Ilion High School

Class of 1933

Alumni News

1933 Mirror Cover

Digitized Class Yearbook....

Senior Class Book 1933 Ilion High School from the New York Heritage digital Ilion Free Public Library Yearbooks collection. Link opens in new browser tab. (added March 24, 2021)


Class History....

Now everything you wanted to know about the IHS Class of 1933 is at your published in the 1933 Senior Class Book Class History.


Class Roster....

Class Roster, Officers and Honor Students, as published in the "1933 Senior Class Book", are available on the 1933 Class Roster page. (added December 2, 2021).


Class Historical Newspaper Articles....

     Newspaper articles about the IHS Class of 1933 (added November 5, 2022)



Robert Meehan Albany College of Pharmacy Yearbook 1939

Robert F. Meehan - IHS 1933

IHS 1933 alumnus, Robert F. Meehan, was among the graduates who pursued a career in pharmacy and were featured in the November 2020 Cover Story. His education, career and obituary were published as Meehan Pharmacists. (November 27, 2020)


Colonel John Neary Davis....

IHS Class of 1933 John Neary Davis
IHS Class of 1933 John Neary Davis

John Davis graduated from Ilion High School in 1933. He studied at Annapolis Training School to prepare for entrance to the West Point Military Academy. He attended, with other West Point cadets, the Inaugural Day parade for Franklin Roosevelt, in Washington DC, on January 20, 1937.

Major John Davis received a serious leg wound while leading his battalion to action in Sicily on August 2, 1943. He spent weeks in Army hospitals in North Africa and finally in Fort Devens, Massachusetts. The wound severed a nerve leading to the foot and Army doctors expected it would take a long time to heal. He was granted a 30-day leave to be with his parents, at their Old Forge Road home. He was awarded the Silver Star Citation and the Purple Heart medal for his actions during battle. He was accompanied from Fort Devens by his wife, the former Alberta Christie. His father-in-law was Colonel A. E. Christie who was a Japanese prisoner of war in Formosa.

Major John Davis Wounded in Battle

Lt. Col. John N. Davis Honored

Korean War - April 9, 1953

The Ilion Sentinel July 28, 1953

Lt. Col. John N. Davis - Medals

Lt. Col. John N. Davis received the Bronze Star in Africa and the Oak Leaf Cluster in Italy. After he was wounded during World War II, he returned to America and attended Ohio State University, where he received his master's degree in military psychology. He taught at West Point and graduated from the West Point command and staff school at Fort Leavenworth. In August of 1952, he left for Korea. Lt. Col. Davis received a second Oak Leaf Cluster for logistical work in Tageu, Korea in April 1953.

1959 Movie - Pork Chop Hill
1959 Movie - Pork Chop Hill

The July 28, 1953 Ilion Sentinel reported that Lt. Col. John N. Davis received his third Oak Leaf Cluster. He was congratulated by Maj. Gen. Arthur G. Trudeau. Trudeau was commander of the 7th Infantry Division in Korea. Col. Davis was also appointed acting chief of staff of the 7th Division.

Lt. Col. Davis was a Battalion commander in the battle of Pork Chop Hill during the Korean War. He lost most of his men fighting the Chinese. The battle was featured in a 1959 movie, Pork Chop Hill, starring Gregory Peck. The actor Barry Atwater portrayed Lt. Col. John Davis.

Colonel John Neary Davis, 70, 570-316 Village Place, Longwood, died Thursday, December 11, 1986. Born in Bridgeport, Conn., he moved to Longwood from Stuart in 1985. He was retired from the Army, was a retired business professor and was a member of Episcopal Church of the Resurrection, Longwood. He was a member of the Academy of Management, the Institute of Management Science and the Association of the U.S. Army. Survivors: wife, Alberta; son, Cmdr. John Phillip, Virginia Beach, Va.; daughter, Patricia D. Pickett, Avondale, Pa.; sisters, Lydia Schaughnessy, Ilion, N.Y., Winifred Metter, Vero Beach; five grandchildren. Baldwin-Fairchild Funeral Home, Forest City. (May 30, 2016)


Class President....

The president of the Class of 1933, Francis Scott, was ordained a Catholic Priest and served as Assistant Pastor of St. Francis de Sales Parish in Herkimer, NY. Father Scott celebrated his first mass, the nuptial mass of Ilion alumnus, Miss Helen Sullavin, of 137 East North Street, to Charles Kelly. The Mass was held at Annunciation Church, Ilion, on June 21, 1941. His older brother, Rev. Thomas Scott was also a Catholic Priest. They were the sons of Mr. and Mrs. William Scott, 17 East River St., Ilion, NY. See - Illion NY Sentinel 1941-1943 - 0195.pdf and Utica NY Observer 1942 - 3124.pdf (Jan 31, 2015)



Edward W. 'Skip' Allen, IHS 1933, age 101, of Herkimer, lifelong resident of the area, passed away on Tuesday, November 29, 2016 in Galax, VA. He was born May 16, 1915 in Herkimer, son of the late Edward C. and Carrie (Stadler) Allen. Skip was raised in Ilion and attended local schools graduating from Ilion High School in 1933. Following graduation, he joined the Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC) for two years (1933 and 34) during the Great Depression. Skip enlisted and served four years (1942-45) during WW II as a Sergeant in the Army Air Corp, 6th Tactical Air Communications Squadron supporting the 84th Infantry Division. He received five Campaign Stars during his time in the service. Skip was employed as a machine operator at the Union Fork & Hoe in Frankfort, beginning in 1936 for 44 years up to his retirement in 1980. The only time he missed was during his military leave during the war. His marriage to Anna Bortniak took place on June 20, 1947 at the First United Methodist Church in Herkimer. Following their marriage, they settled in Herkimer. He had a blessed union of 68 years with his wife up until her recent passing. He remained in Herkimer for the most part with the exception of spending the last two years living near his nephew Don and his family in Galax, VA. Skip enjoyed reading, sports and played baseball, softball and golf in his younger years. He was an avid deer and game hunter. His passion was exercise and working out, which he did up to the time of his passing. Survivors include his niece, Patricia Cofrancesco and her husband Jim of Liverpool, their children, great niece Fay and her fiance Mike Ellison of Whitehall, MD, great nephew James and his wife Jena of Liverpool; nephew Charles Allen of Mohawk; nephew Edward Allen of Covington, LA and his two sons, great nephews Kenneth from Covington, of LA and Edward of Herkimer; niece, Julianne Allen and her son, great nephew Michael Yelle Jr. both of Ilion; nephew, Allen Desmond and his wife Linda (Vokins) of Ilion; their children, great nephews Frank (Bud) of Middleville, Corey of FL, great nieces Joelle of FL , Danielle of Idaho; nephew Thomas Allen and his wife Pam (Paragi) of Colorado Springs, CO and his children, great nephews Scott of Whitesboro, Thomas Jr. of Mohawk, Christopher and his wife Tracey of Herkimer, great niece Kari Ann Slaughter of Ilion; nephew Timothy Allen of New Hartford, nephew Theodore Allen of Idaho; nephew Donald Bortniak, his wife Liz (Franz) and their son, great nephew Jake all of Galax, VA; great nephew Jason Bortniak and his wife, Jessica Gulmi of Manhattan, and great niece Katie Bortniak of West Palm Beach, FL. He was predeceased by his wife Anna; his father-in-law, Arthur Bortniak, mother-in-law Anastazia (Wan); sister Ruth (Allen) Desmond and her husband Cornelius; brother Robert Allen and his wife Peggy; brother Charles Allen and his wife Fay; sister-in-law Christine (Bortniak) Peknik, and her husband Daniel; brother-in-law Andrew Bortniak and his wife Mary; sister-in-law Mary (Bortniak) Myers and her husband Robert; niece Kathleen (Varano) Bortniak; nephew Donald Desmond and niece Theresa (Allen) Winn. The family will be present to receive relatives and friends in Fenner Funeral Home, Inc., 115 Court St., Herkimer on Saturday, June 17th from 9:30 until 10:30 am. A memorial service will follow at 11:00 am in the First United Methodist Church Herkimer/ Little Falls, with the Reverend Janet Gleason, pastor officiating. Interment with military honors will follow at Mountain View Memorial Gardens, town of Little Falls. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial contributions be made to the Wounded Warrior Project, PO Box 7585, 16 Topeka, KS 66675. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home. (February 4, 2023)


Catherine Ruth (Bedworth) Shelley IHS 1933, age 98, formerly of 122 S. Fifth Ave., Ilion, passed away peacefully on Monday, July 2, 2012, in Greenwood, SC, with her son, Harold and his wife, Barbara, by her side. She moved to Greenwood three years ago to be closer to her family. Catherine was born on Feb. 15, 1914, the daughter of Harold and Leona Bedworth. She was predeceased by her brothers, Harold and Ralph, and her beloved husband of fifty-two and a half years, Barthau Shelley. She is survived by her sister, Helen Spoor (Herkimer); her son, Harold Shelley and his wife, Barbara, (McCormick, SC); her grandson, Charles Shelley and his wife, Jennifer (Mooresville, NC); her granddaughter, Laurie Fagan and her husband, Gary, (Huntersville, NC); and her great-grandson, Alexander Fagan. Catherine graduated from Ilion High School in 1933 and University Hospital Good Shepard in 1933 as a registered nurse. After college, she worked part time in the hospital and attended Syracuse University, studying public health. She worked in Syracuse, and the Ilion and Frankfort school systems as the school nurse. Catherine spent many happy hours with friends in Ilion and Mohawk playing cards and going on senior citizen bus trips. She was an active member of the Ilion First Baptist Church and lifelong member of the Eastern Star. She loved to be with her family while living in Wesley Commons in Greenwood, SC. Her great-grandson came to visit soon after his birth and she loved holding him. The family will cherish those memories. Catherine wrote in a grandmother's book to her granddaughter that her wish for her future, was to "Have a happy, healthy home life with a loving partner to share it with. She suggested she experience the beauty of every moment, realize all her dreams and wished that the Good Lord bless her." That is how Catherine lived her life, may she rest in peace. Catherine will be interred at Arlington Cemetery in September, next to Barthau. (July 7, 2012)


Mr. Robert John Hoffman (Bob) IHS 1933, formerly of 137 Second Street, Ilion, New York, died on Sunday, June 27, 2010 at the Folts Home in Herkimer New York. Mr. Hoffman outlived his wife, Ruth, by four years. They had been married for sixty-three years. He was born on July 27, 1915 and was just one month short of his 95th birthday. Surviving Mr. Hoffman are his eight children: Patricia Follin (Albert) of Framingham, Massachusetts,; Kathleen Ford (Frederic) of East Brunswick, New Jersey; Gretchen Hoffman of Schodack Landing, New York; Robert Hoffman, Jr. of Herkimer, New York; Cecelia Hoffman (Peter Butchko) of Plattsburgh, New York (an Ilion resident until recently); Andrea Hoffman of Middlebury, Vermont; Sheila Glinski (John)of Saranac Lake, New York; Phyllis Green (Duane)of Unadilla, New York. In addition he is survived by fourteen grandchildren and fourteen great-grandchildren and various nieces and nephews. Mr. Hoffman retired as a chemical engineer at Special Metals in New Hartford, New York in 1980. He was a 1954 graduate of Syracuse University. Mr. Hoffman had worked previously at Remington Rand, as had many others in his family, after returning from service in the Coast Guard. His service from 1938 until 1947 included pre-war time patrolling the Northeastern United States and then service in both the Atlantic and Pacific arenas during WWII; most notably aboard the USS Wakefield and in the Philippines. After graduating from Ilion High School, Mr. Hoffman worked on projects through the CCC and WPA prior to joining the Coast Guard. Mr. Hoffman was well known in the area as an avid book collector and amateur historian. He had been a long time member of the BPOE of Ilion and the Knights of Columbus and was a strong supporter of the Friends of Russell Park. Friends may call on the family on Wednesday, June 30 from 6:00-8:00p.m. at the Whiter-Hendrix Funeral Home Inc. Ilion. Services will be held at the gravesite at 10:30 am in the Calvary Cemetery in Herkimer with the Rev. Anthony Barratt officiating. Friends may leave online condolences and light a candle at (July 3, 2010)


John L. Pugh IHS 1933, 92, a long-time resident of South Fifth Avenue, passed away at home Sunday, Oct. 14, 2007. John was born Dec. 7, 1914, in the town of Frankfort, son of the late John and Edith (Lindsay) Pugh. He was a graduate of Ilion HighSchool, where he played on championship football teams under coach Joe Bemis. Following high school, John graduated from Oswego State College in 1940 with a bachelor of science in education degree in Industrial arts. He then taught industrial arts at Katonah John Jay High School in Westchester County. On June 28, 1941, he was united in marriage to Lois Clair at the Church of Annunciation. They were married for 50 years until Mrs. Pugh's passing in 1991. In 1945, John was an Industrial Arts Teacher at Ilion. A substitute teacher was named to replace him while John was in the service. John was a veteran of the U.S. Navy Seabees during World War II, serving in the Pacific islands. He was employed by Rockwell International for 31 years as regional sales director for the Northeast U.S. Following his retirement, John taught woodworking/refinishing for adult education. He was well known throughout the valley for master woodworking, cabinet-making and antique restoration. He was of the Catholic faith and a former member of the Ilion Knights of Columbus. John was a current member of the Oswego Alumni Association. He enjoyed the Adirondacks and the family camp in Old Forge. Survivors include his daughter, Linda (Pugh) Whittemore of Ilion; sister-in-law Betty (Torbitt) Pugh of Florida; aunt, Ruth Lindsay of Old Forge; two nephews, John and Richard Pugh of Vermont; a niece, Alicia (Pugh) Bussing of Vermont; several cousins, friends and past business associates; also friends from the morning "coffee" group. He was predeceased by his brothers, Robert of Frankfort/Florida, and Richard of Vermont, his niece, Phyllis Pugh and brother-in-law Curtis Clair. Family and friends are invited to a graveside committal service Wednesday, Oct. 17, at 11 a.m. at the Armory Hill Cemetery, Ilion, with Father Anthony Barratt of the Church of Annunciation officiating. In keeping with John's wishes there are no calling hours. A very special thank you to Linda Evans and Marcia Mower, his home health care aides, for their quality care and concern for John which allowed him to enjoy living in his home over the past several years. Also to Dr. William Parker and his wife, Jo and staff for their care and willingness to accommodate John's needs. In lieu of flowers please consider memorials in John's name to the Ilion Ambulance Fund, c/o 1 Central Ave., Ilion, N.Y. 13357. Donation envelopes will be available at the cemetery. The Enea Family Funeral Home - John Day, director, 4309 Acme Road is honored to serve Mr. Pugh's family. (Oct 26, 2007)


Grover W. Radley Jr., IHS 1933, age 90, of 358 Second St., Ilion, and Otsego Lake, passed away Saturday, Nov. 26, 2005, at Bassett Hospital,Cooperstown, with his family by his side. Grover was born April 10, 1915, in Ilion, the son of the late Grover W. and Pearl Risley Radley, and in 1933, he graduated from Ilion school and then attended Colgate University, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa in 1937. He was a member of the Phi Kappa Tau fraternity at Colgate. He received his master's degree in history from the Maxwell School of Syracuse University in 1938, and received his LLB degree from Harvard Law School in 1949. Mr. Radley was a veteran of World War II, serving as first lieutenant in the U.S. Army, where he was with the Medical Administration Corps. He participated in the Battle of the Bulge, and was a recipient of the Purple Heart during his tour of duty. On Sept. 9, 1945, he married the former Patricia Rheinhardt in Evansville, Ind. Mr. Radley was a prominent attorney in the village of Ilion for many years and, with the return of his son, Jeffrey Rheinhardt, he established the Radley and Rheinhardt law firm. He also served as the attorney for the town of German Flatts from 1967 to 1985. Mr. Radley was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Ilion where he was the senior member of the church, the Olive Branch Masonic Lodge and he was also active in many local clubs and civic organizations. He was known for his love of classical music and was an accomplished pianist. His love of music was surpassed only by his love for his family. Grover is survived by his devoted wife of 60 years, Pat; two sons and daughters-in-law, Jeffrey and Brenda Rheinhardt of Ilion and Eric and Lynn Rheinhardt of Cooperstown; two daughters and sons-in-law, Marcia and John Minehan of Westport, Conn., and Sarah and Robert Stein of Rockport, Maine; 18 grandchildren, several great-grandchildren and several nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by a sister, Lois Radley Arthur. The family will receive friends on Tuesday, Nov. 29, from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. at the Whiter-Hendrix Funeral Home, 100 Otsego St., Ilion. A memorial service will be held at a later date at a time to be announced. Friends are asked to consider memorials to Colgate University c/o the Whiter-Hendrix Funeral Home, 100 Otsego St., Ilion, the Ilion Ambulance Fund or a charity of one's choice in Grover's memory. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home. (Jan 7, 2006)


Joyce Pierce Sanders, valedictorian of the Class of 1933, age 86, of London Towers, Ilion, a former employee of the Ilion Public Library, died February 6, 2003 at Faxton Hospital. She was born November 1, 1916 in Ilion, the daughter of Byron Kingsley andBessie Vincent Pierce. She was valedictorian of the Class of 1933 at Ilion High School and attended Skidmore College. In 1951, she was married to Harold Sanders, who died in 1963. Joyce was a life member of St. Augustine's Episcopal Church, Ilion, where she served on the Altar Guild. She was a member of the Order of the Eastern Star and the Herkimer County Humane Society. She leaves her cousins, Elaine Griswold of New Hartford, Constance Christiana of Utica, and Frank Steber, Watkins Glen. She also leaves many beloved friends, especially William and Elaine Billings, who "adopted" Joyce as a member of their family after their cat, "Freckles," had done so first; Harold and Joyce Casey of Ilion; her friend since high school, Helen Merena of Herkimer, and Mark and Audrey Price of Rochester. The family also thanks the aides who lovingly cared for Joyce at home as well as staff of the Faxton Critical Care Unit and Mohawk Valley Nursing Home. A Memorial Service to celebrate Joyce's life will be at 2 p.m. Sunday, February 9 at St. Augustine's Episcopal Church, Ilion, with interment in Armory Hill Cemetery, Ilion. In lieu of flowers, remembrances may be made to St. Augustine's Church, the Herkimer County Humane Society or the Ilion Ambulance Fund. Arrangements by Enea Family Funeral Home. (February 8, 2003)


"I wanted to give you an update regarding my grandmother. Marie Smith Atwell, who graduated in 1933, passed away in her sleep on March 3, 1999. She thought a lot of her years at Ilion." - submitted by Marjorie Geer Graziano '81 (August 8, 1999)


Bombers Buzz Website ....

Robert Merritt, Retired, email, Hurley, NY, registered. (May 9, 2002)


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