Willis Fred Weeden ’41, a retired physician and surgeon, long prominent in the Canandaigua, NY, community, was born on March 5, 1920, in Frankfort, not far from Utica. A son of George Roger Weeden, an insurance agent, and the former Helen Fish, he was a grandson of Willis L. Weeden, Class of 1882. He followed his older brother, Roger, to College Hill in 1937, after his graduation from Frankfort High School. On the Hill, “Bill” Weeden managed to combine demanding premedical studies with active participation in athletics as well as student government. He played varsity basketball for three years and football for four, despite temporary interruptions caused by ankle and knee injuries. A member of Delta Upsilon, he was elected president of his sophomore class and served on the Student Council in his senior year. Tapped for all four class honoraries, Quadrangle, DT, Was Los, and Pentagon, he was graduated in 1941.
Before entering the University of Rochester School of Medicine in the fall of that year, Bill Weeden spent the summer working a 12-hour shift making machine guns at Savage Arms in Utica. His medical studies accelerated because of World War II, he earned his M.D. degree in 1944. On November 18 of that year, while serving his internship, he was wed to Janet Edam in Rochester. By 1945, he was on active duty with the U.S. Navy. He served as a medical officer on an aircraft carrier in the Pacific theater, not long before the Japanese surrender and the war’s end.
Released from the Navy as a lieutenant in 1946, Bill Weeden returned to Rochester and completed its surgical residency program. However, in 1952 he was recalled by the Navy to serve for the duration of the Korean War. Released once again in 1954, he established his practice of general surgery in Canandaigua, in New York’s Finger Lakes region. A fellow of the American College of Surgeons, he became attending surgeon in charge of the surgical staff as well as president of the medical staff at F.F. Thompson Hospital in Canandaigua. He also served part-time as an associate professor of surgery at Rochester’s medical school and was a director of Rochester Blue Cross and Blue Shield and of the Genesee Valley Medical Service.
In addition, Dr. Weeden made a variety of contributions to the Canandaigua community, including service as president of its board of education. In 1969, he joined the board of directors of the Canandaigua National Bank & Trust Co. and helped guide it through its formation as a bank holding company. He was named director emeritus following 26 years of distinguished service to the bank in 1995.
Bill Weeden, who retired from his surgical practice in 1986, found pleasure in gardening and golfing. He also enjoyed fishing from the dock fronting his home on Canandaigua Lake. His retirement years were enriched by the close family ties and the proximity of his grandchildren.
Long in ill health, Willis F. Weeden, a devoted alumnus, died at his home in Canandaigua on July 9, 2006. In addition to his wife of over 60 years, he is survived by a son, Willis F. Weeden, Jr. ’70; two daughters, Debra Pasternack and Barbara Pasley; and seven grandchildren and nieces and nephews including Stephen H. Applegate ’74. Dr. Weeden predeceased by six weeks his brother, G. Roger Weeden, Jr. ’39, whose memorial biography will appear in the next issue of the Alumni Review.
Return to Top
William Eustace Dirolf ’42, a retired New York State tax supervisor, was born on April 21, 1921, to William H., an accountant and office manager, and Flossy McLaughlin Dirolf, in North Creek, NY. Bill Dirolf grew up in that Adirondack village, where he was graduated as valedictorian from North Creek High School in 1938. Enthusiastically recommended by its principal as “outstanding in every respect,” he was admitted to Hamilton that year. He joined Tau Kappa Epsilon and the Newman Club, and, with his clarinet, became a stalwart member of the College Band and its president in his senior year. Elected to Quadrangle, he also served as manager of the soccer team and president of the TKE house, and sat on the Musical Arts Society’s executive board. He was awarded his A.B. degree with honors in economics in 1942.
Three months later, while attending the Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration, where he took courses in industrial administration, Bill Dirolf enlisted in the U.S. Army. Called to active duty in the spring of 1943, in the midst of World War II, he was recruited by the Office of Strategic Services (the wartime predecessor of the CIA) and became part of the OSS detachment with the Ninth Army in Europe. There he worked with resistance forces in France, Belgium, and the Netherlands. Years later, he recalled those days from Normandy to the Elbe as “the greatest experience of my life.”
Bill Dirolf, the recipient of three battle stars, left the Army as a staff sergeant after the war’s end in 1945 and returned to his hometown to find employment with A&B Oil Co. as an accountant. Subsequently employed in a similar capacity locally by National Lead Co. and Barton Mines Corp., he left the private sector in 1955 to become a tax auditor for the New York State Department of Labor. After 11 years in the Utica area, where he was tax auditor for the division of unemployment insurance, he was promoted to senior unemployment tax auditor and transferred to Malone. Responsible for field audits and collection activities for four northern New York counties, he remained in Malone for 20 years until his retirement as assistant district superintendent for field tax services in 1986.
While residing in Malone, Bill Dirolf became active in the community. He was elected to Malone Central School’s board of education and served as secretary-treasurer of the local Boy Scout troop. He was also active in numerous community organizations and sang bass in the choir of St. Joseph’s Church as well as the North Franklin Ecumenical Choir. A lifelong sports fan and an avid reader with a special interest in books on World War II history, Bill Dirolf also enjoyed long walks, cross-country skiing, and listening to his collection of Big Band recordings of the ’30s and ’40s. With his wife, the former Elizabeth Carol Fitzgerald, whom he had wed on July 26, 1947, in North Creek, he took pleasure in his growing family.
In 2001, the Dirolfs moved from Malone to Plattsburgh, NY. There, on December 28, 2005, William E. Dirolf, a loyal and ever supportive alumnus, died. In addition to his wife of 58 years, he is survived by four daughters, Elizabeth A. Krell, Mary P. and Margaret R. Dirolf, and Kathryn Dirolf Frascella ’82, wife of Joseph Frascella ’80; two sons, Paul M. and John F. Dirolf ’81; and nine grandchildren and a sister.
Return to Top
William Henry Clarkin ’43, a professor emeritus of the School of Library and Information Science at the State University of New York, Albany, was born on March 1, 1922, into an Irish-American family, in Whitesboro, NY, where he grew up. A son of Harry Clarkin, a factory worker, and the former Mary Scouten, Bill Clarkin came up to College Hill from nearby Westmoreland High School in 1939. A commuting student, he left the College for financial reasons at the end of his freshman year and later obtained a B.A. degree from the University of Western Ontario. Committed to the academic life, he subsequently earned a Ph.D. from the University of Ottawa and a master’s in library science from Rutgers University.
Bill Clarkin initially taught history at Bennett College in Poughkeepsie, NY, before joining the faculty of SUNY Albany. He remained at Albany for many years, teaching in the School of Library and Information Science. Scholarly and genially erudite, he customarily spoke rather than lectured and without the benefit of notes. He concluded his career as the university library’s chief bibliographer.
A former president of the Print Club of Albany and a book collector and flower gardener, William H. Clarkin was devoted to his Roman Catholic faith. He was still a resident of Albany when he died on May 29, 2006, while hospitalized in Ilion, NY. Unmarried, he is survived by a sister, Mary Warner, and a brother, James Clarkin, as well as nieces and nephews.
Winsor Hartshorne Beebe ’44, a retired insurance company co-owner and prominent in community affairs, was born on February 9, 1921, in Wakefield, MA. The younger son of Marcus G., a leather broker, and Gladys Whitten Beebe, he grew up in that Boston suburb and was graduated from Wakefield High School. “Win” Beebe came to College Hill in 1940, after a year’s preparation at Loomis Institute (now Loomis Chaffee School) in Connecticut. He joined Alpha Delta Phi, lettered in basketball, and was elected to DT. Having acquired “the lowest draft number in New England,” he was assured of early entry into military service, and consequently he left the Hill after two years to do his part in World War II.
As a U.S. Army Air Corps radio operator and gunner with the 8th Air Force in Europe, Tech. Sgt. Beebe completed 18 missions in a B-24 Liberator bomber before his plane was shot down while on a raid over Germany in 1944. He subsequently spent a year and a half in a variety of German prisoner-of-war camps. Freed at the end of the war and awarded the Purple Heart and Air Medal with oak leaf clusters, he returned to Massachusetts and promptly wed Virginia Getchell on August 15, 1945, in Lynnfield.
The couple took up residence in Lynnfield, near Win’s hometown, and until 1954 he worked as a broker in his father’s business, Marcus Beebe Leather Co., in Boston. Thereafter he became a co-owner of Beebe, Blakeley & Forbes, an insurance agency also in Boston. Vice president of the firm, he retired in 1989.
Within the community, Win Beebe at one time chaired the Republican Town Committee of Lynnfield as well as the local chapter of the American Red Cross. He also served as president of the American Field Service in Lynnfield and was a member of the town’s school committee. An incorporator and later chairman of the board of the Wakefield Savings Bank, he served in addition as vice president of the Wakefield YMCA. Fond of travel, skiing, and boating with his family, he continued to play tennis into his later years. He also enjoyed duck hunting with friends and cherished most particularly the family’s annual summer gatherings in Maine.
Winsor H. Beebe was in Florida when, on March 12, 2005, he succumbed to injuries sustained in an automobile accident, as the College has only recently learned. Predeceased by his wife, he was survived by two daughters, Anne W. Lowe and Alison Robie; a son, Bradford D. Beebe; and seven grandchildren and a great-grandchild.
Return to Top
Richard Watrous Couper ’44, LL.D. (Hon.) ’69, a distinguished educational leader and a life trustee and devoted supporter of the College, was born on December 16, 1922, in Binghamton, NY. The son of Edgar W. ’20, also a trustee of Hamilton, who became chancellor of the University of the State of New York, and Esther Watrous Couper, Dick Couper had numerous family ties to the College going back through six generations to its earliest years. He came to College Hill in 1940 from Binghamton Central High School, where his leadership qualities had already been demonstrated. On the Hill he joined Delta Kappa Epsilon, went out for basketball, track, and soccer, and lent his powers of persuasion to the debate team. Elected to Quadrangle and DT, he left the College in 1942, not long after U.S. entry into World War II, to join the Army. Commissioned as an officer in the Ordnance Corps, he served in the Aleutian Islands, becoming a company commander while stationed at remote Attu.
Released as a captain in 1946, after the war’s end, Dick Couper returned to College Hill to resume his studies. He was soon joined by his bride, the former Patricia Pogue, whom he had married on September 24, 1946, in Cincinnati, OH. He resumed his soccer career as goalie and, as a student government leader, helped resurrect numerous campus organizations that had been in abeyance because of the war. A member of the Honor Court and chairman of the Student Council, he was tapped for Pentagon, following in the footsteps of his father. He also excelled academically, became a part-time instructor in the history department, and was elected, like his father, to Phi Beta Kappa. Hailed by The Hamiltonian as “sincere, popular, able,” and for his character and intellect, he was awarded the prestigious James Soper Merrill Prize upon his graduation with honors in history and Greek in 1947.
After acquiring an M.A. degree in American history from Harvard University in 1948 (his love of history would be lifelong and he was particularly fascinated by the works of the historian Francis Parkman), Dick Couper returned to his native Binghamton to enter the insurance business. He was vice president of the firm of Couper-Ackerman-Sampson in 1962 when he responded to a call from his alma mater to return to College Hill as Hamilton’s first-ever administrative vice president. After serving as acting president of the College during two crucially transitional years, 1966-1968, he left the Hill as vice president and provost in 1969 to become New York State’s deputy commissioner of higher education.
In 1971, Dick Couper was appointed as the first full-time president and chief executive officer of the New York Public Library. During the ensuing decade he played a vital role in maintaining and preserving that great national repository of knowledge at an exceedingly difficult time in its institutional life. In an era when New York City was experiencing financial crisis, he succeeded in balancing the Library’s budget for the first time since 1924 while also raising substantial funds through gifts and grants, especially from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Astor Foundation. In addition, he launched a successful program to computerize the Library’s card catalog, making it the first major library to do so, and saw to completion a new building in Harlem to house the renowned Schomburg Collection, forming the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture.
With the hard times weathered and the institution strengthened under his stewardship, Dick Couper left the Library in 1981 to conclude his highly fruitful career in educational administration as president of the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation. In that post during the 1980s, he provided effective leadership in the Foundation’s efforts to enhance excellence in teaching and learning within the nation’s colleges and universities by inaugurating a series of new programs.
A remarkably vigorous and active man with a strong sense of commitment, Dick Couper served as a trustee or director of more than 60 organizations during his lifetime. They included for-profit corporations such as banks and publishing companies as well as numerous non-profit institutions , including major foundations. A longtime trustee of Wesleyan University, the Episcopal Divinity School, and the New York State Historical Association, he was a charter trustee of the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education and a founding trustee of the Lincoln Center Institute and of the New York Council on the Humanities. He also gave outstanding service to the national Phi Beta Kappa Society as president of the Phi Beta Kappa Associates.
However, it was to his alma mater that Dick Couper’s commitment was most enduring and unstinting. He was active already as a young alumnus, serving on the Alumni Council and chairing the Alumni Fund. First elected as an alumni trustee in 1959, he was named a charter trustee in 1967 and a life trustee in 1992, becoming one of the longest serving trustees in the history of the College. During the 1960s he chaired the Board of Trustees’ first long-range planning committee, which yielded the report that resulted in the establishment of Kirkland College, paving the way for coeducation on College Hill.
After his retirement from the Woodrow Wilson Foundation in 1990, Dick Couper and his wife Patsy settled on College Hill, where they built a home and became enthusiastically involved in the community. Dick, as a life trustee, also continued to demonstrate in countless and generous ways his ardent commitment to Hamilton. The College’s presidents as well as his fellow trustees enjoyed and valued his sage advice and astute counsel until virtually the end of his life. Within the College, and reflecting his love of books and devotion to libraries, he took a particular interest in the Burke Library, supporting it in various ways with his funds.
Beyond College Hill, Dick Couper was a generous supporter of community institutions such as the Kirkland Town Library and the Oneida County Historical Society. A lifelong Episcopalian, he also served on the vestries of his parish churches and additionally was active in the national Episcopal Church and the dioceses in which he resided.
Through the years, Dick Couper received much deserved recognition and innumerable awards for his achievements. They included a half-dozen honorary doctorates from college and universities in addition to the one from his alma mater in 1969. In 2004, the Alumni Association recognized his lifetime contributions to Hamilton with one of the last honors he was to receive, its Volunteer of the Year Award.
Richard W. Couper, who, despite declining health, remained actively engaged with the College until virtually the end of his life, died on January 25, 2006, while hospitalized in New Hartford. Patsy, his wife and wholehearted partner in all his endeavors for almost 60 years, was at his side. Also surviving are two sons, Frederick P. and Thomas H. Couper; a daughter, Margaret C. Haskins; and four grandchildren and a sister, Katharine Watrous, wife of the late Joseph B. Watrous, Jr. ’42. A son, Barrett W. Couper, predeceased his father in 2001.
In announcing to the Hamilton community Dick Couper’s passing, President Stewart observed: Few people loved Hamilton College more than Dick Couper and few did more to nurture and sustain it. In simple and gracious ways, he and Patsy welcomed many of us into this community. During my two-and-one-half years as president, Dick was for me a trusted confidant, a patient advisor and someone with whom I talked often about Hamilton. He was warm and generous, witty and learned, a prolific writer and an exemplary orator…. His death is an immense loss for Hamilton.
Return to Top
David Lloyd Rosencrans ’44, who practiced general surgery in the Pittsburgh area for more than 30 years, was born in Sayre, PA, on March 25, 1922. A son of Lloyd C. and Martha Meredith Rosencrans, he grew up in Towanda, PA, and attended Towanda High School, where he became president of the Student Council. Following his graduation in 1940, Dave Rosencrans came to Hamilton. He joined Psi Upsilon, lent his voice to the Choir, and went out for swimming as a member of Hamilton’s first varsity team. Chosen president of the freshman class and elected to Quadrangle and DT, he was graduated, in September 1943, thanks to a wartime accelerated program.
Drafted into World War II military service that year, Dave Rosencrans was sent under U.S. Army auspices to the University of Pittsburgh Medical School. He served his internship and residency at St. Francis Hospital in Pittsburgh, and was awarded his M.D. degree in 1947. On July 17, 1948, while a surgical resident, he was married to Barbara Allen in Montclair, NJ.
Called back into the Army in 1951, following the outbreak of the Korean conflict, Dr. Rosencrans, with the rank of first lieutenant, served on the surgical staff of Army hospitals in Germany and France. After two years in uniform, he completed his surgical residency and established his practice in 1956 in the Pittsburgh suburb of Kittanning, where he became president of the medical staff of Armstrong County Memorial Hospital. In 1964, he transferred his practice to Pittsburgh and there served as president of the St. Francis Hospital medical staff. He spent six mornings a week in the operating room and years later looked back at that time of his life as exceptionally happy and productive.
A strong advocate of the use of seatbelts in automobiles long before they gained any acceptance, Dave Rosencrans had installed them in his own car in 1954. He helped mobilize local support for their use in the face of much resistance. While serving as president of the Armstrong County Medical Society, he took the lead in efforts to immunize all the county’s children against polio, and as president of the county chapter of the American Cancer Society, he helped publicize the risks of breast cancer by speaking about it countless times to women’s groups.
In 1983, plagued by physical problems, Dave Rosencrans retired from his surgical practice. After a busy life as a surgeon, he had difficulty coping with retirement. However, he kept occupied for a time as a volunteer teacher at the University of Pittsburgh Medical School and later as an active member of Fox Chapel Presbyterian Church. He served the church as an elder, treasurer, and choir member, and helped install its first computer database system. For relaxation he enjoyed classical music and opera, and for exercise he was fond of snow-shoeing.
David L. Rosencrans, a faithful alumnus who was ever grateful to Hamilton for adding “breadth and depth” to his life and imbuing him with “an unrelenting quest for knowledge,” was residing in a retirement community in the Pittsburgh suburb of Oakmont when he died on December 4, 2005, following a stroke. In addition to his wife of 57 years, he is survived by two sons, Alan S. and Andrew L. Rosencrans, who were happily adopted by Dave and Barbara Rosencrans as infants. Also surviving are six grandchildren and a brother, retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Evan W. Rosencrans.
Return to Top
Willett Benjamin Sherwood, Jr. ’44, who practiced law in Vestal, NY, for some 50 years, was born on November 19, 1920, in Hackensack, NJ. The elder son of Willett B. ’15, a printer, and Caroline Merriam Sherwood, he grew up in New Hartford, NY, and was graduated from New Hartford High School. After two years of varied employment, Ben Sherwood entered Hamilton in 1940, with a future career in the law already in mind. He joined Theta Delta Chi, took part in dramatics with the Charlatans, and participated in sports, including track and soccer. Elected to Quadrangle and DT, he remained on the Hill until the end of 1942, when he enlisted as a private in the U.S. Army. He served during World War II with an anti-aircraft battalion in Europe, after landing in Normandy in June 1944, and was awarded several battle stars.
Discharged after the war’s end in 1945, Ben Sherwood never resumed his undergraduate studies, but instead went directly to Cornell Law School. He obtained his LL.B. degree in 1948, and on November 28 of that year, he and Ellen Delfs were married in Albany, NY. The couple settled in Vestal, near Binghamton, where Ben established his law practice in 1949. For the most part it was a solo practice until 1980, when he went into partnership with his son, Michael, forming the firm of Sherwood & Sherwood in Vestal.
In addition to his general practice, which he continued on a limited basis until his death, Ben Sherwood served for 35 years as attorney for the Vestal Central School District and was a past president of the New York State Association of School Attorneys. Beginning in 1978, he also served as an impartial hearing officer in disputes between parents and upstate school districts concerning student discipline and the education of handicapped children.
Fond of tennis, golf, and sailing, Ben Sherwood was also an enthusiastic downhill skier who took up ski racing in his 50s and did not abandon the slopes until the age of 83. He and Ellen often spent winters at their condominium in Taos, NM, where the mountains and ski valley were nearby. They enjoyed travel as well, and their many overseas journeys took them from France and Sweden to New Zealand and China.
Ben Sherwood had, in addition, a great interest in art, and was himself an accomplished watercolor artist. A former director of the Fine Art Society of the Southern Tier and president of the Chinese Art Association of Binghamton, he personally pursued artistic studies with impressive results.
W. Ben Sherwood, an ever faithful and supportive alumnus, died on April 8, 2006, while hospitalized in Johnson City, NY, of complications following surgery. His wife of 57 years and their children were by his side at the end. Besides his wife, he is survived by four sons, Michael D., Jeffrey H., Matthew J., and Peter W. Sherwood; five daughters, Susan I. Sherwood, Sarah Pinfold, Candace Havens ’79, Cynthia Evans ’82, and Jill Mirabito ’83; and nine grandchildren and his brother, Robert M. Sherwood, father of James A. Sherwood ’74.
Return to Top
Stevens Hawthorne Walker ’44, employed for 35 years in management by General Electric Co., was born on May 7, 1922, in Rutherford, NJ. The elder son of Clarence H., a transportation company executive, and Evelyn Stevens Walker, he came to College Hill in 1940 from Rutherford High School. Steve Walker joined Delta Upsilon and went out for football, basketball, and baseball. He also took on roles with the Charlatans and participated in Hamilton’s wartime civilian pilot training program, learning to fly a Piper J3 out at the Utica Airport. By the spring of 1943, he was in uniform as an Army Air Corps pre-meteorology student at New York University. Commissioned as a second lieutenant, he served as a weather officer through the end of World War II and later attained the rank of captain in the Air Force Reserve. In 1946, while still in uniform, he returned to the Hill to receive his diploma, the College having accepted credits he had earned in military service.
In 1948, shortly after acquiring an M.B.A. degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business Administration, Steve Walker began his long employment with GE. Starting out in its marketing training program, he was promoted to assistant to the manager of marketing research. In 1951, he became manager of sales control for GE’s X-ray department. He was assigned to various locations during the course of his early career with GE, including North Carolina and Wisconsin. Before its conclusion, his career encompassed research, marketing management, long-term strategic planning, and directing a variety of special new business studies. He also undertook special assignments for U.S. Government programs and for the Electronics Industry Association.
By the late 1950s, Steve Walker had settled in the Syracuse, NY, area, where he and his wife, the former Penelope Schneider, who were wed in 1954, reared their three daughters. In 1984, a few years after the death of his wife, Steve Walker was married to Barbara Brown Kaiser. Fond of sailing and motor-boating, he again took up flying in his 60s. However, a heart condition ended his flying in 1984, as well as his employment with GE.
Steve Walker retired from the company as manager of consumer electronics market research, and he and Barbara moved that year to Seneca, SC, to which he was lured by the waters of Lake Keowee. Briefly ill, Stevens H. Walker died in that corner of South Carolina near the Georgia and North Carolina borders on April 28, 2006. A loyal supporter of the College, he is survived by his wife and daughters Penelope (Penny) Harrington, Jill Symmonds, and Patricia Stokes; two stepdaughters and six stepsons; and six grandchildren.
Return to Top
Charles George Lee ’45, a retired junior high school teacher, was born on March 30, 1922, the youngest of nine children, in Utica, NY. A son of Italian immigrants Carmine V., an orthopedic shoemaker, and Josephine Mercurio Lia (Lee), he came to College Hill in 1941 from Utica’s Thomas R. Proctor High School. Charlie Lee, both gregarious and a gentle soul, remained on the Hill for three semesters before withdrawing from the College to enter the U.S. Army in 1943. He served in North Africa and Italy, where he was attached to a military mission to the Italian Army in Rome. Awarded the Croce di Guerra by the Italian government, Cpl. Lee was released from the Army after the end of World War II in 1945.
Charlie Lee returned to Hamilton in the spring of 1946. A member of the Squires Club and the Choir, he completed his studies in the summer of 1947 and received his diploma in June 1948. Uncertain about his future career but thinking it might lie in the fashion industry, he went to New York City and spent two years at the Traphagen School of Fashion, where he earned a certificate in fashion design in 1950. He obtained a job with the then well-known women’s apparel designer Philip Mangone, but soon concluded that working in the fashion industry was not for him.
In 1951, Charlie Lee found employment as an investigator for the New York State Department of Labor. Two years later, back in Utica, he became a case worker for the Oneida County Department of Social Services. Still not satisfied with his career choice, he sought the advice of Hamilton Professor David M. Ellis ’38, who suggested he go into teaching. He heeded that advice, which he never had cause to regret, for it led to 31 exceedingly happy years in the classroom.
Charlie Lee, who in 1958 would strengthen his academic credentials with an M.S. degree in education from the State University of New York College at Oneonta, began teaching social studies in the Utica School System in 1956. He taught primarily at Horatio Seymour School until his retirement in 1987. Active in numerous educational and community organizations, he was a life member and former treasurer of the Oneida County Historical Society. He was also a lifelong communicant of St. Mary of Mt. Carmel Church, where he helped maintain the altar cloths and did other volunteer work. In addition, he enjoyed travel to Europe and especially to Italy.
Charles G. Lee, a faithful alumnus who regularly attended class reunions and often designed items for those occasions, died in Utica on April 21, 2006. Unmarried and predeceased by all of his sisters and brothers, including Vito S. Lee ’28, he is survived by numerous nephews and nieces, to whom he was devoted. Among them is Pasquale V. Scarpino ’54.
Return to Top
John Frederick Kellogg ’46, a retired high school English teacher, was born on May 20, 1924, in Syracuse, NY. The son of Joseph W., an electrical engineer, and Mildred McOmber Kellogg, a teacher, he grew up in Binghamton, where he was graduated from North High School. John Kellogg enrolled at Hamilton in 1942, became a member of Chi Psi, and went out for fencing. However, he withdrew from the College after a semester to enter the U.S. Army. He remained on the Hill to take the Army Air Forces’ pre-meteorological course and was later assigned as a radio operator to the Office of Strategic Services. As a member of an OSS field team, he took part in World War II operations in China.
Released from the Army as a corporal at the end of 1945, John Kellogg took up studies at Syracuse University, where he majored in English and was graduated Phi Beta Kappa in 1949. After briefly working for Moore Publishing Co. in New York City and a stint as a Department of State employee in Germany, he returned to Binghamton in 1954 and joined the staff of the newly established Roberson Memorial Center, now the Roberson Museum and Science Center. In the early 1960s he began teaching English at Central High School in Binghamton. He added to his credentials an M.A. from the State University of New York at Binghamton in 1966 and continued to teach at Central High for many years until his retirement. A lifelong devotee of the dramatic arts, he was actively involved with the Civic Theater in Binghamton.
John F. Kellogg died at his home in Binghamton on April 25, 2006. Unmarried, he is survived by a sister, Helen E. Tonetti, and five nephews.
Return to Top
Sterling Lee ’46, a lawyer who retired as assistant chief counsel for the National Labor Relations Board, was born on March 28, 1924, in Washington, DC. A son of Frederic P. Lee ’15, a prominent attorney in Washington and trustee of the College, and Marian Armstrong Lee, he was a nephew of George S. Lee, Jr. ’20. Sterling Lee prepared for college at St. Albans School in Washington, where he captained the tennis team, and enrolled at Hamilton from Bethesda, MD, in the summer of 1942. He withdrew in 1943, during the Second World War, to enter the U.S. Navy’s V-12 program at St. Lawrence University. After completing Officer Candidate School, he served as an ensign aboard a landing craft, transporting cargo in the Pacific.
Discharged from the Navy in 1946, Sterling Lee returned to the Hill and completed his course of study. A member of Delta Upsilon and known around campus for his “common sense and pithy sayings,” he was awarded his A.B. degree in 1947. A week later, on June 21, he and Marian B. Keddy, daughter of his father’s classmate John L. Keddy ’15, were wed in Alexandria, VA. By that time, Sterling Lee had already begun preparations at Columbia University Law School for his future career. After obtaining his LL.B. in 1950, he returned to Washington. In 1951, after brief employment by the Interstate Commerce Commission, he joined the National Labor Relations Board. He remained on the Board’s legal staff until his retirement in 1980.
Sterling Lee, whose wife died in 1964, leaving him with three children, was remarried two years later to Patricia Moore Crawford, a widow with seven children of her own. They took up residence in Annandale, VA, in an old farmhouse that Sterling had purchased years earlier and spent much time renovating. Following his retirement, the Lees moved to another old farmhouse on Islesboro, an island in Maine’s Penobscot Bay. There, too, besides finding great pleasure in reading, he enjoyed the work of home rehabilitation with hammer and saw.
Sterling Lee, a loyal alumnus, died on June 18, 2006, while hospitalized in Portland, ME, from complications following heart surgery. In addition to his wife of 40 years, he is survived by a daughter, Kathryn Wilson; two sons, Frederic S. and John K. Lee; and seven stepchildren, 13 grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.
Return to Top
Jason Forsythe Bloomberg ’47, a former business executive, was born on November 21, 1925, in Battle Creek, MI. A son of Abraham Jason Bloomberg ’14 and the former Dorothy Forsythe, Jason Bloomberg grew up in Battle Creek and prepared for college at St. John’s Military Academy in Wisconsin. He attended Hamilton for a semester before withdrawing at the end of 1943. Soon thereafter he was called into military service. He saw action with the U.S. Army in France during World War II and earned the Purple Heart. After the war he returned to Battle Creek, where, in 1964, he succeeded his father as president of R.W. Snyder Co., manufacturers of fruit flavors for ice cream. He later operated the House of Ing restaurant in Battle Creek.
Jason Bloomberg engaged with pleasure in a variety of pursuits, from cooking to flying (he had earned a pilot’s license at the age of 16). His interest in aviation once even led him to create a faithful reproduction of a Fokker DR-1 Triplane. In addition, he had an interest in Tennessee walking horses.
Jason F. Bloomberg died at his home in Battle Creek on July 28, 2006. He is survived by his second wife, Susan J. Bloomberg. Also surviving are two sons and a daughter, Robert J., Ronald W., and Mary T. Bloomberg, born of his first marriage to Mary L. Bloomberg, and two stepchildren, two grandchildren, and a sister.
Return to Top
Gordon Ritchie Smith ’47, an obstetrician and gynecologist who practiced medicine in Monmouth County, NJ, for over 40 years, was born on June 19, 1926, in Aurora, IL. His parents were John R., a utility company manager, and Naomi Middleton Smith, an artist. The family moved to Monmouth County when Gordon Smith was a child, and he prepared for college at the Peddie School in New Jersey. He came to Hamilton in 1943 and joined Delta Kappa Epsilon, but withdrew from the College in the spring of 1944, following his enlistment in the U.S. Navy.
Gordon Smith entered the Navy that year and served in uniform through the end of World War II. He returned to the Hill in the fall of 1946 to pursue a premedical course of study. He also became much involved in the musical life of the campus as a member of the Choir, Glee Club, and Musical Arts Society, and leader of the College Band in his senior year. Awarded the Nelson Clark Dale, Jr. Prize in Music, he was graduated in 1949.
Thereafter, Gordon Smith enrolled at New York Medical College, where he obtained his M.D. degree in 1953. He returned to New Jersey to establish a general medical practice. Later, he served his residency in obstetrics and gynecology at St. Luke’s Woman’s Hospital in New York City, and, while residing in Rumson, became chief of obstetrics and gynecology at Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank. His leisure time was devoted to sailing and skiing.
In 1992, Gordon Smith moved to Shrewsbury, NJ, where he continued to live in retirement. He died at nearby Riverview Medical Center on March 16, 2006. Predeceased by his first wife, the former Maydawn DeVoe, whom he had wed in 1951, he is survived by his second wife, Susan T. Smith. Also surviving are a son and daughter from his first marriage, David R. and Christina D. Smith, and a stepdaughter, three grandchildren, and a sister.
Return to Top
Peter Roland Porcino ’48, long employed as a system programmer for the IBM Corp., was born on February 5, 1924, in Stoneboro, PA. A son of Peter Porcino, a shoe company employee, and the former Victoria Giuno, Pete Porcino grew up in Binghamton, NY, where he was graduated in 1941 from North High School. He entered military service in 1943 and first came to College Hill that year as a trainee in the U.S. Army Air Forces’ pre-meteorological program. Later completing the AAF’s communications course at Yale University, he was commissioned as an officer. He continued to serve in uniform through the end of World War II and was discharged as a lieutenant in 1946.
That year, Pete Porcino returned to the Hill as a matriculated student. A large man described by The Hamiltonian as “the easy-going scholar with that good-joe personality,” he excelled academically, capturing the Southworth Prize in Physics and the Root Fellowship in Science. In his spare time he “twisted the dials” for WHC, the campus radio station. He was graduated Phi Beta Kappa after only two years of residence in 1948, with honors in mathematics and physics.
Peter Porcino went on to obtain an M.S. degree in physics from Cornell University in 1951. The following year he was wed to Beverly Martin in Binghamton. In 1957, after a year of employment with Bendix Aviation and four years with the General Electric Co., he went to work for IBM in Owego, NY. He later became advisory programmer in computational processing at its Space Guidance Center located there. After retiring from the company in 1984, he continued to utilize his computer skills to assist local retirement home residents.
Peter R. Porcino, who had long resided in Binghamton, died while hospitalized in that city on July 18, 2006. Predeceased by his first wife as well as his second, the former Mary Tobin, he is survived by two sons and a daughter by his first marriage, Martin and Matthew Porcino, and Victoria Douglas; two daughters by his second, Bernadette O’Hara and Maria Rappazzo; and four grandchildren and a brother.
Return to Top
John Manwaring Davis ’49, a highly regarded physician who took a prominent role in advancing health care in his upstate New York community and beyond, was born on April 26, 1928, in Auburn, NY. A son of James L., also a physician, and Dorothy Manwaring Davis, he grew up in Newark, southeast of Rochester, and entered Hamilton from Newark High School in 1945. He joined Delta Upsilon and found time to improve his bridge-playing technique and volunteer for Hamilton’s fire department while also pursuing a premedical course of study. Credited by The Hamiltonian with “conviviality and whole-hearted devotion to the task at hand,” he was graduated in 1949.
After a stint of graduate study at Syracuse University, John Davis went on to New York Medical College, where he earned his M.D. degree in 1955. He was in residency at Upstate Medical Center in Syracuse when called to active duty with the U.S. Army in 1957. He served for two years in the Army Medical Corps, including a tour in Germany. Discharged as a captain, he returned to Syracuse to complete his residency in internal medicine before establishing his private practice in his hometown of Newark in 1961.
Dr. Davis, who joined his father in group practice as a partner in the Newark Medical Center, also joined the staff of Newark-Wayne Community Hospital. In 1966, while serving as the hospital’s chief of medical services, he established its coronary and intensive care units. He also chaired the hospital’s peer review committee and subsequently served as its chief of staff (1976-1981) and medical director (1997 until his retirement in 2005). Described as “providing good old-fashioned care to his patients, but always based on the latest technology,” he combined cutting-edge medicine with the dedication and commitment of a small-town doctor.
A past president of the Wayne County Medical Society, Dr. Davis became a leader in the regional activities of the American Heart Association and the American Lung Association. Having taken a special interest in respiratory diseases throughout his years of practice, he served as president of the Lung Association’s state board as well as a member of its national board. Also a past president of the Finger Lakes Heart Association and member of the state board of the American Heart Association, he was formerly president of the New York State Tuberculosis Association and of the Finger Lakes Tuberculosis and Respiratory Disease Association.
As a member of his hospital’s emergency cardiac care committee, Dr. Davis helped bring the first mobile coronary care unit to regional residents in 1976. He also served as president of the Empire Nine Emergency Medical Services, which was instrumental in training people for emergency response in Wayne and eight neighboring counties. In the battle against respiratory diseases, his efforts had a much wider impact when, as state president of the American Lung Association, he launched what turned out to be an 11-year campaign to get the state’s legislature to pass the Clean Indoor Air Act. It was finally passed in 1989, and in recognition of his efforts, Dr. Davis received one of the pens used by Governor Mario Cuomo in signing the bill into law.
In addition to his professional and community activities, John Davis was a collector of antiques and ardently devoted to the outdoors. He enjoyed fishing as well as gardening, and he also loved the woods and its flora and fauna. He took special pleasure in observing and photographing wildlife around his wooded-area home, where at least 40 birdhouses could be found. He fed corn and apples to deer during the winter, and even though he was the longtime secretary-treasurer of the 1249 Club, a group of local hunters, he personally could not bring himself to shoot game when they went camping in the Adirondacks.
John M. Davis, who had retired just a year earlier after 44 years in medical practice, died on January 28, 2006, in the familiar surroundings of Newark-Wayne Community Hospital. Married to the late Marjorie Taylor on August 16, 1952, in Newark, he is survived by their two sons and daughter, Christopher T. and Craig L. Davis, and Jane Perlaky. Also surviving are four grandchildren and three brothers. Dr. Davis, married for a second time, in 1978 to Yvonne J. McGhee, was predeceased by his third wife, the former Martha Jackson Kraham, whom he had wed in 1994.
Return to Top