September 2nd, 2015

Helen Dana

Helen (Kelly) English Dana, of Jupiter, Fla., passed away on Sunday, August 30th, 2015 in her Middletown home at the age of 93.

She was born on March 29, 1922 in Somerville, Mass. to her late parents Mr. & Mrs. Patrick J. Kelly. Helen was one of nine children who are all predeceased; Thomas Kelly, Rita Neylon, Ann Donovan, Mary Cremmins, Teresa O’Leary, Peggy Kelly, Katherine Kelly and Joseph Kelley.

Her first husband, Captain J. English, U.S. Marine Corps Aviation, was K.I.A. in the Korean War. Helen & James had three children together: James English married to Janet English of Goshen, N.Y., Patricia Massa married to Patrick Massa of Jupiter, Fla., & Kerry English married to Wendy English of Goshen, N.Y. Helen remarried Fred Dana of Dorchester, Mass., son of Mr. & Mrs. F.C. Dana, Sr. who predeceased her in 2014. Together they had one son Fred C. Dana III of Montgomery, NY.

Helen was the matriarch of a large loving family that called her “Nana”. She will be missed dearly by her family which included her eleven grandchildren, Shane (English) Roth, Trevor English, Mollie (Massa) Smith, Katie (Massa) Demarais, Brett Massa, Patrick English, Kelley English, Cullen Dana, Casey Dana, Kyleigh Dana & Caden Dana and her nine great-grandchildren: Sophie, Annabelle & Maggie Smith, Lily & Charlie Demarais, Nathan & Carter Roth, Sebastian Massa & Nola English.

Helen’s contributions to the community reached far & wide as she served as President of the Naval Officers’ Wives’ Club, Washington D.C., President of Occupations Auxiliary of Middletown, N.Y., Board member of the Goshen Historic Track, Board member of The Hill Hold & Brick House Museum and Board member of the Friends of the Orange County Arboretum.

Visitation will be on Thursday, September 3, from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. at Overhiser Funeral Home 78 Union St. Montgomery.

Funeral service will be Friday, September 4, at 10 a.m. at St. John the Evangelist Church, 71 Murray Ave., Goshen.

Charitable donations may be made in Helen’s memory to the not-for-profit Goshen Historic Track, The Goshen Historic Track, Inc. 44 Park Place Goshen, NY 10924.

Arrangements were made by Millspaugh Funeral Directors.

Virginia Ferguson

Virginia “Ginnie” Ferguson of Walden, NY, a retired Crossing Guard for Village of Walden, and a lifetime resident of the area, entered into eternal peace on Thursday, August 27, 2015, at the age of 90.

The daughter of the late Samuel and Anna Pauline Kaolyczn Daioczok, she was born August 26, 1925 in Ellenville, New York, the youngest of eight children.

Ginnie’s last job was as a school crossing guard for the Village of Walden. She referred to the children on her crossing as “her kids” and enjoyed them so much.

She is survived by nieces and nephews and her “adopted son”, Charles Davidson and his family. Ginnie was a generous, selfless person with a great sense of humor and a lot of love. She was a friend and mentor to so many people, many of whom have moved out of the area, but still kept in touch. She will be missed by all.

She was predeceased by her husband, Raymond “Bud” Ferguson, her son, Doug Ferguson, her parents, 5 sisters and 2 brothers.

The family would like to thank the wonderful staff at Montgomery Nursing Home and the great staff of 4 North at St. Luke’s Hospital, as well as Dr. Lazar, Dr. Paracha, Dr. Moin, and Dr. Muslim for their care and compassion.
Funeral services are private.

Ginnie will be buried in Wallkill Valley Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, it is requested that donations be made to either the Walden Baptist Church, 33 Bank St., Walden, NY 12586 or the Walden Humae Society, PO Box 135, Walden, NY 12586 in Ginnie’s memory.

Arrangements were made by Millspaugh Funeral Directors.

Barbara Maria Jennings

Barbara Maria Jennings of Montgomery, NY, a retired Senior Confidential Secretary and a resident of Montgomery since 1951, died Wednesday, August 26, 2015, in Middletown. She was 90.

The daughter of the late Karl and Sophie Weirtz Michelbach, she was born November 07, 1924 in New York City.

Before moving to Montgomery from New York City Barbara worked for Best & Co. and was the personal shopper for Lane Bryant Department Store on 5th Ave. She then became a buyer for Tompkins Department Store in Middletown. She spent the rest of her career working for Orange and Rockland Utilities: first as a secretary in the engineering department as a secretary on West Main St. in Middletown, and then in the administrative office at Blue Hill, in Pearl River, N.Y. until her retirement in 1987.

After retirement she became an active member of the Coldenham Garden and the Red Hatters. She was a longtime member of the Montgomery New Horizons Senior Club.

Barbara loved travel, gardening, cooking, needle work, and the old movies on TCM. She could speak, read and write fluent German.

Survivors include her daughter, Nancy Lee Jennings of Manhattan, sister, Helen Kelly of Scotchtown.

She is also survived by her cousin, Brigitte Dorfler of Dusseldorf, Germany, nieces Lynn Kuhl of Middletown, Lisa Simon of Bloomingburg, Ann Young of Calverton as well as her nephews Gregg Jacobs of Fayetteville, Georgia, George Jacobs of Pittsboro, North Carolina, and Karl Michelbach of Long Island. She had many great-nieces and nephews: Sarah and Michael Simon, Stephen Lo Turco, Sophie and Mila Jacobs, Brian and Deanna Jacobs, Thomas, James and Kyle Jacobs, and Christopher and Leah Young.

Barbara was predeceased by her brother Carl Michelbach and nephew Gary Jacobs.

Funeral services were held Saturday, August 29, at the Overhiser Funeral Home, Montgomery, with Deacon John Frohbose officiating. Burial was in Brick Church Cemetery in Montgomery.

In lieu of flowers, it is requested that donations be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105 in Barbara’s memory.

Arrangements were made by Overhiser Funeral Home/Millspaugh Funeral Directors.

Barry D. Heaney

Barry D. Heaney went home to be with the Lord on Monday, August 24, 2015. The son of the late John and Mary Phyllis Hannon Heaney, he was born on May 19, 1942 in Lowell, MA. He was 73 years old.

Barry worked for the NYS Department of Transportation. He also was employed by the Pine Bush School District. He served in the Navy during Vietnam and also in the Army National Guard and Air National Guard for a total of over 30 years retiring as a Master Sergeant. He was an active member of the Trinity Lutheran Church.

Survivors are his wife, Wenda Risdal Heaney at home; daughters: Traci Herrera and her husband, Rudy and Megan Bedford and her husband, Stephen; sons: Barak Heaney and Logan Heaney. He is also survived by his grandson, Ross Donaldson and his wife, Vicki and great-grandsons, Maddex and Trevor, and sister-in-law, Anne Hannon, many nieces, nephews, grand nieces and grand nephews. He was predeceased by his parents and his brother, Ronald Hannon.

A memorial funeral service was held on Friday, August 28th at the Trinity Lutheran Church, Walden. Cremation was in the Cedar Hill Crematory, Newburgh.

Memorial contributions may be made to Trinity Lutheran Church or a veterans’ organization of your choice.
Arrangements are by the Gridley-Horan Funeral Home, Inc.

John R. May

John R. May, “Poppy” of Wallkill, NY, a retired Railroad Engineer for Metro North Railroad, and a longtime resident of the area died Monday, August 31, 2015, in Wallkill. He was 82.

The son of the late John F. and Elizabeth Summerfeld May, he was born October 2, 1932 in Patchogue, New York.
He served in the Air Force during Korean Conflict.He was an engineer for 32 years working for New York, New Haven Hartford, Penn Central, Conrail & Metro North Railroads.

Survivors include his wife, Joyce at home; son John R. May, Jr. “Smokie” and his wife Amy of Walden; son Jeffrey C. May and his wife Cathy of Plattekill; daughter, Jeryl D. May of Wallkill, 7 Grandchildren: Michael, Matt, Brad, Danny, Erin, Sasha, Taylor, 2 great-grandchildren: Aidan and Connor; sister Susan Dibble of Palmetto, FL and many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his sister Elizabeth Blaustein and brother Tom May.

A memorial service will be Friday, September 4, 11 a.m. at Wallkill Reformed Church, 45 Bridge St., Wallkill. Toni Macon will officiate.

In lieu of flowers, it is requested that donations be made to the Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 758517, Topeka, Kansas 66675; Honor Flight, Inc., Attn: Diane Gresse, 300 E. Auburn Ave. Springfield, OH 45505, or St. Jude’s Childrens Hospital, 501 St Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105-1942 in John’s memory.

Arrangements were made by Wallkill Funeral Home.

Valeria V. Mentrasti

Valeria V. Mentrasti entered into eternal rest on August 28, 2015 at Highland Rehabilitation and Nursing Home in Middletown, NY.

Valeria was born in Washington, DC on December 2, 1951 to parents Valeria Pastyik and Mario Mentrasti.

Valeria is predeceased by her father Mario and grandparents Frank and Julianne Pastyik.

She loved spending time with her friends and her loving daughter.

A memorial service will be held at DeWitt Funeral Home, 64 Center Street, Pine Bush on Friday, September 4th at 10 a.m. Messages of condolences can be left at

Laurence M. O’Brien

Laurence M. O’Brien, 60, of Pine Bush, New York, passed away on August 29 in New York City, after a short battle with cancer.

Larry was born in the Bronx on January 7, 1955, to Laurence and Agnes Green O’Brien. He attended City College of New York earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology in 1981.

Larry was a devoted husband and father, commuting to New York City for 25 years working as a custom woodworker at Guttmann Associates, and for the past 2 years at Bark Frameworks. In 1988 he opened his own woodworking company, L.M.O. Woodworking, creating custom furniture and cabinetry for many local residents as well as clients in NYC. He was a talented jazz and classical guitarist.

Although many of his days were spent in NYC, he felt a strong attachment to the people of the Pine Bush community, contributing his time and labor whenever possible to helping those in need.

Survivors include his wife, Joanne O’Brien of 30 years, his son L.P. and daughter Anjelica O’Brien of New York City, sister Mary O’Brien Harte of Boston, her husband and children, Stanley, Aidan and Christopher, as well as his brother-in-law Kenneth Fradley of Key West, Florida and sister-in-law and husband, Amy Fradley and David Strickland of Victor, Idaho. He is also survived by his in-laws, Peter and Joan Fradley of New Paltz, and many dear cousins near and far.

Visitation will be held on Wednesday September 2, 2015 from 2-4 & 7-9 p.m. at the William M. Gagan Funeral Home Inc., 1525 Burlingham Rd., Pine Bush, NY. Mass of Christian burial will be offered on Thursday, September 3, 2 at 10 a.m. at St. Paul’s RC Church. Burial will take place in Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Hawthorne, NY. In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to: Visiting Nurse Service of New York Hospice and Palliative Care (VNSNY) 1250 Broadway – 7th Floor, New York, NY 10001 Arrangements entrusted to the William M. Gagan Funeral Home Inc.

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