Archive for August 2015

Slabinski, Robert John Sr.

photo_005701_dit3548136_1_photo1_cropped_20150831.jpgxRobert John Slabinski, Sr. age 76, of Unionville, CT quietly passed away surrounded by family on August 25, 2015 in Anchorage Alaska, while on vacation celebrating his 57th wedding anniversary to Marilyn Ann (McGovern) Slabinski. Robert was born on March 30, 1939 to John and Adele (Diamond) Slabinski in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. He attended Wilkes University where he achieved an associates degree for engineering sciences, he then earned a bachelors in Mechanical/Aeronautical engineering from the University of Hartford, and then earned his masters from the University of Connecticut. He worked for Royal Typewriter in Elmwood, CT where he held a patent for the “Space and repeat space bar Mechanism for an electric typewriter” filed June 7, 1963. He then went on to work for UTC – Hamilton Standard, where he had a front row seat during the 1960’s space race, and development of the Space Shuttle. He also has a patent for Hamilton Standard/UTC for “Multi-Parameter Air Data Sensing Technique” filed March 11, 1997. After retiring in 1999, he went on to earn a certificate as a Master Gardener. And was a member of the Orchids Society, he served as President of the Farmington Senior Center, also served as President of St. Mary’s Parish Counsel, and for the past 11 years he has been an usher at St. Mary’s. He was a proud and devoted father to Robert J. and Susan (Arvidson) Slabinski Jr. of Burlington, CT, Jerome and Jennifer (Loiselle) Slabinski of Plainville, CT, Barbara Ann Slabinski of Leesburg, VA, Patricia (Slabinski) and Gary Young of Enfield, CT, Marilyn Ann (Slabinski) and Tom Dionne of Burlington, CT, and finally John Joseph and Alexis (Morley-Lyons) Slabinski of Tariffville, CT. He was a wonderful grandfather of 9: Zachary, Daniel, and Nicholas Slabinski, Alix and Kelley Slabinski, Kenna O’Brien-Slabinski, Candice, Amanda, and Dawn (Palance) Young. He also had 3 great grandchildren, Bob also preceded his 2 brothers John (Jack) and his wife Barbara Slabinski, and Stanley and his wife Elaine Slabinski, and many nieces and nephews. 

Nelson, June Billingham

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June Billingham Nelson, teacher and administrator at the Renbrook School for 36 years, and docent at the Wadsworth Atheneum for 23 years, died at John Dempsey Hospital on August 23rd after a brief illness. She was born in New York City on June 7, 1918, and became a resident of Hartford at the age of 12. After graduating from Radcliffe College in 1940, and completing 60 hours of graduate study at Yale in 1941 and 1942, Mrs. Nelson taught for three years in Pennsylvania before beginning her career at Renbrook, then known as the Junior School, in 1945. In 1961, she spent a year teaching fourth grade boys at St. Paul’s Junior School in London, England. When she retired as head of the Lower School at Renbrook in 1981, the Lower School building was named in her honor. She married Arnold W. Nelson in 1973, and resided with him in Avon and Farmington until his death in 1998. Together, Mr. and Mrs. Nelson pursued many interests, including active involvement in the nuclear freeze movement of the 1980’s, which led them to travel to Russia as members of delegations seeking to improve understanding between the people of Russia and the United States. In 1981, after retirement from Renbrook, Mrs. Nelson trained to become a docent at the Wadsworth Atheneum, and worked in that capacity until her 86th year, in 2004. She particularly enjoyed leading groups of Hartford school children when they visited the Atheneum. She moved to the McAuley in West Hartford in 2000, and lived there until her death. She was a sponsoring member and attended concerts at the Hartford Symphony, and frequently traveled to New York City to view exhibits at the Metropolitan Museum of Art or attend theater performances. June Nelson was a long-time member of the Westminster Presbyterian Church in West Hartford, where she is remembered in part for her enthusiasm as a Sunday School teacher. She is survived by two step-sons and their spouses, Robert and Sandie Nelson of Rancho Palos Verdes, California and John and Ann Nelson of Montpelier, Vermont. She leaves five grandchildren and six great grandchildren. She is also survived by a nephew, John Billingham, of Dallas, Texas. In her later years, June considered Vermont to be her second home. She learned to cross-country ski in Putney, Vermont in the early 1970’s and she made extended visits to Montpelier, where she had many friends, on a regular basis for over 30 years. 

Hassey, Mary Claire

Hassey, Mary ClaireMary Claire Finn LaPointe Hassey passed away peacefully on August 22, 2015 at age 96. She was born in Cambridge on December 7, 1918 to Ellen Goggin Finn and Joseph Frederick Finn. She graduated from Catherine Gibbs School. She was Executive Assistant to the Regional Manager of Sears Roebuck. Prior to that she and her husband owned and operated a retail store. Claire belonged to the Catholic Daughters of America. Her religious faith as a Roman Catholic played an important role in her life. She is survived by several nieces and nephews and their children. Her Mass of Christian Burial is Saturday, August 29 at 10:30 am at St. Columbkille Church in Brighton. The burial will follow at Holy Cross Cemetery in Malden.

Healy, Anne Marie (Lawler)

Healy, Anne Marie

Anne Marie (Lawler) Healy, 86, of Farmington, CT, died peacefully after expressing her love and gratitude to her family on August 25, 2015.She was predeceased by her loving husband, Daniel J. Healy and her parents, Thomas and Mary (O’Connell) Lawler. Anne Marie was a devout Roman Catholic and was looking forward to a conversation with Jesus, Mary & Joseph. She was a parishioner of St. Ann’s Church in Avon, CT.Anne Marie was a remarkable woman who was born in Bronx, NY, and was liberated before “women’s lib”, someone who spoke her mind and had an adventurous life moving to many parts of the U.S., Paris, and Brazil. She resided the longest at the home she made for her family in Ridgefield, CT. Anne Marie loved to cook, entertain and socialize, enjoying good times, family, friends, music and food. She was a long-time volunteer for Meals-On-Wheels, and one of her favorite pass-times was trying her hand at Bridge.Anne Marie and her husband Dan were married for 48 years. After retirement, they lived in Avon, CT, and their winter home in Boca Raton, FL, for 25 years. She was a graduate of Our Lady of Good Counsel College and earned her Master’s degree from Fordham University, where she also taught. She went on to become a professional business woman who held many positions throughout her career.Anne Marie raised five (5) children with love and devotion and not a little fire! Her children were Anne Marie’s greatest accomplishments and the center of her life. Maura & Bill Kernan of Windsor, CT, Kathleen & David Bonola of Glastonbury, CT, Eileen & Dean Setzler of Canton, CT, Tom & Teresa Healy of Redding, CT, and Danielle & Scott Wilson of Madison, CT. Anne Marie, affectionately called as “Ami,” loved and thoroughly enjoyed her 13 grandchildren and their spouses: Eileen & Scott McKinney, Kelly Tobin, Christy & Jonathan Gould, Kathryn and Kevin Anderson, Matthew and Michael Setzler, Ryan, Jack and Will Healy, and Brian, Tommy and Christopher Wilson. She cherished and was entertained by her four great-grandchildren, Danny & Claire Gould, Addison Tobin, and Riley McKinney. Ami also leaves a very special cousin and her husband, Marianne & Michael Fleming of Durham, England. The family extends heartfelt thanks to the wonderful staff at The Gables of Farmington, Ursula Niemczycki from McLean’s Hospice, and Bozena “Anna” Fraczek for their kindness and friendship as they cared for our Mom. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Hartford, CT, on Thursday, August 27, 2015 at 10:00 am followed by a graveside service at Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Hawthorne, NY.

Connally, Mary Bowen

ConnallyMary Bowen Connally passed away July 20, 2015, at Saint Francis Hospital in Hartford. A gifted artist and loving mother, she trained in portraiture and illustration at Yale University School of Fine Arts, and at Rhode Island School of Design. Born in 1930, she grew up in Mountain Lakes NJ, and attended Carlton College in Northfield Minnesota, before going to art school. She was married August 21, 1953 to Thomas W Connally, of Atlanta Ga, who was attending Yale Architecture School. They lived in Connecticut and also briefly in the San Francisco area, before moving to New York City, where she spent most of her life. She was active in NOW, particularly the NY State Task force on Child Custody, in the late 60’a and early 70’s. She became a Buddhist, and traveled extensively in Nepal and France. After cataract surgery in late 2014, she was resuming her artistic work in portraiture at her home in Hartford, in 2015. A recurrence of CHF in June was followed by unexpectedly critical conditions, including severe respiratory infection. Her children and grandchildren were each with her in the 2 months before she passed away. She is survived by her 3 children, Nancy C. Zamboni, Thomas W. Connally III, and Elizabeth C. Bilodeau, her 2 grandchildren, Laura C. Bilodeau and Jonathan M. Zamboni, and also her brother, Robert Goss Bowen Jr. There will be a Memorial Service at Trinity Episcopal Church, 120 Sigourney St, Hartford on Saturday, August 22 at 2:00pm. The following Saturday, August 29, starting at 2pm, there will be a Memorial Service at Christ and Holy Trinity Church,55 Myrtle Ave, Westport, with Interment of the ashes at nearby Willowbrook Cemetery, 395 Main Street, Westport. The services will be followed by a more informal time to gather and share memories. Memorial offerings may be made to: U.S. Fund for UNICEF “Nepal Earthquake Relief”,125 Maiden Lane, New York NY 10038, 212-686-5522, www.unicefusa.org.

Kerr, Michael E.

Kerr, MichaelMichael E. Kerr, of Unionville, formerly of Winsted, passed away peacefully surrounded by his family on Wednesday, May 27. Born on December 8, 1951, he is survived by his parents Stanley and Margaret Kerr of Unionville, two brothers, Gregory Kerr of Farmington and Stanley Kerr Jr. and his wife Brooke Kerr of Unionville, two sisters, Colleen Kerr and Lisa Zabel and her husband Kevin Zabel of Farmington and several nieces and nephews. He is predeceased by his brother Edward Kerr and his longtime life partner Anna Kelmelis. Michael was an avid fisherman and hunter and enjoyed being in the outdoors. Mike and Anna shared a great love for dogs. Together they raised several litters of hunting dogs. His Irish Setter Brandy his first dog, always held a special place in his heart. The family has planned a private burial at a later date.

Cutting, Florence Reid

Cutting, FlorenceFlorence Catherine (Reid) Cutting, 81, of West Hartford, CT and Needham, MA, passed away on August 18, 2015. Florence was born in Hartford, CT on November 13, 1933. The daughter of the late Margaret and John Francis Reid, she graduated from Mount St. Joseph Academy and attended the University of Connecticut. She earned her Licensed Practical Nurse degree and also worked for the Connecticut Secretary of State Office for many years. Beloved mother, nana, aunt and friend to many, Florence is survived by her daughter, Maureen Cutting (Robert) Neff of McLean, VA; three sons, William F. (Maura) Cutting of Needham, MA; Matthew C. Cutting of Waltham, MA; and James M. Cutting of Waltham, MA. Nana of Elizabeth, Joseph and Mary of Needham, MA. She was predeceased by her brothers; Rev. John P. Reid, O.P. and Gerald J. Reid. She also leaves nieces, a nephew, and cousins. She was predeceased by her former husband, J. William Cutting. Florence loved the theater; performing and working backstage. While at the Connecticut Secretary of the State Office, she earned the ‘Good Egg Award’ from the Hartford Advocate. She loved the city of Hartford and telling stories about growing up in the North End. She was an avid reader, a member of Mensa, and enjoyed all kinds of music. She was a great mother who was always there for her children. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Saturday, 22 August at 10:30 A.M. at St. Joseph Cathedral, 140 Farmington, Ave., Hartford, CT. The family would like to express their thanks and deep appreciation for the love and care that Florence received at Wingate at Needham. In lieu of flowers, her family suggests a contribution to Wingate at Needham, 589 Highland Avenue, Needham, MA. ATTN: Christine Norton.

Wysock, Sheila C.

Sheila C. Wysock, 84, of Farmington, widow of Robert J. Wysock, passed away peacefully Monday, August 17th, 2015. Born September 5th, 1930 in Hartford, daughter of the late Thomas and Catherine (Flattery) Cullina. She was a longtime communicant at the Church of St. Patrick in Farmington. Sheila is survived by her three children, Kathleen A. Fillers and her husband Russell of Gainesville, VA; Trisha M. Roberts of Farmington; and Robert J. Wysock, Jr., of Tolland, her sister, Margaret Pritchard of Stamford, her two brothers, Thomas Cullina of Milbray, CA; and James Cullina of Ashburn, GA, four grandchildren, Jennifer, Caitlin, Erin and Kayla and two great grandchildren, Andrew and Ian. She was predeceased by her brothers, David and John Cullina. Friends may call at The Ahern Funeral Home, 111 Main St., Rt. 4, Unionville on Friday (Aug. 21) from 9:00-10:00am. Funeral procession from The Ahern Funeral Home will be at 10:00am followed by the Funeral Liturgy in the Church of St. Patrick, 110 Main St., Farmington at 10:30am. Burial will be in St. Joseph Cemetery, Bristol. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to The House of Bread, 27 Chestnut Street, Hartford, CT 06120.

McKenzie, Vida M.

McKenzie, VidaVida M. McKenzie “Miss Mack”, 85, of Hartford, died on Friday, August 14, 2015. She is survived by four children, Deacon Reverend Philip McKenzie of Jamaica, Elsa Redway of Florida, Yvonne Smith of N. Carolina, and Paulette Josephs of Hartford, sister Millicent Bell of Hartford, 3 sons-in-law, 3 grandchildren, 4 great-grandchildren and a host of nieces and nephews. Visitation for Vida will be held Friday (Aug. 21) from 9:00-10:00am at Rehoboth Church of God, 1170 Blue Hills Avenue, Bloomfield followed by Funeral Services in the Church at 10:00am. Burial will be in Mt. St. Benedict Cemetery, Cottage Grove Road, Bloomfield.

Vastano, Robert William “Bobby”

Robert “Bobby” William Vastano of Old Lyme, passed away peacefully on Thursday morning, August 13, at the age of 72. Born in Hartford, Bobby was the eldest child of Robert and Helen (Gregerick) Vastano. While born with special needs, he received a lifetime of love and care every minute of every day. Bobby was predeceased by his mother and father, and his devoted brother and guardian, Jerry Vastano. He leaves behind his loving sister and brother, Donna Garms and Jeffrey Vastano, brother-in-law, Brian Garms, sister-in-law Linda Vastano, nephew Robert Vastano, aunt Theresa Gregerick, aunt and uncle Frances and Melvin Davis. For the last 19 years, Bobby has received unconditional loving care from the staff at Sunrise Northeast in Old Lyme. If he could he would want to personally thank his extended Sunrise family; Bonnie, Kelly, Stacy, Isabella, Eric, John, Lorraine, Sheryl and Shannon, and he would lovingly embrace one last time his BFF for eternity, Colleen Phillips at Baroco in Gales Ferry, where he spent the fun part of this life Monday through Friday. Every once in a while an angel arrives on earth who remains angelic to the very end of life. Such was the life of Bobby Vastano. He is greatly missed by all that know him. The Funeral Liturgy will be celebrated on Tuesday, August 18 at 10:00am in the Church of St. Mary Star of the Sea, Main St., Unionville. There will be no calling hours. Burial will be private. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the  ALS Association CT Chapter, 4 Oxford Rd., Milford, CT 06460.

Batterson, James Goodwin

James Goodwin Batterson V (Jim) died at the age of 77 due to complications related to cancer on August 9, 2015. He is survived by his son, Samuel Holmes Batterson of Bristol, RI, his siblings, Anne Batterson of Canton CT, Bettina (Nicki) Hall of East Hartland CT, Jonathan Batterson of Stuart FL. His nephews: Scott Hall of Belfast Maine and Taylor Hall of Jackson Wyoming; his nieces: Anee Ward of Taos New Mexico, Samantha (Mandy) Davis of Peaks Island Maine, Sarah Batterson of Dover NH, and Christine (Crissy) Batterson of Washington DC. He was born July 6, 1938 to James Goodwin Batterson IV and Bettina Baldwin Batterson at Hartford Hospital. Jim graduated from Tabor Academy in Marion MA in 1961. After a brief military service, he went on to graduate from Wake Forest University in North Carolina. He later received a graduate degree from Columbia School of International Business. A lifelong learner, he continued to attend classes of literature and other academic interests at Trinity College and other local schools in Hartford until his final days. Their vision of doing high quality work led Jim and Peter Brainard of Bloomfield CT to found a residential construction and development company called Hartford West Inc., a company that was active in the Greater Hartford area for over thirty years. Highlights that reflect his enthusiasm for sailing include the meticulous preservation of one of the last wooden sailboats in the Comet Class, a boat he raced for many years in Weekapaug RI; the Bermuda Race in the 60’s; sailing his 43’ Baltic in the Baltic Sea for a several months, and speedy trips around Buzzard’s Bay in his sloop Easterly, an E boat designed by Rob Doyle. On the golf course, he was known for a powerful and accurate driving game and less than stellar putting on the green. Services will be held Thursday, August 13 at 1:00pm at Old St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church: 59 Tariffville Road Bloomfield, CT. He will be buried at a private service in Cedar Hill Cemetery in Hartford. Memorial donations may be made to Nope’s Island Conservation Association, Inc., 4 Wawaloam Drive, Westerly, RI 02891.

Blades, Erik Brandon

Erik Brandon Blades, of East Hartford, formerly of Unionville was killed in a car accident on August 6, 2015, in Glastonbury. Born on September 17, 1996, in Nashua, New Hampshire, he was the beloved son of Amy (Brignano) Blades of Unionville and John Allen Blades of East Hartford. Erik was a graduate of Synergy High School in East Hartford and was currently employed by UPS in Hartford. Erik lived a clean life, was always active, loved playing basketball, football, baseball and wrestling; and was planning on enlisting in the Air Force. Besides his parents, he is survived by his sisters, Taylor, Madison, and brother William, all of Unionville, his maternal grandparents Pauline Potvin Brignano of Farmington and Patsy John Brignano of Bloomfield, paternal grandfather Joseph Ralph Blades Sr. of Midlothian, Virginia and many aunts, uncles, and cousins. Funeral Services will be held on Tuesday, August 11, 2015, at 6:00 PM at Saint Matthew Lutheran Church, 224 Lovely Street, Avon, Connecticut. There are no calling hours. In lieu of flowers please make contributions to Manchester CJRCYFSC c/o CT Junior Republic Development Office, Child Youth and Family Support Center, P.O. Box 161, Litchfield CT 06759.Blades, Erik

Johnson, Ella Mary (Michna)

Mrs. Ella Mary (Michna) Johnson, 92, of Unionville, widow of Clinton E. Johnson, passed away August 5th, 2015. Ella was born in Unionville on March 4, 1923. The daughter of Mary and Andrew Michna, she graduated from Farmington High School and then worked at the Connecticut Power Company during World War Two. After she left there, she worked for many years for the Farmington School System as a Secretary. She was a lifetime member of St. Mary Star of the Sea Church. Beloved wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, and friend to many, Ella is survived by her son, Phillip and his wife Lynn of Vermont; grandson, Michael, his wife Nina and their children Isabella and Blaise of Torrington, grandson, Scott and his wife Leanne of Torrington; daughter, Cynthia Ferrarotti of Bethlehem, granddaughters, Amy Ferrarotti of Torrington, Jill Philips and her husband Jonathan of Massachusetts, and Tia Williams and her husband Ryan and their son, Calvin of New Hartford. She also leaves a sister, Julie Alender of Harwinton and nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her youngest son, Peter. Friends may call at The Ahern Funeral Home, 111 Main St., Rt. 4, Unionville on Saturday (Aug. 8) from 8:30-9:30am. Funeral procession from The Ahern Funeral Home will be at 9:30am followed by the Funeral Liturgy in the Church of St. Mary Star of the Sea, Unionville at 10:00am. Burial will be in St. Mary Cemetery, Avon. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Church of St. Mary Star of the Sea, Bidwell Square, Unionville, CT 06085.

Salamon, Dorthy Kleinhenn

Dorothy Kleinhenn Salamon, of West Hartford, beloved wife of Frank R. Salamon, passed away August 1, 2015 surrounded by her family. Born October 16, 1926 in Springboro, Ohio, she was the daughter of the late William and Hannah (Ertel) Kleinhenn. Dorothy graduated from Miami University of Oxford, Ohio in 1949 and began teaching home economics in New Britain Public Schools where she met her husband. After many years as a homemaker and mother, Dorothy resumed teaching at Hartford High School in 1972 until her retirement in 1977. She was a wonderful cook, baker, and seamstress and an avid collector of Native American Art. She traveled extensively throughout the United States and Canada. She was passionately interested in her family’s genealogy. Dorothy’s research led to her membership in the Abigail Phelps Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. She was an avid bird watcher, gardener, and a 50-year member of the Sierra Club. Dorothy loved following politics and was a founding member of the Ridgefield, CT League of Women Voters. Dorothy was a member of Asylum Hill Congregational Church in Hartford. Besides her loving husband of 64 years, she is survived by her son, Frank W. Salamon and wife Nancy of Southington, daughter Joan Israelson and husband Tom Caputi of Granby and the light of her life, her granddaughter, Sarah Israelson of Washington, D.C. Funeral services will be private at the convenience of the family. A memorial service will be held at a later date at The McAuley in West Hartford. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Asylum Hill Congregational Church, 814 Asylum Avenue, Hartford, CT. 06105.