Carole A. Bernardini

Feb. 9, 2018, in Augusta, Maine, at 77. A nurturing woman with a strong work ethic, she worked in the Marchese Blue Light Pub for many years. She supported the Colby menís hockey team, who considered her their “Maine adoptive mom” for more than 30 years, and reportedly never missed a game. There was a moment of silence in her honor at Alfond Ice Rink following her death. She also cared for people with intellectual disabilities in her home and advocated for their rights. Predeceased by her husband, Clarence, who worked in Colbyís Security Department, she is survived by four children, two foster daughters, 14 grandchildren, and 30 great-grandchildren.

John “Swisher” Mitchell

July 25, 2018, in Waterville, Maine, at 91. An accomplished athlete, he earned his nickname playing basketball for Waterville High School, leading the team to an undefeated season and the New England Basketball Championship in 1944. He served in the U.S. Navy 1946-47 and then enrolled at the University of Rhode Island (URI), where he played point guard, was named All-Yankee Conference pick and Honorable Mention All-American, and graduated in 1951. His sports prowess earned him induction to the URI Athletic Hall of Fame, the Maine Sports Hall of Fame, and the New England Basketball Hall of Fame. He taught history and was an assistant principal in the Waterville school system for 23 years, earning a masterís in teaching from the University of Maine, Farmington, along the way. He directed the Waterville Boys and Girls Club, and he taught and coached in Bangor and in Tucson, Ariz. He came to Colby in 1967 and worked for 40 years as assistant coach to head coach Dick Whitmore. In 2017 Colby basketball alumni joined together to endow the assistant menís basketball coaching position in his name. Survivors include two daughters; four grandchildren, including Danielle Bolduc Marquis ’99; two great-grandchildren; two siblings, Barbara Atkins and former U.S. Senate Majority Leader George J. Mitchell; and extended family, including niece Mary Mitchell Friedman ’79.

Francis B. Smith '34

Aug. 18, 2018, in East Naples, Fla., at 110. He studied physics and acoustics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology after Colby, and he played first chair violin for the New England Conservatory of Music. He worked for many years for Hammond Organ Company, and then spent the rest of his career as an electronic engineer. He was a lifelong sailor who owned a series of sloops and, in retirement, was a navigation instructor for the U.S. Power Squadron. He volunteered as a security patrol officer at Naples Estate, worked out faithfully in the gym, and loved to read. Predeceased by his great-grandfather Harrison A. Smith, Colby Class of 1825, he is survived by his wife, Priscilla. He had three sons, 10 grandchildren, and nine great-grandchildren.

Arline Bamber Veracka '39

Aug. 11, 2018, in Norwood, Mass., at 98. During World War II, she worked as a service representative for New England Telephone, resigning in 1951 to become a mother. She began substitute teaching a few years later and in 1969 started full-time teaching at Norfolk County Agricultural High School. She described volunteerism—in her community and her church—as a way of life. Three children and extended family survive her.

Dorothy Emerson Martin '41

Aug. 16, 2018, in Wakefield, Mass., at 98. Home, family, kindness, and hard work defined her life. Described as a stoic woman, she found pleasure in baking, sewing, gardening, and raising roses. Predeceased by her husband, William H. Martin ’41, she is survived by three children, four grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. 

Ruth Sanderson Rudisill '42

July 26, 2018, in Davenport, Iowa, at 97. She earned a B.S. in library science from Simmons University in 1943, and during the next 45 years held various roles in libraries in New York, Illinois, and New Jersey: childrenís librarian, cataloguer, librarian, and chief librarian. She took time off to raise her children and make a home each time she moved with her career army officer husband, all the while finding time for Girl Scouts, her church, golf, swimming and skiing, and quilting. She is predeceased by her grandfather Elisha Sanderson (whose Colby class year can’t be verified) and her father, Arthur Sanderson ’27. She bore six children and had at least 19 grandchildren and two great-grandsons.

Joan Hunt Banfield '47

Aug. 1, 2018, in Stamford, Conn., at 91. She worked for five years as a research lab technician at Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons before devoting herself to her family and home. She enjoyed opera and the theater, played bridge and golf, and made time to travel. Predeceased by her parents, Robert ’27 and Doris Dewar Hunt ’26, she is survived by her husband of 66 years, Dr. Richard Banfield, four children, six grandchildren, and a brother.

Gordon R. Paterson '47

April 5, 2018, in Stamford, Conn., at 93. He arrived at Colby at 16, studied for two years, and then was drafted into the U.S. Army, where he served for four years, including at the Battle of Okinawa. He returned to Colby, and in 1950 he earned a law degree from Fordham University. He practiced law for six decades in Connecticut, specializing in commercial real estate law, and later was an attorney trial referee. Volunteer service included time on the City of Stamfordís Board of Representatives and Charter Revision Commission and as president and chair of the board of the Stamford YMCA. Survivors include his wife of 70 years, Jean Whelan Paterson ’47; five children, including Nancy Paterson Salit í’78 and Kathryn Paterson ’86; 11 grandchildren; and nine great-grandchildren.

Mary Louise Coulombe Boddy '48

Aug. 23, 2018, in Lawrence, Mass., at 92. Although home and family were her foremost concern, she gave of herself through community service and volunteerism as a Girl Scout leader, a class officer and reunion organizer for her high school, and an activist in a neighborhood association. She was most proud of her work on the Bellevue Cemetery board of directors, serving as chair for 16 years and getting the cemetery on the National Register of Historic Places. She is survived by three children, including Charles D. Boddy Jr. ’84, four grandchildren, including Sean Boddy ’20, and four great-grandchildren.

Beverly Holmes Center '48

June 4, 2018, in Portland, Maine, at 91. She transferred from Colby to D.T. Watson School of Physical Therapy and practiced as a certified physical therapist in three states. Later in life, she earned a B.A. at Western Connecticut State College. She was active in the confraternity of the rosary at her church. Her husband of 67 years, Daniel, three daughters, three grandchildren, and two great-granddaughters survive her.

Carol Carpenter Bisbee '49

July 26, 2018, in Belfast, Maine, at 92. Before attending Colby, she supported the war effort as a draftsman at the Glenn L. Martin Company. She married and had children, then became a classroom teacher for 32 years. She earned her bachelorís in 1963 and a masterís in 1968, both from the University of Maine, Orono. While actively engaged with her community in Belfast, she also loved to travel, eventually visiting all seven continents. Predeceased by her sister, Edith Carpenter Sweeney ’52, she is survived by four children, 14 grandchildren, and 18 great-grandchildren.

Mary Bauman Gates '49

July 15, 2018, in Manchester, N.H., at 90. After raising her family, she established a tag and estate sales business called Mary of Westchester, which she ran for more than 20 years. She enjoyed skiing at Sugarloaf, summering on Lake Winnipesaukee, and wintering in Longboat Key, Fla. Survivors include her husband of 70 years, Alfred “Bud” Gates ’50, seven children, 13 grandchildren, including Caitlin Gallagher McDonald ’07 and Kristen Gates ’10, and seven great-grandchildren.

Anne Houston Stiller '49

Sept. 13, 2018, in East Haven, Conn., at 91. She earned a degree in medical technology from Central Maine Hospital and worked in labs and for an allergist while moving with her Navy husband. She volunteered with the Altar Guild at her church and with Orchard House, a nonprofit providing day care for seniors. Anne loved to read, enjoyed history, and continued to drive a sports car, an activity that began at Colby. Survivors include her husband of 63 years, Bertram, three children, including Leslie Stiller Kissner ’78 and Elizabeth Stiller Fahey ’81, her son-in-law Kevin Fahey ’80, four grandchildren, including Emily Kissner ’08, and a sister.

Mary Jordan Megargee '50

June 5, 2018, in Tampa, Fla., at 89. She devoted her life to her family and her home while becoming an accomplished seamstress, baker, needleworker, and artist. A reader and Anglophile, she planned trips to England and also enjoyed traveling through Europe, Canada, and the United States. Predeceased by her twin brother, Hugh Jordan ’50, she is survived by her three children and a granddaughter.

Henry W. Gray '51

June 10, 2018, in Scarborough, Maine, at 92. During World War II, he served with the U.S. Navy, after which he enrolled at Colby. He became a civilian employee at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, where he worked as a nuclear power engineer until he retired in 1974. He belonged to the York Golf and Tennis Club and the South Berwick Rod and Gun Club. Four children, two grandchildren, and a sister survive him.

John A. Baum '52

March 18, 2017, in Wales at 86. A musician, philosopher of education, and potter, he earned a second bachelorís at the New England Conservatory of Music in 1956, a masterís from the University of Colorado in 1959, and a doctorate from Stanford University/University of Cuzco in 1964. He was a Fulbright scholar who published two books and several articles. His ceramic sculptures were exhibited in Peru, Israel, and England. In retirement, he opened Ridgeway Pottery in Wales, where he lived with his wife, Ingrid.

Carol J. Leonard '52

Aug. 2, 2018, in Dover, N.H., at 88. She entered banking right after graduation and established her career in the field, retiring as a vice president of the Bank of Boston after 30 years with the bank. Carol gave back to her community through service to the Wentworth Home and the Womenís Club of Somersworth. An expert bridge player, she earned the rank of Bronze Life Master. Gardening, opera, and travel were her other pleasures. Two nieces, a nephew, and their families survive her.

William L. Ganem '54

July 5, 2018, in Florida at 85. A corporal in the U.S. Army, he served four years during the Korean War. He became a successful businessman in Massachusetts for more than 40 years before retiring. His three children, a grandson, and three siblings survive him.

Barbara Preston Hayes '56

May 18, 2018, in Alexandria, Va., at 84. A proponent of environmental causes, a marcher and demonstrator for justice and equality, and a member of her church, she showed her concern and love for others with gestures large and small. She spent her career doing administrative work for companies such as AMF Inc. and the National Academy of Sciences, where she was a fiscal officer. Predeceased by her sister, Margaret Preston Slingerland ’51, she is survived by her children, David and Mary.

Jeanne F. Arnold '57

May 24, 2018, in Walpole, N.H., at 82. Her M.D. from Boston University School of Medicine propelled her into a career focusing on public health issues such as teenage pregnancy, elder care, and the prevention and treatment of domestic violence. She and her husband practiced family medicine in Peterborough, N.H., and she established family medicine residencies in Janesville, Wis., and Malden, Mass. She was on the faculty at Dartmouth Medical School, Boston University School of Medicine, and Utica Family Practice Residency, and she lectured nationally. She was the second woman to serve on the board of the American Academy of Family Physicians. Survivors include her husband of 58 years, Dr. Peter F. Jefferies, five children, and an abundance of grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great-great-grandchildren.

Paul L. Svendsen '58

May 23, 2018, in Bangor, Maine, at 81. After time in the Army Reserves, he began his career in insurance, working for the Travelers Insurance Company before starting his own agency, New England Financial, in Bangor, which he ran until his death. He served as chair of the Life Underwriters and was a chartered life underwriter. He volunteered for local organizations focused on the mentally and physically handicapped, community health, and housing. He was active with his church, the United Way, and the YMCA, where he coached youth basketball. Traveling, gardening, and the arts were pleasures. Survivors include his wife of 52 years, Suzanne, two children, three granddaughters, and a sister.

Paul R. LaVerdiere '59

July 30, 2018, in Waterville, Maine, at 82. He served his country in the U.S. Army as a sergeant before returning to his hometown of Waterville and working in the family business, LaVerdiereís Drug Stores. He owned a sporting goods store, a lounge, and an insurance company, where he settled for the remainder of his career. He was the mayor of Waterville for two terms, beginning in 1978, and he enjoyed skiing and was a jazz saxophonist. Predeceased by his mother, Lillian Cyr LaVerdiere ’23, and his sister Marcella LaVerdiere O’Halloran ’53, he is survived by four children, eight grandchildren, and a sister.

Cynthia Wong (neé Dunn) Barber '62

Aug. 10, 2018, in Newark, Vt., at 77. An author and technical editor early in her career, she eventually became innkeeper at Smuggler’s Notch Inn in Jefferson, Vt. While running the inn, she was active in the fight to prevent wind power development in the area. In 1989 she earned a master’s in public health from Boston University. 

Cynthia Lamb Johnson '62

Aug. 4, 2018, in Portland, Maine, at 78. A social worker, she spent 30 years working for the State of Maineís Department of Health and Human Services. Her family was important to her, as was her Episcopal church, at which she volunteered and sang in the choir. She also enjoyed sewing and reading. Survivors include her husband of 54 years, Paul, two sons, a grandson, and two siblings.

Wesley E. Barbour '66

Sept. 6, 2018, in York, Maine, at 73. After serving in the Air Force as an F-100 pilot, he became a commercial photographer in Wells and York, Maine, and taught at Wells High School. This gradually morphed into a computer consulting and programming business, teaching computer courses at UNH and elsewhere, and managing the computer systems for the Wells schools and others. He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Chris Austin Barbour ’68, his daughter, Karen, and two brothers.

Phillips “Skip” Kindy Jr. '66

Aug. 14, 2018, in Madison, Wis., at 75. He received an M.S.W. from the University of Wisconsin in 1975 and went on to serve as a social clinical instructor and therapist for 22 years. He became a devout Tibetan Buddhist and was selected to be project leader for the 1990 Tibetan Resettlement Project; in 1996 he and his wife founded the nonprofit Chenrezig Fund to support the education of destitute Tibetan children in Dehradun, India. A traveler, sailor, handyman, reader, and engaged father, he is survived by his wife, Tsering, two daughters, two grandchildren, and two siblings.

James W. Ritter Jr. '67

Sept. 17, 2018, in St. Mary’s, Texas, at 72. He served with the Air Force during the Vietnam War, eventually becoming a fighter pilot, retiring as a major. Later, he worked as a pilot for American Airlines, as a reserve police officer, and as a deputy sheriff and special investigator. He was an avid reader and outdoorsman. Survivors include his wife, Rita, two children, three stepchildren, 10 grandchildren, a great-granddaughter, and his brother.

Lynn R. Weinman '67

July 14, 2018, in Vienna, Va., at 72. He served four years with the U.S. Air Force and then worked for 20 years with the Navy as a contract specialist, eventually retiring from the Department of Defense. His wife, Cathy, three children, three grandchildren, and a brother survive him.

Ronald J. DiOrio '70

Jan. 19, 2018, in Washington, Pa., at 68. He served in the Peace Corps in Afghanistan after he graduated from Colby, and then he worked at various jobs, eventually becoming a substitute teacher in Burgettstown, Pa. He was interested in his family genealogy, and he was a World War II historian and a numismatist. His two sons, Aaron and Alexei, survive him.

Richard I. Hunt Jr. '70

Sept. 13, 2018, in Augusta, Maine, at 70. After earning a master’s (history) and a doctorate (Canadian/American studies) from the University of Maine, he embarked on a 40-plus-year career as a history professor, teaching at the University of Maine, Trinity College in Burlington, Vt., and Champlain College. Upon retirement, he returned to central Maine, where he led Sunday services and Bible studies at the Fairfield Center Church. A proud New Englander and a talented public speaker, he followed the Red Sox and had a passion for trains. His mother and a brother survive him.

Hugo B. Wallgren '72

June 21, 2018, in Newport, R.I., at 68. An M.B.A. from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst prepared him for a career in business, and he ultimately became a C.F.O. for a large company. He played tennis throughout his life, and he was trained in the military self-defense system Krav Maga. He spent the final years of his life in Newport, living in a carriage house near the ocean and cruising the streets in his red convertible. His two daughters, two grandchildren, and a sister survive him.

Hope I. Gottlieb '73

Feb. 22, 2018, in Buffalo, N.Y., at 65. A passionate linguist fluent in seven languages, she earned a master’s in French from Middlebury College, an interpreter certification from Georgetown University School of Language and Linguistics, and a second master’s in public administration at the College of Europe in Bruges, Belgium. She became a conference interpreter and was the first U.S. citizen hired as a permanent member of the interpreting team at NATO Headquarters in Brussels. Later, she was an interpreter for the World Bank, the United Nations, UNESCO, and the European Union. She joined the U.S. State Department in 1986 as vice counsel at U.S. embassies in Palermo, Milan, Santo Domingo, and Paris. A freelance interpreter in Europe later in life, she was working in France when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. Survivors include her sister, Sydney Gottlieb, and a niece.

Curtis A. Sears '73

July 4, 2018, in Richmond, Va., at 66. He built a career in the paper industry, working as a research engineer, production engineer, and superintendent in mills in the eastern United States as well as around the world, most recently in Brazil. In 1977 and 1978, he received a fifth-year certificate in pulp and paper from the University of Maine. An avid runner, he ran across Scotland, from coast to coast, and completed 49 marathons, including four Boston Marathons. Survivors include his wife, Michelle, four children, and three siblings, including his twin sister, Lucinda.

Awetu Simesso '77

Aug. 18, 2018, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, at 64. Human rights advocate, educator, civic leader, and actor, he received two masterís degrees and in 1987 a doctorate in political science and government from Stanford University, where he was a founding member of the Stanford Ethiopian Students Union. He was a professor in the College of Law and Governance at Addis Ababa University at the time of his death, and he had also taught at New Generation University College. From 2006 to 2013, he was a senior advisor at USAID/Ethiopia focusing on peace and security issues and traveling throughout Ethiopia assisting civic organizations. The USAID honored him with the 2009 Meritorious Honor Award, and he was recognized by the United States Department of State for outstanding service in the field of democratic governance. An accomplished actor, he performed in Shakespeare plays in Maine and California and had four film appearances. Survivors include several siblings.

Jane Seamans Swan '78

June 11, 2018, in Durham, N.C., at 62. An accomplished artist, musician, and photographer, she earned an M.B.A. at Cornell University. Survivors include her husband, David, his four children, her mother, and her brother.

Jennifer Batson Wilson '82

Aug. 18, 2018, Newbury, N.H., at 58. She earned a masterís in education in counseling from the University of New Hampshire in 1987, working for the next 25 years as a career counselor at New England College. She also worked as a special education instructor at a preschool and as an assistant librarian. She was founder and co-leader of a parenting group and wrote articles on career development. A devoted mother, she loved alpine skiing with her family. Her husband, Greg, two sons, her mother, and a sister survive her.


Jake Ulick '89

January 2018, in Hong Kong at 50. He worked his way through several regional newspapers before taking editing jobs at the Associated Press and CNN in New York. In the early aughts, he moved to Hong Kong, where he worked as an editor with Bloomberg News. Throughout, he was a mentor to younger journalists. An avid marathon runner, he completed races in New York, Paris, Amsterdam, and Singapore. He founded Colbyís Ultimate Frisbee team, arranging its first meets with other schools, and later became a force in Hong Kongís Ultimate Frisbee league, which competed in tournaments throughout Asia. Survivors include his brother and sister-in-law, Joshua Ulick ’91 and Nicole St. John ’92, and a niece.

Jonathan F. Peters '91

June 4, 2018, in Boston, Mass., at 50. Creative, empathetic, and thoughtful, he spent his career in healthcare and a lifetime helping others before succumbing to cancer. He transferred from Colby and completed his degree at Bridgewater State University. He gardened and recently started a koi pond; he loved conversation, possessing wit and an interest in current events; and he challenged himself as a cyclist and runner. His wife, Pamela Pattavina, survives him along with eight children, two grandchildren, and three siblings.