April 3, 2013

Obituaries 4/3/13

4-3-13 Austin ObitsAngeline Fleming Austin

Born on September 28, 1932, at Miss Lippincott’s Sanitarium in Manhattan, Angie was the second daughter of Matthew Corry Fleming, Jr., and Dorothy Stevens Fleming. She came into the world on her mother’s birthday and was assumed to be a case of birthday-dinner indigestion until the delivery happily proved otherwise.

In 1934, Angie moved with her parents and older sister, Dosky, to Princeton, where she lived until her passing at the University Medical Center of Princeton on February 25, 2013, following a brief illness. Angie attended Miss Fine’s School, where she wrote exams in blank verse, thrived in Miss Stratton’s art class, and warned her dates not to dance too closely for fear of impaling them on pins holding together the elegant dress she had (almost) finished making the night before. After graduating in 1950, she attended the Parsons School of Design in New York. Angie was married to Francis M. Austin, Jr., from 1952 to 1979.

Angie’s prodigious design skills found many outlets throughout her life — in decorations for dances, tennis clothes for her daughter, flower arrangements, and thriving outdoor gardens. Her gardening and organizational talents took form as a member of the Stony Brook Garden Club, a group her mother helped found. Angie served the club in various ways — as president, as head of the annual May Market, as co-designer of the herb garden at Washington’s Headquarters at Rockingham, and as club historian. She honed her skills as a flower arranger at Stony Brook and was an artistic and horticulture exhibitor in both regional and national Garden Club of America shows. Among the many honors she earned were the Catherine Beattie Medal (2000), the Certificate of Excellence in a Major Flower Show (1992), the Barbara Spalding Cramer Award in Flower Arranging (1992), and the Clarissa Willemsen Horticulture Award (2004). Angie was frequently invited to exhibit arrangements in art museum shows, and one of her creations was featured in the GCA book The Fine Art of Flower Arranging. Angie was an accredited GCA flower arranging judge, which took her to many shows around the country.

Angie also served the GCA in an executive capacity. She held many positions in Zone IV (comprising all of New Jersey), including chairman. She attended GCA annual meetings as a representative and was a co-chairman of the 1987 GCA Annual Meeting. She was one of the founders of the New Jersey Committee of the GCA, an organization that awards grants to garden and civic projects, promoting the knowledge and love of gardening and horticulture in the Garden State.

A frequent exhibitor at the Philadelphia Flower Show, Angie won many awards and honors for Stony Brook and found enduring friendships. She also served as chairman of Competitive Classes for several years. In recent years, it was her own extensive garden and its evolving design that gave her pleasure and occupied her energies. She loved working with the unpredictable natural elements — “volunteer” seedlings, maturing plantings, even the devastation that storms could bring — to create a design that both reflected her respect for the landscape and suited her own aesthetic sense.

In addition to gardens, dogs were near to Angie’s heart. She was one of the founding members of the Princeton Dog Training Club, where she worked with her cocker spaniels. But Angie met her true canine companions in terriers. She owned several champion West Highland White Terriers and earned multiple obedience degrees with them. She also bred several litters of Westies (with the able assistance of friends). Most recently she owned champion Kerry Blue terriers and was working her Kerry Blue, Bridget, in obedience training.

Angie was proud of her New Jersey roots, which go back through many family generations to John Stevens, who arrived in New York/New Jersey at the end of the 17th century. The Stevens family included many leading figures of colonial America as well as skilled engineers who, among other inventions, pioneered a “steam wagon” that ran on a track as well as the T-rail system that trains still roll on today. Other Stevens family members included John Cox Stevens, first Commodore of the New York Yacht Club and owner of the yacht America, after which the cup is named; her great-grandfather, Edwin Augustus Stevens, who founded the eponymous Stevens Institute of Technology; and Col. John Stevens, an ardent horticulturalist, who was the first to bring the camellia to the newly formed United States in 1798. Angie was also proud to be an (almost) lifelong Princetonian, her Princeton ties stemming from her grandfather, who was a member of the class of 1886 and a charter trustee of the university, and her father, a member of the class of 1921.

Dressed as “Harvey,” in the audience of the McCarter tribute to Jimmy Stewart, writing letters to the local newspaper, helping to unfreeze the wings of a hapless turkey buzzard, making “egg salad” for New Year’s Eve dinner, turning a toilet plunger into the focal point of a challenge flower arrangement — Angie’s sense of whimsy and her energy will be sorely missed. She is survived by her daughter, Vicki Austin-Smith, her son-in-law, Greg Smith, and her beloved granddaughter, Cecilia Smith; her sister, Dosky French; her niece and her husband, Kathy Gorman Colket and Med Colket, and their son and daughters; her nephew and his wife, Steve Gorman and Rosalie Gorman, and their sons; and her Kerry Blue terrier, Bridget.

A private burial was held at the Princeton Cemetery on March 5. A celebration of Angie’s life will be held in her garden on June 29 (rain date June 30); time and details to be announced. Donations can be made in Angie’s name to “The Growing Fund” of the New Jersey Committee of the Garden Club of America, c/o Ms. Paula Stuart, Treasurer, 65 White Oak Drive, South Orange, N.J. 07079; or to the Westie Foundation of America, Inc. c/o Gary Sackett, Treasurer, 16813 Wood Song Court, Riverside, Calif. 92504-8824.


4-3-13 Goldman ObitElise R. Goldman

Elise Goldman passed away peacefully in the presence of loved ones, on Thursday, March 28 in her home in North Carolina. She was 94 years old.

Elise was born on July 21, 1918 in Norfolk, Virginia. After graduating from Randolph Macon Women’s College in Virginia, where she majored in Greek and Latin, she went north to New York City to study modern dance with Martha Graham, and to work on a PhD at Columbia University. While at Columbia, she met Morton J. Goldman (Mort), the love of her life. They were married in 1942. In 1947, Mort purchased a small camp on Long Lake in Naples, Maine, which he founded as Camp Takajo for boys. Naples and Long Lake became a second home from that moment on, where Mort and Elise and their growing family spent several months each year. They raised a family in Great Neck, N.Y., then moved to Princeton, and in 1993, after the death of Mort in 1990, Elise moved to Chapel Hill, N.C. where she lived for the rest of her days.

While in the New York area, Elise was an active member of the Community Church, and then Riverside Church of New York. While in Princeton, Elise was very committed to community service, and a dedicated volunteer with Recording For The Blind and Meals on Wheels, and other organizations to help people.

Elise greeted each day with a smile and a lust for living that was as infectious as it was inspiring. She was compassionate and unfailingly generous, witty, and keenly discerning. She is survived by a sister, Anne Reid of Chapel Hill, North Carolina; by her five children: Judy Wideman of Naples, Maine; Roger Goldman of Charlotte, North Carolina; Nancy Zorensky of Conifer, Colorado; John Henry Goldman of Princeton; and Paul Goldman of Skillman; by ten grandchildren; and six great grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in her name to Lakes Environmental Association, 230 Main Street, Bridgton, Maine 04009.


4-3-13 Fenton ObitMary Josephine Gardner Fenton

Mary Josephine Gardner Fenton, 84, died after a brief illness November 24, 2012 in Tucson Ariz. Friends and family are invited to join together to celebrate her life on Saturday, April 6, 2013 at 12:30 p.m. at the Nassau Inn for lunch. Interment will follow at 2:30 p.m. at the Princeton Cemetery.

She is survived by her children John B. Cumings, Sarah C. Morse, Alexandra C. Sullivan, and Hamilton S. Gregg, seven grandchildren and a brother Alfred W. Gardner. Born and raised in Princeton, she was the daughter of Henry B. and Sarah (Morgan) Gardner and had attended Miss Fines, Garrison Forest ’45 and Scripps College ’49. She had lived for many years in Denver and Aspen Colo.

In lieu of flowers, please note “in memory of Mary Jo Fenton” on your contribution to Friends of Catalina State Park, 11570 No. Oracle Rd, Tucson Ariz. 85737.


Dorothy M. Bernardis

Dorothy M. Bernardis, 87, of Monmouth Junction died Tuesday, March 26, 2013 at Park Place Care Center. Born in Pittsburgh, Pa. she resided in Beechview most of her life.

Dorothy retired in 1986 with over 22 years of service with J C Penney, Pittsburgh. She was a member of St Catherine of Sienna Roman Catholic Church.

Daughter of the late Albert and Alice (End) Lunn, wife of the late Norman Bernardis, mother of the late Karen Antkowiak, Katherine Tarbet, sister of the late Norman Lunn and Robert Lunn, she is survived by three sons and two daughters-in-law Mark Bernardis, Michael and Sherry Bernardis, Jeffrey and Donna Bernardis, a daughter and son-in-law Laurel and Steven McCullough, 14 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren, and 6 great-great-grandchildren.

A Mass of Christian burial was celebrated at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, April 2, 2013 at St. Catherine of Sienna Church. Burial was followed in the Mt. Lebanon Cemetery, Pittsburgh. Memorial contributions may be made to the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation.