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Obituaries

Hope Rose (Straleau) Swanson

NORTH CANAAN — Hope Rose (Straleau) Swanson, 91, passed away suddenly in her home on Jan. 23, 2019. 

Hope was born on Aug. 20, 1927, in New Rochelle, N.Y., daughter of the late Violet Maude (McElrath) and Adolph Gustav Straleau.

Hope graduated from the former Searles High School in Great Barrington. Having attended the Juilliard School of Music Summer Program, Hope was a well-known soprano soloist in Stockbridge and Great Barrington and had a lifelong love of music. 

Dr. Laurence C. ‘Topper’ Smith

NORTH CANAAN — Dr. Laurence C. “Topper” Smith, 84, passed away in Denver, Colo., on Jan. 25, 2019, surrounded by his loving family.

Laurence was born and raised in North Canaan, the son of the late Loretta (Donsbough) Smith, a long time teacher in Falls Village.

He is survived by his wife, Dr. Debra Smith; his brother, Peter; his former wife, Mary Gertrude Smith, née Paquette, of Kent and Denver; and his 10 children, 18 grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.

Catherine A. (Beltran) Carney Mortenson

SALISBURY — Catherine A. (Beltran) Carney Mortenson passed away unexpectedly on Jan. 21, 2019, following a lengthy struggle with dementia. 

Catherine was born on July 24, 1923, in Brooklyn, N.Y., and was one of nine children (five sisters and three brothers). Her large family was close-knit her entire life and were lovingly labeled the “kissing Beltrans.” 

Pamela Marie Kipp

STANFORDVILLE — Pamela Marie Kipp, a homemaker and lifelong resident of Stanfordville, passed away on Jan. 23, 2019, at Vassar Brothers Medical Center at the age of 70. 

Pamela is survived by her daughter, Tamera Marie Brady; and her grandchildren, Zachary, age 17, and Liam, age 12. She is also survived by her two sisters, Pearl Dennis and Judy Dennis. 

She was predeceased by her husband, Ronald David Kipp; and her brother, Budd Dennis.

Pamela was born on Oct. 9, 1948, to Mary and George Dennis. 

Edwin John Niedhammer

SALISBURY — Edwin John Niedhammer, 94, passed away on Jan. 19, 2019, at Ellis Hospital in Schenectady, N.Y. 

Born in Detroit, Mich., on May 6, 1924, he was the son of Olive and Edwin Niedhammer. 

George G. Vincent

SALISBURY — George G. Vincent, a long-time resident of Salisbury, died peacefully on Jan. 18, 2019, at Noble Horizons. He was 97. A full obituary will appear at a later date.

Theodore L. ‘Red’ Raymond

NORFOLK— Theodore L. “Red” Raymond, 84, died on Jan. 11, 2019, at Charlotte Hungerford Hospital.

He was the husband of the late Irene (Hackney) Raymond.

Theodore was born in Sharon, Vt., on April 17,1934, the son of the late Delia and Percy Raymond. He grew up in and was educated in Hanover, Vt. 

Thomas Eugene Coons

KENT — Thomas Eugene Coons, a lifelong Kent resident, passed away Jan. 7, 2019, at the age of 80.

He was born Sept. 4, 1938, in Sharon, son of the late and Myra (Jennings) and Frank L. Coons Sr. Mr. Coons graduated from Housatonic Valley Regional High School in 1956, received an associate’s degree and served with the United States Army Reserves. 

Mr. Coons was an accountant and had worked at Berkshire Transformer from 1954 to 1984, then worked for J.J. Log and Lumber as a comptroller and was president of Hunt Country Furniture.

Ledlie I. Laughlin Jr.

NORTH CORNWALL — Ledlie I. Laughlin Jr., an Episcopal priest with a vocation for creating community and seeking justice in urban contexts, died at home on Jan. 21, 2019. He was 88 years old. Ledlie loved conversation with friends and family, and delighted in language, beauty and art.

Summing up his 50 years of parish ministry, Ledlie said simply, “I helped congregations figure out how they were called to respond to the needs of others around them, and to do so.” 

Ruth (Stoddard) Dutcher

NORTH CANAAN — Ruth (Stoddard) Dutcher, 87, of Avon, Conn., passed away on Jan. 18, 2019. 

Ruth was the beloved wife of Maurice A. Dutcher for 63 years. 

Ruth was born Dec. 20, 1931, in New Haven, Conn., to the late Dr. Paul and Ernestine Stoddard. Ruth was brought up in North Canaan. After her marriage to Maurice in 1955 they moved to Avon.