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Obituaries from the 
Greenville Press

February 2005

Transcribed by Jackie Towner and Obituaries provided by April Saccocio

February 3, 2005 

Porter Wright
Medusa loses an elder statesman

By Graham S. Parker

MEDUSA---Porter Wright a prankster, historian, painter, cheese maker and beloved lifelong member of the community, died Tuesday, January 25 in Howells at the age of 92.

Wright touched the lives of many of Medusa’s residents, whether they were aware of it or not. They may have one of his famed paintings in their home or office (like The Press), or they may have eaten the ricotta cheese from the former Alleva Dairy, where he worked until it closed in 1976. They may have attended, or sent their children to Camp Medusa, of which he was a founder. Each one Wright had a hand in during his lifetime.

“He was a good uncle,” said William Moore, the organist of the United Church of Christ in Medusa for the last 25 years. “He was well liked by everybody.”

Wright served as the foundation to many of Medusa’s organizations. Besides being a charter member of the Medusa Fire Department, he was a driving force behind its creation and continued service. The same applied to the church, in which he was extremely active, said Moore.

“For many he was the stabilizing force behind the church,” said the Rev. Warren Beeman.

Many times Wright was the person who encouraged people to talk and not walk away from their problems, said Beeman. The church had been through some tough times, and Wright helped it and its attendants through them, the reverend said.

Wright was interested in, and believed in the relationship between nature, man and God. He wrote articles about it, talked about it, and expressed it in his art. He opposed capital punishment, and loved nature and history, said Beeman.

Beeman purchased one of Wright’s last paintings. Titled Sunday Morning, it depicts people walking into the church for a Sunday service in winter.

Wright’s paintings were auctioned at church events to raise money. Moore estimates that more than $2,00 was raised through auctions of his scenic depictions of Medusa, reminiscent of those by Grandma Moses.

“It’s hard to say what Porter meant to everybody …You would have to ask the whole town,” said Town Historian Irene Olson.

Olson took over the position after Wright stepped down nearly five years ago. He also was a member of the Town of Rensselaerville Historical Society. Everybody knew Porter, she said.

Medusa has been her home all her life, she said, and in that time Wright was here.

"It’s a loss to the town. The man and his knowledge (will be missed),” said Olson.

Born in Medusa May 5, 1912 to Walter G. and Alice (Hubbard) Wright.

Before his retirement in 1978, he was a cheesemaker at the Alleva Dairy in Medusa, until it closed in 1976, and then at Cappiello Bros. in Schenectady.

Survivors include his wife of 70 years, Louise (Moore) Wright; a daughter and son-in-law, Janet and the Rev. Stuart Stiles of Howells; a son and daughter-in-law, Allyn and Alayne Wright of Medusa; five grandchildren; seven Great-grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.

Porter donated his body to the Albany Medical College Anatomical Gift Program.

At his request there will be a memorial service to be held on a sunny spring day at the convenience of the family.

The Wright family requests that any memorials be directed to the Medusa United Church of Christ, Medusa or to the Town of Rensselaerville Ambulance, P.O. Box 182, Rensselaerville 12147.

February 3, 2005

Eugene Steinhauer Sr.

Eugene D. Steinhauer Sr., 72, of Cairo, died Friday, January 28 at Community Hospice of Columbia Memorial Hospital in Hudson.

Born in Manhattan, November 7, 1932, he was the son of the late Harold and Eileen (Ahearn) Steinhauer.

He retired from the New York Telephone Co. after 37 years of service and was a veteran of the Korean War. While living in Greene County, he worked for the Wip-O-Will campgrounds in Round Top and was the official greeter for the Department for the Aging.

Steinhauer was the recipient of the Ad Altare Dei Scouting Award.

Survivors include his wife, Patricia B. (McAndrew) Steinhauer; a son, Eugene D. Steinhauer Jr. of New Jersey; three daughters, Deborah Benson of Tennessee, Doreen Steinhauer of Cairo and Jodi Chaves of Hudson; three sisters, Eileen Bardeles of Binghampton, Barbara Lynn of St. Louis, MO, and Carol Start of Hudson, FL; 12 grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren.

Burial was in St. Patrick’s Cemetery, Catskill.

Memorial donations may be made to a charity of choice.

Arrangements were with Richards Funeral Home, Cairo.

February 3, 2005

Elizabeth Dudley

Elizabeth Dudley, 67, of Freehold, died at Columbia Memorial Hospital in Hudson on Friday, January 28.

Born in the Bronx, she was the daughter of the late Charles and Catherine Kripps.

Dudley was a well known fixture at the Sunny Hill Farm Resort in Greenville where she worked for more than 40 years.

Survivors include her children, Frank Dudley Jr. and wife Kathleen of Greenville, Linda Irwin and husband David of Westerlo, Diane Wendel and husband Philip of Freehold and Mary Bahnsen and husband Scott of Tampa, Fl; two sisters, Catherine Ryan of Bolivar and Joan Dean of Brentwood; 12 grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by her husband, Frank Dudley Sr., and a sister Ellen Gortakowski.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Michael J. Quill Irish Cultural and Sports Centre, P.O. Box 320, East Durham 12423.

February 3, 2005

Rachel Maltzman

Rachel M. Maltzman, 82, of Freehold, died at St. Peter’s Hospice Inn in Albany on Saturday, January 29 after a brief illness.

Born in Athol, MA, on September 25, 1922, she was the daughter of the late Frank and Lucy (Marsico) Petruzelli.

Maltzman grew up in the Bronx, where she met her husband Stanley, to whom she was married for 58 years.

She was a communicant of St. John the Baptist Church of Greenville. She enjoyed many types of needlework and was a member of the Quilters. She also was a member of the Clematis Garden Club, The Freehold Volunteer Fire Company Auxiliary, the Connoisseurs Club and All Arts Matter, and was a supporter of the Freehold Beautification Program.

Besides her husband, survivors include her daughters, Carole Kavanaugh and husband Robert of Newtonville, MA, and Susan Story and husband Douglas of Rensselaerville; a sister Lucy Rossi of Yonkers; four grandchildren, Meghan, Kathleen, and William M. Kavanaugh, and Sarah Story; and several nieces and nephews.

Spring internment will be in the Freehold Cemetery.     

Memorial contributions may be made to the Hospice Inn at St. Peter’s Hospital, 315 South Manning Blvd., Albany 12208.

Arrangements were with Cunningham Funeral Home, Greenville.

February 3, 2005

Leona Rundell

Leona I. Rundell, 98, of Greenville died at Community Hospice of Columbia-Greene at Eden Park Health Care Center in Catskill on Friday, January 28.

Born in Norton Hill on October 24, 1906, she was the daughter of the late Truman and Carrie (Spalding) Ingalls.           

Rundell graduated from the Greenville Free Academy in 1924. She first married William P. Kingsley on October 1, 1929, form whom she was divorced. She married Darius H. Rundell on June 17, 1944.

A lifetime resident of Greenville, she worked for the Pioneer Insurance Company and then assisted her husband with his auction and insurance business. In 1961 she was employed by the Greenville Central School District. She served for many years as the secretary to the secondary principal before retiring in 1976.

Rundell was a lifelong member of the Untied Methodist Church of Greenville-Norton Hill, where she was active in the United Methodist Women and sang in the choir.

She was a member of the Concordia Circle and served on the board of Directors of the Greenville Public Library for 35 years, including as president and vice-president. She was on the board of directors of the Locust Cemetery Association, was a former member of the Eastern Star and supported the Greene County Historical Society, the Catskill Valley Historical Society and the Greenville History Group.

Survivors include a stepdaughter, Martha Turon of Greenville; and the following nieces and nephews; Irene Williams and husband George of East Durham; Adrian Elliott and wife Edna of Mechanicsville, VA; Dr. William I. Gay and wife Millicent of Bethesda, MD; Phyllis Crawford and husband Alden of Sugar Hill, NH; Elizabeth “Betty” McAneny and Walter Ingalls and wife Shirley, all of Norton Hill; Ronald Elliott and wife Marguerite of Charlotte, NC; the family of the late Gerald T. Ingalls, her nephew, and his wife Anella; Edna Huffman and husband David of Makakilo. HI; Stephanie Ingalls of Greenville; Paige Ingalls and husband Brian Odza of New York; Heather Anne Petryna and her husband Michael and sons Alexander and Stephen of Thornton, CO; and Debra Sanderlin and husband Paul and daughters Miranda and Veronica of Chula Vista, CA.

Besides her husbands, she was predeceased by two stepchildren, Horace Rundell and Ruth Grenci; eight brothers and sisters, Warren T. Ingalls, Ransom Ingalls, Carrie Ingalls, Stanley Ingalls, Clarence Ingalls, Elgirtha Ellis, Ruth Elliott and Dorothy Gay; and several nieces and nephews.

A memorial service takes place Saturday, February 5 at 10 a.m. at the United Methodist Church of Greenville-Norton Hill, with the Rev. Thomas Carney officiating. There are no calling hours.

Burial takes place in the Greenville Cemetery at the convenience of the family.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Greenville Library or the United Methodist Church of Greenville-Norton Hill.

Arrangements were with Cunningham Funeral Home, Greenville.

February 3, 2005

Robert Rydell

Robert Stanley Rydell, 74, of Middleburgh, died at his home on Thursday January 27.

He was born in Brooklyn October 9, 1930, the son of the late Harney and Berna (Johnsson) Rydell.

Rydell served in the Marine Corps as a corporal during the Korean War and was an expert rifleman. He attended the University of Connecticut at Hartford.

He was a member of the Iron Workers Local 12 in Albany and worked at the Kiessalring Naval Base for several years before his illness.

He was an active member of the Masonic Lodge and past patron of Onestagrawa Chapter of the Eastern Star in Middleburgh.

Survivors include his wife, Cecilia Ann Rydell; a sister, Jeane Rydell Giffin; a nephew, Robert C. Deane of Saratoga; a great-nephew, Robert Jonathan Deane of Voorheesville; and a brother-in-law Brendan Egan and wife Carolyn of Elgen, SC.

A memorial service takes place in May, with internment at the family farm.

Memorial contributions may be made to Catskill Area Hospice and Palliative Care, 327 West Main Street, Cobleskill 12043.

February 3, 2005

John Reilly

John “Barry” Reilly, 47, of New Baltimore, died suddenly Friday, January 28 at Albany Medical Center.

He was born in Catskill, the son of the late Lawrence and Lena Reilly, and lived most of his life in Ravena. He had worked for 15 years for United Stationers Supply in Coxsackie. He enjoyed hunting and boating.

Survivors include his children, Misty Lou Reilly and Andrew Patrick Reilly, both of Earlton; his stepchildren, Edwin VanDenburgh of VA and Michelle VanDenburgh of Loudenville; his wife Lauretta VanDenburgh of Earlton; a brother, Larry (Christine) Reilly of West Coxsackie; his sisters, Kathleen Reilly of Coxsackie and Eileen Reilly of Ravena; his friend, Arvonda Hanlon of New Baltimore; and several nieces and nephews.

Memorial contributions may be made to the New Baltimore First Responders, New Baltimore 12124.

Arrangements were with Babcock Funeral Home, Ravena.

February 3, 2005

Leonard Stahl

Leonard W. Stahl, 87, of Hannacroix, died at his home on Wednesday January 26.

He was born in New York City on July 31, 1917, the son of the late Henry and Isabelle (Webber) Stahl.

Stahl was a lifelong logger.

He was a member of the Lamplighters and Ridge Runners, and a former member of the Earlton Fish and Game Club and the New Baltimore Democratic Club.

Survivors include his daughters, Judith Stahl Newell and husband Leslie of Ravena, Lucille Marjiasso and husband James of Hannacroix, Leila Henderson and husband Fred of Palm Bay, FL, Faye Van Dyke and husband, James of Westerlo and Lona Landauer and her significant other Roger Nickel of East Berne; a son, Leonard H. Stahl; four stepchildren, Judy Soderbloom, Mary Heinz, Rose West and Billy Schreiweis; a sister, Frances Anderson of New Jersey; his significant other, Eileen Glass; 19 grandchildren; and 25 great-grandchildren.

Funeral Services will be in the spring, at the convenience of the family, from Cunningham Funeral Home of Greenville.

February 24, 2005 

Everett Clow

Everett V. Clow, 51, of Greenville died at home on Friday, February 18.

He was born in Catskill on June 12, 1953, the son of E. Virgil Clow and the late Mildred (Marshall) Clow.

Clow was the owner of the Tip-Top Floor Covering in Freehold.

An avid lover of the outdoors and the water, he enjoyed boating with his family and friends. He was also an active member of the Greenville-Norton Hill Wildlife Club.

Clow chose to be a Gift of Sight donor.

Survivors include his wife, Jane (Helligrass) Clow, his children, Tracy Mistler and husband Steven and Cristy Clow and partner Jimmy Smith, all of South Westerlo; his stepsons, Jason Hazen and partner Nicole Blakeslee of East Durham and Darrell Hazen and wife Stephanie of Albany; two sisters, Rose Kiefer and husband John of Manassas, VA, and Judy Lomanto of Cairo; a brother-in-law, James Lomanto of Hannacroix; nine grandchildren, Julia, Lucas, Sierra and Angie Mistler, Sydney Dudley, Jade and Trista Smith and Tyler and Nicholas Hazen; a niece; two nephews; and a special aunt, Irene Blenis-Butler.

A grandson, Daniel Mistler predeceased him.    

As to his wishes, he will be cremated and interred this spring at the convenience of the family in the Greenville cemetery near his grandson.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Community Hospice of Columbia-Green 47 Liberty Street, Catskill, NY 12414 or to the South Westerlo Congregational Christian Church Memorial Fund.

Arrangements were with Cunningham Funeral Home, Greenville.

February 24, 2005

Harold Williams

Harold L. Williams, 94, of Greenville died Tuesday, February 15 at Eden Park Nursing Home in Catskill.

He was born in the upstate town of Hinckley on February 3, 1911 to Marvin and Addie (Winans) Williams.

His father was principal of two schools in Hartsdale, Westchester County, and his mother was one of the first female graduates of Syracuse University in 1905.

Williams grew up in Hartsdale and graduated from Pratt University in New York City with degrees in mechanical and electrical engineering.

He acquired the nickname “Beep”, having hand-built his first car at age 21.

Williams traveled the world extensively as a troubleshooter for Merrick Scale Co., and retired at age 67.

He married Virginia Dickerson of Yonkers and raised four children in Pearl River, Rockland County. She predeceased him and he later married Tillie Keegan of Pearl River and spent 30 years with her living in Greenville. They traveled from Alaska to Maine to Florida.

At age 80 he broke a rib sleigh riding and at age 90 was the oldest person to ride the Cyclone roller coaster at one of Florida’s theme parks.

Survivors include his wife Tillie; two sons, Scott Williams and wife Shirley of Cashiers, NC, and Keith Williams and wife Becky of Cape Coral, Fl; six grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Besides his parents and first wife, he was predeceased by two children, Todd and Susan Williams, and a brother, Walter Williams.

Spring internment will be in the Greenville Cemetery at the convenience of the family.

Arrangements with the Cunningham Funeral Home of Greenville.

February 24, 2005

Joan Lynch

Joan C. (Ray) Lynch, 72, of Athens, died Tuesday, February 15 after a long illness.

Born June 10, 1932, she was the daughter of the late Lawrence and Carrie Ray.

Lynch made her home in Athens 50 years ago and became a member of St. Patrick’s Roman Catholic Church. She served as one of the caretakers and as a Eucharistic minister.

Survivors include seven children, Lorraine Weresnick of Florida, Patrick, Brian, and Christopher Lynch of Albany, Thomas Lynch and Noreen Wilson of Catskill and Doreen Lynch of Wassaic; seven siblings, Judith (Ray) Gonance of West Coxsackie, Gloria (Ray) Irving of New Baltimore, Genevieve (Ray) Smith of Colonie, Roland and Charles Ray of West Coxsackie, and Frank and Lawrence Ray of Earlton; and nine grandchildren, Deric Wilson, Patrick, Michael, Shannon, Jeffrey, Kimberly, Andrew and Danielle Lynch; and many nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by Joyce (Ray) Brown.

Burial in Mount Hope Cemetery, Athens will be announced.

Arrangements were with Richards Funeral Home, Athens.

February 24, 2005

Alfred Ollmetzer

Alfred William Ollmetzer, 85, of Hannacroix, died Sunday, February 20 at Albany Medical Center.

He was born January 19, 1920 in Brooklyn, the son of the late Alfred and Rose (Zotter) Ollmetzer.

He was a member of the Army’s 175 Signal Repair Company during World War II and participated in the Normandy, Central Europe, Rhineland and Ardennes-Northern France campaigns. He was awarded five bronze stars, the Croix de Guerre, and Campaign and Victory ribbons.

Ollmetzer was a stationary engineer at the Coxsackie Correctional Facility for many years.

He was a 54-year member of the Coxsackie American Legion Post #166. He enjoyed woodworking, reading and assisting Boy Scouts.

Survivors include his wife, Theresa (Van Cott) Ollmetzer; a son, Alan and wife Melissa Ollmetzer of Hannacroix; three grandchildren, David and wife Melissa Ollmetzer of Ravena, Ann and husband Paul Eddy of Berne and David Bellefeuille of Schuylerville; four great-grandchildren, Lee Goergen, Michael and Paul Eddy and Joseph “J.J.” Ruchel; and several nieces and nephews.

Calling is today, February 24, from 1 to 3 p.m. at Sopris Funeral Home, 11877 Route 9W, Coxsackie. Services are at 3 p.m. with the Rev. Neil Irwin officiating.

Members of the Coxsackie American Legion Post #166 are asked to gather at the funeral home at 2:30 p.m.

Memorials may be made to the Medway-Grapeville First Responders, County Route 51, Medway.

February 24, 2005

Ethel Gee

Ethel F. (Meurer) Gee, 78, formerly of Cairo, died Monday, February 14 at the J.F.K. Hartwick Nursing Home Edison’s Estates in Edison, NJ.

She was born in Brooklyn August 13, 1926, the daughter of the late Peter and Josephine (Meyers) Meurer.          

Survivors include a son, Patrick E. and wife Nancy C. (Mann) Gee of Cairo; two daughters, Ethel Gee of New Jersey and Josephine and husband Ronnie Rottelli of Florida; her adopted daughter, Tina Gee of New Jersey; seven grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.

Her husband William T. Gee and a son, William T. Gee predeceased her.

Burial was in the Catskill Rural Cemetery.

Arrangements were with Richards Funeral Home, Cairo.

February 24, 2005

Marion Van Wormer

Marion E. (Hulbert) Van Wormer, 73, died Monday, February 14 at St. Peter’s Hospital after being stricken at home.

She was born in Catskill to Clayton and Nellie (Kellner) Hulbert.

Van Wormer was raised in the area of Green Lake and came to the Ravena area in 1950. She was a member of the Ravena Hose Company #1 Auxiliary for many years. She also enjoyed bowling at Ravena Lanes.

She was a member of Zion Lutheran Church in Athens.

Survivors include her husband of 52 years ___ “Cindy” Van Wormer; a sister, Nellie Carney of Athens; two nieces; two nephews and three cousins.

A brother, Clayton Hulbert, and a sister, Theretta Jolly, predeceased her.

Burial will be in the spring in the Chestnut Lawn Cemetery, New Baltimore.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Ravena Hose Company #1, 116 Main Street, Ravena 12143.

Arrangements were with Babcock Funeral Home Ravena.

February 24, 2005

Rose Harden

Rose Harden, 88, of East Durham, died Friday 18 at Columbia Memorial Hospital, Hudson.

She was born in Brooklyn June 17, 1916, the daughter of the late Bernard and Frances Ferguson.

Harden was a lifelong homemaker. She was a member of the Oak Hill-Durham United Methodist Church and the Durham Valley American Legion Post #1416 Auxiliary.

Survivors include her husband, James Harden; two daughters, Kathleen Beers of East Durham and Linda Hull and husband Steven of Deer Lodge, TN; five grandchildren, Barbara Beers, Jason Patterson, Melissa Hull and husband Jamie Letner, Harley Hull and wife Kelly, and Jennifer Scott and husband Steve; two great-grandchildren, Cheyenne Letner and Hannah Rae Hull.

A grandson, John Beers, six sisters and two brothers predeceased her.

Burial was in the Town of Catskill Cemetery.

Memorial contributions made be made to the Oak Hill-Durham United Methodist Church Memorial Fund.

Arrangements were with Cunningham Funeral Home, Greenville.

February 24, 2005

Maria Hill

Maria Hill, 41, of Catskill Village, died Tuesday, February 15 at Columbia-Greene Long Term Care in Catskill.

Born in Brooklyn July 13, 1963, she was the daughter of Lucy (O’Neil) Hoffman of Catskill and the late William Frederick Hoffman.

She was a cashier at the Wal-Mart store in Kingston.

Hill enjoyed reading, taking walks, puzzles and NASCAR. She was a fan of Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Besides her mother, survivors include her husband, Thomas Hill Jr. of Alaska; her son, Thomas Hill III of Alaska; her sisters, Carmela and husband Richard Hendricks and Dolores and husband Bernard Gallagher, all of Catskill; her brothers, William E. “Butch” Hoffman of Catskill and Joseph and wife Rosemary Hoffman of Coxsackie; her friends Diane Buguet, Robin Moore, Doriann Sheridan and Robin Balsano; and eight nieces and nephews.

Burial was in the Town of Catskill Cemetery.

Memorial donations may be made directly to the family.

Arrangements were with Sopris Funeral Home, West Coxsackie.

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