Tag Archives: Madeline Robbins

Remembering R-FH Area People, Part II

The year 2014 was one of much loss — an unraveling of what people in the area had grown accustomed to as a tightly woven, familiarly comforting fabric of the community.

There was a lot of death — death of people whose faces and contributions Rumson-Fair Haven area people had grown accustomed to as part of their lives in one way or another.

We said it in the first part of our tribute and it bears repeating:

As the line in the Rogers and Hammerstein musical Carousel put it, “As long as one person on Earth remembers you, it’s not over.”

Well, it’s not over for them or us. These people, in one way or another, contributed to life in the area and were part of our lives.

We honor them with a photo and a token of remembrance.

Take the journey with us, one more time  …

Ian Carpenter, 44, RFH Class of 1988, soccer player, drummer, advocate for ALS/Lou Gehrig’s disease research, Feb. 22, 2014

Ian, an RFH grad who had relocated to Salt Lake City, Utah, died on Feb. 22, a victim of ALS.

Known as a craftsman and carpenter, Ian, who lived most of his life in Fair Haven,  built his own home and was known as a family man who loved coaching his son in soccer and baseball. He left behind a wife, Lindsay, son Winston and daughters Clara and Mary.

Ian, himself, was a varsity soccer player at RFH and a “talented drummer,” said his sister, Angela.

“So many of our high school friends came together for them in the end … it meant the world to him to have his hometown family help so much,” she said in an email.

Rest in peace, Ian Carpenter.

Jack Croft, 84, 64-year Fair Haven resident, 35-year Fair Haven Fire Department member, Sept. 7, 2014

This is a special one for this editor, in the interest of full disclosure.

Jack Croft has been sending me notes of appreciation for my writing dating back to roughly the year 2000 — probably earlier.

A family friend and neighbor, he always made a point of reading my stories and commenting privately via a personal, hand-written note and/or email.

As a journalist who is, as all of us are, accustomed to many queries critiques, and sometimes selfish pleas for one-sided agenda promotion, it was always such a pleasure to wake up to an email or note in the mail from Jack concerning any current issue about which I happened to be writing.

He always ended his notes reminding me that my parents would be proud. Now, that’s the kind of pay-it-forward, random contribution to the community that trumps a high-ticket social event any day. His effect in this and many other small gestures, was enduring and selfless.

A modest, true gentleman, who was often seen walking about town hand-in-hand with wife Jane, it was always not only heartwarming, but encouraging to read his opinion.

He did not gush. He was not ever after a special favor. He just felt it his duty to let a female journalist he knew as a child and neighbor that he appreciated her work. He was always constructive and supportive. And, yes, the gesture was so greatly appreciated.

It meant more than I can say, actually. We, in this thankless business, cover the news because we feel it’s our responsibility. And it is. Though, sometimes, people can be heavily imbalanced in opinion — merciless. He, thankfully, felt it was his responsibility to appreciate the work with a healthy balance. And that went both ways.

Thank you, Jack Croft, for the many moments you took out of your day to show gratitude and brighten this editor’s day. Now it’s our turn.

We so vividly remember you. You and your undying love for your wife, Jane, always affected not only this editor, but all who saw you about town.

Your sincerity, love of community and family will not be forgotten. Oh, and the notes have been saved. One is still on the fridge.

Rest in peace, Jack Croft.

Keith D. Smith, 41, of Rumson, manager of Val’s Tavern in Rumson, May 6, 2014

Kieth, a longtime Rumson resident, died on May 6.

Many had grown accustomed to his face at Val’s. He is missed.

Ida Twist, 90, longtime Fair Havenite and Fair Haven Firemen’s Fair volunteer, Jan. 1, 2014

All you had to do was spend any time at the Fair Haven Firemen’s Fair and you’d recognize Ida.

For the past couple of decades she was at the Grab Bag Booth as what people have come to know as one of the “balloon ladies,” cheerfully getting those balloons to kids and putting smiles on their faces with some homestyle chatting.

If you didn’t see Ida at the fair, then you probably saw her at an event or parade — and she really loved parades — or with the Fair Haven Seniors group. She also helped her grandson, Charlie, start his lawn business.

She loved and was dedicated to community and family.

Rest in peace, Ida.

Mary Kirman, 79, longtime Fair Havenite, Feb. 15

Mary was a charming woman with a lot of community spirit who had a beautiful smile and a great sense of humor.

She looked like “That Girl,” Marlo Thomas, in her younger years — wide-eyed, sage grin with shiny black hair in a “flip” with bangs. And she had the bright disposition to go with the persona.

She was good friends with this editor’s mom and we spent much family time together. There was always a belly-ache of a laugh somewhere in there through the years.

In that time, her contagious laughter infected anyone whose path she crossed. Mom to sons John, Jim and Tom, and many grandchildren, she embodied sincerity and love of life and community. Her legacy is evident in her children.

Mary just had a way about her, as the Billy Joel song goes. She was always approachable, always smiling. Her laugh and smile are things that will always be remembered by those whose lives she touched.

Rest in peace, Mary Kirman.

Milton Edelman, 93, former Fair Havenite and Zoning Board member, April 27, 2014

Milton was known as an interesting, witty longtime Fair Havenite who relocated to League City, Texas, and passed away at 93 on April 27, 2014.

Born in Brooklyn, NY, Milton Edelman and family moved to Fair Haven in 1962. There, the family settled in and he served on the Zoning Board for quite a few years. He was known to offer many anecdotes and sage advice, according to an obituary written by his son Marc.

He was a lawyer with the firm Wilson, Elser, Moskowitz, Edelman and Dicker, which was recognized by the National Law Journal as one of the top 50 firms nationwide. He retired from the firm in 1998.

After relocating to two homes in Vermont and Texas, Milton continued to serve on the local zoning board in Vermont.

Before he died, Milton worked with son Marc at an information technology services firm in Texas — PC and Cable.

He leaves behind his children, Eric, Marc and Alexandra, all RFH grads, and his wife, Frederica.

Rest in peace, Milton.

Dr. Peter Sheehan, 60, renowned diabetes doctor, son of Dr. George Sheehan, May 2014

A Rumson native, Peter Sheehan was one of 12 of Dr. George Sheehan’s children. Dr. George Sheehan, who is deceased, was and is still known as a well-recognized author and runner who raised his family in Rumson.

Peter did groundbreaking work in the study and treatment of diabetes in his lifetime.

Rest in peace, Dr. Peter Sheehan.

Nancy Dexter, 84, of Fair Haven, RFH teacher aide, Jan. 10

Oh, Mrs. Dexter. She was a beautiful woman, with a sharp edge, who died at 84 on Jan 10, 2014.

Mrs. Dexter, a mom of four, was a Catherine Gibbs Secretarial School graduate who married Howard Dexter in 1950.

After having served as a Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School (RFH) aide for a stint in the 1970s, she retired from AT&T in 2000.

Mrs. Dexter was known to many an RFH student as a troubadour of monitoring many hallway hijinks and incidents of library lunacy spearheaded by many good, yet antsy and mischievous students.

Thanks for rolling with us and doling out those myriad reprimands and fun times at RFH, Mrs. Dexter.

Rest in peace.

Karen Harrington Bovenzi, 54, 1978 RFH grad, formerly of Rumson, June 26, 2014

Karen passed away at Newark Beth Israel Hospital after a heart transplant.

Comments flooded the RFH Reunion Facebook page upon Karen’s death. “It’s with great sadness that I tell you that Karen Harrington Bovenzi passed away this afternoon after a very long and courageous battle with a heart transplant and many side effects and issues,” said her good friend Rita Marass Kellegher.

Rest in peace, Karen.

Henry Leon “Sike” Reevey, 85, of Fair Haven, Oct. 20, 2014

Born in Fair Haven in 1929, Henry, known as Sike, was a staple in Fair Haven life.

The senior Reevey is one of many in town who contributed to the town’s homegrown culture.

There are many Reeveys out there to this day. Sike, himself, was born on Sept. 24, 1929, and was a U.S. Army vet of the Korean War, according to his obituary on legacy.com.

“As a member of the Fair Haven Reevey’s (stet), I would like to say Thank You for all the kind words extended to us in the passing of my Uncle Sike. Please keep us in your hearts and prayers especially Aunt Sonia and all his children. He loved all deeply and equally,” his relative said on the Fair Haven Facebook page.

He was, sadly, predeceased by his son Aaron, a 1978 RFH graduate, as well as his parents, Shockely and Margaret Ensley Reevey; and brothers and sisters, James, Dorothy, Stanley, Theodore, Rose Jackson, Lawrence and Frank Reevey.

He is survived by: his wife, Sonia; three children, Henry, Jr., of Freehold, Dwayne, Sr., of Fair Haven, and Stephanie Hurt, of Lawrenceville, GA; one sister, Shirley, of Tinton Falls; 11 grandchildren and seven great grandchildren.

Sike was known to emanate a true love of his hometown community and everyone in his family has been known to carry on his legacy of loyalty to and love of Fair Haven.

Rest in peace, Mr. Sike Reevey.

Arlene Albano, 62, former RFH Math teacher, Aug. 22, 2014

Arlene Albano, who died of breast cancer, was a well-liked Math teacher and advisor of the RFH Twirling Squad. She had many fans.

A graduate of Shore Regional High School and Montclair State College, she, after her teaching career at RFH, became a software developer of nuclear power plant simulation at Electronics Associates, Inc. (EAI), West Long Branch.

This editor had Arlene Albano for Math and found her to be a great teacher with a lot of patience and a pleasant personality.

Carol Nagle Skinner, an RFH twirler, said on the RFH Class of ’78 Facebook page:  “Some of her twirlers were able to see her last week to say goodbye. She fought cancer for way too long but never complained. I don’t know how she put up with us in high school! She is finally at Peace.”

Rest in peace, Miss Albano.

Madeline Robbins, 92, longtime Fair Haven resident, longtime member of the Fair Haven Fire Department’s Ladies’ Auxiliary, Oct. 6, 2014

Madeline Robbins was known as a fun-loving woman with a glowing smile and great heart for her community — Fair Haven.

She served on the Fair Haven Election Board and as Fair Haven’s assistant borough clerk.

As daughter Kathy recalls, she “was always ironing the alter linens for Church of the Nativity.”

This editor remembers Madeline as a family friend with whom Fair Haven families went camping.

She, her husband Al, kids and other families made an annual trek to Pennsylvania Dutch country to camp for many an outing on Memorial Day in the 1970s.

She was always laughing, singing a verse or two of “This Land is Your Land” and joking around the campfire.

Anyone would recognize that bright smile anywhere. Thanks for all the fun, sincere and spirited memories.

Rest in peace, Madeline.

Joseph Lincoln Davidson III, 63, ex-chief of Rumson Fire Department, February of 2014

Born in Reading, PA, Joseph was a lifetime member and ex-chief of the Rumson Fire Department and past president and member of Rumson First Aid.

An avid boater, he was a member of the Coast Guard Auxiliary and loved fishing.

He leaves behind his wife, Regina, of 42 years, sons Christopher and Steven, and daughter Jennifer and grandchildren.

Thank you for your service. Rest in peace, Joseph.

Marylyn J. Scott, former Fair Haven teacher, July 20, 2014

Marylyn Scott was an elementary school teacher in Fair Haven for decades, from the early 1960s to 1990, when she retired.

Many remember Marylyn for her kind nature and conscientiousness as an educator.

Her obituary, spearheaded by family, asked that she be remembered as not only a teacher, but a mother, friend and neighbor. She was all of those things.

Thank you for your dedication to the children of Fair Haven.

Rest in peace, Marylyn.

John Edward Kondrup, 93, longtime Rumson resident, former borough mechanic, U.S. Army World War II vet, driver for Rumson First Aid, member of Oceanic Hook & Ladder Co. #1, Sept. 18, 2014

Kondrup was known to always have a smile on his face and a great deal of pride in his vegetable garden.

Many have said that he was known to also ride his bicycle around town for many years, until he reached his 90s.

Rest in peace, John.

Photos/courtesy of families and Thompson Memorial and Days funeral homes.