Posted March 30, 2006
Welles T. Seller
Welles T. Seller (Brud) died peacefully in his home on March 12. He was 89. Born in Greenfield in 1917, he was the son of Dorothy Wells Seller and Joseph Seller. He graduated from Deerfield Academy in 1936 and Dartmouth College in 1940. In 1941 he enlisted in the United States Army Air Corps and became a pilot instructor and B-29 pilot. He retired in 1945 as a major. In 1942 Brud married Ruth Pigeon of Wellesley Hills. After his service in the Army they spent a year in Springfield before moving to Greenfield where they remained for more than 30 years.
Brud was owner/president of the Sheldon-Lodge Oil Co. of Greenfield. He was active in the community as past president of the Greenfield Kiwanis Club, Trustee of the Franklin County Hospital, Trustee of the Franklin County Savings Institution, and Director of the Green River Cemetery Association. He was a long-standing member of the Second Congregational Church and served as Deacon.
He and the family were long-time summer residents of Menauhant, East Falmouth where he served as past commodore of the Menauhant Yacht Club and past governor of the Grace Memorial Chapel. Menauhant was the place where, as a teenager, Brud met his future wife, Ruth. He was an avid boatman, sailor, fisherman, and woodworker and he spent his happiest times on his motorboat, the Nike, fishing and cruising on Vineyard Sound and off the coast of Maine. Upon retirement in 1978 he and Ruth settled full-time in East Falmouth and he became a member of the Rod and Gun Club of Falmouth, and a member of the Waquoit Congregational Church. For years Brud's neighbors and friends relied on him to lend out tools from his extensive shop, and to share his expertise on woodworking, even a repair or two to a piece of furniture or a boat, and he was always glad to lend a helping hand.
Brud leaves his wife, Ruth P. Seller of East Falmouth; two daughters and a son, Deborah Pigeon of Oak Bluffs, Jane S. Smith of West Springfield, and James T. Seller of West Tisbury. He also leaves five grandchildren, Hallie M. Armer and Eben J. Armer of West Tisbury, Wesley E. Smith of Missoula, Minn., Justin A. Smith of Tampa, Fla., and Chase T. Seller of West Tisbury.
Brud's love of family delighted all who knew him. Ruth Pigeon remained the love of his life for more than 63 years and they would have celebrated their 64th anniversary this coming May 30. After meeting as teenagers on Cape Cod they were together from then on. The caring and love Brud has shown for Ruth in recent years lives out a dream any couple would hope for. His children and grandchildren all had their own special connections with him. Deborah grew to love sailing and she inherited his stamina and strong will; Jane adopted his creative flair and they shared many craft projects together; Jim, like his dad, has an eye for life and captures it through his photography; Hallie was the first grandchild and the only girl and she grew to love the ocean and to paint; Eben shared his deep love of handcraft in wood and stone; Wes developed the will to persevere through difficult circumstances as was so evident in Brud's character; Justin has inherited the will of life, freedom, and the peace that the ocean offers; Chase has inherited his grandfather's love of flying and history and is pursuing a career in aviation.
A memorial service will be held at the Grace Memorial Chapel on July 8 at 4 pm for both Brud and Judith Brainerd, his beloved sister-in-law. There will be a reception to follow. Donations may be made to Grace Memorial Chapel, c/o Treasurer, P. O. Box 277, East Falmouth, MA 02536.
Doris W. Jones
Doris W. Jones, a native of Malden, died on March 21. She was 92. Ms. Jones was a summer resident of the Vineyard from the 1940s until the 1970s, when she vacationed with family in the Highlands section of Oak Bluffs. She also brought small groups of her dance students to the Island. Some stayed at Maxwell Cottage. Ms. Jones was the sister of longtime Vineyard vacationer Celestine Bayne, whose family maintains a summer home in the Highlands.
Doris Jones originally taught ballet in Boston, where her most noted protégé was future choreographer Elma Lewis, herself a Boston legend.
From the 1940s through 1960s, Ms. Jones, her artistic and business partner Claire Haywood, Mrs. Bayne, former Cotton Club dancer Isabel Powell, and writer Dorothy West were neighbors and contemporaries.
Richard J. Shannon Jr.
Richard J. Shannon Jr. of Oak Bluffs died on March 25.
A visitation will be in the Chapman, Cole and Gleason Funeral Home, Edgartown-Vineyard Haven Road, Oak Bluffs on Thursday, March 30, 11 am followed by a 12 noon graveside service at the Oak Grove Cemetery, State Road, Vineyard Haven.
Donations may be made in his memory to the Muscular Dystrophy Association, 10 Riverside Drive, Lakeville, MA 02347. Visit www.ccgfuneralhome.com for online guest book and information. A complete obituary will follow in a future edition of the Times.
Martha M. Hartman
John Viera Jr.
Memorial service for Martha Matilda Hartman (nee Anderson) who died Nov. 23, 2005 in Valdosta, Ga., will be held Saturday, April 8 in Christ United Methodist Church, Church St., Vineyard Haven, at 1:30 pm. Survivors include her children, Lisa Berger of Cary, N.C., Ronald (Buddy) Hartman Jr. of Keller, Texas, John Hartman of Vineyard Haven, and Jesse Hartman of Agawam; as well as seven grandchildren, and her mother, Marjorie Anderson of Vineyard Haven and Tyler, Texas. She also leaves her brothers, Robert of Springfield, Ore., and John Anderson of Tyler, Texas; her sister, Vera of Granville, Ohio and Miriam Anderson of New Bern, N.C., and a number of nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her father, Aarne Anderson. Local arrangements are under the care of Chapman, Cole & Gleason Funeral Home, Edgartown-Vineyard Haven Road, Oak Bluffs. Donations Mrs. Hartman may be made to the Island Food Pantry, P.O. Box 1874, Vineyard Haven, MA 02568. Visit www.ccgfuneralhome.com for online guest book and information.
John Viera Jr., age 65, of East Falmouth, died on March 26 at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston after a long illness.
He is the husband of Cecelia M. (Goulart) Viera to whom he was married for 40 years.
Born and raised in Oak Bluffs, he was the son of John and Helen May (Fauteux) Viera. John was employed by the Oak Bluffs Department of Public Works (DPW). He later moved to Falmouth, working for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts DPW as a heavy equipment operator and foreman for 41 years until retiring in 2001.
For 15 years Mr. Viera was a special police officer in the Town of Falmouth and also coached little league baseball in Falmouth for several years. He enjoyed fishing, shellfishing, and spending time with his grandchildren Justin, Jason, Jessica, MacKenzie, Devin, Jordan, John, and Melyssa.
Besides his wife and grandchildren he leaves four daughters, Pamela Viera of E. Falmouth, Cheryl Peterson of Spartanburg, S.C., Linda Willis of Mashpee, and Sandra Silva of New Bedford and two sons, John L. Viera of E. Falmouth, and Michael Viera of Marstons Mills.
A funeral Mass will be celebrated on Friday, March 31 at St. Anthony's Church, 167 E. Falmouth Highway, E. Falmouth, at 9:30 am. Burial will follow in St. Anthony's Cemetery. Visiting hours will be Thursday, March 30, 5 to 9 pm in Chapman, Cole, and Gleason Funeral Home, 475 Main St., Falmouth Center.
Elizabeth H. Stacy
Elizabeth (Liz) Hilliard Stacy, wife of Walter R. Stacy, died peacefully in her home in Oak Bluffs on March 27 after a one-year battle with cancer. Born in Bradford on Nov.16, 1919, she was the third of seven children born to Perley and Jessie Hilliard, the founders of Hilliard's Kitch-in-Vue Candies. She met her husband while he was working at Hilliard's, and they married on Jan.12, 1941. After the births of their six children, the couple left the family business and moved to Camden, N.Y. in 1952. There they opened Sta-See Candies, a popular home-based business in that area. While in Camden, Liz was active in the PTA, and she spent several years as a Girl Scout leader.
Walt and Liz closed their candy business in 1964, and Liz took a job as a darkroom technician at a printing company in Camden. She worked there until the spring of 1965 when Walter accepted the position of service manager at Camp Aldersgate in Brantingham, N.Y., a summer camp belonging to the Northern New York Conference of the United Methodist Church. During their 15 years there, Liz worked for Beaverite Corporation in Glenfield, N.Y., also as a darkroom technician.
After leaving Brantingham, the Stacys did some traveling around the United States. They had been coming to Martha's Vineyard since the early 1940s when the Hilliards first opened their candy business on Circuit Ave., and, in 1982, Liz and her husband moved here to take over that business. They ran the business, with the help of two of their daughters, until June of 1989 when they sold it to Liz's nephew, David Hilliard.
From 1982 to 2005 the couple divided their time between Martha's Vineyard and Palmetto, Fla. They settled on the Vineyard year-round beginning in March, 2005. They are members of Trinity United Methodist Church in Oak Bluffs, and Liz sang in the choir there for a number of years.
Liz enjoyed knitting, rug hooking, and oil painting. At the age of 58 she took on the job of hooking a rug for each of her five daughters, then she hooked a 9-foot by12-foot rug for herself. After that was done she started on rugs for each of her grandchildren, managing to finish eight of them before cancer overtook her. In 1999, at the age of 80, she built a stone wall in her yard on East Chop.
Elizabeth was predeceased by her parents, one brother, Douglas Hilliard of West Hartford, Conn., one sister, Ruth Hilliard of Abington, and her son, Raymond Stacy. She is survived by two brothers, Alan Hilliard of Venice, Fla., and Philip Hilliard of Halifax; two sisters, Dorcas Brown, a missionary to Thailand, and Christine Wilson of Harper, Kan. She also leaves five daughters, Susan Thurber of Oak Bluffs, Janet Whiting of Syracuse, N.Y., JoAn Dunn and Diane Murdock, both from Cazenovia, N.Y., and Brenda Mastromonaco of Oak Bluffs. In addition, she leaves 16 grandchildren, including Christopher Thurber of Vineyard Haven and Josiah Mastromonaco of Oak Bluffs, and 13 great-grandchildren, including Samantha Thurber of Oak Bluffs.
There will be no visiting hours, and a memorial service will be held at a later date. Donations in Elizabeth's name may be made to Hospice of Martha's Vineyard, P.O. Box 2549, Oak Bluffs, MA 02557 or Trinity United Methodist Church, Trinity Circle, Oak Bluffs, MA 02557. Arrangements are under the care of Chapman, Cole & Gleason Funeral Home, Oak Bluffs.
Leonard L. Drake
Leonard L. Drake, 76, of Coleman, Mich., and Edgartown, died at home on March 12.
Leonard was born in Westport. He was married to Kathleen F. Fitzpatrick on Feb. 6, 1965 in Costa Mesa, Calif.
Leonard is survived by his wife; son Matthew Drake of Coleman, Mich.; step-daughter Colleen Bissell and step-son Doug Meek both of Harrison, Mich.; grandchildren Mark and Andrew Drake, Angela Meek, and Katie Bissell; great grandchildren Tristen Michael Bissell; brothers Harris N. Drake and Samuel P. Drake; sisters Pauline Benton and Edith Bennett. Leonard was predeceased by two brothers and two sisters.
A memorial service is planned for Leonard's extended family in Edgartown in June, a date to be announced. At that time Leonard's ashes will be interred in the Drake plot in the Edgartown cemetery, Leonard's last resting place.
Alvin J. Mentzel
Alvin J. Mentzel, age 84, died on March 27 after a brief illness. He was surrounded by family, friends, and the extraordinary caregivers of Martha's Vineyard Hospital and Hospice of Martha's Vineyard. Al served as an officer in the United States Navy in the Pacific theatre during World War II. He then enjoyed a long career as a certified public accountant, joining the firm now known as Price Waterhouse Coopers (PWC) in 1951, becoming a partner in 1963, and retiring from PWC in 1984.
Upon retirement, Al and his wife Hallie moved to Martha's Vineyard where they both became active in many community organizations. Al served on several volunteer boards, including the Vineyard Conservation Society, Hospice of Martha's Vineyard, and the Friends of Family Planning of Martha's Vineyard. He also worked tirelessly in the fundraising campaign for the new West Tisbury Free Public Library.
He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Hallie; his daughter Andrea Uribe; former son-in-law Carlos Uribe; son Anthony Mentzel and daughter Nina Mentzel. To honor him, donations to Hospice of Martha's Vineyard, P.O. Box 2549, Oak Bluffs, MA 02557, or a charitable organization of your choice, would be appreciated. There will be a gathering of friends and family in the next few months on a date and time to be announced. Arrangements are under the care of Chapman, Cole & Gleason, Oak Bluffs.