William Dutton Pettit Sr.
William Dutton Pettit Sr. passed away quietly and peacefully on February 9, 2015. He lived for over 94 years and filled each one of them with love, laughter, and a gritty optimism that fueled a life of varied achievement, and of remarkable family connection and experience.
Bill was born in Brooklyn, New York on May 8, 1920, the third son of Karl Dravo Pettit and Estelle Fitch Pettit. They moved to Cherry Hill Farm on Ridgeview Road in Princeton in 1922. He attended Asheville School, achieving a remarkable record in both academics and athletics before entering Princeton University with the class of 1941. He distinguished himself on the football team, and joined Cannon Club prior to his graduation from Princeton.
Bill fulfilled his ROTC commitment, and was in the army when Pearl Harbor changed his plans. He married Carole Helene Earle (Taddy) on December 27, 1941, and immediately began traveling with the Army as Bill prepared to go to Europe. He fought with distinction as a member of the 28th Division of the 3rd Army, commanding an artillery battery through the battles of Normandy, the Colmar pocket, and the Battle of the Bulge. He won the Bronze Star and numerous battle decorations. After helping with the occupation, Bill returned home in 1946, and immediately entered the investment business of Karl D. Pettit and Company with his father. They pioneered many concepts in investments, including two of the oldest mutual funds (The Knickerbocker Fund and the Knickerbocker Growth Fund) and the development of a tool to track Market Psychology. Bill became the president of the firm, and managed it successfully until its sale in 1974. He remained a senior advisor to the successor companies (CNA and Morse-Williams), retaining accounts and advising clients until his retirement at age 87 in 2007.
Princeton always held a special place in his life, for he attended with two brothers and saw all three of his sons attend Princeton University in the 1970s. It was where he met the first love of his life, Carole Earle Pettit. Bill and Carole (known as Taddy) lived together in Princeton from 1946 to 1983, participating regularly in Princeton events of all kinds. They had two daughters, Carol Lovelock and Penelope Kreinberg, and three sons, William Jr., Jonathan, and Donald. Bill and Taddy were married for 41 years and built many good memories together. Taddy died in 1983.
Bill threw himself into his life as a grandfather and Princetonian in the decades from 1983 to the 2000s, and met and married the second love of his life, Elizabeth Stetson in 1986. Bill became president of the class of 1941, and enjoyed golfing and attending the sporting and arts events of his 16 grandchildren. His infectious enthusiasm extended to the events of his great grandchildren, and he enjoyed meeting all 19 of them.
Bill resided in Seattle from 2011 until his death. Elizabeth predeceased him in 2013. Bill’s son Jon passed away in 2013, but he is survived by 4 of his children, 5 of their beloved spouses, 16 grandchildren and their 11 spouses, and 19 great grandchildren.
The family will gather on March 21, 2015 at 1 p.m. at Trinity Church in Princeton for a service of remembrance. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests a donation in Bill’s name to the class of 1941 memorial fund at Princeton University.
Liza Helene Dawson-Pitts
Liza Helene Dawson-Pitts died peacefully on the morning of February 25, 2015 at Capital Health Hospital in Trenton, New Jersey with her immediate family by her side. She was 31 years old.
Liza cherished music, cats, dogs, and all other animals. She loved her family and friends. A talented cartoonist, she was funny, sensitive, and often very kind. In the carnival of life Liza was the girl on the flying trapeze.
Liza was pre-deceased by her mother Suzanne Dawson and her brother Zachary Dawson-Pitts. She is survived by her father, Stephen Pitts and her sister, Anna Dawson-Pitts, both of Lawrenceville, New Jersey. Liza is also survived by her grandparents Col. and Mrs. W. H. Dawson III along with numerous aunts, uncles, and cousins.
A memorial service for Liza will be held on Saturday, March 14, 2015 at 1 p.m. at Trinity Church, 33 Mercer Street in Princeton. A reception in the church hall will follow immediately after the service.
In lieu of flowers please give generously to Crawford House through their website or at Post Office Box 255, Skillman, New Jersey 08558, attention Liza Dawson-Pitts Memorial. Crawford House, founded in 1978, is an addiction recovery house that has helped many women.
Beatrice Hunt Rider
Beatrice (Bea) Hunt Rider, 97, of Princeton, died peacefully on February 9, 2015, at The Birches of Newtown in Pennsylvania. Bea was born in Princeton, March 4, 1917, to Joseph Hilary Hunt and Pearl Waag Hunt. Bea lived all but the last seven and a half years of her life between Princeton and Kingston. She was a graduate of St. Paul’s grammar school and Princeton High School. After high school she worked for a while at Princeton University. After being turned down for a raise, she left there, bought a typewriter and announced to her mother she was going to open her own business. This venture proved to be very successful for Bea. First, she started out from her family home typing theses for the university students and as time progressed and her business grew, she moved to a small office and then a bigger office on Nassau Street, which was named Nassau Secretarial and Answering Service. Bea married Benedict Rider, a master wood worker, who specialized in restoring antique furniture. Ben was the owner of Rider Furniture in Kingston. He predeceased Bea in 1977. Bea was also predeceased by her parents and siblings Mildred Mason (Harry), Joseph H. Hunt Jr. (Marjorie), Ruth Hunt Bell, George Hunt, and niece Catherine Hunt Maksim (Jim), and nephews Harry Mason and Joseph H. Hunt III (Nancy), great niece and nephew Jennifer Hansen and Joseph Mason. Among the known surviving relatives are nieces and nephews William Mason, Elsie DeSimone (Izzy), Mildred Hansen, Tex Mason, Lawrence Mason, Doris Mason, Alice Dellmire, Paula Hunt Chaffee (Chet); as well as great nieces and nephews Joseph H. Hunt IV (Lorena), Cheryl Hunt, Patricia Hunt Ruch (Jordan), Sean Hunt, Michael Maksim, Marjorie Maksim, Nicholas Maksim, Daniel Maksim, Catherine O’Sullivan, Tyler Chaffee, Peter Hansen, Elizabeth Hansen Delcasale, Timothy Mason, Deborah Mason, Dorothy Fryer, Tex Mason, Lawrence Mason, Dominic Mantuano; and many cousins.
Bea was proud of her Irish ancestry. She was especially thrilled when she had the opportunity to visit Ireland and explore her roots. She was respected by her family for her hard work ethic, independence, and thoughtfulness. She always made time to sit and talk with family and friends, enjoying a pot of tea together or glass of wine. She loved the Jersey shore and her favorite place to vacation with family and friends was Manasquan. She was a longtime member of St. Paul’s parish in Princeton.
Bea loved animals (favorite pets were Henry, a Tabby cat and Rondo, a German shepherd). She was a member of the ASPCA.
A memorial service was held in Bea’s honor on February 16, 2015 at Mather-Hodge Funeral Home in Princeton and interment was at St. Paul’s cemetery in Princeton.
In memory of Bea, please consider a donation to the ASPCA, Catholic Charities, or the Alzheimer’s Association.
Bea will remain in our hearts and memories always.
The tide recedes but leaves behind bright seashells in the sand.
The sun goes down, but gentle warmth lingers on the land.
The music stops, and yet it echoes on in sweet refrains ….
For every joy that passes,
Something beautiful remains.
Shirrell de Leeuw Buhler
Shirrell de Leeuw Buhler was born on September 15, 1929 in Buffalo, New York and died at her home in Hopewell, New Jersey on February 26, 2015. Buhler was the founding partner of the P-STAT statistical software program. She was a graduate of Oberlin College where she met her husband and business partner, Roald Buhler. After raising four children, her academic career began in 1966 as a research assistant at the Princeton University Office of Population Research under the direction of Professor Charles Westoff. In 1969, she joined the staff of the Princeton University Computer Center where she managed technical support and training. In 1979 the Buhlers transitioned from academia to commercial software development, incorporated as P-STAT, Inc. Shirrell was the primary author of the P-STAT manuals and training documentation.
She loved her work, programming P-STAT for over 50 years with her husband Roald. They were a dynamic duo, working together and challenging each other to write better Fortran code. They traveled the world presenting papers, participating in government/academic/commercial projects, and training the next few generations of analytic researchers. She was a member of the American Statistical Association for decades. One colleague wrote, “She had a keen sense of how numerical analysis develops meaning versus the mechanics of computing.”
Shirrell loved life and enjoyed it to the fullest — reading, programming, jazzercise, sudoku, Friday night dinners with friends, and most especially, keeping in touch with her family.
She is survived by her sister, Carolina de Leeuw, her four children and their partners; Eric and Nancy, Sebbie and Charles, David and Karen, Marc and Jenny; and grandchildren Wade and Owen.
In memory of Shirrell, please consider supporting WWFM — The Classical Network, 1200 Old Trenton Road, West Windsor, New Jersey 08550 (online wwfm.org) or your local Planned Parenthood office. There will be no formal memorial service.
Julia B. Manuel
Julia B. Manuel, 90, formerly of West Windsor, New Jersey, passed away on January 23, 2015 at The Pavilions at Forrestal in Princeton. She is survived by her devoted husband of 65 years, Arthur J. Manuel; a daughter and son-in-law, Beatrice and Stephen Francis; son and daughter-in-law, John and Janice; son, William, granddaughter, and grandson-in-law, Julia and Matthew Thomas; grandson and partner, John Francis and Timothy Stackhouse; and two great grandsons, Benjamin and Zachary Thomas.
For many years, Julia was an active member of Princeton Friends Meeting and volunteered at Mercer Street Friends Center. She was also a member of West Windsor’s Twin “W” Rescue Squad.
A memorial service will be held on March 14, 2015 at 2 p.m. at the Princeton Friends Meeting House, 470 Quaker Road in Princeton. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Mercer Street Friends, 151 Mercer Street in Trenton, New Jersey 08611.
Memorial Service: Betty Whelan Donovan
The Memorial Service for Betty Whelan Donovan will be held on Saturday, March 7, 2015 at 11 a.m. at Nassau Presbyterian Church followed by a reception at Springdale Golf Club. In lieu of flowers, donations in Betty’s memory may be made to Friends of Princeton Women’s Golf In Memory of Betty Donovan: Will Green, J. Stuart Francis ’74 Head Coach of Men’s Golf, Princeton University, Dillon Gym, Room #11, Princeton, NJ 08540. Online: https://makeagift.princeton.edu/athletics, Designate Friends of Golf/In Memory of Betty Donovan. Also, S.A.V.E. A Friend to Homeless Animals: 900 Herrontown Rd., Princeton, NJ 08540.