Mary Joan “MJ” Kevlin

1958 - 2017

COOPERSTOWN – Mary Joan “MJ” Kevlin, co-publisher of The Freeman’s Journal, Hometown Oneonta and www.AllOTSEGO.com for the past 11 years, passed away Friday, June 16, 2017, at Bassett Hospital. She was 59, and had been struggling with cancer since October 2014.

MJ was born on April 19, 1958, in Endwell, to Joseph W. and Joan (Gaffney) Simmons, and was raised in Lafayette Hill, Pa. She graduated from La Salle University in 1979 and received a master’s in historic preservation planning from Cornell University in 1981.

As a planner for Jefferson County in Watertown, she met her future husband, Jim, who was an editor at The Watertown Daily Times. They married on June 25, 1983, at Our Mother of Consolation Church in Chestnut Hill, Pa.

She soon became Watertown’s first city planner, and administered the process that led to construction of 800 units of military housing in the city during the expansion of Fort Drum. She also obtained funding to begin the restoration of the city’s Frederick Law Olmsted park. Her successes brought additional responsibilities into her portfolio: For a time, she managed the city airport and the Thompson Park Zoo.

In the 1990s, she and her husband moved to Buffalo, then Pottsville, Pa., where she continued to pursue her professional interests. She served as executive director of the Pennsylvania Downtown Center, moving the organization from Bloomsburg to Harrisburg to ensure a firmer foundation for its future. She was vice chair of the Pottsville Area Development Corp. board, and was particularly interested in the redevelopment of a rare reverse-screen nickelodeon into the Majestic Theater, a community performing arts center. For several years, she taught the historic survey course in Cornell University’s Department of City & Regional Planning, documenting the architectural significance of such communities as Binghamton’s Abel Bennett location, that city's first "streetcar suburb" and neighborhood of former state Senate Majority Leader Warren Anderson.

In 2006, then in Norwich, Conn., she and her husband purchased Cooperstown’s Freeman’s Journal, founded in 1808 by William Cooper, village founder and father of James Fenimore Cooper. A wordsmith, MJ coined the company name, Iron String Press, from Emerson’s, “Trust thyself: Every heart vibrates to that iron string.” Her husband focused on the editorial side, while she ensured the smooth operation of the company through the founding of Hometown Oneonta in 2008 and the expansion of www.AllOTSEGO.com in 2015.

Locally, she served on the Cooperstown Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and, currently, on the board of the Greater Oneonta Historical Society.

In addition to her husband, James C. Kevlin, she is survived by two sons, Joseph J. Kevlin of Tempe, Ariz., and John C. Kevlin, his wife Meghan Burke and their daughter Kyla, of Oakland, Calif.; two sisters, Anne Lacey and her husband, Matthew, of Exton, Pa., and Karen Rylant and her husband, Keith, of Florence, Ala.; three Lacey nieces, Caitlin (David) Durkin, Anna (Ted) Hooven, and Tara (Kevin) Bogan, all of the Philadelphia area, and two Rylant nieces, Katherine and Caroline, both at the University of Alabama.

She was predeceased by her parents.

Calling hours are at 6 p.m. Thursday, June 22, at the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home, 82 Chestnut St., Cooperstown, followed by a service at 7 p.m. at the funeral home, with the Rev. Tom LeBeau, pastor, Cooperstown United Methodist Church, officiating.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Oneonta Corps, The Salvation Army, c/o Salvation Army Processing Center, Box 16310, Albany NY 12212-6310. (Each Christmas for the past decade, MJ administered the newspapers' Angel Tree Fund, providing gifts for needy children.)

Arrangements are entrusted to the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Douglas E. Getman

1924 - 2017

COOPERSTOWN - Douglas E. Getman, 92, of Cooperstown, passed away unexpectedly Tuesday morning, June 13, 2017, at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown.

He was born July 28, 1924, in the Town of Theresa in Jefferson County, a son of Ernest and Eva (Bell) Getman. 

After moving to Otsego County, he was employed for many years as a heavy equipment operator, and at one time worked for Edward Van de Bogart in Oneonta, as well as Hank and Donnie Burton. 

On January 14, 2012, Doug was united in marriage with Patricia Rose Kreutzfeldt at the Free Baptist Church in West Davenport.

Doug is survived by his wife, Patricia, of Cooperstown; a stepdaughter, Allison J. Santos of Milford; a brother, George Getman and wife, Lucille, of Turin; a sister, Gladys Pate of Castorland; two nephews, Dean Moxley and wife, Cindy, and Gary Moxley and wife Carlene; four nieces, Colleen Rogers, Gail Carey, Lois Gregory, and Judy; his nephews and nieces families; and many friends. 

He was predeceased by three sisters, twins Dorothy Moxley and Doris Marlof, and Pauline M. Seelman; a brother, Donald Getman; a son, John Edward Getman, who died in infancy in 1960; and a step son, Norman D. Vass. 

A Memorial Service will be held at 3 p.m. Thursday, June 22, 2017, at the Free Baptist Church on Charlotte Creek Road inWest Davenport, with Pastor Steve Estes officiating. A luncheon will follow-please bring a dish to pass. 

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Gordon L. Gray

1932 - 2017

COOPERSTOWN - Gordon L. Gray, 85, of Cooperstown, passed away Monday night, June 12, 2017, at his home surrounded by his family.

He was born January 14, 1932, at home in the Town of Hartwick, a son of Walter F. and Ruth (Fassett) Gray. 

He lived his entire life in the Cooperstown area, and for 35 years was employed as the cafeteria manager at Mary Imogene Bassett Hospital. 

Throughout his life Gordie was a hard worker, and in addition to working at Bassett he mowed many lawns and plowed a lot of snow. In his leisure he enjoyed hunting and fishing, but most enjoyed just being with family and friends. 

Gordie is survived by his wife of 56 years, Evelyn Bridger Gray, of Cooperstown; their four children, Barry D. Gray and wife, Brenda Wedderspoon-Gray, of Cooperstown, Pamela Madrid of San Antonio, Texas, Bonnie Garcia of Lancaster, California, and Brenda Lee Gray of Walton; a sister, Mrs. May Tymcheck of Hortense, Georgia; and many many grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

One of 11 children, Gordie was predeceased by three brothers, Douglas, Donald and Clifford Gray; and six sisters, Ruth Short, Hilda Turp, Marion Dale, Betty Stalvey, Virginia Armstrong and Doris Armstrong.

At his request, there will be no services.

For those who wish to remember Gordie with a memorial donation, please consider Catskill Area Hospice and Palliative Care, 1 Birchwood Drive, Oneonta, NY 13820 or the Cooperstown Emergency Squad, P.O. Box 322, Cooperstown, NY 13326. 

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Bernice E. Strong

1931 - 2017

MILFORD - Bernice E. Strong, 85, of Milford, passed away unexpectedly Tuesday afternoon, May 23, 2017, at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown. 

She was born October 19, 1931, on Crumhorn Mountain in the Town of Maryland, the daughter of Lewis and Lillian (Wright) Virtell. 

As her father was a tenant farmer, Bernice and her family lived in various places throughout Otsego County while she was growing up. In later years, her family fondly recalls that whenever they were out driving around Laurens, Mt. Vision, Hartwick and Milford she would point to a house and say "we lived there!" 

On July 19, 1952, Bernice married Arthur C. Strong in Pennsylvania, and they settled into their home in Milford. 

From 1969 until 1993, Bernice worked for Milford Central School District as a school bus driver, and was well-liked by the many children she drove to and from school each day. Her true calling in life, though, was tending to and caring for her family. A great cook she will be especially remembered for her pies. An avid birdwatcher, she enjoyed watching cardinals and bluebirds (but hated the Blue Jays!) and also enjoyed dancing, doing crossword puzzles, crocheting and knitting. She also bowled for many years. Truly the matriarch of her family, she will be greatly missed.

Bernice is survived by her beloved husband of almost 65 years, Arthur C. Strong, of Milford; six children, Lewis Crawford of Rineyville, Kentucky, Evelyn Lacey and husband, William, of Vine Grove, Kentucky, Robert Strong and wife, Laurie of Milford, Vickie Konchar of Maryland, Michael Strong and wife, Sandy, of Milford, and Carla Strong of Maryland; 19 grandchildren; 11 great grandchildren; four sisters-in-law, Elna Virtell of New Berlin, Elizabeth Virtell of Milford, Judy Virtell of New Jersey and Helen Southworth of Cooperstown; and many nieces and nephews.

In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by her three brothers, Peter, Paul and James. 

The family will receive friends at the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home, 82 Chestnut Street, Cooperstown, from 4-6 p.m. Monday, May 29, 2017.

A Funeral Service will be offered at the funeral home at 11 a.m. Tuesday, May 30, 2017, with Rev. Sylvia Barrett, pastor of the Milford and Portlandville United Methodist Churches, officiating. Burial will follow in Westville Cemetery.

As an alternative to flowers, the family suggests memorial donations be made to the Milford United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 127. Milford, NY 13807, or the Milford Emergency Squad, P.O. Box 359, Milford, NY 13807.

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Ruth N. Fenstemacher

1922 - 2017

COOPERSTOWN - Ruth Naomi Fenstemacher, formerly of Cooperstown, passed away Sunday morning, May 14, 2017, at The Masonic Care Community of New York in Utica, where she had resided for the past 11 years. She was 95.

Born May 5, 1922, in Scranton, Pennsylvania, Ruth was a daughter of Austin DeHart and Jean (Searfoss) Rome. 

She married Elmer S. Fenstemacher April 25, 1942, in Endicott. They resided in Vestal for many years until Elmer retired from IBM. She was also employed at IBM in Endicott and then the Vestal Central School District.

Because of her love of children, Ruth worked part-time in her retirement at a daycare center. 

Ruth and Elmer loved to travel and spent seven years travelling cross country in an RV before finally settling in Arizona. They moved back East to reside in Cooperstown to be closer to family. 

She and her husband enjoyed the outdoors as well as spending time helping to restore an old farmhouse and mill site that their son bought in the township of New Lisbon. 

Ruth is survived by two sons, Erich L. Fenstemacher and his long-time partner, Jill Preston of New Lisbon, and Keith A. Fenstemacher and his wife, Cara, of New Hartford; and two granddaughters, Jessica Fenstemacher of Chicago, Illinois and Corey Fenstemacher and husband, Mark Schruntek of Brooklyn.

She was predeceased by her husband, Elmer S. Fenstemacher, who died July 24, 2013, and two sisters, Gertrude Brown and Shirley Jenny. 

There will be no calling hours. A private family funeral service will be held at the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown, and interment will be in the Gerald B.H. Solomon Saratoga National Cemetery in Schuylerville.

The Fenstemacher family expresses their sincere appreciation to the compassionate and caring staff at Wylie Hall and the Health Pavilion's Tarrytown Household, and the entire Masonic Care Community. In lieu of flowers, expressions of sympathy in the form of memorial gifts be made to the Masonic Care Community of New York, 2150 Bleecker Street, Utica, NY 13501.

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home, 82 Chestnut Street, Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Aline M. Heller

1921 - 2017

COOPERSTOWN - Aline M. Heller, a native of Cooperstown and long-time faithful member of Christ Church, passed away peacefully Wednesday afternoon, May 10, 2017, at her home in Hyde Park with her family and the Rector, the Rev'd Dane E. Boston by her side. She was 95.

Born December 1, 1921, in Cooperstown, Aline was a daughter of Harry Grant Campbell and Pearl née Vroman Campbell. 

After graduating from Cooperstown High School in 1940 she met Bill Heller, 
who had just moved to Cooperstown and was working at Smalley's Theatre. They were married Easter Sunday, April 13, 1941, at Christ Church in Cooperstown. 

Of the Episcopal faith, Aline was a life-long member of Christ Church, and before her death was their oldest member. Through the years she served the church in many ways, including teaching Sunday School, serving on the Altar Guild and with St. Margaret's Chapter, and was the first woman elected to serve on an all-male Vestry. She was also member of the Native Daughters of Cooperstown and a life member of the Clark F. Simmons American Legion Auxiliary. A volunteer for many years at The Meadows, where she and Bill ran Bingo for the residents, she was the first manager of the Otsego County Nutrition Program. She led a full and productive life, and will be greatly missed by her family and friends.

Aline is survived by two daughters, Sandra Thorne and husband, Marshall of Cooperstown and Marion Terpening of Warren, Ohio; three grandchildren, Jeffrey S. Thorne and wife, Stephanie, Matthew W.C. Terpening and Meredith M. Arn; eight great grandchildren, Dakota R. and Natasha L. Thorne; Andrew J., Matthew D., Jaden N., Trinity R. and Tristan Terpening, and Brenna M. Arn; and several nieces, nephews and cousins. 

She was predeceased by her husband of 56 years, William R.P. Heller, who died February 6, 1998; a brother, The Rev'd Harry Grant Campbell, Jr., Lt. Col US Army (Ret.) who died May 14, 2000; and a sister, Thelma C. Ryan. 

The Office of the Burial Of the Dead (Rite One) with Holy Eucharist will be offered at 2 p.m. Saturday, May 13, 2017, in Christ Church, Cooperstown, with the Rev'd Dane E. Boston, Rector officiating.

The Service of Committal and Burial will follow in Hartwick Seminary Cemetery. 

In lieu of flowers, expressions of sympathy in the form of memorial gifts may be made to the Christ Church All Souls Fund, 69 Fair Street, Cooperstown, NY 13326 or Catskill Area Hospice and Palliative Care, 1 Birchwood Drive, Oneonta, NY 13820.

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Larry G. Gallup

1952 - 2017

FLY CREEK - Larry G. Gallup, 64, passed away Friday, April 21, 2017, at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester following an extended illness.

A Cooperstown native, Larry was born June 21, 1952, a son of Marge and "Pudge" Gallup.  Raised in Cooperstown, he proudly graduated as one of the Cooperstown "Redskins" in 1970 and recently retired as an electrician.

On October 10, 2003, Larry married Teriann Sammis in Shelby County, Tennessee.  They shared their life and love with chocolate labs named Reno and Hunter in Fly Creek Valley and Titusville, Florida.

An avid sports fan, Larry enjoyed hunting, snowmobiling, bowling, watching NASCAR and racing cars, but his passion was for golf and it was a common sight to see his red Mustang GT parked at the Leatherstocking Golf Course.  He always looked forward to playing golf with his large group of friends, and cherished the memories of playing at St. Andrews in Scotland and Pebble Beach, California, and getting a hole-in-one.  He also had fond memories of bowling a 300 game, driving a race car at Michigan Speedway, and hunting with friends.  Oh, the stories he could tell!

Larry is survived by his wife, Teriann, of Fly Creek, and his tireless pal, Hunter; his brother Bob and wife, Kathy; Homer and Mavis Lindstadt; the "Florida Gallups"; and many lifelong friends and golfing buddies.  He will be missed by all.

He was predeceased by his parents, Marge and "Pudge" Gallup and his favorite dog, Reno.

The family will be present to receive friends from 2 - 4:30 pm on Thursday, May 11, 2017, at Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home, 82 Chestnut Street, Cooperstown.

At the conclusion of the visitation, a Service of Remembrance will be offered at 4:30 p.m. at the funeral home with the Rev. Elsie A. Rhodes, pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of Cooperstown, officiating.

Following the service there will be a gathering of family and friends at the Leatherstocking Golf Course Restaurant overlooking Larry's favorite golf course and Otsego Lake.

In lieu of flowers, Larry's family requests that gifts in his memory be directed to the American Cancer Society, 13 Beech Street, Binghamton, NY 13790.

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Leslie A. Parshall

1926 - 2017

I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
-- Philippians 4:13 (KJV)


COOPERSTOWN - Leslie A. Parshall, 90, of Greenough Road in Toddsville, passed away Sunday afternoon, April 9, 2017, at Focus Rehabilitation and Nursing Center at Otsego.

He was born November 16, 1926 in Saranac Lake, New York, the son of Howard and Gladys (Gowett) Parshall. He first attended a one-room schoolhouse, then continued his education in Cooperstown. 

On August 19, 1948, Les married Lois M. Harvey in Cooperstown. 

A veteran of World War II, Les entered into active service October 30, 1944 and proudly served his country in the United States Navy. Seaman First Class Parshall was involved with the Asiatic Pacific Theatre of Operations and was in combat in the Marshal Islands. Upon receiving his honorable discharge on June 12, 1946, Les returned home and was employed for many years building circuit boards for the UNIVAC division of Sperry Rand Corporation in Utica. During those years he also served as a union arbitrator. After retiring from UNIVAC, he was employed as a painter at the Mary Imogene Bassett Hospital in Cooperstown. 

In his leisure, Les enjoyed fishing and camping with his family. 

As a symbol of respect for veterans of the United States Armed Forces, Les erected in 2005, on his property in Toddsville, an Honor Roll of World War II veterans from Otsego County.

Throughout his life, Les had a deep and abiding faith in God, and in his own way served Him many different ways. 

Les is survived by his second wife, Doris Parshall of Norwich and her family; two daughters Judy "Susie" Urbin and husband, John of Lufkin, Texas and Linda Miller of Holland, Texas; three sons, Stephen Parshall and wife, Barbara, of Daleville, Virginia, Thomas Parshall of Franklin, and Carl Parshall and wife, Nancy of Morris; ten grandchildren; many great grandchildren; two brothers-in-law, Merritt Harvey and wife, Elaine of Toddsville, and Donald Harvey and wife, Mary of Milford Center; and many nieces and nephews.

He was predeceased by his first wife of 47 years, Lois M. Parshall, who died July 8, 1996; a sister, Evelyn Warner; and two brothers, Howard "Sonny" Parshall and Robert Parshall. 

A Funeral Service will be offered at 11 a.m. on Friday, April 14, 2017, at the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home, 82 Chestnut Street, Cooperstown, with Rev. Stephen D. Fournier, pastor of the Milford Center Community Bible Church officiating.

The Service of Committal and Burial with Military Honors will follow in Fly Creek Valley Cemetery, Cemetery Road, Fly Creek.


Family and friends may call and pay their respects at the funeral home on Friday morning one hour prior to the service.

In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made to Hartwick Fire Department Company No. 2, 4877 State Highway 28, Hartwick Seminary, NY 13326.

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Lori Ann Patryn Smith

1972 - 2017

COOPERSTOWN - At home, on March 29, 2017, Lori Ann Patryn Smith, passed on to Eternal Life after fighting cancer bravely for almost a year and a half. She was surrounded by family and friends, including her husband Steven E. Smith of Cobleskill - the light of her life; father and mother Bruce and Mary Patryn of Springfield Center; parents-in-law Richard and Deborah Smith of Cobleskill; brother and sister-in-law Bruce and Mary Patryn of Long Meadow, Massachusetts; and beloved niece, Dina and nephews Bruce, Matthew, Nicholas, Mark and Gabriel, to whom she was "the best aunt ever". 

Lori leaves her step-daughter, Riley Smith; brother Christopher Patryn and nephew Michael; sister and brother-in-law Rebecca and Mark Maroney; sister and brother-in-law Beth and Benjamin Smith; and Babci Anna Kreminec. She leaves many loving relatives including her aunts, uncles and cousins. She also leaves many neighbors and friends including her dear friend, Rebecca Oliver Esposito.

Lori was predeceased by her paternal grandparents, Leonard and Cecilia Patryn; her maternal grandfather, Michael Kreminec; her Uncles Joseph Wichkowsky, Leonard Patryn, Albert Desorcy and her Aunt Cheryl Audet. 

Lori left a positive impression and had close friends wherever she was. She attended Cherry Valley-Springfield School and was active in music and especially loved being part of the soccer team. She had an I-can-do-it work ethic she put into practice on the family farm. She and her brother had many good times working at the Lakehouse Restaurant in high school and college. Lori graduated from Sienna College and formed some of her closest friendships there. Lori's career spanned 21years of dedicated service at The Otesaga Hotel rising to the management position of Maitre d'hotel. She was very proud of being part of the Hotel and loved the friends that she worked with. 

Lori loved Spring and gardening, boating on Lake Otsego and throwing fantastic parties for her loved ones. She was known for her hospitality and love of life. Lori had the biggest, brightest smile and a strong and determined character. She loved Our Lord and truly sought to be His disciple as a communicant of the St. Mary's "Our Lady of the Lake" Roman Catholic Church Parish in Cooperstown. 

Lori wanted to thank all neighbors, friends, and family for all the prayers and acts of kindness. She was so encouraged in the journey by bouquets of flowers, constant kindness and many visits. Our families want to express special appreciation to Deborah Smith for her constant care, companionship and love for her daughter-in-law. 

Lori will be waked at the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home, 82 Chestnut Street, Cooperstown, on Monday, April 3, 2017, from 4-7 p.m.

The Liturgy of Christian Burial will be offered at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, April 4, 2017, at St. Mary's "Our Lady of the Lake" Roman Catholic Church, 31 Elm Street, Cooperstown, with Fr. John P. Rosson, pastor, presiding.

A Spring burial will be announced later. 

In lieu of flowers, Lori's family suggests that memorial donations may be directed to benefit cancer research at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, P.O. Box 5028, Hagerstown, MD 21741, or Catskill Area Hospice and Palliative Care, 1 Birchwood Drive, Oneonta, NY 13820, or St. Mary's "Our Lady of the Lake" Roman Catholic Church, 31 Elm Street, Cooperstown, NY 13326. 

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Barbara Jane Brooks (Poe)

1950 - 2017

COOPERSTOWN - Barbara Jane Brooks (formerly Poe), a resident of Robynwood in Oneonta and a former resident of Vestal and Endicott, passed away from complications of breast cancer on Tuesday, March 28, 2017 at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown. She was 66.

A native of Pennsylvania, she was born Barbara Jane Brooks June 28, 1950, in Meshoppen, a daughter of the late Corey Robinson Brooks and Elizabeth Jane (Sheehan) Brooks.

Barbara is survived by her daughter, Emily Poe and son-in-law, Lewis Long of Austin, Texas; a sister, Beverly Brooks of Rochester; a brother, Ray Brooks of Johnson City; granddaughters Corey and Cameron; niece Elizabeth Handley and nephew-in-law Brian Handley of Rochester; and grandnieces Amelia and Samantha.

She will be most remembered for being a loving mother and proud grandmother. She had a love of music and enjoyed nothing more than laughing with her friends. The family thanks the scores of healthcare professionals and others who helped care for her and took the time to enrich her life over many years.

A funeral service will be offered at 3 p.m. Sunday afternoon, April 2, 2017, at the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home, 82 Chestnut Street, Cooperstown.

Barbara will be laid to rest the following day near her parents in Vaughn's Cemetery, Mehoopany, Pennsylvania.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that memorial contributions be made to NAMI (the National Alliance on Mental Illness), P.O. Box 62596, Baltimore, MD 21264-2596. 

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Jean Thorpe

1929 - 2017

HARTWICK - Jean Thorpe, beloved wife, mother and grandmother, died late Sunday evening, March 12, 2017, at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown. She was 87.

Born July 6, 1929, in New York City, Jean was the daughter of Richard E. and Helen E. (Wright) Cary. She was raised in Fort Lee, New Jersey, and while growing up she spent many happy times in Swartswood Lake, New Jersey, with her family. She was once named Miss Wildwood. 

Through the years she was employed in several occupations, but the job she liked most was being a switchboard operator at US Steel and National Tube in New York City.

On May 15, 1954, Jean married John J. Thorpe in Westwood, New Jersey. In 1956 they moved to Nanuet where they raised their family. In 1995 Jean and John moved to Hartwick and settled on West Hill where Jean was able to truly relish her love of nature. She also enjoyed gardening, baking, fishing, watching the hummingbirds, her daughter's dog, Scotty, and the beautiful views from their deck. Throughout her life, Jean always had a positive attitude, no matter the situation, and always looked on the bright side of life. 

Jean truly loved her family, and will be fondly remembered as a devoted and loving wife to her husband of 62 years, John J. Thorpe of Hartwick; was a wonderful mom to two daughters, Nancy Higgins and husband, John, of Middletown, and Carol Stankard of Hartwick; and a loving grandmother to Jennifer Jean Casey and husband, Thomas of Walden. 

She was predeceased by a son, John J. Thorpe, Jr. in 1976 and a son-in-law, Matt Stankard in 1999.

A private graveside service will be held in George Washington Memorial Park, Paramus, New Jersey.

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

George E. Vermilya

1926 - 2016

NEW HARTFORD - Mr. George Elmer Vermilya, 90, of New Hartford and formerly of Fly Creek, died Saturday morning, November 26, 2016, at St. Elizabeth Medical Center in Utica. 

A native of Delaware County, George was born at home in Grand Gorge on September 12, 1926, a son of Leo Eugene Vermilya and Inez Patterson Vermilya.

He attended South Kortright Central School and then entered into active service in the United States Army in January 1945. After proudly serving his country during World War II he returned home and earned his high school diploma from SKCS with the Class of 1948.

On October 2, 1953, George married Elsie A. Darling in a ceremony at the Hobart Methodist Church. In 1954, the couple moved to Cooperstown where George was employed as the manager of the Sealtest Milk Plant which was located at the corner of Chestnut and Walnut Streets.

During their years in the Cooperstown area, the Vermilyas resided in Fly Creek, during which time Elsie was employed on the news staff of The Freeman's Journal. George became a life member of the Sgt. Walter P. Eggleston Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 7128 in Cooperstown, and often served with the Honor Guard for Military Honors for deceased Veterans. 

In 1971, George and Elsie moved to St. Lawrence County to reside in Madrid, where he was employed as a dairy farm inspector for the Kraft Cheese Plant in Canton. Upon his retirement in 1988, the couple moved to New Hartford.

George is survived by one daughter and son-in-law, Barbara and Anthony Covais of Massena; three granddaughters, Tammy Loz and husband, Richard, Teresa Cavanaugh and husband, Mark, and Candace O'Neill; 11 great grandchildren; and two great great grandchildren.

He was predeceased by his wife of 55 years, Elsie A. Vermilya, who died January 18, 2009.

A graveside service will be offered at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 13, 2017, in the Fly Creek Valley Cemetery, Cemetery Road, Fly Creek, with James Atwell, Quaker Minister officiating. Military Honors will be accorded by members of the Sgt. Walter P. Eggleston VFW Post No. 7128 and the New York State Military Forces Honor Guard. 

As an alternative to flowers, expressions of sympathy in the form of memorial gifts may be made to the American Diabetes Association, P.O. Box 11454, Alexandria, VA 22312.

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Louis Hyman Fishman

1934 - 2017

COOPERSTOWN - Mr. Louis Hyman Fishman, 83, formerly of New York City, passed away Wednesday morning, March 1, 2017, at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown.

A native New Yorker, he was born February 3, 1934, in New York City, a son of Alter Eliozor and Gussie née Gittel Fishman.

First employed in the field of commercial photography, he soon began purchasing taxi cab medallions and ran his own fleet of taxis in New York City. He later owned and operated a limousine service.

On July 6, 1977, Lenny-as he was affectionately known by his family and close friends-married Amelia Alves in New York City. Upon retirement they first lived in Florida and then moved to Cooperstown in 2012. 

In addition to his loving and devoted wife of almost 40 years, Amelia Fishman of Cooperstown, Lenny is survived by a sister, Eileen Frazer of Barnegat, New Jersey, and several nieces and nephews.

A graveside service was offered at 2 p.m. Thursday, March 2, 2017, at New Montefiore Cemetery on Long Island, with Rabbi Saul Korn officiating.

Arrangements were under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Douglas S. Rhyde

1932 - 2017

FLY CREEK VALLEY - Douglas Schuyler Rhyde, "The Mayor of Fly Creek Valley", passed away Sunday evening, February 19, 2017, at Syracuse VA Medical Center. He was 84. 

Born July 21, 1932, in Walton, Doug was a son of Rufus J. and Esther E. (Pope) Rhyde. He first attended a one-room schoolhouse and then school in Richfield Springs.

Doug entered into active service with the United States Army on November 5, 1953, and proudly served his country during the Korean War. He received his honorable discharge November 4, 1955, and then transferred to the US Army Reserves, receiving his honorable discharge from there in October 1961. 

On December 27, 1954, Doug married Helen Turner in a ceremony at the Fly Creek Methodist Church. Together, they raised their family and ran their dairy farm on Roses Hill Road for 60 years. 

Doug was a dedicated and faithful Brother in the Masonic Fraternity for over 50 years. Raised to the Sublime Degree of a Master Mason on the eighth day of February, A.D. 1966, A.L. 5966, in Richfield Springs Lodge No. 482, Free and Accepted Masons, he served the Lodge as Worshipful Master 1989-1992, 1993-1994, and 1998-2001. In 2006, he received the Dedicated Service Award from The Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the State of New York, and on April 26, 2016, he was recognized by The Grand Lodge for having completed 50 years of loyal support and dedication to the Masonic Fraternity. Doug was also a member the Order of the Eastern Star, first with Arbutus Chapter No. 317, O.E.S. in Richfield Springs and then Otsego-Hartwick-Arbutus Chapter No. 201, O.E.S. in Cooperstown. He served the Chapter as Patron for many years, and in 1981was District Lecturer.

An active and dedicated volunteer fireman, Doug was a long-time member the Fly Creek Volunteer Fire Company and was very proud being a part of their Fire Police. For 27 years he was a member of the Fly Creek Board of Fire Commissioners, serving for many of those years as Chairman.

Doug was also a member of the Agway Council, the New York State Cooperative Extension, and enjoyed his more than 10 years as a security guard for the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. 

He always enjoyed his many "ramming sessions" with people in the Valley. He will be fondly remembered by his children for always being supportive of them, especially by attending their many sporting events. 

Doug is survived by his four children, Patricia Rhyde, Michael Rhyde, Susan Sherman and Kelly Steele; four grandchildren, Sara Oetjen, Stacy Thoutt, Michael Rhyde, Jr., and Gabrielle Elizabeth Rhyde; one brother, Edward Rhyde; one brother-in-law, Jack Turner and his wife, Nancy; two sisters-in-law Violet Moshier and Gail Rhyde; and many nieces and nephews. He is further survived by his beloved dog, Annie. 

He was predeceased by his wife of 60 years, Helen T. Rhyde, who died April 9, 2015, and a brother, Donald J. Rhyde who died in 1975. 

Memorial Services will be offered beginning at 6 p.m. Friday, February 24, 2017, at the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home, 82 Chestnut Street, Cooperstown. The services will begin at 6 p.m. with a Firefighter Memorial Service conducted by members of the Fly Creek Volunteer Fire Company. This will be followed by remembrances from Doug's children. A Masonic Memorial Service conducted by Brothers from Richfield Springs Lodge No. 482, F. & A.M. will follow. At the conclusion of services, Military Honors will be accorded by members of the Cooperstown Veterans Club and a contingent from the New York State Military Forces Honor Guard.

Friends may greet the family on Friday at the funeral home one hour prior to the services.

Burial will be private later this Spring, when the farmers are preparing their fields. 

For those who wish to make a gift in memory of Doug, his family respectfully requests that donations be made to the Fly Creek Volunteer Fire Company, P.O. Box 218, Fly Creek, NY 13337. 

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Robert W. Ranger

1937 - 2017

WEST WINFIELD - Robert W. Ranger, 79, of West Winfield died Saturday evening, February 18, 2017 at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown following a brief illness. 

Bob was born June 15, 1937 in Corning to Robert W. and Freida (Spreitzer) Ranger. Raised in Painted Post, Bob graduated from Painted Post High School. He then graduated from Cornell University with a Bachelors Degree and later attained his Masters Degree from Rutgers University. 

In December 1978 he married Marjorie Brooks, a union of almost 40 years, in which he once said that "between the two of us we can surmount any obstacle - we are a team". His kindness and compassion were endless.

Bob was employed for over 35 years with Oneida National Bank and its successor banks. After retiring from Fleet Bank he became President of the Financial Institutions Bank in Warsaw. After completing his tenure there he returned to West Winfield, and with a group of investors formed the Bank of Cooperstown, also with offices in Oneonta and Geneva. He retired from their Board of Directors in 2016, remaining as a director emeritus.

Bob also served as the Chairman of the ABA Ag Bankers Committee in Washington, DC, as well as many other ag related committees in the local area. He was a member of the local Rotary, served on the Mt. Markham Central School District Board and Herkimer County BOCES Board for over 25 years.

Bob was a truly remarkable man. His passion was for his family and he was a devoted husband, father and grandfather. He loved to hunt and fish, and his home was surrounded by wildlife that her dearly loved to watch and for which he provided sanctuary.

He is survived by his wife, Marjorie Brooks Ranger of West Winfield; his children, Lisa Doyle of Woodbridge, VA, Todd M. Ranger of Camden, Kelley Tripple (Michael Dougherty) of Bridgewater and Luanne T. Brooks of West Exeter; his grandchildren, Chad Bailey, Ryan Bailey, Jordan Doyle and Victoria Doyle, all of Woodbridge, VA, Jacob Tripple (Bree Palmer) and Andrew Tripple, both of West Winfield, Melissa Gregory and her husband Jay of Mt. Vision and Matthew Brooks of West Exeter; and his great-grandchildren, Grant and Grace Gregory, Michael Bailey and Logan Herrin. He is further survived by his siblings, Phyllis Stowell of Painted Post and Donald Ranger of Mount Wolf, PA, as well as his special family, Sara, Gil, Aaden and Abel Sanchez.

In addition to his parents, Bob was predeceased by a sister, Carol Ann Smith and his step-son, John G. Brooks.

At Bob's request, there will be a private service of remembrance for his immediate family at their convenience.

In lieu of flowers, Bob's family requests that you make a gift in his memory to your favorite charity.

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Edward C. Smith

1938 - 2017

COOPERSTOWN - Edward C. Smith, owner of Smith-Cooperstown, Inc., died Saturday evening, January 21, 2017, at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown. He was 78.

A Native Son of Cooperstown, Ed was born March 23, 1938, at Mary Imogene Bassett Hospital, a son of Evelyn Amelia Wheeler of Cooperstown and Harry William Smith of Minneapolis, Minnesota.

After graduating from Manlius Military Academy, Ed attended Palm Beach Junior College and later graduated from the University of Miami with a bachelor's degree in business administration.

For many years he served as President and Owner of Smith-Cooperstown, Inc. He was also a strong supporter of the many public and private institutions, organizations and businesses in the area, and was always willing to offer advice and assistance where needed. 

Chad Welch, a long-time employee and friend of Ed's, wrote a touching tribute to his mentor, which includes - in part - the following thoughts that eloquently sum up Ed Smith's life: "Ed was a reserved and humble man, never one for attention or ever seeking praise, as quiet about his many successes as he was of his considerable generosity. Ed would much rather rub elbows with race car fans at a backyard barbecue or clambake than mingle with socialites at banquets and black tie parties. His very best and closest friends were true salt-of-the-earth working class folks, and he most enjoyed the close company he kept with those of us who worked for him. My family, and our Smith-Ford family, lost a great boss, fatherly figure and friend."

Another colleague and friend has stated: "Ed was both a gentleman and a gentle man." He influenced and touched many people's hearts and lives and will always be remembered. 

Ed is survived by his long-time partner and companion, Norma Onyan of Cooperstown; Norma's children that Ed considered his own, Louise Wayman of Toddsville, Gregory Onyan of Fly Creek and Terry Onyan and his wife, Wendy of Fly Creek; one sister, Rose Belle Smith Broeffle of Vero Beach, Florida; one brother, James D. Smith and his wife, Mary Jane, of North Hutchinson Island, Florida, and Norwich; one sister-in-law, Patricia Manley Smith of Norwich and Cooperstown; and numerous nieces and nephews as well as his extended family at Smith-Cooperstown, Inc. and a multitude of friends and acquaintances. 

He was predeceased by one sister, Shirley S. McCabe; two brothers, Robert Frederick Smith and Harry William (Bill) Smith; and his brother-in-law, William Broeffle. 

A Memorial Service will be offered at 2 p.m. Monday, January 30, 2017, in The Louis C. Jones Center in the Main Barn at The Farmers' Museum, 5775 State Highway 80,Cooperstown, with the Rev. Betsy Jay, Chaplain at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown, officiating.

Ed will be laid to rest later this Spring in Lakewood Cemetery, Cooperstown.

In lieu of flowers, Ed's family respectfully requests that those who wish to remember him through a memorial donation consider the following organizations: Friends of Bassett, 1 Atwell Road, Cooperstown, NY 13326; Cooperstown Fire Department, P.O. Box 1, Cooperstown, NY 13326; Cooperstown Emergency Squad, P.O. Box 322, Cooperstown, NY 13326; or Susquehanna Animal Shelter, 4841 State Highway 28, Cooperstown, NY 13326. 

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of Martin H. Tillapaugh and Peter A. Deysenroth.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Lewen "Lenny" Ray Webb

1950 - 2017

HARTWICK - Lewen "Lenny" Ray Webb, 66, of Hartwick, passed away Sunday morning, January 22, 2017, at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown.

Born August 4, 1950, at Chenango Memorial Hospital in Norwich, he was a son of the late Raymond W. and Vera J. (Stratton) Webb. 

A graduate of New Berlin Central School, Lenny was drafted into the United States Army on May 12, 1970, and proudly served his country during the Vietnam War. Following his honorable discharge on May 11, 1973 he returned to New Berlin and for a time was employed at the Roostertail Bar and Grill where he met his wife, Colleen.

On June 20, 1981, Lenny married the former Colleen A. Morton in Morris. 

He worked for Jerry Russell painting, then moved on to work at New Berlin Recreation Lanes, until he became a self-employed painter and painting contractor. He was employed for six years in the maintenance department at The Otesaga Resort Hotel and for the past five years at Cooperstown Dreams Park.

In his younger days he enjoyed his free time on the bowling league at New Berlin Recreation Center. He was also a member of the South New Berlin Horseshoe Club. An avid sports fan, Lenny enjoyed NASCAR, watching football-especially the New York Giants-and was a devoted fan of the New York Yankees. He also enjoyed camping and fishing, and was a faithful member and current Finance Officer of the Hartwick American Legion Post No. 1567. 

Lenny was a devoted husband and father who always enjoyed being with his family, especially for their annual Memorial Day and Father's Day celebrations at Gilbert Lake State Park. While his children were in school, his home became a haven for their many friends, and he always enjoyed being with them for the many bonfires they held on their property through the years. 

Lenny will be greatly missed by his wife of 35 years, Colleen A. Webb of Hartwick; and their two children, Traci Lynn Webb of Burdett and Michael Lewen Webb of Jacksonville, Florida. He is further survived by his three brothers, Brian Webb and wife Linda of Richfield Springs, Leslie Webb and Joan Toenies of Wells, and Morris L. Webb of New Berlin; and many nieces and nephews.

Friends may call at the Hartwick United Methodist Church from 4-7 p.m. Thursday, January 26, 2017, when Lenny's family will be in attendance. 

Funeral Services will be at 11:30 a.m. Friday, January 27, 2017, at the Hartwick United Methodist Church with Pastor Richard Howard officiating. 

Interment will be in Hartwick Cemetery in the Spring of 2017.

Contributions in Lenny's memory may be made to the Hartwick American Legion Post No. 1567, P.O. Box 262, Hartwick, NY 13348, and the Hartwick Emergency Squad, P.O. Box 208, Hartwick, NY 13348.

Funeral arrangements are under the guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Nancy Waller

1918 - 2017

COOPERSTOWN – Nancy Waller, world-traveler, advocate for peace, social justice and prison reform, lifelong writer and artist, died peacefully January 10, 2017, at the Clara Welch Thanksgiving Home, Cooperstown, NY, her three daughters and pastor at her side. She was 98.

Born Anne Bigelow Thomson in 1918 in Nanking, China, Nancy was a daughter of Dr. ​James Claude Thomson and Margaret Seabury Cook Thomson. She grew up in pre-Communist China. Her father, a biochemist, was head of the Chemistry Department at the University of Nanking, one of several Christian colleges established in the early 20th century to educate China’s ‘best and brightest’. Her mother, a Smith College alumna, taught literature there; she also advised their neighbor, whom Nancy knew as ‘Aunt Pearl’, on a manuscript that was later ​published as The Good Earth. Aunt Pearl was of course Pearl Buck.

Nancy described her childhood in My Nanking Home, self-published in 2010, as a “haven of affection and acceptance for us and our friends”. She attended Hillcrest international elementary school in Nanking, then Shanghai American School, a boarding school, graduating in 1936. Her schoolmates included Huston Smith, known today for his authoritative studies of the world’s religions, and Harriet Mills, who became a Chinese scholar—but not before imprisonment in China as a spy. Nancy attended Ginling College, the women’s college of the University of Nanking, for her freshman year, leaving Nanking, as tensions were rising, just months before Japanese forces invaded the city in what is referred to as the Nanking Massacre. She attended the Geneva College for Women, in Switzerland, her sophomore year, then Smith College, Northampton, Mass. It was only her second ​academic experience in the United States, her first being middle school at Miss Fine’s in Princeton, NJ when the family was on furlough.

After gaining secretarial skills—something all young professional ​women needed to do—she worked for the Chinese Industrial Cooperative, a​ supposed radical group that later merged with the well-known​ United China Relief. Then, “no longer noisily a pacifist,” she enrolled in the Harvard-Radcliffe Program in Business Administration program (today part of the Harvard Business School which women could not attend in that era). Her advanced degree took her to the personnel department of Time-Life, where she made her mark by hiring Henry Grunwald as a copy boy. Grunwald was to become managing editor of Time magazine in 1968.

It was on a blind date when Nancy was at Smith that she first met Julius Earll Waller, Jr., a Princeton student. She called him Jerry. On April 4, 1943, they were married in Kearney, Nebraska, where Jerry was stationed in the United States Army Air Forces. Jerry received orders for Europe, where he remained until the end of the war. Nancy, who lived in New York City and worked at Time-Life, bought a Roseboom farm advertised in The New York Times.

Jerry, now a captain, was discharged in 1945, and the couple settled in Cooperstown, NY, where he taught at the Cooperstown Academy (now the site of Bassett Hall). Their first daughter, Anne, was born in Cooperstown. The next year they moved to South Kent School, a
​​boarding school for boys ​in South Kent, CT, where Jerry taught French and Latin and coached athletics for the next 35 years. South Kent was also where they raised their family: three daughters, Anne, Sydney, and Margaret, grew up on the school campus.

In 1957-1959, the Wallers moved to France, where Jerry earned a graduate degree at the University of Poitiers. They enrolled their daughters—who were under the age of ten and the only Americans—in a local​ French elementary​ school. Nancy ran the household, was active in the Protestant Reformed Church, made friends who lasted a lifetime, and also learned French, which would get in the way whenever she tried to put together a sentence in Chinese. Nancy and Jerry also lived in Toulouse, France in 1974-1975.

Back in South Kent, Nancy continued to provide​ good cheer to generations of students and faculty families. She ​was active in many community issues and organizations, advocating for a kindergarten and housing for the elderly. ​She was a member of the Kent League of Women Voters and the Kent Congregational Church, and she hosted Sunday afternoon teas at the Waller home for the SKS ​'boys”. She was a life-long artist, her preferred medium, watercolor. ​  ​

Nancy earned her Masters in Education in 1968 and taught French and French culture at Kent Center elementary school for ​eight years.

Upon Jerry’s retirement in 1982, Nancy and Jerry embarked on an eight-month road trip around the perimeter of the country, before taking up residence in Cherry Valley, NY. Their house had been built in 1793, and it had a name—Willow Hill. They had bought it years earlier on Nancy’s whim, and had painstakingly restored both the historic house ​and the grounds, creating magnificent gardens.  In the 1990s they sold Willow Hill and built an entirely new house on a hill in Roseboom to be closer to the woods of Jerry’s tree farm, managed since 1948.

Nancy was a witty, passionate woman, interested in the world, people, politics, peace. In the last decade she read Chinese history, studied the Revolutionary and Civil Wars, and American presidents. Although her hearing and sight diminished, she remained well-informed and fully conversant on issues of the day and regularly wrote letters to the editor, officials and Supreme Court justices. She was an active member of the First Presbyterian Church, a Bassett volunteer, an early member of the Opera Guild and of many other organizations. She was an activist who literally stood up for what she believed in—every Wednesday at noon ​in front of the Cooperstown Post Office, protesting wars and bad politics, since the tragedy of 9/11.   

Nancy is survived by her daughters, Anne Seabury Waller Auerbach; of ​Brookline, MA; Sydney Lancaster Waller, Cooperstown, NY; and Margaret ("Peggy") Earll Waller Burhoe and husband, Richards, Brookline, MA; six grandchildren: Peter (Brooklyn, NY), David and wife Peninah (Nairobi, Kenya), Jocelyn and husband Jason (Denver, CO), Rebecca (Nairobi, Kenya), Samuel (Portland, ME) and Anna (Brookline, MA); and many cherished nieces and nephews and friends.

Jerry, her husband of 70 years, died in 2013. She was predeceased by her sister, Sydney Thomson Brown, and brothers, James Claude Thomson, Jr. and John Seabury Thomson, who spent their childhood with her in Nanking.

A service of thanksgiving for the life of Nancy Waller will be offered at 3PM on Saturday, February 4, 2016, at the First Presbyterian Church, Cooperstown, NY with the Rev. Elsie Armstrong Rhodes, pastor, officiating.

Memorial gifts may be directed to Southern Poverty Law Center, The Fortune Society (Building People, Not Prisons)​, Otsego Land Trust, any outreach program of the First Presbyterian Church, Cooperstown or any charity that benefits refugees, children, prison reform or animals.​

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Angelina S. Schlesier

1935 - 2017

HARTWICK - Mrs. Angelina S. Schlesier, 81, of Hartwick, died unexpectedly on the evening of January 9, 2017 in her home.

Angie was born August 18, 1935 in Wyandanch, New York on Long Island as ninth of twelve children to Guido and Lucy Cioffi.

Angie was employed as the manager of Conservative Gas Co. of Wyandanch after graduation from Huntington High School.

On June 2, 1957, Angie married Anthony G. Schlesier in a ceremony at Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Mission Chapel in Wyandanch. Tony and Angie were blessed with four daughters and have spent the past 50 years on their on their farm in Hartwick. Angie was an integral part in the successful operations of the dairy farm, as well as the numerous businesses that she and Tony have owned throughout the years. In her later years, Angie was a member of the Hartwick Senior Aerobics Group, which she truly enjoyed and loved her companions who joined her each week. Angie was well known for her engaging smile, contagious laughter and pure soul that positively impacted every person who was blessed to know her. Angie was the keeper of the flame for the Schlesier family and her legacy of love will live on with all of her family members.

Angie is survived by her husband of almost 60 years, Tony, of Hartwick; their four daughters, Elizabeth Flaska (Scott), of Albany; Lucy Dubray (Robert), of Ossining; Theresa Davis (Gary) of Camp Verde, Arizona; and Mary DeNike (Chris) of Hartwick. Six grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren. She is further survived by one sister, three brothers, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Angie was pre-deceased by three sisters and four brothers.

Calling hours will be from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm on Saturday, January 14, 2017, at the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown, NY. A prayer service will conclude the visitation at 5:00 pm, officiated by her daughter Elizabeth Flaska.

The Committal and Burial Service will be at the Saratoga National Cemetery in Schuylerville on Tuesday, January 17, 2017, at 1:30 pm.

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Christian Taylor Kepner

1961 - 2017

COOPERSTOWN - Christian Taylor Kepner, 55, died Monday, January 9, 2017, after a series of health issues. 

He was born June 18, 1961, at A.O. Fox Memorial Hospital in Oneonta, to Susan Noakes Kepner and George S. Kepner, Jr., a retired Otsego County Surrogate Court Judge.

After graduating from Cooperstown High School, Chris attended school to become a farrier. He worked for Aufmuth's in Fly Creek for a few years and then went to Bruce Hall Corp. in Cooperstown while in his 20s, and stayed with them for the rest of his working career.

Chris was an upbeat, devil-may-care person and was well-known to many. His loves were work, golf and his kitties.

Chris is survived by his nephew, Taylor Kepner; sister-in-law Tassha Rathbone; step mother, Claire Kepner; step sister, Rachael Demsker, and her husband, Robert, and son, Theo; step brother, Jay Crossman and his wife, Danya, and children, Lauren and Hunter; Uncle Donald Noakes and his family; his good friends Mark Althiser and Bill Fort; and his work family at Bruce Hall Corp.

He was preceded in death by his mother, Susan N. Kepner, who died December 28, 1988, his father, George S. Kepner, Jr., who died October 30, 1993, and his brother, Matthew Donald Kepner, who died July 6, 2015.

Chris' family greatly appreciates all the care and support he received from Bruce Hall Corp. employees and his many caregivers at Bassett Medical Center. 

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


Service Notice

COOPERSTOWN - A Memorial Service for Chris Kepner was held at 1 p.m. Saturday, February 18, 2017, at the Fly Creek United Methodist Church, 852 County Highway 26, Fly Creek, after which family and friends gathered at the Cooperstown Sportmen's Association, 110 Sportsmen's Lane, Cooperstown.

Arrangements were under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Jane Spraker Potrikus

HARWICH, MASSACHUSETTS - Jane Spraker Potrikus, 89, of Harwich, Massachusetts, and formerly of Cooperstown, New York, and Little Falls, New York, died January 6, 2017, after a brief battle with cancer.

Her life centered on devotion to her family and to her Catholic faith. She was a communicant of and proud alto for the choir at Holy Trinity Parish in West Harwich, Massachusetts, where, until November 2016, she volunteered weekly for the Perpetual Adoration Chapel and work at the parish thrift shop. 

Jane was the only child of Francis and Jennie Spraker of Little Falls, New York. She, in turn, is survived by nine children: Ellen Barber of North Adams, Massachusetts; James (Heidi) of Kansas City, Kansas; Joan (David) Bruce of Clifton Park, New York; Michael of New Bern, North Carolina; Joseph (Doreen) of Fly Creek, New York; Timothy (Lisa) of Somers, Connecticut; Ted (Angie) of Niskayuna, New York; Marilyn (Joel) Habercorn of Hartwick, New York; and Anthony (Peter) of New Bern, North Carolina. She also is survived by 25 grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren, and one great-great grandchild.

She is predeceased by her parents, her husband, John (1978), her son, Charles (1975), and her daughter, Catherine (2011).

Jane was graduated from Little Falls High School and the Utica School of Commerce. She was employed at the H.P. Snyder Bicycle Manufacturing Corporation of Little Falls, where she met her World War II Veteran husband-to-be, John M. Potrikus. They married in 1948 and moved to Cooperstown, where Mr. Potrikus opened and operated the Cooperstown Dry Cleaners. Upon her husband's death, she assumed the ownership of the family business and operated it with her son, Michael.

Jane moved permanently to Cape Cod in 1986, and was graduated from the Sheffield School of Interior Design in 1989. She was employed by Bayfair Design Studio in Orleans, Massachusetts, for many years. She participated in parish activities and community groups, and always welcomed family and friends to share her hospitality and love for the Cape. She enjoyed travels with family and friends and kept a busy schedule until the final weeks of her long life. 

Jane spoke often of her deep pride for the accomplishments that each of her 11 children and their respective families had achieved. Her children and their families will continue to speak of her as a role model, wise and devoted advisor, cheerleader, and motivator to whom each could turn without hesitation.

Each whom she leaves behind and the many who knew and loved her throughout her life could fill pages with stories of her unassuming compassion, wit, courage, intelligence, selflessness, creativity, cooking, budget-stretching, and countless other skills for which she had boundless talent and energy. Overriding them all would have been her quiet humility, because were she to read this particular paragraph she surely would chide its authors for overstating her place in our lives. For just this once, though, we respectfully would correct her.

Calling hours are from 10 a.m. to 12 Noon only on Thursday, January 12, 2017, at St. Mary's "Our Lady of the Lake" Roman Catholic Church, 31 Elm Street, Cooperstown, New York.

The Liturgy of Christian Burial follows immediately thereafter (beginning at Noon) at St. Mary's "Our Lady of the Lake" Roman Catholic Church, 31 Elm Street, Cooperstown, New York. 

Jane's family will be in attendance at a reception in the Parish Center after the Mass.

Interment at St. Mary's Cemetery in Index, New York, follows at a date to be determined.

In lieu of flowers, please make donations in Jane's name to The McCarthy Care Center, 73 Service Road, East Sandwich, MA 02537.

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.

Father John R. Roos

1930 - 2017

Well done, good and faithful servant … enter thou into the joy of thy lord. 
-- St. Matthew 25:23

COOPERSTOWN - Father John R. Roos, 86, of Cherry Valley, entered into eternal rest Tuesday night, January 3, 2017, at St. Elizabeth Medical Center in Utica following a brief illness.

He was born January 5, 1930, in Albany, a son of the late Frank and Katherine (Purcell) Roos. A graduate of Vincentian Institute, Father was ordained to priesthood on July 17, 1955 (The Feast of Our Lady of Humility) at the Church of Twelve Apostles in Rome, Italy.

His first assignment was at The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in the City and Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany. He completed graduate studies at Catholic University in Washington, D.C. where he studied canon (Church) law and served as Secretary the Diocesan Tribunal. He later taught and was Rector at Mater Christi Seminary in Albany.

His entry into Parish Priesthood began as Pastor of St. Joseph's Church in Scotia. He served on brief temporary loan to the Archdiocese of Anchorage, Alaska, then returned to his native New York State and served as Pastor of St. James Church in Fort Plain and Annunciation Church in Ilion.

Upon the retirement of Fr. John Sise in 1991, Fr. Roos was named pastor of St. Mary's "Our Lady of the Lake" Roman Catholic Church in Cooperstown. One of his first acts was to appoint a Parish Council to assist with Church spiritual, social and economic functions. Later in his ministry it was under his guidance that the Eucharistic Minister program at Bassett and the St. Mary's Bereavement ministry was begun and flourished. He retired June 30, 2000, and went on to serve as Sacramental Minister at St. Thomas the Apostle in Cherry Valley, Blessed Sacrament in Springfield Center and St. Mary's in Sharon Springs. He resided for a time in Cobleskill and more recently made his home at the Clara Welch Thanksgiving Home in Cooperstown.

On June 14, 2015, he celebrated his 60th (Diamond) Anniversary of Ordination to the Priesthood in the company of the Reverends John P. Rosson and Andrew W. Cryans (who celebrated their Ruby Anniversaries) and Rev. Gregory Weider in a Mass of Thanksgiving at St. Mary's "Our Lady of the Lake" Roman Catholic Church in Cooperstown.

Fr. Roos once stated, "There's a quote I've always liked: If Jesus is for real, things fit. Without Him, nothing makes any sense at all."

An avid fan of the New York Yankees, he equally enjoyed Notre Dame and Syracuse University athletic events. He loved to sing -- his chanting during Mass was always impressive and meaningful -- and at various times he could often be heard humming to himself. He also had a passion for chocolate, enjoyed corned beef sandwiches, pansies, smoking his pipe, and reading. He always enjoyed talking with friends and family and appreciated the visits, gifts, cards and calls throughout his life from parishioners and friends far and wide, especially in the last weeks of his life.

Fr. Roos will be fondly remembered by many faithful parishioners for his kind, understanding, humble and calming presence.

He was preceded in death by his brother, Father Robert E. Roos, who died October 1, 2003.

Fr. Roos is survived by his brother, Joseph F. Roos and wife, Ann, of East Syracuse, and is the uncle of Joseph F. Roos, Jr. and wife Jennifer and their sons, Ryan, Sean and Evan of Fayetteville. Many cousins and friends and his extended church family survive him.

The Liturgy of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, January 10, 2017, at St. Mary's "Our Lady of the Lake" Roman Catholic Church in Cooperstown. The Most Reverend Howard J. Hubbard, D.D., Bishop Emeritus of Albany will celebrate the Mass.

The Reception of the Body will be at 4 p.m. on Monday, January 9, 2017, at St. Mary's "Our Lady of the Lake" Roman Catholic Church in Cooperstown, where he will lie in repose and people may pay their respects until 7 p.m.

Vespers will be held Monday evening at 7 p.m. at the Church.

The Service of Committal and Burial will be in Our Lady of Angels Cemetery, Colonie, where Fr. Roos will be laid to rest in the family plot.

Memorial contributions may be made to the charity of your choice.

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of Peter A. Deysenroth and Martin H. Tillapaugh, Funeral Directors.


If you would like to send condolences to the family, send an email to Connell, Dow & Deysenroth. We will forward your comments to the family. If you would like to send flowers in memory of the deceased, contact Mohican Flowers at (607) 547-8822, or A Rose is a Rose at (607) 264-3100.