Broken clouds
Broken clouds
28.4 °F
December 08, 2016
River Reporter Facebook pageTRR TwitterRSS Search

July 7, 2011

Walter R. Wistermayer of the Lake Owassa section of Frankford Township, NJ, died Tuesday, June 28, 2011, in Newton, NJ. He was 78.

The son of the late Carl and Emilie Wistermayer and born in Clifton, NJ, Mr. Wistermayer was raised in Carlstadt, NJ and lived in Denville, NJ for 28 years. He was a summer resident of Lake Owassa before moving there six years ago.

Mr. Wistermayer was a Navy veteran of the Korean Conflict. He was the director of Digital Services for the former Bell Atlantic, now Verizon, in Bloomfield, NJ before his retirement. Memberships included the Branchville American Legion Post 157, past president of the River Edge Rotary Club, the West Point Parents Association, the Bear Swamp Hunting Club and Beaver Brook Hunting Club, both in Yulan, NY, and past president of the Bethel Sportsman Club in Yulan. He was a former Boy Scout Leader in Denville. Mr. Wistermayer had a passion for hunting and fishing, but his family always came first.

He is survived by his wife of 28 years, Linda Wistermayer; children Kathy Fernicola of Point Pleasant, NJ, Rita Costa of Highland Lakes, NJ and Paul Wistermayer of Holly Springs, NC; three grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; sisters Carol Ann Kristensen of Augusta and Rita Bringman of Carlstadt; and many nieces and nephews.

Mr. Wistermayer is also predeceased by siblings Ruth Glavan, Helen Peraino, Alfred Wistermayer and Paul Wistermayer.

Funeral services were held on Saturday, July 2 at the Wood Funeral Home, Branchville. Memorial donations may be made to the Alzheimers Association, 400 Morris Avenue, Suite 251, Denville, NJ 07834.


July 7, 2011

Ralph F. Sykes of North Branch, NY, a dairy farmer and lifetime area resident, died Wednesday, June 29, 2011 in North Branch, in the family home in which he was born. He was 84.

The son of the late John and Mildred Hust Sykes, he was born August 8, 1926 in North Branch.

He was a veteran of the U.S. Army serving in World War II. He was a member of Grace Lutheran Church in North Branch, the North Branch Fire Department, Cornell Cooperative Extension and the Farm Bureau.

Ralph met his wife, Antoinette Le Clere Sykes, in France during World War II. They were married for 64 years. Dairy farming was his life. He also enjoyed snowmobiling, and had a lifelong love of horses.

He is survived by his wife; daughter Janine Coppola and husband Carmen of Cedar Grove, NJ; two sons Robert Sykes and wife Bonnie of North Branch and Timothy Sykes of Hortonville, NY; grandchildren Rebecca, James, Jason, Silvana and TJ Sykes; step-granddaughter Megan Meyer; two great-grandchildren; brother-in-law Rene LeClere and wife Ethel; and several nieces and nephews.

He is predeceased by two grandsons, Ryan Coppola and Chad Sykes; brothers James and Fred Sykes; and sisters Ethel Ingerto and Blanche Fazio.

Funeral services were held on Saturday, July 2 at Grace Lutheran Church in North Branch. Burial was in Heavenly Rest Cemetery in North Branch.

Memorial contributions may be made to the charity of one’s choice.

July 7, 2011

Laura Hawley Keesler, formerly of Callicoon, NY, and Ponta Gorda, FL, passed away Thursday, June 23, 2011. She was 98.

Born November 22, 1912 in Lookout, PA, she was the daughter of the late Roy Hawley and Lena Rodenberg Hawley. She was married to the late Everett Keesler.

Mrs. Keesler was a member of the United Methodist Church, Tammany Chapter of the Eastern Star, and a former member of the Ladies Auxiliary of Grover Hermann Hospital, all in Callicoon.

She is survived by a son, Arthur E. Keesler and wife Jane of Callicoon Center; daughter Nancy Hankins of Binghamton, NY; 12 grandchildren; 20 great-grandchildren; and three great-great-grandchildren; a sister, Florence Hawley Knapp Sayre of Ponta Gorda; brother Roy Hawley and wife Natlie of Binghamton; and sisters-in-law Lilly Keesler Morgan of Middletown, NY and Joan Dauch Keesler of White Lake, NY.

She is predeceased by a son, James Keesler of Callicoon; daughter Betty Keesler Johnson and husband Robert Johnson of Elkhorn, WI.

Burial will be in the Galilee, PA cemetery at the convenience of the family.

July 7, 2011

Anna Shields Gregorski of Hamlin, PA went to be with God on Wednesday June 29, 2011 at Regional Hospital in Scranton, PA after a courageous battle with cancer. She was 57.

Her husband is Albert P. Gregorski, Jr. The couple would have been married 39 years in September.

Born January 7, 1954 in Beach Lake, PA, she was the daughter of the late Joseph and Joyce Rosencranse Shields. She graduated from Honesdale High School in 1971. She loved to paint and sold many of her painted objects at local craft shows, and also held painting classes.

Also surviving are sons Peter and wife Denise of S. Canaan, PA and Steven and wife Cindy of Lakeville, PA; grandchild Olivia; sisters Margaret Hamlyn and husband Walter of Waymart, Kathy Mohrmann and husband Doug of Harleysville, PA, Fran Smith and her husband Charles of Big Springs, WV, Patricia Gregorski and husband Chick of Hamlin and Vera Shields of Beach Lake; brother Joseph Shields of Honesdale; mother-in-law Blanch Gregorski of Lake Ariel; numerous nieces and nephews.

She is preceded in death by a brother, Ray Shields.

Memorial services will be held at a date to be announced.

Cremation took place in the Lake Region Crematory at the James Wilson Funeral Home.

Memorial contributions may be made to the donor’s favorite charity.


July 7, 2011

Mr. Allen, 82, late of Orland Park, IL and Shohola, PA died January 20, 2011 following a brief illness. He was 82.

He shared 39 years of marriage with Karen J. Layland.

He served as a veteran of the Korean Conflict and professionally was a TV and radio broadcaster, international broadcast consultant and an accomplished freelance writer.

Other surviving family members include sister Nancy Jean Rupke and husband John of Wisconsin, sister-in-law Nancy Allen of Maine and many loving nieces and nephews.

Mr. Allen is predeceased by his parents, Reverend Frederick Hadley Jr. and Jean Malven Allen; and brother Dr. Donald E. Allen.

A memorial service was held at the First Presbyterian Church, Port Jervis, NY on Saturday, July 2.

Memorials may be sent to First Presbyterian Church, 60 Sussex Street, Port Jervis, NY 12771.

June 30, 2011

John J. Them entered into rest on Thursday, June 9, 2011 at Trinity Hospital, Augusta, GA. He was 82.

John lived in Milanville, PA where he constructed his own home 25 years ago. He moved to Augusta seven years ago, where he was a member of God’s Church of Grace. John was a World War II veteran.

He is survived by his son, Richard Them; a brother, Philip Them; a sister, Katherine Morales; and girlfriend Ruthie Conyers.

A memorial service was held on June 25, 2011 in the Arthur A. Bryant Funeral Home, Honesdale, PA. Interment will take place in Hillside Cemetery, Damascus, PA at a later date.

June 30, 2011

Sam Shostle passed away on June 20, 2011 at Catskill Regional Medical Center in Harris, NY. He was 93.

He was born August 31, 1917 to Alex and Bertha Shostle in Louisville, KY.

He served as a combat veteran in WWII, including in the Battle of the Bulge. He worked in the grocery business most of his life.

He was a loyal friend with a great sense of humor, hard working, humble and bright right until the end. He loved animals, especially his cats, and taking country rides, picking berries, going out for coffee, and to hear the Callicoon Center Band.

He is survived by his loving and devoted daughter Bonnie Hoffman who cared for him for many years; his brother Leon in California; and numerous nieces and nephews.

He was predeceased by his wife Mollie Heit; and numerous brothers and sisters.

There will be no public services. Interment will be at the Veterans Cemetery in Liberty. Donations may be made to the SPCA animal shelter in Rock Hill, NY.

June 30, 2011

Rose M. Maculaitis, 92 of Honesdale, PA, formerly of Beach Lake, PA, died Wednesday, June 22, 2011, at Ellen Memorial Health Care Center. She was 92.

She is preceded in death by her husband, Edward Maculaitis, on June 2, 1992. The couple married in 1948 in Towanda, PA.

Born February 1, 1919, in Towanda, she was the daughter and last surviving member of the late Peter and Maria Pietropaoli Gabriel family.

She and her husband moved to Beach Lake shortly after being married, and she resided there until 2008, when she moved to Ellen Memorial. She was a member of St. Bernard’s Catholic Church in Beach Lake.

Rose worked several places including as an aide at the Stourbridge School, Honesdale, PA. She loved to cook and bake and was known for her homemade breads and Italian cookies.

Surviving are her sons, Joseph Maculaitis and wife Sandra of Greentown, PA and Richard Maculaitis of Mountain Top, PA; grandchildren Amy, Erin, Andrea, Scott; eight great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her son Robert Maculaitis, who died in 2010; and five sisters and a brother.

A funeral mass was celebrated on June 25 at St. Mary Magdalen Church in Honesdale. Cremation followed at Maple Hill at Salem Crematory. Interment was in St. John’s Cemetery in Honesdale. Visit

June 30, 2011

Isabella Coney, a lifelong resident of Monticello, NY, passed away on Sunday, June 26, 2011 at the St. Theresa’s Adult Home in Middletown, NY. She was 86.

The daughter of the late Charles Morris & Lena Libolt Morris, she was born October 29, 1924 in Phillipsport, NY.

She was the widow of Donald F. Coney Sr. who predeceased her on September 26, 2002.

Isabella was a member of the Moose and Eagles, the VFW Ladies Auxiliary, the Happy Hobos and the Forestburgh Seniors. She worked at the Miss Monticello Diner for many years and was a lunch lady at the Monticello Schools.

She is survived by three sons, Richard Coney and wife Gail of Narrowsburg, NY, Ronald Coney and wife Lisa of Winter Park, FL and Robert Coney and wife Tamara of Neversink, NY; daughter June Conklin and husband Tom of Monticello; grandchildren Richard, Michael and wife Nerrisa, Jason and wife Katie, Brian, Karyn and husband Jermaine, Stacy and husband Ron, Brittany, Dana and husband Mark, Erin, Tim, Sarah and Jackson; 17 great grandchildren; one great great granddaughter; brothers Leon, Earl, Harry and Carl; sisters Carol, Arlene, Kathy, Lena and Tessie; and many nieces and nephews.

She is also predeceased by a son, Donald Coney Jr.; brothers Sonny, Lenny and Eddie; and sisters: Ruth and Alice.

Visitation will be on Wednesday, June 29 from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. at the VanInwegen-Kenny, Inc. Funeral Home, 401 Broadway in Monticello. Her funeral service will be held on Thursday, June 30 at 11 a.m. at the funeral home with Pastor Jack Polin officiating. Burial will follow at the Rock Ridge Cemetery in Monticello. Visit

Contributions can be made to St. Teresa’s Nursing Home, 120 Highland Avenue, Middletown, NY 10940.

June 23, 2011

Rose Ulrich Totten of Yulan, NY passed away on June 19, 2011 at Bon Secours Hospital, Port Jervis, NY. She was 95.

The daughter of Ellen McAndrews Bailey and Albert Bailey, she was born on April 15, 1916 in Brooklyn, NY.

Rose married Eric Ulrich in 1939 and moved to this area in 1963. In 1974 she married Robert Totten. She worked at Eldred Central School and Rosie’s Yulan Inn until 1979. She was a member of St. Anthony of Padua Church and the Ladies Auxiliary of the Yulan Fire Dept.

A family statement reads in part: “Rose was a devoted wife, mother, grandmother and great grandmother who taught through example. There was never a problem she couldn’t help with, a song she could not sing or a dance she could not do. Her smile, gentleness and kind heart was loved by all who knew her. She will be sadly missed.”

Survivors include her daughter, Barbara Donnelly and husband Vincent of Yulan; son Thomas Ulrich and wife Karen of Newburgh, NY; grandchildren Vincent Donnelly and wife Pamela of Holdervess, NH, Michael Donnelly and wife Lisa, James Donnelly and wife Maureen, Thomas Donnelly and wife Cheryl, all of Yulan, Eric Ulrich of Peeksville and Megan Ulrich of Newburgh; eight great grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.

Rose is predeceased by her husbands; dear companion Joseph Wulforst; son Arthur Ulrich; granddaughter Barbara Ann Donnelly; brothers Albert Bailey and Clarence Bailey; and sisters Ellen Ellingsen and Viola Grollimund.

A Mass of Christian Burial took place at St. Anthony of Padua R.C. Church in Yulan on Wednesday, June 22. Interment followed at St. Anthony’s Cemetery.

June 23, 2011

Mary Ann Westbrook Tabler of Beach Lake, PA, died peacefully after a 16-month battle with pancreatic cancer at Wayne Memorial Hospital. She was 59.

Born February 13, 1952, in Buffalo, NY, she was the daughter of the late Jack and Dorothy Kunka Westbrook.

Mary was a certified nurse’s assistant at Julia Ribaudo in Lake Ariel, PA. It was her passion to care for others. Mary also loved and took great pride in her garden and flowers.

She is survived by her daughter, Julie Ann Katz of Honesdale; brother Colonel Mark Westbrook and wife Tammy of Toano, VA, stationed at Ft. Lee; niece Ashley Westbrook of Burke, VA.; longtime companion Duane Fenon of Hamlin, PA; and best friend Donna Yeckley of New Jersey.

A private graveside service will be held at the convenience of the family in Glen Dyberry Cemetery. Visit

Contributions can be made to the Dessin Animal Shelter, 138 Miller Dr. Honesdale, PA 18431.

June 23, 2011

Richard Macejka of Damascus, PA, died Tuesday, June 14, 2011. He was 65.

Born in Clifton, NJ, he resided in northern New Jersey before settling in Damascus, PA 30 years ago. He retired as a plant operator for the Town of Morristown, NJ where he was employed for 20 years. Previous employment was as a self-employed contractor.

Mr. Macejka was a Vietnam United States Army Veteran serving in the 1st Army Aviation Brigade on the 48th Assault Helicopter. He was a grower of blue spruce trees, a life member of the NJ Trappers Association and a very active outdoorsman.

He is survived by his companion of many years, Lynne Mehalick; and several nieces and nephews.

He is predeceased by two brothers, Joseph and Robert Macejka.

Funeral services were held Monday, June 20 at Bizub-Quinlan Funeral Home, Clifton. Interment followed at Cedar Lawn Cemetery, Paterson, NJ. Visit

Contributions may be made to Wounded Warrior Project, 4899 Belfort Road, Suite 300, Jacksonville, FL 32256.

June 23, 2011

Alice Houston of Callicoon Center, NY, a former instructor at Delaware Valley Job Corps Center and a longtime area resident, died Monday, June 13, 2011 in Callicoon. She was 50.

The daughter of Kathleen Deckelmann and the late Thomas Houston, she was born December 1, 1960 in Brooklyn.

She is survived by her mother, Kathleen Deckelmann; her twin sons, Tracy and Justyn Houston; sisters Christina Rowers and Katherine Doyle; brother Thomas Houston; and several nieces and nephews.

She is predeceased by a brother, Samuel Houston.

There will be no visitation.

Burial will be at the convenience of the family.

Memorial contributions may be made to the charity of one’s choice.

June 23, 2011

Willis I. Cudney of Pleasant Mount, PA, formerly of Shohola, PA and Summitville, NY, died Wednesday, June 8, 2011, while enjoying his lifelong dream of a trip to Alaska. He was 76.

His dear and loving friend and travel companion, Linde Malti of Hawley, PA was by his side.

Born August 11, 1934, in Summitville, he was the son of the late Willis J. and Isabelle Gammon Cudney.

Willis served in the U.S. Navy aboard the USS Ticonderoga from 1952 to 1956 during the Korean Conflict.

He enjoyed hunting, fishing and all that the great outdoors had to offer. He also enjoyed restoring antique vehicles and traveling the United States. He was retired from Cablevision.

He is predeceased by his love and partner of 27 years, Theresa McErlean.

Also surviving is his daughter, Joean Kolakowski; granddaughter Alivia Kolakowski of Summitville; sister Dollyanna Lewis and husband Mervin of Otisville, NY; nephews Donald and Jason; Theresa’s children Kate, Michael, Jane, Peg and Jim and their respective families.

Funeral services were held on Friday, June 17 at Hessling Funeral Home Inc., Honesdale, PA. Interment followed in Poplar Grove Cemetery in Phillipsport, NY. Visit

June 23, 2011

William F. Bott of Mongaup Valley, NY died Sunday, June 12, 2011 at the VA Medical Center in New York City. He was 85.

He was born on May 3, 1926.

He is survived by his wife Nenita De Belen Bott, at home; and his extended family including the Bott and Toomey families.

He is predeceased by two sisters, Sr. Catherine Bott OP and Margaret M. Bott PhD; and brother John “Jack” Bott.


June 16, 2011

Eleanor “Ellie” Garrabrant of Blauvelt, NY passed away on June 5, 2011 after a battle with cancer. She was 75.

She was born Eleanor Teresa Davis on March 31, 1936.

A family statement reads: “Ellie was a wonderful, caring and unselfish person who always put others before herself. May God give us the strength to go on without her and learn and live by her example. May her spirit and love always be with us through eternity. May God see that she has everlasting comfort. She was a beloved mother, sister, daughter, grandmother, and great-grandmother.”

Survivors include four children, Deborah T. SanGiacomo of Monroe, NY, Arthur J. Lenna of Georgia, Gary A. Lenna of North Carolina and Douglas F. Lenna of Lynchburg, VA; sisters Virginia Brooks of Jeffersonville, NY, and Tina Flora Sloat of Graham, NC; and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

June 16, 2011

Betty P. Masker Bidwell of Honesdale, PA, formerly of White Mills, PA, passed away on June 11, 2011 at Wayne Memorial Hospital, Honesdale. She was 81.

She was born in Cold Springs, PA to the late Leland Masker and Dorothy Goodwin Mills.

She was married to the late Carl O. Bidwell.

She was a housewife and of the Methodist faith. She loved bingo, yard and garage sales and picking blueberries. She also loved to fish, which she did until she was 80 years old, and over the years she taught many children in White Mills how to fish. Her family was very important to her and she was proud of her children and grandchildren.

She is survived by daughter Judy and husband Jim Farrell of Honesdale; son Bradley and wife Heather Bidwell of Damascus, PA; sisters Alberta Silvi and Mary Lou Hartz, both of Honesdale; six grandchildren; and one great grandchild.

She is preceded in death by a brother, Arthur Masker; and a sister, Beatrice Masker.

A memorial gathering and luncheon will take place at Texas #4 Fire Co., Grove St., Honesdale, on Saturday, June 18 at 1 p.m.

Cremation took place at Lake Region Crematory, Lake Ariel, PA. A private interment will be held at the convenience of the family at Indian Orchard Cemetery, Honesdale.

Contributions may be made to the White Mills Fire Department, P.O. Box 273, White Mills, PA 18473 or Texas #4 Fire Co., Grove St., Honesdale, PA 18451. Visit

June 16, 2011

William A. Abruzzese, a longtime resident of the area, passed away at Westchester Medical Center, Valhalla, NY on Friday, June 10, 2011. He was 89.

He was born in Brooklyn on February 3, 1922 to the late Dominick and Angelina Columbo Abruzzese.

William served in the U.S. Army in WW II. He was a NYC police captain who retired after serving 33 years.

He was a graduate of St. Francis College of Criminal Justice. William was married for 51 years to Stella Santa Maria Abruzzese, who passed away on September 16, 2001.

A family statement reads: “Everyone knew Willie to be a good and honest man, a faithful, loving husband and a wonderful loving father. His family meant everything to him. He will be loved, remembered and missed forever. Always in our hearts, but returned by God to our mother and brother in heaven.”

William is survived by four children, Dominick Abruzzese of Warwick, NY, Angela Daley and husband Steve of Narrowsburg, NY, Susan Muller and husband Ted of Narrowsburg and William Abruzzese and wife Andrea of Slate Hill, NY; 11 grandchildren; sister Helen Angeloro; and many nieces and nephews.

William is predeceased by his wife Stella and their son Robert W. Abruzzese, who had passed way in 1964; sister Ida Angeloro; and brother Fred Abruzzese.

A Mass of Christian Burial was held on Tuesday June 14, 2011 at St. Francis Xavier R.C. Church, Narrowsburg. Rev. William Scully O.F.M. officiated.

Christian burial was in St. Francis Cemetery, Narrowsburg.

Donations may be made to Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, 1275 York Avenue, New York, NY 10065; or Alzheimer’s Association, New York City Chapter, 360 Lexington Avenue, 4th Floor, New York, NY 10017; or the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation.

June 9, 2011

Reva A. Slish of Mallard Meadows Residential Healthcare Center in Waymart, PA, formerly of Beach Lake, PA, died Sunday, May 29, 2011, in Wayne Memorial Hospital, Honesdale, PA. She was 96.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Andrew Slish, in 1977.

Born on July 20, 1914, in Milanville, PA, she was the daughter of the late Burton and Vesta (Hartman) Scott.

Reva and her husband owned and operated a family dairy farm for many years. Reva was especially fond of working with animals and growing flowers. She was a member of the Beach Lake Free Methodist Church in Beach Lake. Above all, Reva dearly loved her family.

She is survived by a son, Gary Slish and wife Joyce of Honesdale; granddaughters Jennifer Morgan and husband Tim of Beach Lake and Tanya Turner and husband Brian of Muskego, WI; four great-grandchildren; brother Billy Scott of Hawley, PA; sisters Phyllis Williams of Damascus, PA and Sally Schafler of Sidney, NY.

She was also preceded in death by a son Richard Slish; brothers Russell and Chester Scott; and sisters Gladys Jenks and Dorothy Bigelow.

Funeral services were held on Wednesday, June 1 in the Beach Lake Free Methodist Church with Rev. Christopher Freet officiating.

Graveside interment services were held on Thursday, June 2, 2011, in the Indian Orchard Cemetery.

Contributions may be made to the Beach Lake Fire Hall, Beach Lake, PA 10405 or the Beach Lake Free Methodist Scholarship Fund, c/o the Beach Lake Free Methodist Church, Beach Lake, PA 18405. Visit

June 9, 2011

August A. Oetzel Jr., a lifelong area resident, passed away on Sunday, June 5, 2011 in Hospice Care at Bon Secours in Port Jervis, NY. He was 85.

Son of the late August A. Oetzel, Sr. and Florence Stevens Oetzel, he was born on May 28, 1926 in Harriman, NY.

August was a retired mechanic for Ford Motor Company in Mahwah, NJ and a veteran of the US Navy serving during World War II.

He was a member of American Legion Mulligan-Eden Post 1573 in Harriman, Greenwood Lake Elks Lodge 2067, Excelsior Sportsman’s Club of Eldred and was a former member of Harriman Engine Company #1.

He is survived by his wife, Louise Lupardo Oetzel of Eldred; son James A. Oetzel Sr. and wife Francesca of Dingmans Ferry, PA; daughter Anna Marie Coburn of Cincinnati, OH; brother Charles Oetzel of Chester, NY; four grandchildren; nieces and nephews.

He is predeceased by his son, August A. Oetzel III; and brother Emerson Curtis.

The funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, June 9 in the funeral home with Rev. Alon White officiating. Interment will follow in Seamanville Cemetery in Monroe.

Donations may be made to Hospice of Orange and Sullivan Counties, Inc. 800 Stony Brook Court, Newburgh, NY 12550. Visit