Stephentown Federated Church

1513 Garfield Road, Stephentown, NY     518-733-5813




Stephentown Federated Church

1513 Garfield Road, Stephentown, NY




In Memoriam

Mary J. French

1933 - 2024

Mary Jean French (1933- 2024), 90, of Berlin, New York passed away in the early moming on Thursday, February 22nd at home of natural Causes.

She was born in Salt Lake City, Utah in October of 1933 to Conrad and Bunice Puller. After high school, Mary worked at Hill Air Force Base and later attended Brigham Young University to study education. When she moved out to New York, Mary received her masters in education and taught first grade at Berlin Elementary School. She worked there 22 years before retiring and enjoyed watching many of her students grow up.

Mary met the love of her life, Donald Ira French Jr. in 1956 while attending college at BYU. She was walking her dog with her roommate when Don asked if he could say hello. Her long, platinum blonde hair was what caught his eye, but it was her quick wit and banter that kept hum calling on her day after day. Excited to start ther new laves together, the two were married at the Salt Lake Temple on December 20th, 1957

Mary and Don couldn't wait to start a family of their own, and their children Alinda, Donald Ira III, Warren, and Gary meant the world to them. After being a mother. Mary's favorite role was being a grandparent. She treasured her time with her grandkids and loved being their Grammy, never failing to have a fun craft on hand or take everyone down to the pond on a hot day.

Although Mary was a full-time grandmother, she always found time to take part in her community, and was active in the Stephentown Federated Church, as well as the Berlin Library Book Club.

Mary will always be remembered for her kindness and for her garden filled with abundant vegetables for the whole family. We couldn' thave asked for a better Wife, Mother, Grandmother, and Great-Grandmother, and we will miss Mary every day. Her memory will live on in the hearts of all those who loved her.

Mary was preceded in death by her daughter Alinda, as well as her two brothers, Raymond and Brian, and is survived by her husband Don, her three sons, ten grandchildren, and twelve great-grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at the Stephentown Federated Church in the spring ( May 4 at the Stephentown Federated Church at 1 PM) to celebrate Mary's life.

Donations to the Stephentown Federated Church and the Berlin Library would be greatly appreciated, as they were very important to her.



Clarence Weston Wentworth

19437 - 2024

Clarence "Pete" Weston Wentworth passed from this life on March 1, 2024 at the age of 86.

Born in Winchendon, MA, he was son of the late Clarence and Eva Laura "Toini" (Peltola) Wentworth. He grew up in Winchendon and graduated from the Murdock High School where he was a star of the baseball team. He was a veteran of the U.S. Navy.

Clarence was employed for many years by the General Electric Company in Pittsfield as a designer/draftsman.

He very much enjoyed watching the NY Yankees and listening to Country Western music.

He was the husband of Priscilla (Palmer) Wentworth for 63 years. He is survived by his children, Douglas (Sue), Heather, Philip and Lynn and his grandchildren, Zachary and Jessica.

Friends are invited to visit with Clarence's family on Saturday, March 9, 2024 from 11 am until 12:30 pm at the Hall & Higgins Funeral Home, 457 NY Route 43 Stephentown, NY. A prayer service will conclude the visiting and interment will immediately follow in Stephentown Cemetery.



Everett Madden

1942 - 2023

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Everett Daniel Madden, 81, who passed in the comfort of his home on November 19, 2023, with his family and his wife of 42 years, Tammy, by his side.

Everett was born May 9, 1942, to Lawrence & Betsey (Swarthout) Madden. A lifelong resident and current town councilman of Stephentown, Everett grew up on the family farm that his grandparents established on Madden Road. After graduating from Berlin Central School in 1960, Everett worked at Fuller Brush Company and sold encyclopedias to put himself through college at State University College at Buffalo. After obtaining a bachelor's degree in education, he taught industrial arts at Lansingburgh High School.

In his younger years, Everett enjoyed operating ham radios and was a member of the Northern Berkshire Amateur Radio Club. He also flew with the North Adams Flying Club until 1977.

In 1974, Everett opened Madden's Corner Shell, later known as Madden's Service Center where he served the community for 44 years before retiring in 2018. As a businessman, Everett greeted everyone with a "Howdy". He was selfless, humble, and well-respected. He loved the challenge behind repairing cars and the art of untangling wrecks with the tow truck.

Everett found great joy in gardening, canning, making cider and wine, hunting, and fishing. He enjoyed a yearly hunting trip to the Straight Run camp in Pa. with the guys. He was an avid reader and knew a little bit about everything and could fix almost anything. He had many unique sayings that his family calls "Evy-isms" and he could tell a story like none other. The town of Stephentown has lost a pillar in the community.

Everett was predeceased by his parents and his brother Henry Madden. He is survived by his wife Tammy; his children, Heather (Jim) Klauck, Eric (Jayme) Madden, Danielle (Jeremiah) Hughes, and Cynthia (Michael) Carter; and his five grandchildren, Olivia, Christopher, Daniel, Makayla, and Mason. In addition, he is survived by his mother-in-law, Caroline White, several brothers-in-law, and sisters-in-law, as well as many nieces and nephews.

Private family services will be held. Relatives and friends are invited to gather for a celebration of life on December 29, at 2 p.m. at the Stephentown Fire Hall.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Stephentown Emergency Food Pantry, PO Box 387 or the Stephentown Volunteer Fire Department, PO Box 208.



Jeanette O'Brien Obituary

1942 - 2023

Jeanette (Jennie) O'Brien, 81, of Stephentown, NY, died on December 22, 2023. She was born in Flint, Michigan, the daughter of the late Donald and Marion Robbins. Jennie was a medical lab technologist and worked for doctors offices in the Pittsfield, MA area. Following her retirement from the medical field, she was an avid sewer and a volunteer for Meals on Wheels and Quilts for Kids.

She was a beloved wife, mother, grandmother, and most recently a great-grandmother. She was the wife of the late Harold O'Brien; mother of Patrick (Aura) Whitman of Cheshire MA, Dawn (Vincent) Mancuso of Voorheesville, NY, Karen (Kim) Whitman of Longmont, CO and Delos (Zophia) Whitman of Brooklyn, NY. She was preceded in death by James Robbins, Sr.

She was a devoted grandmother to Christopher (Tillian) Mancuso, Renee (Anthony) Sanchez, Reva and Chloe Whitman, and Delos Rhodes Whitman. She was a great-grandmother to Charles Mancuso and Vienna Sanchez.

There will be a service at Stephentown Federated Church, 1513 Garfield Road, on Saturday, December 30, 2023 at 1 pm.
Published by The Berkshire Eagle on Dec. 28, 2023.



Michael J. Morris

1953 - 2023

STEPHENTOWN - Michael J. Morris, 70, died peacefully in his home on June 21, 2023, with his family by his side after a challenging battle with ALS. The scientist in him led him to do extensive research to learn as much about the disease as possible.

Michael is survived by his wife, Jennifer Jay Morris; his children, Jessica Lynn (Daryl Maxon) Rontey, Brian Michael (Jessica) Morris, Sarah Elizabeth (Zachary) Leonard and David Michael (Sarah Forsythe) Morris all of Stephentown; and five grandchildren, Allie Elizabeth, Madison Dorothy, Aidan Peter, Mason Michael and Addie Evelyn. He was the brother of Anthony (Deborah) Morris and Mark (Lynn) Morris both of Stephentown, Joseph (Carol) Morris of Troy and the late John Morris.

He will also be greatly missed by his best friends, Clint and Carol Sommers; his brother-in-law, Alan Jay; and his sister-in-law, Nike Carli. He is also survived by several aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews.

Born in Bethesda, Md., he was the son of the late John and Dorothy (Henderson) Morris. He grew up in Nassau, in a loving family community on Nassau Lake sharing countless adventures with his family and friends. It was at this time that he developed his love of fast cars and motorcycles.

Michael attended Hudson Valley Community College where he received an associate degree in applied science. An engineer for 40 years, he began his career at General Electric in Schenectady, and Pittsfield, Mass. as a senior materials test and analysis engineer. He furthered his career at Knolls Atomic Power Lab as an electron microscopist in Niskayuna, where he retired in 2021. He will be greatly missed by the many friends and colleagues that he mentored.

Michael was a dedicated member of the Stephentown Federated Church for many years. He completed a pastoral counseling program through the Counseling Center of the Berkshires. He continued to use the skills he learned during this time to guide others in their spiritual journey. Michael and his wife Jennifer supported many causes donating to both local and national organizations. Michael was always putting the needs of others before himself.

Michael enjoyed spending time outdoors with his wife, family and friends while canoeing, kayaking, hiking, cross-country skiing, and biking. He could often be seen hiking the back roads of Stephentown. Michael was a competitive athlete, competing in many canoe races and triathlons. He also had a love for travel, venturing with his wife and family to Ireland, Scotland, and Nova Scotia. He was extremely proud of his most recent accomplishment, kayaking the length of the Erie Canal from Buffalo to Waterford with his brother-in-law, Alan. Michael was an avid reader, rarely without a book close by. His greatest joy in life was sharing his love of science and nature with his grandchildren. He will be greatly missed by all whose lives he touched.

The funeral service will be on Sunday, June 25, at 1 p.m. in the Stephentown Federated Church, 1513 Garfield Road, Stephentown, with Pastor Chris Garrison officiating. Relatives and friends are invited and may also call prior to the service at the church from 12-1 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to St. Peter's ALS Regional Center, 19 Warehouse Row, Albany, NY, 12205 or at or Stephentown Federated Church, P.O. Box 10, Stephentown, NY, 12168 or at

Arrangements are by the Hall & Higgins Funeral Home in Stephentown. Condolence book at



Cynthia Braley

1937 - 2023

Cynthia Tyde Pease Braley passed away peacefully on January 7, 2023 surrounded by her loving family. She was born in Pittsfield, MA on August 20, 1933 and was the daughter of the late Richard W. Tyde and Esther Tyde (Stewart) of Stephentown, NY.

Cynthia attended New Lebanon Central School where she played trumpet in the band, and graduated as Valedictorian of the Class of 1951. After high school, she went on to work as a drafting trainee at GE in Pittsfield, MA, until she became the beloved wife of farmer Andrew Pease in November of 1951.

Cynthia and Andrew owned and operated Pease Farm and Produce in Stephentown, NY for over 25 years. Cynthia kept very busy baking fresh pies and breads, preparing meals for hungry farmhands and overseeing numerous teenage seasonal workers. Somehow she managed to carve out time to write a cooking column for The Echo called "The Owls Nest Kitchen".

As a member of Stephentown Federated Church, she was a soprano in the choir. She was active with the Stephentown Grange, the Historical Society and the local Daughters of the American Revolution, all this while caring for her husband until his passing in 1980.

After the farm was sold, Cynthia owned and operated Tiffany's Bakery in Altamonte Springs, FL with her second husband Robert Braley whom she was married to until his passing in 2006. Cynthia was also a sales associate for Haverty's Furniture and a sales associate for a fur company in Columbia, SC until she retired at the age of 84. She then moved to Jacksonville, FL where she resided until she passed.

Cynthia had a love for owls, she had an owl collection like no other. She also had a love for cooking and had a cookbook collection containing well over 5000 cookbooks. She was a fashionista and had a scarf and a pair of reading glasses to match almost every outfit.

Cynthia is survived by her loving son, Stewart N. Pease of Pittsfield, MA, her grandson and caregiver Sean S. Pease of Pittsfield, MA and her "Irish Twin" brother Richard S. Tyde (Doris) of St. Augustine, FL. She is also survived by her nephews Richard Tyde (Doris), Michael Tyde (Ann), and William Tyde (Paige), her nieces Jennifer Brace, and Victoria Tyde, along with many great nieces, nephews and special friends.

A Celebration of Life will be held at the Stephentown Federated Church, 1513 Garfield Road, Stephentown, NY 12168 on April 29, 2023 at 12pm followed by interment at the Garfield Cemetery. All are invited to come and share memories of Cynthia with her family and friends.

A special thank you from the family to Sean Pease, Sandy Mitchell and Mike Tyde for their love, compassion, caring and support for Cynthia during her final months.



Donna E. Mullet

1933 - 2023

Donna E. Mullet, 85, of Stephentown, NY, passed away peacefully after a brief illness on Sunday, October 2, 2022. Donna was preceded in death by both of her parents Reinholt and Lydia Heck. Donna was the beloved wife of Edward (Ed) Mullet, and mother to Russell Mullet (predeceased), Nancy Marigliano (Bob), and Jennifer Mullet (Kevin). She was grandmother to Justin Hoffman, Amy Mullet and Raeanne Mullet. She was the great-grandmother to Liam and Anna Grace Hoffman. Donna was adored by numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins. She is survived by two of her brothers, William, and Robert Heck. She was preceded in death by her other siblings Marvin, Vivian, Arnold, and Dorothy Heck.

Donna will be deeply missed by her dear friends who had become family. She enjoyed their companionship and their escapades. Donna in her retirement years was an avid quilter, antique doll collector, and homemaker. Donna most recently retired from Darrow School where she served as an assistant in the admissions office. Previously she was an executive assistant at McClave and Company, owner of The Chalet, and an elementary school teacher in the Rapid City (South Dakota) School District. She lived a full life and never shied away from an adventure. She delighted in her life with Ed, family members, and her countless friends. Donna was always there to brighten the lives of others with her smile, hospitality, and kindness.

A celebration of life will be held on Saturday, November 5, 2022, at 12:00 pm at the Stephentown Federated Church. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the Stephentown Volunteer Fire Department.

Thomas P. Mooney Funeral Home



Paul Allen Sykes

1931 - 2022

STEPHENTOWN – Paul Allen Sykes, Sr., 90, of Stephentown, passed away peacefully on Tuesday evening, February 8, 2022 at Samaritan Hospital in Troy. He was born in Elizabethtown on October 24, 1931, the son of the late Walter C. and Carrie Bateman Sykes.

Paul attended Ithaca College for Physical Education and to become a coach. He then served in the US Air Force for a brief time before coming home to Stephentown to work with his father, wife and family in the operation of the family business, W.C. Sykes Store in Stephentown until it closed in April, 2016.

The general store was the center of action in Stephentown, where most anything that was needed was available in Sykes Store and Paul was the friendly face greeting all of his customers at the door. Paul joined the Stephentown Volunteer Fire Department in 1951 and served his community as fire chief from 1978-1989. He was a lifetime member with over 71 years of dedicated service to Stephentown. He often answered the old “fire phone” at the back of Syke’s Store then raced over to the firehouse to respond to the call. He oversaw the building of the current fire station and lent a major hand in bringing the current pager system on board.

He was a huge New York Yankees fan and loved to mow his lawn and spend time with his children and their families. He enjoyed playing softball in the Echo League, bowling, hunting and fishing.

He was a member of the Stephentown Federated Church. He was the beloved husband of 66 years of Rita M. (Sweet) Sykes who died in 2019; devoted father of Paul A. Sykes, Jr., Terry E. Sykes and Eileen (P.J.) Roder all of Stephentown; proud grandfather of Jason, Paula, Cindy, Alissa, Katie and Matthew; 11 great grandchildren and 4 great-great grandchildren. He was predeceased by his two daughters-in-law, Dolly and Theresa, whom he adored dearly.

The family would like to thank the staff at Samaritan Hospital and especially his nurse Randie for the wonderful care given to our dad. A funeral service will be held Sunday, February 13, 2022 at 2:00 pm at the Hall & Higgins Funeral Home, 457 NY 43, Stephentown with Revs. Bob & Joy Lowenthal officiating. Interment will be in the spring at the Cemetery of the Evergreens, New Lebanon.

Relatives and friends are invited and may call at the funeral home on Sunday prior to the service from 12-2 pm.In lieu of flowers, the family would prefer donations to the Autism Society of the Greater Capital Region, 430 Franklin Street, 2nd Floor, Schenectady, NY 12305 or the Stephentown Volunteer Fire Dept., PO Box 208, Stephentown, NY 12168.

Condolence book at



Janet H. Edwards

1937 - 2021

Edwards, Janet H. STEPHENTOWN
Janet Helen (McClintock) Edwards, 84, died on Friday, October 15, 2021, at the Columbia Memorial Hospital in Hudson. She was born in Troy on June 1, 1937, the daughter of the late Ernest and Helen (Clum) McClintock. She was a lifelong resident of Stephentown and was a graduate of New Lebanon High School and Albany Business College.

Janet was employed in the family business, McClintock Chevrolet in Stephentown for many years as the bookkeeper. She later worked for Troy Saving Bank and Pioneer Savings Bank in the mortgage department before retiring. She was a board member of the Stephentown Historical Society and a member of the Stephentown Federated Church where she was a member of the "Heavenly Quilters" and the "Knit-Wits." Janet enjoyed bowling with the "Friday Nighters" at Larabowl Lanes and was a den mother for the Cub Scouts in Stephentown that she started with Jack Brazie.

She was the beloved wife of the late Wesley R. Edwards who died on December 1, 2020; loving mother of Greg (Doreen) Edwards of Salem, Va., Dwight (Anne) Edwards of Efland, N.C. and Carolyn (Patrick) Hourihan of Guilderland; adored grandmother of Amanda and Sarah Edwards, Christopher and Brian Edwards, Ryan, Sean and Megan Hourihan and six great-grandchildren; and sister of William T. (Wendy) McClintock of Bonners Ferry, Idaho and the late Robert E. McClintock and Barbara J. McClintock Wood. She is also survived by several nieces and nephews.

The funeral service will be on Wednesday at 11 a.m. in the Hall & Higgins Funeral Home, 457 NY 43, Stephentown with Reverend Trygve Tomlinson officiating. Interment will follow in the Saratoga National Cemetery at 1:30 p.m. Relatives and friends are invited and may call at the funeral home on Wednesday prior to the service from 10-11 a.m. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Stephentown Federated Church or to the Stephentown Historical Society in memory of Janet H. Edwards.

Condolence book at



Judy Leab

1943 - 2021

Judy Leab , 78, left this earth from her beloved home, Ioka Valley Farm, to be with the Lord Tuesday, September 14, 2021. She is survived by her husband, Donald "Don" Leab. They celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary in August 2021. She is also survived by her 3 children; daughter Heather (Larry) Eckhardt and Catherine "Kate"(Kevin) Beach, both of Stephentown, NY and son Robert "Rob" (Melissa) Leab at the farm in Hancock, MA., her 3 siblings; sister Barbara (Norman) Smith-Schroeder of New Mexico, brothers Robert "Robin" (J.J.) Smith of New Lebanon, NY and Larry (Debbie) Smith of Scotia, NY, her 6 grandchildren, 2 great grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews. She is predeceased by her parents, Robert and Martha Price Smith. She was a graduate of New Lebanon High School, class of 1961.

Judy loved her community and served on the Hancock School Committee for many, many years. Her joy of working with young people found her leading 4-H for 15 years, hosting young people from all around the world as part of an international 4-H exchange program, teaching Sunday school and coordinating youth programs in her local church. Judy was a member of the Berkshire County Farm Bureau for 50+ years serving as secretary and 8 years as president; and the Massachusetts State Farm Bureau Women's Committee. She served on the Massachusetts Dept. of Agricultural Resources Board of Agriculture for over 20 years including time as chairwoman, helping to steer the course of the Dept. for the whole State on Agricultural issues.

As co-owner of Ioka Valley Farm, she was instrumental in the promotion of the agricultural and dairy industry hosting uncountable open houses to promote their farm and dairy products, always focusing on education and awareness about where and how your food is produced. Many of the State's Legislative Leaders attended events at the farm where Judy focused her knowledge in helping them understand farmer's needs. She helped transform Ioka Valley Farm from a national and local award winning dairy operation into the agri-entertainment and farm educational destination it is today. Her pumpkin patch is famous for the lessons provided to thousands of school children from the local area. She leaves to her grandchildren a legacy of keeping their farms beautiful with flowers and manicured lawns. Judy also leaves us with all her homemade recipes for everything produced on the farm.

A memorial service in honor and remembrance of Judy will be held at Ioka Valley Farm, in Hancock, MA, Monday September 20, at 11:00 am. Attire should be outdoor casual. Family and friends are also invited to calling hours, Sunday, September 19, from 2pm until 5 pm, at Hall and Higgins Funeral Home, 457 NY Rt. 43 in Stephentown, NY. Those wishing to remember Judy in a special way can make memorial contributions in her name to, The Berkshire County Farm Bureau Treasurer, 131 Baldwin Hill Rd., Great Barrington, MA 01230. Burial will be in Hancock Cemetery. To leave condolences for the family online, please visit



Jane Theo McCumber

1936 - 2021

PETERSBURGH - Jane Theo McCumber, 84, died Saturday, January 23, 2021 at the Center for Nursing & Rehabilitation at Hoosick Falls. Jane was born February 13, 1936 to Irene and Albert Silvernail in Stephentown, NY. She grew up on the family dairy farm and attended Berlin Central High School where she met Dan McCumber.

After graduating from Green Mountain College, Jane & Dan got married and raised their four children: Eric, David, Jeffery and Colleen in Troy, NY. Jane worked at RPI until she and Dan moved to Kirkland,Washington, where Jane worked at the University of Washington.

Eventually they returned to NY to reside in Petersburgh. Jane & Dan loved sailing on Lake Champlain, traveling, (always to Maine & occasionally to Europe) and wintering in Tucson for the last 20 years with family & friends from around the globe. Jane loved her family & her Dan.

She is preceded in death by her loving husband, her parents, sister Anne Stubbs, and brother, CSM. David Silvernail. She leaves behind her children, grandchildren, nieces & nephews and extended family.

Funeral services will be held at a safer time, but she will be missed always. Arrangements are by the Thomas M. Barber Funeral Home in Petersburgh. Condolence book at

Jane McCumber will be buried May 15th at 10AM at the Meadowlawn Cemetery in Petersburgh and people are invited to join.



George H. Eckhardt, Jr.

STEPHENTOWN - George H. Eckhardt, Jr., 90, passed away peacefully at his family farm in Stephentown on November 27th, 2020. Born in Norwood, MA on January 17th, 1930 he was the eldest child of George H. Eckhardt, Sr. and Frieda Knaus Eckhardt. Called "Skip" by all who knew him in his early years, he graduated in 1948 from the Norfolk County Agricultural High School in Walpole, MA. His alma mater inspired his lifelong career as a farmer and steward of the land. His first employment was with the Dairy Herd Improvement Assoc., working with Eastern Massachusetts dairy farmers. During his first year, 1949, he receive a prestigious award for most improved dairy herds in the state. This was only the first of many accolades George received for his outstanding farming accomplishments throughout his long career in agriculture.

George married M. Jean MacDougall on October 27th, 1951 in Norwood, MA. In 1952, they moved to Fort Benning Army Base in Georgia while he served his country during the Korean Conflict.

Returning to Eastern Mass area upon discharge in 1954, George work for several farms in the Boston Area. In the spring of 1959, George placed an advertisement in a farm magazine, looking for a farm where he might be able to work his way into eventual ownership. A family in Stephentown answered his ad. George move his family and his few possessions to Stephentown in May of 1959 where he made his home for the next 61 years. He raised his family, built a thriving agricultural business and served in many leadership positions both locally and statewide. These include: 4-H leader in Stephentown, Stephentown Town Board Councilman for 27 years, Rensselaer County Farm Bureau President and Vice President, Agway Committeeman and Representative to State Annual Meeting, and various advisory committees to agricultural organizations. He and Jean traveled extensively to National Farm Bureau meetings all over the country including Texas, California and Hawaii.

Always busy, George spent most of his winter months until his "retirement", helping other farms and businesses. He drove milk truck for Hatch Milk Hauling in New Lebanon, milked cows for Stanley Chittenden, delivered fuel for Larabee Fuel, hauled trailer loads of potatoes from Maine for Whitney and Son in Pittsfield, delivered wood products for Senter Lumber in Stephentown and helped fix equipment at Jiminy Peak in Hancock.

After his "retirement", George and Jean traveled in his RV to Many Mansion RV Park in Dade City, Florida to spend the winter months. Right up until Jean's passing they traveled the south and toured the warmer climate states. George had the same spot in the park for 28 years and enjoyed the company of many fellow "snowbirds" and year-round folks at the park. Even after his wife's death, George continued to enjoy the RV taking a 2009 cross-country tour to California with his friend Pat Coon, to see the Rose Parade in Pasadena. Although he enjoyed his winter home, he always relished returning to the farm each and every spring to help with the new season of crops, fence fixing and brush hogging the pastures and field edges.

George is most fondly remembered, not only by his family and friends but by the innumerable young people who worked at the farm over the past 61 years. For most, it was their very first job. George was a wonderful mentor to young people and for many, he was their driving instructor. Countless teenagers got their first chance to drive a pickup or tractor under Georges' watchful eye and sometimes loud "Yankee-accented" voice. If you broke something, he'd hand you a wrench and say "you broke it - now learn how to fix it". He was also cherished by his loyal customers of the famous sweet corn his farm produced and they looked forward to the summer seasons when George would deliver daily to their stores and stands.

George is survived by his five children: Sons G. Martin (Kathy) of Raleigh, NC, Larry (Heather) at the family farm in Stephentown, Alan (Donna) of Stephentown, Philip Eckhardt and daughter Beth Eckhardt both of Troy, NY. He has five grandchildren, Alan John of Stephentown, Matthew and Andrew at the farm in Stephentown and Adam and MeBette of NC and one great grandchild, Olivia Jean of NC. George will also be missed by his neighbor and friend, Devin Peterson of Stephentown. He has two surviving siblings, Charles Eckhardt of Loudon, NH and Louis Eckhardt of Barnstead, NH.

He is predeceased by his wife, Jean who died January 2006, his parents and two siblings. He was also predeceased by his later-in-life best friend and companion, Patricia Coon who passed away in November 2019.

A celebration of George's life and legacy will be held next summer at the farm in Stephentown.



Wesley R. Edwards

STEPHENTOWN – Wesley R. Edwards, 90, longest tenured Town Justice in New York State, died Tuesday, December 1, 2020 at St. Peter’s Hospital in Albany with his family at his side.

He was born in Berlin, NY on January 10, 1930, the son of the late Richard and Pearl Armsby Edwards. Wes was a graduate of Berlin Central School and was a US Army veteran of the Korean War. He met his beloved wife Janet of 65 years at the Bridgeway Tavern in Cherry Plain square dancing.

He was employed by McClintock Chevrolet in Stephentown as a parts manager before taking a position as an inspector in the turbine division at the General Electric Co. in Pittsfield where he worked for 25 years before retiring in 1992.

Judge Edwards was the Stephentown Town Justice for 51 years before retiring in 2015 with the distinction of the being the longest serving Town Justice in New York State. He was a member of the NYS Magistrates Association.

He was a member of the Stephentown Federated Church, the Stephentown Volunteer Fire Department, served as secretary for the Veterans of Stephentown and was part of the original organizing committee for the Stephentown Veterans Park. He was a Third Degree Free & Accepted Mason with Unity Lodge #9 in Chatham.

Originally a Brooklyn Dodger baseball fan, he became an avid NY Yankees and NY Giants sports fan.

He is the loving husband of Janet H. McClintock Edwards whom he married on September 17, 1955 in Stephentown; devoted father of Greg (Doreen) Edwards of Salem, VA, Dwight (Anne) Edwards of Efland, NC and Carolyn (Patrick) Hourihan of Guilderland; proud grandfather of Amanda and Sarah Edwards, Christopher and Brian Edwards, Ryan, Sean and Megan Hourihan and 6 great grandchildren; lifelong childhood friend and best man in each of their weddings, Ivan (Shirley) Wager of Berlin. He is also survived by several “favorite” nieces and nephews.

Relatives and friends may call at the Hall & Higgins Funeral Home, 457 NY 43, Stephentown on Monday from 10:00-11:30 am followed by the funeral service at 11:30 am. Interment will follow in the Saratoga National Cemetery. Please wear a mask and follow social distancing.



Daniel J. McCumber

PETERSBURGH: Daniel J. McCumber, 85, died on Sunday, November 24, 2019 at his home in Petersburgh. Born in Pittstown, NY on July 17, 1934, he was the son of the late Kenneth Earl McCumber and Florence Church McCumber.

He was a graduate of Berlin Central School and the 1st graduating class from Hudson Valley Community College in Troy. He resided in Troy, Berlin, Seattle, WA and Petersburgh where his family was considered one of the original families of Petersburgh. He was a member of the US Army National Guard based out of Hoosick Falls.He was employed by the US Army Corps of Engineers, Westside Structural Steel in Watervliet, was a vice president of McKinney Steel in Albany, 10 years for Chinook Construction Products in Seattle, WA and for Beeche Systems Scaffolding.

Dan was very active in the Petersburgh community serving as Town Supervisor, President of the Petersburgh Library Association and President of the Meadowlawn Cemetery Association.He was an avid reader, enjoyed sailing on Lake Champlain and Pugent Sound in Seattle, WA and doing crossword puzzles especially the NY Times.

Along with his wife Jane, he wintered in Arizona for over 30 years.His motto was “humor is the lubrication of life”.He is the beloved husband of 63 years of Jane T. Silvernail McCumber; devoted father of Eric J. (Kathy) McCumber of Stephentown, David B. McCumber of San Antonio, TX, Jeffrey A. (Pamela) McCumber of Stephentown and Colleen A. (Laura Reddoch) McCumber of Seattle, WA; proud grandfather of Heidi J. McCumber, Daniel Lightfoot McCumber, Walker Bryan McCumber, Joshua Alan McCumber, Molly Irene McCumber and Matthew Reddoch; dear brother of Susan McCumber of Bristol, RI, Kathy (John) Armstrong of Wilmington, NC and the late Noel, Barry and Christie McCumber. He is also survived by several nieces and nephews.

Relatives and friends may call at the Thomas M. Barber Funeral Home, 66 Armsby Road, Petersburgh on Saturday, November 30th from 10:00 am-12:00 noon. Interment will follow in Meadowlawn Cemetery, Petersburgh.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Meadowlawn Cemetery Association, PO Box, Petersburgh, NY 12138 or the Petersburgh Library Association, PO Box 250, Petersburgh, NY 12138.Condolence book at Published in The Record on Nov. 27, 2019



Patricia Barker Coon

Patricia Barker Coon, age 92, a resident of Brookdale at Fillmore Pond in Bennington and a former resident of Amenia, NY and Stephentown, NY died on November 10, 2019 following a brief illness.

She was born in Burlington, Vermont on April 3, 1927, and was the daughter of the late Clifford and Grace (Rumball) Barker. She received her education in local schools and is a graduate of New Paltz State University. As a small child, she took piano lessons, and then went on the play the flute, alto horn, trumpet, bell lyre and drums. She played in the school band as well as the community band. Patricia married a dairy farmer and had five children.

She loved to sew and learned to quilt. Patricia has won several awards for baking, sewing and crafts. Patricia was Girl Scout Leader and 4H Leader. She was a Dutchess County Cooperative Extension Board member, Chairperson of the Dutchess County Dairy Princess Committee. She was a member of the Smithfield Presbyterian Church in Amenia, NY and was an Elder of the church.

She retired from teaching in 1992. She had taught at the Webutuck Central School District for twenty-eight and one half years. She was instrumental in setting up the computer program for the Middle School in the Webutuck district. Patricia belonged to Delta Kappa Gamma, the International Honor Society for teachers.

She moved to Stephentown in 1987, and became a very active member of the community; which included membership in the Stephentown Federated Church and Chairperson of the General Committee. She was involved with the Literacy Volunteers as a tutor and board member, and sat on the Board for the Stephentown Library. She was also a member of the Pittsfield College Club. Patricia enjoyed playing the organ and swimming at the YMCA.She also enjoyed traveling to Alaska, Australia and New Zealand. She loved Hot Air Balloons and several years ago she attended the Rose Bowl Parade and helped assemble the floats.

Survivors include her long time companion George Eckhardt of Stephentown, NY, her children: Sheila (Todd) Hewitt of Berlin, NY, Peter (Alice) Coon of Amenia, NY, Timothy (Elizabeth) Coon of Amenia, NY, David (Kimberly) Coon of Amenia, NY, Christopher (Sarah) Coon of Sharon, CT. Patricia leaves fifteen grandchildren, and eighteen great grandchildren. She has two sisters; Carolyn Cookingham of Staatsburg, NY and Marion Jural of Tomahawk, WI. and many loved nieces and nephews. She is predeceased by her parents and one sister, Barbara.

Funeral services will be held on Friday, November 15, 2019 at the Stephentown Federated Church at 12:00PM. Friends may call at the church on Friday from 10:30 until the time of the service.

Published in the Poughkeepsie Journal from Nov. 12 to Nov. 13, 2019



Elizabeth M. (Maston) Hartnett

Hurst, TX - Elizabeth M. (Maston) Hartnett, 84, a longtime resident of Berlin and more recently Texas, died peacefully Friday, July 5, 2019 at the Bishop Davies Nursing Center in Hurst, TX, following a long illness.

Born in Hancock, MA., June 6, 1935, Mrs. Hartnett was the daughter of the late James F. and Elizabeth E. (Martin) Maston and for over 32 years the wife of the late Lloyd M. Hartnett Sr. who predeceased her in 1989. Betty and Lloyd were married on April 12, 1957.

Elizabeth was a graduate of New Lebanon High School.

For several years she was employed at the former Seagroat's Greenhouse in Berlin and later worked as a Secretary and retired in 2002 from the former William J. Cowee Lumber Company also in Berlin.

Mrs. Hartnett was a member of the Berlin Baptist Church and volunteered with the Berlin Rescue Squad for over 30 years.

Betty is survived by her children, Gini (Herb) Parsons of N. Richland Hills, TX, Lloyd (Janice) Hartnett Jr. of Stephentown, Linda (Bill) Butt of Cropseyville, Michael Hartnett of Berlin, Roy (Sandy) Hartnett of Egg Harbor Township, NJ and Timothy Hartnett of Cropseyville, 16 grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren and several nieces, nephews and cousins. In addition to her parents and husband, she was predeceased by an infant daughter, Rose Marie and two brothers, James (Janice) Maston and George (Joyce) Maston.

A funeral service will be held on Friday, July 12, 2019 at 10:00 a.m. at the Howard B. Tate & Son Funeral Home Inc., 2237 NY-7, in Raymertown with Pastor Gini Parsons officiating. Burial will follow in Berlin Community Cemetery. Family and friends are invited to call at the funeral home on Thursday, July 11, from 4:00-7:00 p.m.

Memorial contributions if desired may be made to the Berlin Rescue Squad, 11 Community Avenue, Berlin, NY 12202 in memory of Elizabeth M. Hartnett.

Published in The Berkshire Eagle on July 10, 2019



Rita M. Sykes (Sweet)

Stephentown – Rita M. Sweet Sykes, 86, of Stephentown, passed away peacefully at home on Tuesday, June 11, 2019, with her loving family by her side. Born in Grafton, NY on January 1, 1933, she was the daughter of the late Milton and Nellie Sweet.

Rita and her husband Paul owned and operated the Sykes Store in Stephentown until it closed in April 2016. Rita loved to bake and often sold her baked goods at the store, much to the delight of her customers. She enjoyed meeting new people at the store and formed many friendships there. Rita was at her happiest when she was spending time with her children and their families. Rita was a dedicated member of the Stephentown Federated Church.

Rita is survived by her loving husband of 66 years, Paul Sykes, Sr., their children; Paul Jr., Terry, and Eileen (PJ), her grandchildren; Jason, Paula, Cindy, Alissa, Katie, and Matthew, 9 great-grandchildren and 2 great-great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her two brothers, Carl and Eddie, and by two daughters-in-law whom she adored dearly, Dolly and Theresa.

A funeral service will be held Thursday, June 13, 2019 at 11 AM at Hall and Higgins Funeral Home, 457 NY Route 43, Stephentown. Visitation will be held prior to the service, from 10 until 11 AM. Interment will follow the service in Cemetery of the Evergreens, New Lebanon. In lieu of flowers, donations in Rita’s memory can be made to the Autism Society of the Great Capital Region, 433 State Street 4th Floor, Schenectady, NY 12305, or the Stephentown Volunteer Fire Dept., PO Box 208, Stephentown, NY 12168.



Kenneth Knobloch

May 10, 2018
Stephentown, NY
By Eastwickpress

Kenneth Allen Knobloch, 88, passed away on May 5, 2018. He was born in Brooklyn, New York on October 24, 1929, son of the late Kenneth C and Aileen MacDonald Knobloch. He graduated from Eastchester High School and the State University of New York in Canton. He was raised in East Chester, New York.
Ken retired from Arbor Acres in 1973. He spent his retirement years at High Meadows Farm in Stephentown. Ken enjoyed fishing, farming, woodcarving, reading and walking his dog, Molly. He took pride in his blueberry crop, which continues to yield the best blueberries around.

Ken will be remembered for his quick wit, his hearty laugh, his willingness to lend a helping hand to anyone in need and for his love of desserts. Ken was an active member of the Stephentown Federated Church. He was also a member of the Stephentown Historical Society. Ken lived his final years in Noank, Connecticut where he could be closer to his family.

Ken will be sadly missed by his three sons and their families: Mark and Sally Knobloch, Craig and Sandra Knobloch and Eric and Lisa Knobloch. He also leaves behind three grandchildren Christopher, Brooke and Justin, his former wife, Ethel Boissevain and his cousins, Chris and Dorothy Johnson.

He is predeceased by his sister, Carol Knobloch.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to The Stephentown Federated Church, PO Box 10, Stephentown, NY 12168. A private service will be held at High Meadows to celebrate Ken’s life.



Margaret Cummings

Margaret McMullen Cummings, 83, of Fuquay-Varina, NC, slipped the surly bonds of earth on Wednesday, March 15, 2017, in Fuquay-Varina, NC.

Born October 7, 1933, in Glasgow, Scotland, she was the daughter of the late James and Jemima McMullen. She married Martin C. Cummings in 1952; he preceded her in death in 1987. She was a secretary for the state of New York for 20 years. She was a member of the Fuquay-Varina Presbyterian Church. She raised her family in Stephentown, was a long-time member of the Stephentown Federated Church and sang in the church choir.

Margaret is survived by a sister and brother; Lillian Mosher of Northport, NY and William McMullen of Largo, FL; three daughters; Bonnie Cummings-Laubach of Fuquay-Varina, NC, Dr. Laurie Cummings of Fuquay-Varina, NC and Ellen Wallace of Hudson, NY; two sons; David Cummings of Stephentown, NY and Robert Cummings of Stephentown, NY; one granddaughter, Layla Cummings of New Paltz, NY and many beloved cats and dogs.

A wake will be held from 4-7 p.m. on Tuesday, March 21 at Hall & Higgins Funeral Home, 457 State Route 43, Stephentown. A funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, March 22 at the Stephentown Federated Church, 1511 Garfield Nassau Road, Stephentown, where Pastor Trygve Tomlinson will officiate. The family will greet visitors immediately after the service in Pierce Hall at the church. Interment will be later in the spring at Garfield Cemetery.

Memorial contributions in Margarets memory may be made to the Stephentown Federated Church Memorial Fund.

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In Memory of Our Dear Friend Margaret (mp3)