer County Humane Society. Envelopes are available at the funeral home. The Hart family has entrusted all service arrangements and supervision to their family Funeral Director, Don Applegate. (March 10, 2013 - modified March 20, 2016)
Warren E. Beckwith IHS 1939, age 94, formerly of Ilion, passed away on Wednesday, December 26, 2012, at Faxton St. Luke's Healthcare, New Hartford. He had been a resident of the Masonic Care Community, Utica. He was born on July 27, 1918, in Ilion, the son of Arthur and Ella (Kinne) Beckwith. Warren graduated from Ilion High School, attended Clarkson College, and completed his education at Lincoln Extension Institute. He was a veteran of WWII, serving in the US Army. On August 11, 1951, he was married to Ruth Marion Wright, in Ilion. She died on September 21, 1997. Warren was employed as an engineer-draftsman at Sperry Rand Univac in Ilion and Utica for twenty-three years, retiring in 1973. He was a member and past Master of the Olive Branch Lodge # 40 Free and Accepted Masons. Warren was also a member of the DAV and AARP. Survivors include his two daughters and son-in-law, Barbara and Albert Kirchhoff, of Papillion, NE, and Ruth Beckwith, of Barneveld, WI; five grandchildren, Michael and Heidi Brink, of Bellevue, NE, Melissa Brink, of Chico, CA, Juli and Jerry Earley, of Austin, TX, and Darren Kirchhoff and Cameron Kirchhoff, both of Odessa, TX; three great-granddaughters; two nieces; three nephews; and several cousins. He was predeceased by his sister, Evelyn, in 1974, and his brother Herbert, in 2005. Funeral services will be held 11:00 a.m., Monday, December 31, 2012, at the Applegate-Day & Enea Family Funeral Home, 4309 Acme Rd., Ilion, with Rabbi Albert Kirchhoff and Rev. David Zoeckler, officiating. Burial will be in Armory Hill Cemetery, Ilion. Calling hours are Sunday, December 30, 2012, from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the funeral home. A Masonic service will be held by the Olive Branch Lodge # 40 F & AM, on Sunday, December 30, 2012, at 2:00 p.m. at the funeral home. Anyone wishing to share a memory of Warren, or add to his online memorial, may go to www.applegateandday.com on the Internet. In lieu of flowers, as an expression of sympathy, memorial contributions may be made to the American Heart Association or the American Cancer Society. Donation envelopes are available at the funeral home. The Beckwith family has entrusted all funeral and burial arrangements to their family Funeral Director, Don Applegate. (Jan 1, 2013)
William S. Fay IHS 1939, 91 of the Galinsky Apartments, Herkimer passed away Monday August 6, 2012. Bill was born August 5, 1921 in Ilion the son of the late H. Stewart and Ellen (Foothorape) Fay, and was a graduate of the Ilion High School and later in life took courses in golf course equipment maintenance. Bill served his country serving in the US Navy during WW2. Bill's first marriage was to the mother of his children Jean Carroll, he later married Dorothy Southard who predeceased him. Bill was employed with Special Metals in Herkimer for many years as a Metallurgic Technician and after retiring worked with golf courses doing golf cart maintenance. Bill was a member of St Augustine's Church in Ilion, the Ilion Vol. Fire Dept. a former member to the Ilion Fireman's Band, The Beavers, was active with Veterans Clubs in the area, a Preservationist; collecting stamps as well as local history memorabilia. Bill also played with several local bands as a drummer, he was also a former boy scout. Bill is survived by a daughter and son in law Leslie and Roy Dillon of Columbus, OH, a brother Robert H. Fay of Milford, NH, a sister and brother in law Dorothy and William Slocum of Ilion, his grandchildren Andrew Riedel, Alison Cherry, Amanda, Doug, and John Fay, great grandchildren Matther, Bode, Sam and Emily, also several nieces and nephews. Bill was predeceased by his son Douglas Fay. Friends are invited to attend a memorial service to be held on Friday August 10, 2012 at 1:00 pm at the St Augustine's Church, Second Street, Ilion with Rev. John Bassett officiating. In keeping with Bill's wishes there is no calling hours. Bill had many friends in the valley since he returned from South Carolina. A special thanks to Oneita and her family and Pat and Kathleen, for their friendship and kindness. Friends are asked to consider memorials to St. Augustine's Church in Bill's memory. Arrangements are with the Whiter-Hendrix Funeral Home Inc. 100 Otsego Street Ilion. To light a candle please goes to www.whiter-hendrix.com (Aug 9, 2012)
Betty (Frankish) Lonis IHS 1939, age 90, of 113 Elm St., Ilion, passed away on Wednesday, September 28, 2011, at St Elizabeth Medical Center, Utica, after a long illness, with her family by her side. She was born on March 9, 1921, in Syracuse, NY, the daughter of Leon C. and Frances (Getman) Frankish, and was a graduate of Ilion High School. On March 11, 1943, she was married to David E. Lonis, in Ilion, and they spent sixty-eight wonderful years together. Mrs. Lonis was a clerk employed at the Ilion Water Dept. for over twenty years. She enjoyed her numerous gardens over the years. Survivors include her husband, David E.; two sons, David N., of Utica, and Mark E., of Ilion; five grandchildren, Kelly L. Lonis and Dana Alberico, of Syracuse, David J. Lonis, of Washington, DC, Ryan M. Lonis and fiance, Hillary J. Bard, of Utica, Stephanie Lonis, of Florida, and Michael Lonis, of Florida; two great-grandchildren, Maddox and Jeslyn; and best lifelong friends, Florence Baker and Judy Steele. She was predeceased by her son, John "Jack" Lonis. Funeral services will be held 12 noon, Saturday, October 1, 2011, at the Applegate-Day & Enea Family Funeral Home, 4309 Acme Rd., Ilion, with Rev. John Bassett, Rector of St. Augustine's Episcopal Church, Ilion, officiating. Interment will be at Armory Hill Cemetery, Ilion. Calling hours are Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 12 noon, prior to the funeral home service. In lieu of flowers, as an expression of sympathy, memorial contributions may be made to Herkimer County Humane Society. Envelopes are available at the Applegate-Day & Enea Family Funeral Home. The Lonis family has entrusted all funeral arrangements and supervision to Funeral Director, Don Applegate. (Nov 7, 2011)
David E. Lonis IHS 1939, age 88, of 113 Elm St., Ilion, passed away on Tuesday, November 1, 2011, at The Veterans Administration Medical Center, Syracuse. David was born on January 26, 1923 in Frankfort, a son of the late David N. and Eva (Gay) Lonis. He was educated in Constableville schools. On March 11, 1943, he married Betty Frankish in Ilion, and together they enjoyed sixty-eight wonderful years until Betty's passing on September 28 of this year. He was employed by Remington Arms, Ilion. David was a longtime member of the Ilion Elks Club. Mr. Lonis was a veteran of the United States Navy, and served his country during World War II in the Pacific Theatre on a destroyer escort named the USS Charles E. Brannon. His medals included the Victory Medal and the Philippine Liberation Campaign Medal. David loved cars and animals, but his special times were spent gardening with his beloved Betty and family. Survivors include two sons, David N., of Utica, and Mark E., of Ilion; five grandchildren, Kelly L. Lonis and Dana Alberico, of Syracuse, David J. Lonis, of Washington, DC, Ryan M. Lonis and fiancée, Hillary J. Bard, of Utica, Stephanie Lonis, of Florida, and Michael Lonis, of Florida; and two great-grandchildren, Maddox and Jeslyn. He also leaves his special friends, Larry, Phyllis, and Chad Murphy, along with many nieces, nephews, and cousins. Mr. Lonis was predeceased by his beloved wife and best friend, Betty; a son, John 'Jack' and five sisters, Izatta Fifield, Verna Plunkett, Frances Wood, Thelma Braun, and Bertha Macomber. Funeral services will be held at 12 noon, on Friday, November 4, 2011, at the Applegate-Day & Enea Family Funeral Home, 4309 Acme Rd., Ilion, with Rev. John Bassett, Rector of St. Augustine's Episcopal Church, Ilion, officiating. Interment with full military honors will follow in Armory Hill Cemetery, Ilion. The family will receive relatives and friends on Friday, November 4, 2011, from 11 am to 12 Noon, prior to the funeral home service. David's fellow Elks will gather at the funeral home at 11:15 am to conduct their ritualistic service. In lieu of floral offerings, kindly consider a contribution in David's memory to the Herkimer County Humane Society, P.O. Box 73, Mohawk, NY 13407. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home. The family is being cared for by Kevin E. Enea, Funeral Director. To add to Mr. Lonis' online memorials, please visit our website at www.eneafamily.com on the internet. (Nov 7, 2011 modified March 20, 2016)
Leland E. Fort IHS 1939, 92, formerly of 80 East North Street in Ilion, passed away Friday April 8, 2011 at Folts Home in Herkimer. Lee was born July 28, 1918 in Frankfort the son of the late Leland C. and Margaret (McEleny) Fort, and received his education in the Ilion Central School System. Mr. Fort was a veteran of WWII serving in the US Army. On June 6, 1946 he was married to the former Elizabeth Wasmer in Ilion, she passed away on January 28, 1995. He was employed as a toolmaker with UNIVAC, and later as a cutter/grinder with Remington Arms in Ilion retiring several years ago. Mr. Fort attended Annunciation Church in Ilion and St Francis De Sales Church in Herkimer. During high school Lee was an avid hockey player, and enjoyed skiing and tennis, the latter two well beyond high school. He played fast pitch softball with the Remington Rand Soft Ball team, and during the 40's and 50's had his own band. Lee is survived by a son, a daughter in law, four grandchildren and 7 great grand children and his best friend "Hermie" the cat. In keeping with Lee's wishes there are no public calling hours or funeral services. The family would like to thank the staff at the Folts Home for all the kindness and compassion shown to Lee during his stay. Arrangements are with the Whiter-Hendrix Funeral Home Inc. 100 Otsego Street Ilion. On line condolences may be left at www.whitre-hendrix.com (April 11, 2011)
William L. Orick IHS 1939, Utica, NY, formerly of Glenville, NY William (Bill) Leonard Orick, 88, passed away March 10, 2011. He was born June 24, 1922, in Watertown, New York, and grew up in Ilion. He was the son of the late Will and Onna Leonard Orick of Ilion and Scotia. Bill was predeceased by his wife of 61 years, Adele Orick. He was also predeceased by his brother, George Orick, and sister-in-law, Gertrude Trudi K. Girvin Hayford. He was the father of daughters Karen (James) Arey of Ithaca, NY, and Sheila (Orick) Barrera of North Carolina, and grandfather of Joanne Jojo (Jason) Arey Gleman of Scotia, NY, and David Arey of Nutley, NJ. Other survivors include his nieces, Gail Girvin, of Scotia, and Sarah-Elizabeth Orick (Paul) Ratliff, of Puerto Rico; nephews, Gordon (Nikita) J. Girvin, of Thornwood, NY, Ben Orick, of Woodstock, NY, and Nicholas Orick, of Denver, CO; and numerous cousins. He was a Navy Air Force (mechanic) veteran of World War II. He was a graduate of the GE Apprentice program and worked in the Large Steam and Generator Department. He attended Union College. He was a self-employed master plumber for over 30 years in the Schenectady/Scotia area, retiring at 70. He was a Mason in the St. Georges Lodge #6 for 50 years. He enjoyed and supported the arts. In his spare time, he enjoyed photography, brewing beer, traveling, their English Setter dogs and using his computer. He built his own computers in the 1980s and gave them to family as gifts. He will be remembered for his good sense of humor. Notice of a private memorial will be made later. In lieu of flowers, contributions in his memory may be sent on his behalf to the Masonic Care Community of New York, in Utica, or the East Glenville Fire Department. William L. Orick Published by The Observer-Dispatch on Mar. 15, 2011. (November 19, 2021)
Marian J. (Farrington) Kasarda IHS 1939, 91, of 16 Phillip Street, Ilion, passed away Saturday, February 12, 2011 at St. Elizabeth's Medical Center with her family at her side. She was born on April 30, 1919 in Ilion, NY, the daughter of the late Wilbur and Ida Crossett Farrington. She was a 1939 graduate of Ilion High School and was a lifelong resident of Ilion. Her marriage to Francis Kasarda took place on November 28, 1947 in Utica and he passed away June 22, 1988. Marian was a member of the First Presbyterian Church of Ilion. She was a loving grandmother and enjoyed the company of her grandchildren. Her door was always open to any child in need and always provided an ear to listen. She also found much pleasure in the sport of bowling and was very active in the Ilion PTO for many years. Survivors include her daughter: Kim Maley and husband Lee of Ilion; a son: Edward Kasarda and wife Mary Kay of Newport; beloved grandchildren: Cindy, Suzy and Shawn, Steven and Heather, Christopher and Kaycie, Douglas, Matthew, Billy, Bobby and Danielle, and Russell; loving great-grandchildren: Nicole, Jocelyn, Emma, Kyle, Ryan, Colin, Braidin, and Drew. She is also survived by a brother: Ron Farrington of Herkimer and his children: Sally Ann and Bob Reardon, Ron and Anne Farrington, and a daughter-inlaw: Linda Kasarda of Ilion; sisters-in law: Sister Ancilla and Marcella; nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by a son Glendon Kasarda on March 22, 2010. A memorial service will be held at 7 pm on Tuesday, February 15, 2011 at the Enea Family Funeral Home, 4309 Acme Rd., between Ilion and Frankfort, 894-8000 with The Reverend Victor McKusick officiating. Friends and relatives may pay their respects on Tuesday from 4-7pm. Interment will be held in the Spring at the convenience of the family. In lieu of flowers, all memorial contributions may be made to The American Diabetes Association and the Ilion Ambulance Service. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home. The Kasarda family would like to thank all their dear friends on Phillip Street in Ilion for their help and also, their heartfelt gratitude to those who serve with the Ilion Fire Dept/Ambulance Service. The family is being served by Harry J. Enea, Jr. director. (Feb 21, 2011)
Ronald L. Tanner IHS 1939, a resident of Wilmington, N.C., passed away on Oct. 23, 2010, at home following a brief illness. Ronald was born and raised in Ilion on Jan. 8, 1919, to Susan (Smith) and Leslie Tanner. He served overseas in World War II as an Army staff sergeant. After returning home, he met and married Frances Michalowski, of Herkimer. Together they raised their family in upstate New York, settling in Syracuse and living there for over 30 years. Ron made his living in sales and retired in 1981. The couple moved to Bradenton, Fla., in 1989 and enjoyed living in their Florida home for many years until Frances passed away in 2007. Ron relocated shortly after to Wilmington, N.C., to be with family. Ron and Fran were married nearly 62 years. Ron was known to all as a talented carpenter and handyman. He did not stay idle very long, as he was always working on a project at home, for family or friends. When he did sit down for a while, it was usually to watch his favorite team, the Notre Dame 'Fighting Irish' play football. He was also an avid Yankees baseball fan. Ronald is survived by three children and their spouses, Ronald W. Tanner and wife, Susan, of Houston, Texas, Mary Beddard and husband, James, of Williamsburg, Va., and Barbara Tanner and husband, Robert Bateman, of Wilmington, N.C. He is also survived by six grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; and a brother, Marvin Tanner (wife Ann), of Stoughton, Wis. A special thank you to Dr. George Sylvestri, Dr. Mlot, Dr. McNulty, Beth Zappin and the services of Lower Cape Fear Hospice. Ron was very appreciative of all who were involved in his care. Funeral services will be private. Interment will be at Coastal Carolina State Veterans Cemetery in Jacksonville, N.C. (Nov 28, 2010)
Robert Carter, Jr. IHS 1939, 90, of 95 N. Fifth Ave., Ilion, died Wednesday, September 22, 2010, in Massachusetts with his family who deeply loved him. He was born in Ilion on August 16, 1920, the son of Robert and Lywena (Hughes) Carter. Robert graduated from Ilion High School in 1939 and served in the US Navy during World War II, on the USS Eastland. During his service he was involved with several notable amphibious landings and battles including the Philippines and Okinawa and a visit to Tian Xin, China, courtesy of the US Navy. Bob was employed for 44 years as a toolmaker with the Remington Arms Co., Ilion, retiring in 1983. He was a member of the First Presbyterian Church of Ilion. Robert was married to Evelyn (Foster) who preceded him in 2005. Survivors include his sons Stephen and Glenn and their wives Patrice (Meehan) and Hallie, his grandchildren Andrew and his wife Melissa, Benjamin and Katherine Carter as well as several nieces, nephews and cousins. He was predeceased by his brothers Glenn and Jack. He enjoyed bowling, skeet shooting, tennis, golf, reading newspapers and was a wealth of knowledge in particular with respect to geography and history. Bob was a warm and witty man who loved his family and friends, dogs, old cars and baseball. He loved going to lunch and dinner with friends and family. He also loved his home town Ilion which held a special place in his heart. He was a great man and he will be missed by all who had the pleasure to know him. Calling hours will be on Sunday, September 26 from 4-6 pm at the Whiter-Hendrix Funeral Home, Inc., 100 Otsego St., Ilion. The funeral service will be held at 11:00 am, Monday, September 27, from the funeral home, with Rev. Victor McKusick officiating. Interment will be in the Armory Hill Cemetery, Ilion. As an expression of sympathy, in lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation. Envelopes are available at the Whiter-Hendrix Funeral Home, Ilion. Friends may leave expressions of sympathy and light memorial candles at whiter-hendrix.com .(Oct 3, 2010)
Charles R. 'Dick' Baker IHS 1939 age 89, of 157 Prospect Ave., Ilion, passed away on Monday, Sept. 29, 2008 at the Lutheran Home in Clinton, surrounded by his loving family.Dick was born on June 9, 1919 in Herkimer, the son of the late Charles and Della (Cretzer) Baker. He was a 1939 graduate of Ilion High School and attended Cornell University. On Sept. 26, 1942 he was united in marriage to the former Florence Shaw, Dick and Florence recently celebrated their 66th wedding anniversary. In 1942, Dick enlisted in the United States Army, earning the rank of sergeant. He served with the 81st 'Wildcats' Division in the Pacific Theater and was part of the Battle of Peleliu and Anguar and the occupying force in Japan until he was honorably discharged in 1945. Following his service, Dick was employed for a brief time with Univac, he then served his community first in the Ilion Fire Department and then as superintendent of the Ilion Board of Water Commissioners, retiring in January of 1982. Dick was a member of the Ilion Elks Lodge #1444, the Ilion Winter Club, past president of the Ilion Community Club and he also held many leadership rolls in the state and national associations as water superintendent. He was also a former member of the American Legion. Above all else, Dick was a devoted family man who lived his life by the motto 'Family first, last and always.' We will treasure the memories of family celebrations, annual trips to Myrtle Beach, years of camping in=2 0the Adirondack Mountains and the special connection Dick had with the children in his life. His legacy will be defined by the values he leaves behind in the hearts of his loved ones. Dick is survived by his beloved and devoted wife of 66 years, Florence. A son and daughter-in-law, Terry and Judy Baker, Attleboro, Mass. Three daughters and a son-in-law, Cheryl and Werner Kleemann of West Henrietta, N.Y., Kathy Murphy of Ilion and Patricia Skinner of Cedarville. His 12 grandchildren, Amy (Kevin) Wilson, Kristen (John) LaBombard, Brian Kleemann, Lyndi (Vasillas) Toxavidis, Jason Baker, Karen (Patrick) Romeo, Kimberly (Paul) Passionino, Katie and Krissy Murphy and Matt, Jackie and Danny Skinner. His 10 great-grandchildren, Jenna, Alex and Ryan LaBombard, Allison and Robbie Wilson, Elizabeth Marcos, Lauren and Lilly Toxavidis, Grace and Michael Romeo. Dick is predeceased by two son-in-laws, Paul Skinner and David Murphy and his three sisters, Lolita Lohman, Rose Allen and Florence Humphrey. Funeral Services for Dick will be held on Thursday, Oct. 2, 2008 at 10 a.m. at the Whiter-Hendrix Funeral Home Inc., 100 Otsego St., Ilion. The Rev. Sarah V. Lewis will officiate. Internment will follow with military honors at the Armory Hill Cemetery in Ilion. Friends may call today from 4 to 7 p.m. a the funeral home and are asked to consider memorial donations to the Herkimer County Humane Society or the Ilion ambulance. Envelops are available at the funeral home. Online condolences may be left by going to www.whiter-hendrix.com. (Oct 12, 2008)
Dr. Donald Morgan Watkin Valedictorian IHS 1939, died in Washington DC on October 29, 2007. He was born on June 17, 1922, in Waterford, NY. Dr, Watkin was the only child of Mary Ellen (Morgan) Watkin and Earl P. Watkin, Superintendent of Ilion schools. He was a physician and medical researcher and administrator who managed the employee health division of the Federal Aviation Administration. He was a graduate of Hamilton College, Class of 1943. He earned his M.D. degree in 1946 from Harvard Medical School under the U.S. Navy's V-12 program. More on Dr. Watkin's distinguished career is available on the Hamilton College web site See below. (June 6, 2008 - modified Feb. 8, 2018)
Donald Morgan Watkin '43, a physician and medical researcher and administrator who managed the employee health division of the Federal Aviation Administration, was born on June 17, 1922, in Waterford, NY. The only child of Earl P. Watkin '12 and the former Mary Ellen Morgan, both educators, he grew up in Ilion, NY, where his father was superintendent of schools. While a junior at Ilion High School, he won a League of Nations Association essay contest, which resulted in an extensive trip to Europe and the opportunity, rare for a teenager in those days and even now, to meet political leaders and other high officials abroad. He came back to Ilion with a future in the international relations field very much in mind, and with no thought at all to a career in medicine.
Following his graduation from Ilion in 1939 as valedictorian of his class, Don Watkin came to College Hill. He joined his father's fraternity, Lambda Chi Alpha, and enthusiastically participated in the Debate Club and public speaking contests, as well as campus publications and Hamilton's newly launched radio station, WHC. He served as managing editor of Hamilton Life and newscaster on WHC in addition to membership on the Interfraternity Council. Elected to both the forensic and journalism honoraries Delta Sigma Rho and Pi Delta Epsilon, he also graced the Dean's List for four years and was graduated with honors in biology in 1943. By that time, "the chief globe-trotter" of the class, influenced in part by his introduction on the Hill to the biological sciences, had embraced medicine as his future career.
In the midst of World War II, Don Watkin entered Harvard Medical School under the auspices of the U.S. Navy's V-12 program. He earned his M.D. degree in 1946, and on June 22 of that year he was married to Virginia Guild in Brooklyn. Specializing in nutrition and gerontology, he engaged in postgraduate training in clinical and research medicine until 1951. That year, he began his long career with the federal government in the U.S. Public Health Service as a senior investigator in the gerontology section of the National Heart Institute in Baltimore, MD. He was subsequently employed for six years as an investigator in the metabolism section of the National Cancer Institute in Washington, DC, and as attending physician at the National Institutes of Health's clinical center in Bethesda, MD.
Beginning in 1960, Dr. Watkin was able to resume his "globe-trotting" as a nutrition advisor to the Pan American Health Organization in Mexico City and consultant to the Interdepartmental Committee on Nutrition for National Defense in countries ranging from Brazil and Peru to Egypt, Iran, and Pakistan. He assisted in numerous international health and nutrition surveys and directed those carried out in Libya, the eastern Caribbean, and Paraguay. Don Watkin also served as an associate professor of nutrition at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and acquired a master's degree in public health from Harvard University in 1965. He chaired the panel on aging of the White House Conference on Food, Nutrition and Health (1969-70) as well as the technical committee on nutrition of the White House Conference on Aging (1970-77).
Dr. Watkin, who, by 1966, was with the Veterans Administration in Washington as chief of research in nutrition, gerontology, and gastroenterology, served for a year (1968-69) as field director of the New York State nutrition program and health survey. From 1973 to 1978, he directed the national nutrition program for the elderly in the Department of Health, Education and Welfare. In 1979, he became a research professor of health sciences for George Washington University School of Medicine, and in 1981, he began the final phase of his 42 years in federal service when appointed chief of the occupational health division for the Federal Aviation Administration.
Until his retirement as manager of the employee health branch in 1995, Dr. Watkin was responsible for the health and health-awareness programs for all of the FAA's 50,000-person workforce. In the early 1980s, after President Ronald Reagan had fired all the air traffic controllers who had gone on strike, he was involved in the huge task of medically evaluating some 8,000 newly recruited replacement trainees. Through the years, he continued to lecture and consult abroad, including China under sponsorship of the World Health Organization. A past chairman of the Explorers Club's Washington Group, he also trod the path of adventure by making several trips to Antarctica and other remote parts of the world. Often joining him in his overseas jaunts was his wife Virginia, who continued to pursue a distinguished career of her own as a partner in the prestigious Washington, DC, law firm of Covington & Burling.
All of Don Watkin's remarkably varied activities and achievements reflected his highly methodical mind, devoted to precision. They included authorship or co-authorship of more than 125 articles on nutrition, gerontology, and public health in medical and scientific journals, as well as the Handbook of Nutrition, Health, and Aging (1983). Amidst his myriad activities he always remained close to Hamilton, which he credited with providing him with "the blueprint for an optimum life." A devoted supporter of the College in many volunteer capacities, including fund-raising activities and membership on the Alumni Council, he also served his Class as a dedicated and ever-faithful correspondent for this magazine for more than 25 years. In 2005, he defied ill health and physical infirmities to attend the dedication of Hamilton's new Science Center. Fittingly in recognition of his pioneering research on vitamin B-12, nutrition, and aging, an area in the Center has been named in his honor.
Donald M.Watkin, despite years of illness and physical debilitation, maintained a sunny disposition, a sharp mind, and a lively interest in the world's happenings until the very end. He died in Washington of complications of diabetes on October 29, 2007. In addition to his wife of 61 years, he is survived by two sons, Henry M. and Edward G. Watkin '79; two daughters, Mary Ellen Watkin and Ann K. Watkin-Statham; and four grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.
Vivian M. (Day) Schierholtz IHS 1939, 86, of North Fifth Avenue, Ilion, a lifelong Ilion resident, passed away unexpectedly Thursday, Sept. 13, 2007, at St. Elizabeth Medical Center, Utica, with her loving family by her side. Vivian was born Aug. 12, 1921, in Ilion, daughter of the late Roy C. and Margaret (Farrell) Day. She attended Ilion schools and was a graduate of Ilion High School 'Class of 1939.' On Oct. 20, 1945, she was united in marriage to Charles R. Schierholtz at the Annunciation Parish house. They shared a loving and dedicated union of 48 years until Chuck's passing on June 13, 1993.Primarily a dedicated homemaker, firefighter's wife, mother and grandmother, most recently she was employed by the Ilion School District in the cafeteria for many years until her retirement, a job she truly enjoyed. Early in her life she worked at Baker's Pharmacy, another job she loved.She was a member of the Church of the Annunciation, at one time volunteered for the Democratic Committee, enjoyed cooking, and taking care of her home and pool which she loved to swim in. She was an avid supporter of the 'Golden Bombers,' always seen in the bleachers rooting her boys and girls on. Vivian enjoyed reminiscing about the old days and had a very sharp memory. She could remember people and stories from years ago. Recently, Vivian would travel to her daughters' homes, spending holidays and extended vacations with them, which she and they loved. Her family was her life, and she was always there for all of them. She will be dearly missed by all. Survivors include her two daughters and sons-in-law, Charleen and her husband Robert 'Bob' LaGasse of Stow, Ohio, and Lynn and her husband Kyle Jenks of Clifton Park; four cherished grandchildren, Robert LaGasse of Birmingham, Ala., Bill LaGasse and his wife Lindsay of Akron, Ohio, Mike LaGasse of Cincinnati, Ohio, and Matt and Heidi LaGasse of Newburgh Heights, Ohio; her sister-in-law and very special friend, Charlotte Day of Ilion; her brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Bud and Betty Schierholtz of South Carolina; several nieces, nephews, cousins, longtime friends and neighbors, including her close and dear friends, Martha Bechard, John Gilmartin and Marion Edwards. She was predeceased by her husband, Charles R. Schierholtz in 1993; three brothers, Roy, Bob and Jack Day; and one sister, Marion Cooper.Family and friends are invited to visitation Sunday, Sept. 16, from 3-6 p.m. at the Enea Family Funeral Home, 4309 Acme Road, between Ilion and Frankfort. Vivian's funeral services will be held Monday commencing at 9 a.m. at the Enea Family Funeral Home and 10 a.m. at the Church of the Annunciation, where Father Anthony Barratt, pastor, will celebrate a Mass of Christian Burial assisted by Deacon Jim Bower. Procession for interment in Armory Hill Cemetery will follow. All arrangements are under the direction of Vivian's nephew, 'Johnny' Day. In lieu of floral offerings please consider memorial contributions inVivian's memory to the Ilion Ambulance Fund. (Sept 15, 2007 modified March 20, 2016)
Robert K. 'Bob' Roe IHS 1939, age 86, of Concord Street, Ilion, a lifelong Ilion resident, passed away Tuesday afternoon, Aug. 14, 2007, at the Mohawk Valley Nursing Home, Ilion. Bob was born on Feb. 14, 1921 in Ilion, the son of the late Frank and Mary (Kenyon) Roe. Bob attended Ilion schools, graduating from Ilion High School. He also attended Utica College. Bob was a proud veteran of World War II (1942-1946), serving as a Sergeant with the U.S. Army Air Corps in the Asiatic-Pacific Theater of War. He was awarded the following decorations and citations in recognition of his service to our country. The American Service Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Service Medal, Good conduct Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal. On June 26, 1948 he was united in marriage to Elizabeth 'Betty' Madigan in Ilion and shared a very special and devoted union of 59 years. Bob was employed by the Remington Rand/UNIVAC Co. in Ilion and Utica as a tool and dye inspector for 37 dedicated years. He last worked at the Remington Arms Gun Plant in Ilion also as a tool and dye inspector, retiring in 1985 with nine years of service for the 'Arms.' A Roman Catholic, Bob was a parishioner at the Church of the Annunciation, formerly an active member of the Ilion Knights of Columbus Sacred Heart Council 518, the Ilion-Frankfort Post 518 Veterans of Foreign Wars, and a former member of the Herkimer County Family Caregivers. Bob was a devoted and loving husband, father, and grandfather satisfied in that role and working hard to care for them. Survivors include his wife, Elizabeth 'Betty' at home; three daughters and one son-in-law, Christine Roe of Ilion, Cheryl and Constantine Arcella of Garden City, Long Island, N.Y., and Ms. Betty Bowman of Ilion; three cherished grandchildren, Charles Roberts III, Jaclyn Roberts, and Francis Bowman; one brother, Frank Roe of Herkimer; his sister-in-law, Jean Madigan of Ilion; several nieces, nephews, and cousins. He was predeceased by his beloved son, Mark Andrew Roe in 1990, and his sister Dorothy Krawczyk. Bob's funeral services will be held Saturday, Aug. 18, commencing at 10:30 a.m. at the Applegate-Day and Enea Family Funeral Home, 102 West St., Ilion and 11 a.m. at the Church of the Annunciation, Ilion, where Father Anthony Barratt and Deacon Jim Bower will celebrate a Mass of Christian Burial. Procession to Calvary Cemetery, Herkimer, will follow Mass. Bob will be laid to rest beside his son Mark. Full military honors will be accorded at the grave. Family and friends are invited to visitation Saturday from 9:30-10:30 a.m. prior to Bob's funeral services at the Applegate-Day & Enea Funeral Home, Ilion By request of Bob's family, please omit floral offerings and consider memorials in Bob's name to the Herkimer County Catholic Charities or the Central New York Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired. Donation envelopes will be available at the funeral home or church. To sign Bob's online register, send a letter of condolence to his family, or share a special memory, go to www.applegateandday.com on the Internet. (August 19, 2007 modified March 20, 2016)
Robert E. 'Bob' Whittemore IHS 1939, a newspaperman in New York state for more than 60 years, died Wednesday, July 5, 2006 at his home in Oneonta after a long battle with cancer. He was 84. Bob was born Sept. 28, 1921, in Utica, son of Ernest and Minnie (Monroe) Whittemore. The family moved to Ilion when he was 3 years old. He married Betty Lou Sprague of Ilion in Savannah, Ga., on July 24,1943. He is survived by his wife, Betty Lou of Oneonta, two daughters, Barbara (Joe) Stanton of Otego, Bethany (Terry) Vargason ofOswego, and a son, Brian (Jan Best), of Prior Lake, Minn. A younger son, Brad, and his wife Charlene died in a fire in 1979. He is also survived by six grandchildren, Erik (Amy) Whittemore of Marietta, Ga., Lori (Matt) Mannina of Otego, Kevin Stanton of Otego, Ian (Amy) Whittemore of Kennesaw, Ga., Kyle Vargason of Hermosa Beach, Calif., and Derrick Vargason of Portland, Oregon, and six great grandchildren, Ashley and Sarah Mannina, Alex and Emily Whittemore, Kylee Stanton, and Nate Whittemore. He is also survived by a nephew, Jeffrey Whittemore of Dolgeville. He was preceded in death by a brother, Harold Whittemore. Bob was a veteran of World War II, having served with armored divisions in the European Theater, earning five battle stars. He began his newspaper career with the Utica Observer Dispatch in 1938 covering high school football in the Mohawk Valley. He joined his brother, Harold, who had purchased the weekly Ilion Sentinel, in 1950. When the brothers decided to close The Sentinel, Bob became sports editor of the Oneonta Daily Star in 1954. He was transferred in 1957 to Endicott as editor of the former Endicott Daily Bulletin. He returned to The Oneonta Daily Star in 1961 and was sports editor and then news editor of that newspaper. Bob also worked on the Utica Newspapers copy desk, was editor of the Evening Sun in Norwich, worked on the sports staff at the Press in Binghamton and was editor of the Palladium-Times in Oswego. He won several awards for sports writing, for page layout and for his column, "Rambling." Bob wrote two books, "All We Had Was Us," the story of the Milford Macs baseball team; and "Baseball Town," a history of pro baseball in Oneonta, featuring the Oneonta Yankees. Both sold out. Bob was a member of a very special group called The Beavers, friends since high school in Ilion, and is survived by Beavers Frank Hart, Kink Steber, William Fay, Jack Berkemeyer, and Lynn Coyle and was preceded in death by Tom Lester and Vernon Cool. In lieu of flowers contributions may be made to Catskill Area Hospice or the charity of your choice. Funeral services will be at 5 p.m. Sunday, July 9, 2006 at the Lewis, Hurly, and Pietrobono Funeral Home, 51 Dietz Street, Oneonta 13820. Calling hours will begin at 4 p.m. Burial will be at a later date at the convenience of the family. (September 7, 2006)
Genevieve M. 'Jan' (Joy) Bishop IHS 1939, 86, 11 Brookside Place, Mohawk, passed away Friday, June 16, 2006, at Bassett Hospital, Cooperstown. She was born Jan. 10, 1920, in the town of Frankfort, the daughter of the late Joseph and Jennie Smaldone Joy. Jan was a 1939 graduate of the Ilion High School. In 1945, she married Paul G. Bishop in Connecticut. He passed away in 1972. Mrs. Bishop was employed as an executive secretary with Union Fork and Hoe in Frankfort. In later years she was involved with the Boy Scouts of America and the United Way. Most recently she was employed as the clerk at the Whiffletree Motel Inn in Ilion for two and one-half years. Mrs. Bishop was the former secretary-treasurer of the Mountain View Memorial Gardens Cemetery in the town of Little Falls, former secretary of the Mohawk Valley Business Women's Club, former secretary of the Herkimer County Historical Society and a former member of the Audubon Society. Jan is survived by a son and daughter-in-law, Paul G. Bishop Jr. and his wife Susan Heckamn of Frura Bush, N.Y. and a granddaughter, Katy. She was predeceased by two sisters, Rose Joy and Marguerite Johnson; two brothers, Louis and James Joy. In keeping with Mrs. Bishop's wishes, the funeral service will be held at the convenience of the family. There are no calling hours. Friends are asked to consider memorials to the Herkimer County Historical Society in Jan's memory. Funeral arrangements are with the Whiter-Hendrix Funeral Home, 100 Otsego St., Ilion. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home. (September 7, 2006)
Thomas E. 'Tom' Lester IHS 1939, age 84, formerly a longtime resident of Ilion and Oneida Lake, passed away Thursday, April 7, 2005, at the Presbyterian Home, Town of New Hartford. Tom was born August 17, 1920 in Detroit, Michigan, son of the late Elliott and Frances (VanDelinder) Lester. He was a graduate of Ilion High School. Tom was a proud WWII Veteran serving with the US Navy from 1942-46 as an Aviation Machinist Mate Third Class with the VPB 209 Squadron. He was the recipient of the Combat AirCrew Insignia, American Theater Ribbon, Victory Medal, Good Conduct Medal, and on October 3, 2004 was presented the NYS Medal of Merit at his VFW Post. On November 13, 1948, he was united in marriage to Carolyn Eysaman at the Blessed Sacrament Church in Mohawk. They shared a special and devoted union of almost 47 years until Carolyn's passing on September 16, 1995. He was employed as a toolmaker at Remington Arms Co., Ilion, retiring in 1980. At one time, Tom was co-owner and co-operated Reynolds and Lester Garage in Ilion for many years. He later owned and operated T. Lester and Sons of Ilion. In his early years, he attended the Ilion Baptist Church, and later attended the Church of the Annunciation in Ilion and St. Mary's of the Lake in Verona Beach. A dedicated and concerned citizen, Tom was elected as a Trustee in the Village of Ilion for many years, and also served as Mayor. He was a former member of the Ilion Light Commission, a 58 year member of the Ilion Volunteer Fire Dept., a former member of the Volunteer Fire Dept.Marching Band, the Ilion Moose Lodge 1010, Ilion American Legion Post 920, Life member of the Yorkville VFW Post 6001, Former President and Secretary of the Kyser Beach Association, a charter member of the Do Nothing Club, a member of a special group of friends called "The Beavers," and at one time, was an avid bowler and softball player. Tom was known as a devoted and dedicated family man. He loved to laugh and enjoyed the camaraderie of his family and many acquaintances. Surviving are his two daughters and son-in-law, Barb Lester of Oneida Lake, and Carol(Lester) Swart and her husband, Keith of FL; four sons and daughters-in-law, John and Diane Lester of FL, Thomas II and Cathleen Lester, Charles "Chuck" and Marion Lester, all of Ilion, David and Pamela Lester of Ohio; 17 grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; two sisters and one brother-in-law, Betty Pozniak of Frankfort, and Leola and Robert "Bob" Reynolds of Ilion; and several nieces, nephews; and many friends, including his special friend, Father Robert Bogan. Family and friends are invited to Tom's calling hours Sunday, April 10, from 3 to 6 p.m. at the Applegate & Day Funeral Home, 102 West St., Ilion. Funeral services will be held Monday, commencing at 9 a.m. at the Applegate & Day Funeral Home and 10 a.m. at the Church of the Annunciation where a Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated by Father Anthony Barratt, Pastor. Procession to Mohawk Cemetery for interment with Full Military Honors accorded by the US Navy will follow Mass. The Ilion Volunteer Fire Dept. will pay their respects 5 p.m., Sunday, and the Yorkville VFW Post service will commence Sunday, 5:30 p.m., both at the funeral home. Tom's family would like to extend their heartfelt thanks to everyone at the Presbyterian Home and Dr. Taylor for the excellent and professional loving care provided during his stay. In lieu of floral offerings, please consider memorials in Tom's name to the Ilion Volunteer Fire Dept. or the Presbyterian Home. Donation envelopes are available at the funeral home. Those wishing to add to Tom's on-line memorial or send a letter of condolence to his family may do so by going to www.applegateandday.com on the Internet. (April 9, 2005)
Henry F. Marks IHS 1939, age 83, died Saturday, February 19, 2005 at Albany Medical Center after a long illness. Born in Ilion, N.Y., Mr. Marks was the son of the late Minnie (Jones) and Howard Marks. Mr. Marks interrupted his college education to serve his country in the U.S. Army during World War II. He was a member of the local chapter of the Veterans of the Battle of the Bulge. Following the war, Henry returned to Rider College where he met his wife of 56 years, Eleanore Case Marks. He was a purchasing agent for Sterling Winthrop in Rensselaer, retiring in 1983. Henry's Welsh background showed in his love of music. He was a 41 year member and past president of the Mendelssohn Club of Albany and a tenor soloist at the First United Methodist Church of Delmar. Henry built the house where he lived for 52 years and enjoyed volunteering for Habitat for Humanity. He also loved building clocks and gardening. A special pleasure for Henry was helping to restore his 1930 Model A Roadster. After driving for several years for the Red Cross, he drove a Town of Bethlehem Senior Van for many years and also delivered Meals On Wheels. In addition to his wife Eleanore, Henry is survived by a son, Tom (Wendy) Marks of Delmar; a daughter, Cheryl Stees (The Rev. Dr. Ray R. Stees) of Colonie; a sister, M. Elizabeth Marks of Herkimer, N.Y.; and two grandsons, Greg and Eric Stees. He was predeceased by a daughter, Cynthia Marks in 1999. Relatives and friends are invited to call at the Applebee Funeral Home, 403 Kenwood Avenue, Delmar on Wednesday, February 23, 2005 from 12 to 2 p.m. and may attend the funeral services which will be held at 2 p.m. Burial will be in Bethlehem Cemetery, Delmar. In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made to Bethlehem Senior Projects, Inc., 445 Delaware Avenue, Delmar, NY 12054. (Feb 22, 2005)
Fred A. Limpert IHS 1939, passed away April 6th 2004. Thanks so much for your kindness during the Celebration in October 2002 when we came to the reunion from Arizona. We live at 10701 W. Pinion Lane, Sun City, AZ 85373-1831.(623) 974-0007. The viewing is at Lundberg's Mortuary 1121 Michigan Ave Youngtown, AZ. Apr. 9th 4-7 PM. (623)979-7111. The memorial service is at 10 AM April 15th at St. Christopher Episcopal Church 10233 W. Peoria Sun City, AZ 85351 (623) 972-1109. Marti Limpert email (April 8, 2004)
Richard W. Sprague IHS 1939, 83, formerly of Ilion, passed away Thursday, February 12, 2004 at the Mohawk Valley Nursing Home. He was born March 4, 1920 in Ilion, the son of the late Clarence and Jennie Wilcox Sprague and was a graduate of Ilion High School. He served with the US Army during WW II and in August of 1952, he married the former Marjorie L. Hoyt. Mr. Sprague was employed as a machine setter with Remington Arms in Ilion, retiring in 1980. Mr. Sprague was a Methodist, and was a member of the National American Legion. Dick is survived by his wife, Marjorie, of Ilion; his children, David and Christine Sprague of Restin, VA, John and Tammy Sprague of Cave Creek, AZ, Wayne and Maria Mumford of East Haven, CT, Charles and Pam Mumford of East Hartford, CT, Linda and Yuon Thierault of Prospect, CT, Barbara Perkett of Frankfort, and June Lewis of Ilion; his two sisters and a brother-in-law, Joan Ward of Watkins Glen, NY, and Betty Lou and Robert Whittemore of Oneonta; also several grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by a brother, Charles Sprague; and a sister, Edith Graves. A private funeral service will be held at the convenience of the family, with final interment in the Kinne Cemetery, Town of Litchfield, in the spring. In keeping with Mr. Sprague's wishes, there are no calling hours. Friends are asked to consider memorials to the Mohawk Valley Nursing Home in Dick's memory. Envelopes are available at the funeral home or may be sent to Mohawk Valley Nursing Home, 99 Sixth Ave., Ilion, NY 13357. Arrangements are with the Whiter-Hendrix Funeral Home, 100 Otsego St., Ilion. (February 19, 2004)
Betty L. (Prosser) Begert IHS 1939, 81, Topeka, died Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2003, at a Lawrence hospital. Mrs. Begert had worked for a state senator in Albany, N.Y., several years ago. She was born July 17, 1921, in Utica, N.Y., to Verne and Lykel Namminga Prosser. She graduated from high school in Ilion, N.Y., and attended a business school. Mrs. Begert was a member of the Kansas and the National Republican parties, Topeka Country Club, Junior League of Topeka, the U.S. Golf Association, Women's Golf Association and Westminster Presbyterian Church. She did volunteer work for Stormont-Vail Regional Health Center. She married Capt. John Frederick Begert Jr. on Sept. 23, 1944, in St. Augustine, Fla. He died July 3, 1994. Mrs. Begert also was preceded in death by an infant son and an infant daughter. Survivors include two sons, Matthew Begert, El Segundo, Calif., and Mark Begert, Lawrence; a brother, Duane Prosser, Punta Gorda, Fla.; and four grandchildren. Services and burial will be private. Memorial contributions may be made to the Kansas Sheriff's Association, P.O. Box 1853, Salina, 67402-1853. Penwell-Gabel Mid-Town Chapel is in charge of arrangements. (updated Nov 28, 2010)
William L. Prior IHS 1939, age 80, East North Street, Ilion, passed away Tuesday, January 15, 2002 at Faxton Hospital, Utica. He was born June 24, 1921 in Ilion, the son of the late Samuel and Dora Prior. Bill was a 1939 graduate of Ilion High School, and attended the Simmons School of Embalming in Syracuse. He served with the US Army during WW II. On March 26, 1948 he married the former Ferne Oswald in Syracuse. She passed away on November 10, 2000. Mr. Prior was first employed as a guard with Chicago Pneumatic, and then as Plant Operator with the Ilion Water Commission for 23 years, retiring several years ago. Bill was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Ilion, the Ilion Lodge 591 F & AM for 50 years, a charter member of the Ilion Winter Club, and was an avid golfer and bowler. He enjoyed his grandchildren and also enjoyed playing pitch and pinochle. Bill is survived by a son and daughter-in-law, Dennis and Kathleen Prior of Ilion; three grandchildren, Heather! of Ilion, Sheri of Ilion, and Dennis, Jr., serving with the USN Sea Bees in Rota, Spain; two great-grandchildren, Dylan and Damian of Ilion; two sisters and brothers-in-law, Beverly and Frank Baer of Utica, Sandy and Dave Alm, of Chittenango; several cousins, Carlton and Mary Prior of Clayville, Jack Price and Joan, of Waterville, Ed Prior of Clayville, James and Tony Burke, of Cedarville, Brad Burke, Jr. of Cedarville, also several nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by a brother, Louis Prior. Memorial services for Mr. Prior will be held on Saturday, January 19, 2002 at 3:00 from the Whiter-Hendrix Funeral Home, 100 Otsego Street, Ilion with the Rev. Robert Wollaber, officiating. Interment will be in the Norwich Corners Cemetery in the spring. Friends may call Saturday, January 19, 2002 from 1-3 p.m. at the funeral home. Friends are asked to consider memorials to the Ilion Ambulance. (January 18, 2002)
Dick Deming IHS 1939, passed away on December 15, 1998 at his home in Lynchburg, Virginia. He was born in Ilion, NY the son of Milton and Ethel Kibbe Deming. He was a retired engineer with G.E. for over 30 years. He was an active member of the West Lynchburg Baptist Church where he served as Deacon, choir member and Sunday School Teacher. He was also an active volunteer at the Virginia Baptist Hospital and a 50 year member of the Olive Branch Masonic Lodge in Ilion, NY. Dick was a First Lieutenant in the U.S. Army Air Corps where he flew as a fighter pilot with the 14th Airforce, "Flying Tigers" under General Chenault's command in China during WWII. He was awarded the Air medal and the Distinguished Flying Cross. He is survived by his wife, the former Doris McCorn, class of 1942, and two children, Rev. David Deming and wife Sandra and Debra Deming Jennings and two grandchildren Adam and Elizabeth Deming.He is also survived by his brother Bob Deming, class of 1953 and sister Carolyn Deming Bayer, class of 1947. (Jan 13, 2001)
Harold C. 'Hitch' Hitchcock IHS 1939, age 80, of the C. M. Tucker, Jr./ Dowdy Gardner Nursing Care Center, died Tuesday, February 15, 2000. Born in Ilion, NY, he was a son of the late Fayette and Mabel Joesbury Hitchcock. He was retired from the Utica Tool Company and was an Army Veteran of WWII. He was a member of the Elks Club, the American Legion, Post #4, Orangeburg, the Ilion Winter Club, and the First Baptist Church of Orangeburg. In his early years, Mr. Hitchcock played professional baseball and was active in other sports. He was also an avid hunter, fisherman and golfer. Surviving are his wife of 56 years, Frances Getman Hitchcock; son and daughter-in-law, Gary and Linda Hitchcock of Cordova, SC; daughters and sons-in-law, Gail and Scott Hosick of Columbia, and Pamela and Edwin Eargle of Columbia; sister and brother-in-law, Betty and Hirim Speece of Speculator, NY; six grandchildren, Jennifer Culler, Amy Union, Jill Thompson, Sid Eargle, Clare Eargle and Melanie Kittrell; and nieces and nephews. Memorials may be made to the Alzheimers Foundation, South Carolina Chapter. (February 28, 2000)
George W. Smithson IHS 1939, 79, passed away Saturday, August 1, 1998 at Faxton Hospital. Mr. Smithson graduated from Ilion High School in 1939. He was a veteran of the World War II, serving in the U.S. Army Air Corps in the 555th Squadron of the 386th Bomber Group. He flew in 55 missions in B-26's, while stationed in Belgium. Mr. Smithson was a process engineer at Sperry-Rand Univac, in Ilion and Utica, for 37 years. Most recently, he worked at Bendix Corp., Utica, retiring in 1981. Mr. Smithson is survived by his wife, Jeanette; his son and daughter-in-law, David and Mary Anne Smithson; his daughter, Debra Wright of East Herkimer; three grandchildren, his sister, Hilda Wright, several nieces, nephews and in-laws. Funeral arrangements were by the Applegate & Day Funeral Home. (August 5, 1998)
Bombers Buzz Website ....
William Orick, email, from Scotia, NY, re-registered. (February 8, 2003)
Frederick 'Fritz' Limpert, retired Major & Hydrologist, attended the mega-reunion from Sun City, AZ. (September 4, 2002)
"I graduated from Washington State University in 1943 with A BS in Civil Engineering. Having taken four years of ROTC and joining the Enlisted Reserve, I never had a draft status. I went from college to Engineer OCS, at Fort Belvoir, Virginia and became a Second Lieutenant. Thanks to my rifle club activities at high school, I had one of the highest scores on the rifle range up to that time. I was assigned to Weapons and Tactics. However, after going home for a short leave, when I got back to Belvoir, my old Friend Col. Jess Buchanan, Former Dean of Engineering and President of the University of Idaho, asked me to join him on the staff of Research and Training Publications. I agreed and ended writing technical manuals, most on bridging, both fixed and floating. If you were good, after a year you were locked in the position. At this point, I married Pat Cheney, from Western Washington. We just celebrated our 54th anniversary. I ended with 5 years Active Duty and 18 years Reserve and retired as a Major."
"From the military, I went to work on the Columbia Basin and Grand Coulee Dam. After 16 years, I moved to the Bonneville Power Administration, as Chief Hydrologist. I worked with the Corps of Engineers and BC Hydro people, laying out the Hydromet Network of river gauges, rain gauges and snow courses, for the Coulumbia River Treaty."
"I retired in 1977, with 23 years Military and 35 years Civil Service. Pat and I now live in Sun City, AZ. and because of illness, she is now in a nursing home." [Pat passed away September 25, 1999. Fritz married Marti L. Luber, 62, on March 24, 2002 and they will be attending the mega reunion in October - added August 28, 2002]
"I have been corresponding with some of the class members, Thomas Lester and Leonard Hagen for the past year, or so. I have been trying for some time to locate Keith Smith, page 18 of the Mirror. So far, no luck." (original posting March 17, 1998 - updated August 28, 2002)
Pauline Ennis Lauer, Herkimer, NY, attended the mega-reunion. (June 11, 2002)
Vivian Day Schierholtz, Ilion, NY, attended the mega-reunion. (June 5, 2002)
Warren Beckwith, from Utica, NY, attended the mega-reunion. (June 3, 2002)
Fred 'Neil' White, Retired, email, from New Smyrna Beach, FL, registered. (updated April 18, 2000)
"I just wanted to add some more information regarding my background while living in Ilion and attending school until l937. Due to my Mother's ill health, my family and I moved to Old Forge, NY and continued my education at the Town of Webb High School, graduating in l939. I have completely lost track of all my school mates in Ilion, although I returned to Ilion after a stint in the Air Force from l94l-l945. Up until my retirement, I worked as a Prudential Agent and retired in l979--and have done very little since. We lived at 357 Second Street in Ilion, rearing two Sons, Mark, a Colonel in the Air Force and Kirk, a employee of the New York State Medical Department. Both Sons graduated from Ilion in 1964 and 1969. Mark graduated from the Univesity of Toronto and a masters from Catholic University. Kirk graduated from Union college in Schenectady NY and furthered his education at Syracuse University. We have been living off and on at our present address since l980, and moved here permanently in May, l999. Our phone number is 904-428-9186. My e-mail address is email@example.com, and I invite any former classmates to contact me. Aileen, I love your website and refer to it almost every day. I married a childhood sweetheart from Old Forge, a relationship that has lasted 54 years, and she is still my sweetheart. --------" - Neil
Raymond Prell, email, from Zephyrhills, FL, registered in the directory. (July 22, 1998)
"I am not an alumnus of IHS, but I was born in Ilion & started school at West Hill. Also I attended Morgan St. school several times. My Jr. high & freshman years were spent at IHS bldg."
"I left Ilion right after my first yr. of H.S. to go to my grandfather's place at Blue Mtn. Lake, N.Y. I finished H.S. at Indian Lake Central, Indian Lake, N.Y. Class of '39."
"Of course I know (knew) lots of Ilion people. I still see some of them whenever I get up that way. ( I live in FL. now )"
"I do want to commend you on your efforts to maintain the dandy Web pages etc. I do enjoy them, especially the pics of the 1941 staff. "Goosie" sure was different!!!! And how! She did have a very kind side too. I remember that one June, she bought a kid a suit so that he would look like the other kids at graduation." - Ray
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