Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXII, No. 26
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
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James C. McKeever Sr.

Frederick M. English

Beatrice H. Wysocki

John C. Perone

James C. McKeever Sr.

James C. McKeever Sr., 89, of Monroe Township, formerly of Princeton, died June 13.

Born in Easton, Pa., he was a longtime resident of Princeton prior to moving to Monroe Township.

After Pearl Harbor he enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Force, was assigned to the Aerial Photographic Intelligence Unit of the 5th Air Force in Australia, and served with it in New Guinea and the Philippines.

As an undergraduate at Westminster Choir College in Princeton, he was the bass soloist of the Symphonic Choir and class president. Upon graduating in 1948 he began a nearly 60-year musical career of directing, teaching, training, and performance.

Called to the First Presbyterian Church of Haddonfield, N.J. in 1948, he served as the minister of music and developed a program that included nine choirs of more than 450 adults and children. While there, he was instrumental in the creation of a community supported music performance series that featured leading international soloists and instrumentalists.

In 1961 he returned to Westminster as a professor of voice and was appointed head of the department. He also began his 11-year service as director of music at the Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church in New York City.

Among the many highlights he experienced in New York was having his choir sing with Duke Ellington and his orchestra in the East Coast premiere of Ellington’s concert of sacred music, “In the Beginning God.” He also conducted the Massed Choirs of New York City in the Singer Bowl at the New York World’s Fair.

At Westminster he served variously as Director of Alumni and Church Relations and Placement, or as Director of Development and Alumni Affairs. In 1975 he was appointed Assistant to the President with responsibility for coordinating the college’s 50th anniversary. He directed the Summer Vocal Camp held on campus for several years. Officially retired in 1983 as Professor Emeritus, he continued to teach voice privately. He was given Westminster’s Alumni Merit Award in 1970 and the Alumni Distinguished Service Award this past May.

He also served as a Visiting Lecturer of Music at Princeton Theological Seminary, designated Music Director Emeritus at the Ewing Presbyterian Church in Ewing, and most recently as the Chorus Director at the Community Church of Rossmoor, Monroe Township. He led vocal workshops and seminars around the country.

As a bass-baritone he was a soloist for performances of Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Bach’s Mass in B Minor and The St. John Passion, Verdi’s Requiem, Handel’s Messiah and Gounod’s Messe Solennelle, among others. He also sang several roles in Warren Martin’s The True Story of Cinderella.

A Rotarian since 1951, he was a past president of the Princeton Rotary Club, where he received the Paul Harris Award. He also held memberships in the Nassau Club and The Old Guard of Princeton.

Predeceased in 2002 by his wife of 60 years, Marion, he is survived by his children, James C. McKeever, Jr. of Fairfax, Va., John D. McKeever of Denville, N.J., and Elizabeth McKeever Lewis of Bethesda, Md.; 11 grandchildren; and a great-grandchild.

The funeral will be private. A memorial service is planned for August 17 at the Nassau Presbyterian Church.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Westminster Choir College, 101 Walnut Lane, Princeton 08540 for The Endowment for the Westminster Archives/the Preservation of its History.

Arrangements are under the direction of The Mather-Hodge Funeral Home.

Frederick M. English

Frederick M. English, 96, of Skillman, died June 21 in Stonebridge at Montgomery.

Born in Trenton, he had been a Princeton resident since 1962.

He was a graduate of Trenton High School, class of 1930, and the University of Pennsylvania, class of 1934. He later attended Harvard Law School and graduated from Rutgers Law School.

He was a United States Army World War II veteran, rising to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

He served as an assistant prosecutor of Mercer County from 1949 to 1957. He worked as a legal analyst with the State of New Jersey, Division of Taxation, and later served as New Jersey Deputy Attorney General from 1972 until 1980.

He was president of the New Jersey State Society of Sons of the Revolution from 1976 to 1978, and a past president of the Historical Society of Princeton, having served in that position from 1983 to 1985. He was also a published author, of General Hugh Mercer.

The son of the late Joseph E. and Iva Mathews English, husband of the late Julie Carll English, and brother of the late Dr. Harrison English and Mary Ann Burnett, he is survived by a daughter, Judy E. Power.

The funeral service will be tomorrow, June 26 at 11 a.m. at the Mather-Hodge Funeral Home, 40 Vandeventer Avenue. Burial will follow in the Ewing Church Cemetery, Ewing. Friends may call on Thursday from 10 a.m. until time of the service at the funeral home.

Memorial contributions may be made to the American Diabetes Association, 1701 North Beauregard Street, Alexandria, Va. 22311; or to a charity of the donor’s choice.

Beatrice H. Wysocki

Beatrice Hannah Wysocki, 94, of Princeton, died June 16 at the University Medical Center at Princeton.

Born in Point Pleasant, Pa., she lived in Frenchtown, N.J. before moving to Princeton in 1972. She graduated from Frenchtown High School in 1933.

She worked in the admission office at Princeton University, having previously worked at the Frenchtown Porcelain Company.

She was a member of the Frenchtown Baptist Church for 80 years. She also attended the Westerly Road Church in Princeton.

She was a past president of the American Legion Ladies Auxiliary Fidelity Post 113 in Frenchtown, where she was a member for 60 years. She enjoyed traveling and had visited every state of the union.

Daughter of the late Zebulon and Emiline (Samsil) Bartleman and wife of the late Edward Wysocki, she is survived by a son, Douglas Wysocki of New Paltz, N.Y.; a daughter, Evelyn Wysocki of Princeton; and a granddaughter, Sara Wysocki of Las Cruces, New Mexico.

The funeral service was June 20 at the Johnson-Walton Funeral Home in Holland Township. Interment was in Frenchtown Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to SAVE, A Friend to Homeless Animals, 900 Herrontown Road, Princeton 08540.

John C. Perone

John C. Perone, 85, a lifelong resident of Princeton, died June 20 in the University Medical Center at Princeton.

He was a U.S. Army World War II veteran who served in the First Army 9th Division. A D-Day survivor, he was also a Purple Heart recipient.

He retired in 1986 after 38 years as a plumbing supervisor with RCA-David Sarnoff Research Center.

He was a member of the American Legion Post 76 and an avid outdoorsman who enjoyed fishing, hunting, and golf.

He was predeceased by his parents, Angelo and Filomena DiCreddo Perone; and his siblings Bruce, Victor, Alfred, Mario, Angelo Jr., Felix, Albert, Mary Perone, and Julia Sartor. He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Jane Boccanfuso Perone; two sons, John M. Perone and Scott D. Perone; two daughters, Patricia A. Trani and Sharon A. Perone; a brother, Joseph Perone; and four grandchildren.

The funeral will be today, June 25 at 10 a.m. at the Mather-Hodge Funeral Home, 40 Vandeventer Avenue. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. at St. Paul’s Church, 214 Nassau Street. Burial will follow in Princeton Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Princeton First Aid and Rescue Squad, P.O. Box 529, Princeton 08542.

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