Karl Gerhard Hernqvist
Karl Gerhard Hernqvist, 92, physicist at RCA in Princeton, passed away on Monday July 7, 2014 at Acorn Glen in Princeton after a four-year struggle with Alzheimer’s. He is survived by his wife of 65 years Thyra Hildegard, and their children Lars Hernquist of Lexington, Massachusetts, Thomas Hernquist of Lancaster, Pennsylvania and Ingrid Hernquist of Princeton. Karl is also survived by seven grandchildren. He was born in Boras, Sweden on September 19, 1922. He became a U.S. citizen and resident of Princeton in 1952.
Dr. Hernqvist received a PhD in electrical engineering from the Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden, in 1959. He worked on radar and microwave instrumentation in the Royal Swedish Air Force in 1945 and 1946. From 1946 to 1952, he was engaged in electron-tube research at the Research Institute of National Defense, Stockholm. He was an American-Scandinavian Trainee at RCA Laboratories in 1949. In 1952, he joined RCA Laboratories and worked there until the company was sold in 1986. At RCA, he worked on microwave tubes, electron guns, and gas-discharge devices. In 1956, he independently conceived of and implemented the thermionic energy converter. In the 1960’s, he became involved with gas laser technology, an area in which he made a number of pioneering contributions. Dr. Hernqvist gained an international reputation for his work. He received five RCA Laboratories Achievement Awards and holds 36 issued patents. He was a member of the Sigma Xi Society and The National Geographic Society and a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers.
Dr. Hernqvist was a world-renowned scientist in the field of gas lasers. In 1970, he was awarded the Fellow designation at RCA Laboratories, a title comparable to that used by universities and technical societies. He was given the award in recognition of his work in the fields of gas discharge devices, thermionic energy conversion, and laser technology. He received the David Sarnoff Award for Outstanding Technical Achievement, RCA’s top technical honor, in 1974, and was honored for “innovative contributions to the development of gas lasers and for his ability to shorten the time cycle
between research and commercial applications.” In 1982 Karl was again awarded the Outstanding Technical Achievement for his work to resolve major quality defects in RCA color picture television tubes. Presented and published papers by Karl on the quality improvements related to arc suppression include “Studies of Flashovers and Preventive Measures for Kinescope Guns’” presented at IEEE Consumer Electronics Conference in Chicago, Illinois, in November 1980 and published in IEEE Transactions on Consumer Electronics, May 1981 Vol. CE-27, No. 2, pp 117-128.
Karl was devoted to his family. He enjoyed traveling throughout the world with them; he was a skilled photographer and talented stained glass artist, and an avid follower of classical music.
A memorial service will be held at Stone Hill Church 1025 Bunn Dr., Princeton, N.J. on August 16 at 11 a.m. In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that donations be made to the Alzheimer’s Association.
Ruth Bergengren Perkins
Ruth Bergengren Perkins, 98, of Princeton, and Blue Mountain Lake, N.Y., died peacefully at home in Princeton on July 7, 2014. Born in 1915 in Boras, Sweden, she was raised in a large dynamic family with four sisters and a brother. In 1939, she married Christian H. Aall, a Norwegian. They spent much of World War II in occupied Norway. In 1947, with their first two children, they moved to Anniston, Ala. There, she opened a Swedish import store called Goodwin-Aall. The family also lived in Columbia, Tenn., and St. Louis, Mo. They had two more children before settling in Princeton in 1956. For the past 15 years, she lived at Princeton Windrows.
For many years, she served on the board of the American Scandinavian Foundation and the Princeton Symphony Orchestra. She was also active in the Princeton University Art Museum and the Garden Club of Princeton. She travelled widely and her adventures included climbing the 19,340-foot Mount Kilimanjaro and writing her memoirs for her family on the shore of Italy’s Lake Como. She loved her family and friends and combined a strong ability to get things done with a graciousness and sense of fun that was infectious, pulling together large formal events and small family parties with equal ease. She married twice, first to Dr. Aall and then to Dr. James A. Perkins, former president of Cornell University. She was the mother of four and stepmother of five.
She is survived by her four children, Cecilia Mathews, Mea Kaemmerlen, Pamela Aall McPherson, and Christian Aall; four stepchildren Barbara Tinker, John Perkins, David Perkins, and Tracy Berman; seven grandchildren, Brandon Mathews, Mark Mathews, Alex Mathews, Ella McPherson, Andrew McPherson, Chris Aall, and Nathalie Aall. Also nine great-grandchildren and nieces, nephews and cousins in Sweden, Norway, the UK and elsewhere.
In her memory, contributions can be sent to the American Scandinavian Foundation in New York City or the Princeton Symphony Orchestra.
Mary Duffy Cognetta Morrisroe
Mary Duffy Cognetta Morrisroe, formerly of North Haven, Connecticut, died peacefully on July 4, 2014 at the Medical Center of Princeton with her husband and one of her daughters by her side. She was 88. She was the devoted wife of Francis M. “Bud” Morrisroe to whom she was married for 37 years. For the last two years they made their home at Stonebridge, in Skillman, New Jersey.
Mary was born in Sharon, Connecticut on December 7, 1925. One of six children, she grew up on a farm in Amenia, New York where she attended a one-room-schoolhouse. Her Irish immigrant parents, the late Henry and Margaret Lynch Duffy, worked at Troutbeck, the summer estate of the Spingarn family where Henry was superintendent. She graduated from the St. Vincent’s Hospital School of Nursing in New York City and served as a cadet nurse during World War II. She pursued her vocation for nursing in a professional career that spanned more than 40 years, opening opportunities for her to explore the diversity and excitement of the world beyond Amenia, taking her from cruise ships to private duty cases to hospital staff to nursing home and visiting nurse positions. In her last post at the Jewish Home for the Aged in New Haven, she was guided by her conviction that each resident was blessed by the wonder and uniqueness of his or her own life’s story. She showered her patients with kindness, tenderness, and respect. She combined her nursing career with what was to become the most important work of her life, raising a family of six children. Her instincts as a mother were unerring. She encouraged and inspired each of her children in a firm and loving manner, never judging, anchoring them securely in their own lives. A devout Catholic throughout her life, she was a member of the St. Barnabas Parish in North Haven, Conn. She taught in St. Barnabas’s religious education program and she served on its altar guild. Along with her husband Bud, she was a member of the Irish Club of New Haven where she participated in the club’s annual Feis and taught the art of baking Irish Brown Bread.
While a student in New York City in the 1940s, Mary attended concerts and the opera, which led to a lifelong love of classical music, a gift she passed along to her children and grandchildren, many of whom are accomplished musicians. She loved to sing and the sweetness of her voice, especially when serenading her children, was unforgettable. She read the New York Times cover to cover every day. The volumes of poetry and meditations she also read daily helped to reinforce her deep faith in the goodness of the world. She was a splendid cook and baker, collecting and sharing recipes and cookbooks and taking great pleasure in family parties featuring her wonderful food. She was renowned among family and friends for her prize-winning Irish brown bread, featured recently at MarthaStewart.com.
Throughout her life, Mary helped countless friends and acquaintances by gently sharing her friendship, wisdom and trust in God to support them through life’s challenges. She was a “life-coach” long before the term was coined, acting as a sounding board and providing practical advice, encouragement, material assistance, as well as unconditional love to anyone lucky enough to cross her path.
In later life, with her husband Bud, she traveled the world, visiting Ireland ten times and touring the major cities of Europe and Russia. She and Bud also spent many happy vacations, often with grandchildren in tow, traveling in their converted Greyhound bus to bluegrass music festivals around the country where Bud performed. Mary summered in Greensboro, Vermont at her daughter’s home on Caspian Lake, the site of many family gatherings. She walked daily at a vigorous pace and especially loved the trails she discovered along farm fields and streams in North Haven, the hilly dirt roads of Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom, and the wooded paths behind Stonebridge.
Mary is survived by her husband Bud Morrisroe and her children and their spouses: Barbra Cognetta of North Haven, Conn.; Meg Cognetta Heaton and her husband Murray P. Heaton of Geneva, N.Y.; Armand B. Cognetta Jr. and his wife Suzanne Doumar Cognetta of Tallahasse, Fla.; Melanie Cognetta Clarke and her husband John K. Clarke of Princeton; Alyce Cognetta Bertz and her husband Gary Bertz of Southbury, Conn.; and Gabrielle Ruf of Southport, Conn. Mary leaves 23 grandchildren, 4 great grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews whose unfolding lives she followed with keen interest and delight. She reserved her most fervent prayers for each of them. Mary’s stepchildren, Michael Morrisroe, Terry Ann Bartlett, and Gail Schopick also survive her as do her sister Alice Page, brother Joseph Duffy and sister-in-law Barbara Duffy. Besides her parents, Mary was predeceased by her first husband, Armand B. Cognetta, MD; her brothers John and Francis Duffy; her sister Margaret Erskine Quinn; her son-in-law James Ruf; and her grandson-in-law Bruce Van Arsdell.
A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on Thursday, July 10 at 11 a.m. at St. Barnabas Church, 44 Washington Ave, North Haven Conn. Interment followed at All Saints Cemetery. Calling hours preceded her burial mass on Thursday, July 10, from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at The North Haven Funeral Home, 36 Washington Ave, North Haven, CT. www.northhavenfuneral.com.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to St. Barnabas Church or to a charity of one’s choice.
Phyllis Kurshan, 88, died July 10, 2014 at home at Princeton Windrows of natural causes. Born in Brooklyn, New York, she lived in Princeton for the past 68 years. She graduated from Samuel J. Tilden High School in January 1944. She attended New York University and received the Bachelor of Science degree cum laude from its School of Education in February 1947.
She married while still attending college and commuted from Princeton to New York City to finish her course work and her student teaching in Hell’s Kitchen on the lower East Side. She then obtained a position teaching Reception Grade, an all-day kindergarten class, in Princeton Township for one year. After a few years’ break to start raising two children, she took a position teaching kindergarten in Plainsboro Township. She subsequently moved on to first grade and taught in Plainsboro for a total of 32 years, never taking a day of sick leave. She introduced an innovative reading program and received a state grant to continue that work. She also introduced computer education in the Plainsboro elementary school. After Plainsboro and West Windsor Townships merged their school districts she served as president of their Education Association (Teachers’ Union) and helped negotiate favorable and equitable teachers’ contracts. She retired from teaching in 1986 but continued to hold a succession of jobs including bank teller at Princeton Trust Co., salesperson and instructor at Clayton’s Knitting Shop, and office assistant at an accounting firm. Her final position was as a receptionist for 14 years with the New Jersey
Hospital Association, which she left at the age of 81.
She was a founding member of The Jewish Center of Princeton and continued to be active as a choir member, Sunday School teacher, volunteer, and member of its Board of Directors. She helped organize and run an auxiliary High Holiday service (the Classical Service) held at the Riverside School. She had a beautiful and powerful voice and often led parts of the religious service. Cognizant of the need for more inclusion of seniors, she helped found the Silver Circle, a social group for seniors, and was its leader for a number of years. She was named Congregant of the Year in 2003.
Phyllis was the daughter of the late Jack and Beatrice Sterman. She is survived by her husband, Jerome Kurshan, whom she married in 1946. She is also survived by a son and daughter-in-law, Neil and Alisa Kurshan, a daughter Rachel Kurshan, five grandchildren; Ilana, Naamit, Ariella, Eytan, and Sara, six great-grandchildren; Shira, Amalia, Matan, Tagel, Liav, and Ezra; and a brother Alex Sterman.
The funeral was held at The Jewish Center, 435 Nassau Street, Princeton, at 9 a.m. on Sunday July 13, 2014. Shiva will be observed at 2233 Windrow Drive with services at 8 p.m. on Sunday through Thursday. Condolence visits may be made Monday through Thursday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Memorial contributions may be made to The Jewish Center, 435 Nassau Street, Princeton, N.J. 08540 or to the Jewish Federation of Princeton Mercer Bucks, 4 Princess Road, Lawrenceville, N.J. 08648.
Arrangements are by Kimble Funeral Home, Princeton, N.J.
Penelope A. Baskerville
Penelope A. Baskerville, 67, of Princeton died Monday, July 7, 2014 at University Medical Center of Princeton at Plainsboro. Born in South Orange, she has been a resident of Princeton since 1972. Penelope was a member of the Zoning Commission, Princeton Young Achievers, and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. She served on the Princeton School Board and for many years as a docent at Morven and Drumthwacket.
Daughter of the late Robert L. and Yolanda (Reaves) Baskerville, she is survived by a son and daughter-in-law Dylan Penningroth and Carolyn Chen; a daughter Ailey Penningroth; her stepmother Mary Baskerville; and two grandsons August and Julien.
The funeral service was held on Sunday, July 13, 2014 at 2 p.m. at Mountain Lakes House, 57 Mountain Avenue in Princeton. It was preceded by a viewing at 1 p.m. A private graveside service followed in Princeton Cemetery. Donations in lieu of flowers may be sent to Princeton Young Achievers and Heifer International. Arrangements are under the direction of the Mather-Hodge Funeral Home in Princeton.
Elizabeth McGraw Webster
Elizabeth “Lisa” McGraw Webster, a philanthropist and renowned supporter of American figure skaters, died on Saturday, June 28 at her vacation home in Sun Valley, Idaho. She was 88.
Ms. Webster was born in New York City to Elizabeth Murtland Woodwell and Curtis Whittlesey McGraw, president of McGraw Hill Publishing from 1950-53. She was the granddaughter of James McGraw, founder of the publishing house. Ms. Webster lived her entire life in Princeton, New Jersey, where she attended Miss Fines School. She went on to Foxcroft School in Middleburg, Va. and Finch College in New York City.
Ms. Webster had a deep love for figure skating, and served on the board of The Skaters Fund, an organization that provides assistance to skaters and coaches in need due to illness, disability or age. Additionally, over some four decades, she sponsored numerous national and Olympic champions including Nancy Kerrigan, Paul Wylie, Steven Cousins, David Liu, Parker Pennington, Derrick Delmore, Jeremy Abbot, Alex Akin, and others. In recognition for her commitment to the sport she was nominated for the Figure Skating Hall of Fame.
Ms. Webster also supported figure skating on the local level. She was a charter member of The Princeton Skating Club and her contributions built the club’s state-of-the-art Lisa McGraw Skating Rink at Princeton Day School.
Ms. Webster was active throughout the Princeton community, serving on the board of directors of Princeton Hospital, and holding memberships at the Nassau Club, Bedens Brook Golf Club, and the Pretty Brook Tennis Club. She was a founder and charter member of the Contemporary Garden Club of Princeton. She also established the Curtis W. McGraw Foundation and the Lisa McGraw Figure Skating Foundation, both in Princeton.
Ms. Webster was married twice, to James Stoltzfus and George Webster; both marriages ended in divorce. She is survived by two daughters, Lisette Stoltzfus Edmond and Marian Stoltzfus Paen; a son, Curtis McGraw Webster; grandchildren Elizabeth Edmond, Victoria Edmond, Alexandra Edmond, Nicolas Edmond, Antony James Maricich, Alexander McGraw Maricich, Anastasha Tatiana Maricich, and Theo McGraw Webster; sons- and daughters-in-law, and great-grandchildren.
A memorial service will be held at the Nassau Presbyterian Church, 61 Nassau Street, Princeton, on October 11, 2014. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to: the Lisa McGraw Figure Skating Foundation, Post office Box 627, Princeton, N.J. 08542-0627, or The Skaters’ Fund, 202 Park Knoll, Princeton, N.J. 08540.
William B. Jennings
William B. Jennings of Princeton died on Sunday, July 13, 2014 after a brief illness. He was 92. Mr. Jennings was born in Athens, Ga. in 1921 and was the son of Reverend Ernest Henry Jennings and Bertie Jennings. He moved to Bradenton, Fla. at age 3 where he lived through high school. After graduating from the University of Florida at Gainesville with a BS/BA, he served in World War II as a First Lieutenant in General Patton’s army. During the war, he held leadership positions, served throughout France, and fought in the Battle of the Bulge through 1945. He was awarded the Bronze and Silver Stars for bravery.
After the war, he entered Harvard Business School graduating in the infamous Class of 1949. After HBS he joined McKinsey & Company as a management consultant in the New York Headquarters. Later in his career he held management positions with several financial firms including EF Hutton, Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette, and Lazard Frères. He was an active member of The Harvard Club of New York and also contributed to his class reunions and events.
In his retirement, Mr. Jennings was an advisor to The Partnership for a Drug Free America. Mr. Jennings was an avid history buff who enjoyed reading books on American history, visiting historical sites and exploring his family’s genealogy. He was a longtime resident of Princeton. A devoted husband, father, and grandfather, Mr. Jennings is survived by his wife of 53 years, Hilda A. Jennings, his son William H. Jennings and Cheri Jennings of Darien, Conn.; his son John S. Jennings and Krissan Jennings of Chicago; and a daughter Pamela Drake and H.B. Drake of Orinda, Calif. He also has six grandchildren. A memorial service will be held at The Nassau
Presbyterian Church in Princeton, N.J. on Saturday July 19 at 11 a.m.
Arrangements are under the direction of The Mather-Hodge Funeral Home in Princeton.
Ermelina Nini Procaccini
Ermelina Nini Procaccini, 93, passed away in peace on Saturday, July 12, 2014 at the Senior Center of Loomis House in Holyoke, Mass. Ermelina was born in Pettoranello di Molise, Italy, February 1, 1921, the second of four children, to Biagio Nini and Gabriella Procaccini. On May 25, 1942, she married her devoted and venerated husband, Angelo Procaccini, with whom she spent 59 glorious years until his death in 2001. Together with her husband and their two children, Alfonso and Italo, she immigrated to the United States in 1955, taking residence at Kingston, N.J. where she lived until 2006, when she moved to Holyoke to be close to family. Throughout the years, she returned to Italy on numerous occasions to visit relatives and enjoy the beauty and the art of her mother country to which she always felt so attached. A small woman of unbounded energy and unlimited love, courage, and faith, Ermelina was the consummate wife, mother, and grandmother. Her greatest joy was to give totally of herself to her entire family and friends. Known for her simple, yet exquisite cuisine, she particularly cherished any occasion when she could host and serve everyone around her table. Her homemade pasta and sauces, her stuffed focaccia with swisschard, and cotolette alla milanese were simply unmatched! In addition to her work as a meticulous housekeeper, Ermelina also enjoyed sewing, reading Italian literature, and listening to Italian opera.
More than anything, Ermelina basked in recounting tales from her small hometown of Pettoranello, always coloring and imbuing the stories with her playfully ironic humor and ever-quick wit. Ermelina leaves her two sons, Alfonso and his wife, Ariane, and Italo, whose dear wife, Helene, passed away only two weeks prior; her five grandchildren, Piero, Pia and her husband Stan, Francesca, Brennan and Devon; two great grandchildren, Eliza and Brayden. She also leaves her dearest and ever beloved sister, Dora Celli, along with numerous nieces and nephews. Calling hours at the Mather Hodge Funeral Home of Princeton will be Friday, July 18, 2014, from 6 to 8 p.m. Funeral services will begin Saturday morning, July 19, 2014 from Mather Hodge Funeral Home at 8:45 a.m. with a Liturgy of Christian burial at 9 a.m. at St. Paul Roman Catholic Church, Princeton. Burial will follow in Princeton Cemetery. Memorial gifts can be made to the Loomis House, 298 Jarvis Avenue, Holyoke, MA 01040.