George Lawrence Riforgiat

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George Lawrence Riforgiat, 88, of “Mathews Rd, USA”, passed away suddenly on Saturday, February 16, 2019. He was born December 30, 1930, the son of the late Samuel and Veronica Riforgiato. George was a 1949 graduate of Brocton Central School. He proudly served his country in the U.S. Army during the Korean War. George worked for many years as a pipefitter for Sandberg Fire Protection Local 669. He also owned and operated a grape farm and served as Superintendent of Buildings and Grounds at Brocton Central School. He retired in 1994, spending his days tending to his garden and home, spending time with dear friends of many years in the community, and traveling to see his family. George was an active member of St. Dominic Parish in Brocton, Brocton American Legion Post 434, Westfield Moose, and Westfield VFW. George was the epitome of a gentleman and the true patriarch of the “mess” that he proudly created. He was devoted to his wife and was always by her side. George carried that same love to each of his children and grandchildren and was always proud of their individual accomplishments. Although he was a man of few words, he had a welcoming presence and a vast library of one-liners, his infamous “George-isms” and a nickname for everyone and everything. He leaves to cherish his memory his beloved wife of 63 years, Mabel (Colvin) Riforgiat, whom he married on April 23, 1955; children, Mark (Kelly) Riforgiat of Bradenton, FL, Gary (Cindy) Riforgiat of Lakeland, FL, Lynn Riforgiat, of Portland, and Sharon (Rodney) Poznanczyk of Chester, VA; sister, Elvera “Pete” LeGrano; sister-in-law, Gail Riforgiat; grandchildren, Amy (Patrick) McCloskey, Stephen (Samantha) Riforgiat, Connie (Chris) Allen, Ryan (Kourtney) Poznanczyk, Wilson (Stacy) Riforgiat, and Wesley Riforgiat; great-grandchildren, Lily, Ja’Keria, Abby, Taylor, Quinn, Rory, and Tommy; as well as many nieces, nephews, other family members, and friends that he loved as though they were family. Besides his parents, he was preceded in death by his brother, A. Bud Riforgiat and nephew, Blaine Riforgiat. A visitation will be held on Wednesday, February 20, 2019 from 4-8pm at Morse Funeral Home, 51 Highland Avenue, Brocton, NY 14716. A funeral mass will be held on Thursday, February 21, 2019 at St. Dominic – Roman Catholic Church, 12 Central Avenue, Brocton, NY 14716 at 11:00am. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Portland Volunteer Fire Department in George’s honor at 6841 W. Main Street, Portland, NY 14769.

Mickey Eileen Mitchell


Mickey Eileen Mitchell, 70 years old of Portland, New York passed away Sunday afternoon February 10, 2019 at UPMC Hamot Hospital in Erie Pa. after a short illness. She was born in Dunkirk, New York on February 20, 1948 and was the daughter of the late Norman and Genevieve Gorman Munson and lived in this area her entire life. She was a 1966 graduate of Brocton Central School and was employed at one time at the former New York Store of Dunkirk, New York, Welches of Westfield, New York and Ahira Hall Memorial Library of Brocton, New York. Mickey worked also on the Board of Elections and was a member of the Portland Congretional Church of Portland, New York and served as a member on the Cable Committee . Besides her family Mickey loved  crocheting, beading, having a good cup of coffee at the Brocton Diner, sitting in the front yard on summer evenings watching the cars go by and always reading a good book. She also loved her many cats and dogs especially her beloved “Chipper”.

Mickey is survived by her husband Robert Lyle Mitchell of Portland, New York, one daughter Phoebe ( Jonathon) Long of Sheridan, New York and one son Jay Mitchell of  Stockton, New York, five grandchildren Summer Marie Mitchell, Anthony Thomas Mitchell, Lyle Michael Mitchell, Marah Elizabeth Long, and Jonathan Matthew Long, one sister Mary Ann Sell of Fredonia, New York,one brother Henry Munson of Texas. and several nieces and nephews.  Besides her parents she was predeceased by one son Jed Elton Mitchell who passed away September 30, 1986, two brother Harry and Thomas Munson. 

Funeral Services will be held at 11 am on Thursday February 14, 2019 from the Morse Funeral Home in Brocton, New York, the Rev. Josh Ehmke of the Portland Congregational Church will officiate. Interment will be private at the Portland Evergreen Cemetery. Friends are invited to call at the Morse Funeral Home, 51 Highland Ave, Brocton, New York on Wednesday February 13, 2019 from 2-4 and 7-9.Memorials in Mickey's honor may be made to either the Portland Fire Dept., Rt. 20 West Main Rd., Portland, New York 14769 or the Brocton Fire Dept., Lake Ave. Brocton, New York 14716.

Leona (Woleben) Tranquist

Leona (Woleben) Tranquist, age 88, formerly of Portland, NY died peacefully Saturday, February 9, 2019 at the Chautauqua Nursing and Rehab Facility in Dunkirk, NY.

 She was born on November 10, 1930, the  daughter of the late Jay and Bernice (Wilber) Woleben.

 Leona had also been a former member of the Portland Congregational Church of Portland, N.Y.

 Leona is survived by her husband Arnold Tranquist and a daughter, Linda Messinger. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her six brothers, Harlo, Arthur, DeForest, Clarence, Fredrick, and Ferris Woleben.

As per her wishes there will be no visitation and aMemorialService will be announced at a later date andat the convenience of the family. Funeral arrangements were providedby the Morse Funeral Home, Brocton, NY 14716.

Clara B. (Link) “Birdie” Fellinger

Clara B. (Link) "Birdie" Fellinger, 85,  passed away peacefully on January 29, 2019 at her home in Portland, NY after an extended illness. She was a loving wife, mother, and grandmother. Birdie was born on November  21, 1933 in Stockton, NY a daughter of the late Carl and Theona (Wachob) Link and remained a lifelong resident of the area.

 On January 21, 1950 Birdie married Thomas J. “Al” Fellinger and spent, what she described as, “an exciting 68 years together” before his passing in 2008.

 She had been employed by the M. Wile Sewing Factory in Dunkirk, NY as a seamstress for 42 years, and after her retirement she enjoyed spending her time camping at her Blue Water Beach Campsite, helping her husband in the shop, playing BINGO, and shopping with her sister, Ethel.  

 When asked what her greatest accomplishment in life was, Birdie would quickly reply, “My family; I’m blessed with a wonderful family.” Her family includes her two sons, Terry (Stephenie) Fellinger of Fredericksburg, Va and Paul (Mary Ford) Fellinger of Findley Lake, NY; six grandchildren, Julie (Terrance) Hamlett, Jamie (Jeffrey) Sotzing, Jeanie (Frank) Carr, Jennie (Edward) Whelan, IV, Elizabeth (Ben) Cottrill, and Andrew Ford; fourteen great-grandchildren, and one great- great grandchild. Birdie’s sisters and brothers include Irene Richardson of Bell, FL, Ethel Carpenter of Brocton,NY ; Ronald (Diane) Link of Fredonia,NY  and Henry (Carol) Link of Portland, NY. In addition, Birdie was blessed with many nieces and nephews. At the end of her illness, Birdie was surrounded by caretakers who became more like family to her. They brought happiness to her life and treated her with much love and kindness.  

 Birdie will be most remembered for her sharp mind and kind heart. She was a walking Historian , always remembering family lineage and stories. And, she never missed an opportunity to send a card for a birthday or anniversary.  

 In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by a brother, Robert Link.
 Family and friends may call at the Morse Funeral Home, 51 Highland Ave., Brocton, NY, 14716 on February 9, 2019 from 11 am until the time of service there at 12 pm with the Rev. James Witherington, Hospice Chaplain, officiating. Burial will be private.

Memorial contributions can be made to the Chautauqua County Hospice, 20 W Fairmount Ave, Lakewood, NY 14750 or to the Portland Fire Department, 6481 W Main Rd; Portland, New York 14769 for the exceptional care they showed Birdie during her short illness.

Paul Hugh Farver


Paul Hugh Farver, 93, of Brocton, New York died Sunday, January 20, 2019 at home after a sudden illness.

He was born May 17, 1925 in Mahoningtown, Pennsylvania a son to the late Ernest O. and Lydia C. (Ball) Farver.

 Paul was a graduate of Westminster College, New Wilmington, Pennsylvania and did graduate work at several universities including Syracuse and the University of Rochester. He served his Country with the US Marine Corp in World War II including a tour in the Philippines. Paul was a high school Biology Teacher and then a Guidance Counselor at Lyons, NY and then at Brocton Central School where he workedfor18 years until his retirement. Students noted that he showed them patience, understanding and friendship and gave them a sense of direction.

 He married the love of his life, Gwendolyn “Gwen” Allen on August 12, 1949 in New Castle, Pennsylvania. She preceded him in death on June 23, 2018 after 68 years of marriage. Together they raised five loving children ; Ernest (Priscilla) Farver of Mayville, NY; Thomas (Deborah) Farver of Hamden, Connecticut; Alice (Randy) Wilder of Tucson, Arizona; Kathleen (James) Southwick of Kennedy, NY; and John (Margaret) Farver of Holland, Ohio. He is further survived by nine cherished grandchildren and fourteen great grandchildren and his brother Kenneth Farver.

In addition to his parents and his wife he was preceded in death by a brother, Harold Farver.

 Paul loved spending time with his family but most of all the annual 4th of July family reunion was the highlight of the year. He also enjoyed working in his garden and was an avid bird watcher and was a member of the Lake Erie Bird Club for many years. Neighbors would often see him walking along the road and were always greeted with a wave and a smile.

 Private interment was in the Castleview Memorial Gardens in New Castle, Pennsylvania. There will be a memorial service to celebrate Paul’s life this summer which will be announced at a later date.

 Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to the Morse Funeral Home, 51 Highland Ave., Brocton, NY 14716.

Vickie Marie Maher

Vickie Marie Maher (Starr) of Brocton, New York passed away peacefully on January 4, 2019 at the age of 69.

Vickie was born to parents Mabel and Joseph Starr on July 1, 1949, in Huntingdon, Pa. She was the eldest of four children and graduated from Waterloo High School in Waterloo, New York. After high school she attended SUNY College at Fredonia and graduated with a degree in education in 1971. On August 15, 1970 she married Robert William Maher Jr. (Bill) and together they lived for a brief time in Bemus Point, NY before moving to Brocton where they currently reside.

Vickie was the beloved nursery school teacher at Tri-Church Nursery School from 1984 until her retirement in 2003. She was a member of the Brocton Fire Department Ladies Auxiliary and The St. Ann's Society of St. Patrick's RC Church. She enjoyed gardening, reading, the company of close friends and trips to the ocean. She especially enjoyed spending time with her grandchildren.

She is survived by her loving husband of 48 years, Bill, their three children, Kelly (McGarry) and Jon of East Aurora, NY, Stephen And Melanie Maher of Calverton, NY; Jeffery and Nicole Maher of Silver Creek, NY and five grandchildren, Lily, Abigail, Will, Ben and Avalynn. She is also survived by her brother Dan Starr and sister-in-law, Lori of Canandaigua, NY, sister Debbie Bowe of Ocala, Fl, nieces Brittany, Sarah and Brooke; nephews, Nick and Chris along with many aunts and uncles and cousins. She is preceded in death by her parents, Mabel and Joseph and her sister Jody

A private burial will take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the Brocton Fire Dept.or the Brocton EMS Squad, Lake Ave, Brocton, NY 14716 or Ahira Hall Memorial Library, 37 West Main St., Brocton, NY 14716

Funeral arrangements have been provided by the Morse Funeral Home of Brocton, New York.

Ronald William Test


Ronald William Test, 79 years old of Brocton New York passed away unexpectedly at his home on Monday evening December 17, 2018. He was born in Fredonia, New York on September 13, 1939 to the late William and Marjorie Guest Test and has lived in this area his entire life. As a young man he served his country in the United States Army during the Vietnam War. He was employed at Al Tech Specialty Steel in Dunkirk for 32 years until his retirement. Ron also was a member of the American Legion John W Dill Post 434 of Brocton, New York. Besides loving his family he also enjoyed working on tractors and building computers, attending tractor pulls, going to the Casino, reading and traveling/camping.

He is survived by his wife Marjorie A (Davidson) Test whom he married on January 15, 1966 in Fredonia, New York and four children Ronald (Teri) Test of Cherry Creek, Sandra (Darren) Buck of Brocton, Cathryn (Mike Dotson) Millin of Brocton and Laura (Michael) Shelters of Brocton, three brothers Richard (Late Ann Marie) Test of Dunkirk, Ernest (Shirley) Test of Pinnellis Park and David (Ann Marie) Test of Dunkirk, two uncles Richard Guest of Ohio and Denton (Sue) Guest of California, one sister-in-law Mary Test, 9 grandchildren and one great-grandchild and several nieces and nephews. Besides his parents he was preceded in death by his two brothers Raymond and Robert Test, one sister Marjorie Bannister,one grandson Merle Jack Millin, and grandparents Nina Guest Thompson and Ronald Guest.

Funeral Services will be held at 11 am on Saturday December 22, 2018 from the Morse Funeral Home in Brocton, New York with the Rev. Jim LaBarr of Harvest Chapel in Fredonia officiating. Full military will be accorded Ron by the American Legion John W Dill Post 434 of Brocton at the Funeral Home at the conclusion of the Funeral Service. Interment will be at Webster St. Cemetery in Fredonia, New York. Friends are invited to call at the Morse Funeral Home, 51 Highland Ave, Brocton, New York from 4-7 pm on Friday, December 21, 2018. The family suggests Memorials in Ron's memory and Honor be made to the Brocton Fire Dept. Lake Ave. Brocton, New York 14716 and/or The American Legion John W Dill Post 434 of Brocton, 110 West Main St., Brocton, New York 14716.

Mary Jo Schlicker Dudley

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Mary Jo Schlicker Dudley of Bend, Ore., died Nov.5, 2018, at age 84.

Mary Jo was born Feb. 1, 1934, in Westfield, N.Y., to William and Maryetta (Gleason) Schlicker.

She attended Hiram College for one year before joining American Airlines as a ticket agent. In 1954, Mary Jo married Lawrence “Bud” Dudley and they raised three children while living near Chautauqua and Goshen, N.Y., Beatrice, Neb., Columbia, S.C., East Longmeadow, Mass. and finally, back to Lakewood, N.Y.

Mary Jo loved to travel with her husband but felt most at home staying at the Athenaeum Hotel, visiting her Gleason cousins in Open Meadows, her sister Miriam Spears and family in Olean and her many friends in Chautauqua County.

She is predeceased by her sister, Miriam and survived by her sister, Patricia; children: Tim (Lindy), Ann (Brad) and Susan (Michael); grandchildren Nathan, Ryan, Kathryn, Michael, Jake, Sarah, Jordan, Rachel, Emma and Nolan.

A memorial service for Mary Jo will be held Dec. 8, 2018, at Hurlbut Memorial Methodist Church at 11 a.m. All are welcome to attend.

Contributions in Mary Jo’s honor may be made to the Hospice Center of Bend or The Chautauqua Fund.

Charles W “Chuck” Johnson


Charles W “Chuck” Johnson, 88 years old of Fredonia, New York passed away Thursday November 29, 2018 at Westfield Memorial Hospital after a brief illness.

Chuck was born in Pomfret, New York on August 18, 1930 and was the son of the late John and Anna Lawson Johnson and was an area resident his entire life. He proudly served his country in the United States Navy aboard the USS Little Rock during the Korean Conflict. After serving his Country, Chuck began his career as a Truck Driver for 23 years for the Red Wing Co. of Fredonia, New York. In his younger days he loved working in his garage, welding and hanging out with his buddies. Chuck also loved spending time with his family, was a great fan of the New York Yankees, loved the outdoors, fishing, camping, snowmobiling and being a snowbird with his wife Ann whom he married on August 31, 1974 and who passed away June 28, 2014.

Chuck had also been a member of the American Legion John W Dill Post 434 of Brocton, a retired member of the Fredonia Fire Department, and a Masonic Lodge Member of the Brocton / Fredonia Masons.

He is survived by one son Dave (Caroline) Johnson, one daughter Cindy (Warren) Erdle, two step-children Robert (Denice) Bailey and Lisa (Scott) Brisley, Two grandchildren Kari (Jeff) Potter and Brandon (Sarah) Tarnowski, great-granchildren Nolan and Bryce

Potter and Brayden and (baby to be) Tarnowski, step grandchildren Ashley (Jim) Karalus, Christian Bailey and Makayla Brisley and two step great-grandchildren Nataleigh Fox and Wyatt Karalus. He is also survived by several nieces and nephews; Joene (John) Pease of Lakeview,New York, Barb (Jim) Wright of Fredonia, New York, Robert (Christie) Johnson of Chicago,Il, Ken Johnson of Fredonia, New York and Bruce Stone of Portland, Maine.

Besides his parents and his wife Ann Bernice Johnson he was predeceased by four brothers Milton, Lester, Raymond and Robert Johnson and two sisters Florence Stone and Ruth Sherman.

Funeral Services will be held on Monday December 3, 2018 at 11 am from the Morse Funeral Home in Brocton, New York. Rev. Larry Morrison of the Brocton Baptist Church will be officiating. Full Military Honors will be accorded to Chuck by the American Legion John W Dill Post 434 of Brocton at the conclusion of the services at the Funeral Home. Interment for the family will be at Portland Evergreen Cemetery. In lieu of flowers. Friends are invited to call at the Morse Funeral Home 51 Highland Ave. Brocton, New York from 4-7pm on Sunday December 2, 2018. Memorials in Chucks memory may be made to The American Cancer Society P O Box 22478, Oklahoma City, OK 73123 or online at American Cancer Society / or Fredonia Rescue Squad, West Main St. Fredonia, New York 14063.

James Brown

James Brown 82 years old of Brocton, New York passed away Monday morning at St. Vincent Health Care Center in Erie, Pa. after a brief illness.  James was born in Sheridan, New York on December 18, 2018 to the late Cecil and Cecile Markham Brown. He had live in this area his entire life. When he was younger he had worked at the Collins Milk Plant in Gowanda, New York and later at  the Mayville Milk Plant and Smitties Gravel Pit in Brocton, New York.  He was a Grape Farmer and loved farming, tractors and the land.

He is survived by four stepsons Keith Brown of Brocton, New York, Paul Brown of Portland, New York, Ron Brown of Pennsylvania and Vern Brown of Jamestown, New York and many nieces and nephews.  He was predeceased in death by his wife Mary Ann Brown who passed away four years ago and one sister Charlotte (Brown) Farnham, one brother Charles Brown and one little sister.

As per James wishes there will be no visiting hours and a Memorial Service will be held at the convenience of the family at a later date.Funeral arrangements have been provided by the Morse Funeral Home of Brocton, New York.