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Obituaries Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, December 9, 2010

Doris M. Abbott

NEW SCOTLAND — Doris Abbott, who quietly looked after her family, died at the Hospice Inn at St. Peter’s Hospital on Dec. 2, 2010. She was 97.

“She never asked for anything for herself — ever,” said her daughter, Jean Zelezniak. “Not even at Christmas.”

The youngest of four children, Mrs. Abbott was born on Sept. 12, 1913 in Andes, N.Y. to the late Frank and Alma (Weaver) Tremper. She stayed on her family’s farm until she was 21, Mrs. Zelezniak said.

“I’ve got to get off this hill if I’m going to meet someone,” she remembered her mother had said of why she left. She went to live with her sister in Delhi and got a job as a housekeeper for a couple who owned a dairy company. The late Kenneth Abbott worked at the dairy.

After the couple married, Mrs. Abbott became a careful housekeeper and made all of her family’s quilts and many of their clothes. She even made a wooden doll bed for her daughter’s 10th birthday.

When her children were grown, Mrs. Abbott went to work for Myer’s Department Store and then for Macy’s.

She was a member of the Red Hat Society, the Ladies Aid Society of the Dutch Reformed Church of New Salem, and the New Salem Home Bureau.

She and her husband would sometimes go to flea markets where she would collect Depression glass and he would collect milk bottles, said her daughter, Charlotte Lichtenberg.

“Our house was special,” Mrs. Lichtenberg said, since its smell went from sauerkraut in one season to homemade ice cream in another. Her mother made many of their meals from her own garden and, she said, what she didn’t cook with, she’d can. Mrs. Abbott always grew beans, squash, and strawberries and made her own bread and butter pickles.

Mrs. Abbott was a quiet, hardworking woman who always thought of others before herself, her daughters said.


Mrs. Abbott is survived by her children, K. Jean Zelezniak and her husband, Michael; Charlotte Lichtenberg and her husband, Horst; Virginia Coleman; and Richard Abbott and his wife, Betty.

She is also survived by her 18 grandchildren, Susan Zelezniak-Eichenbaum, Sharon and Stephen Zelezniak, Carl and Reiner Lichtenberg, Sherry Miller, Dawn Coleman, Gary Abbott, Todd Abbott, Mark Abbott, and Debra Henson as well as her great-grandchildren, Devan, Matthew, and Nicholas Zelezniak; Sarah and Joshua Eichenbaum; Tyler and Brittany Lichtenberg; Andrew Pentengill; Haley and Chase Ennis; Brian, Alysha, James, and Jared Abbott; and Julian, Kiera, Keeley, and Jada Henson as well as two great-great-grandchildren.

Her husband, Kenneth E. Abbott died before her as did her siblings, Wilma Robertson, Dorothy Ruff, Olive Tremper, and Willis Tremper.

A funeral will be held at 10 a.m. today, Dec. 9, at the New Comer Cannon Funeral Home at 343 New Karner Rd. in Colonie with interment to follow in the Prospect Hill Cemetery in Guilderland.

Memorial contributions may be made to the charity of one’s choice and a message may be left for the family online at www.NewcomerAlbany.com.

— Saranac Hale Spencer

Nellie V. Ciupek

VOORHEESVILLE — Nellie V. Ciupek, a lifelong village resident, died on Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2010, at Our Lady of Mercy Life Center in Guilderland. She was 88.

Mrs. Ciupek was born in Voorheesville, to the late Blasé and Julia Waz Ciupek. She worked for 20 years for the Naval Inspection Unit at General Electric in Schenectady, and another 20 years for the Interal Revenue Service in Albany, before retiring in the early 1980s.

She was a member of the National Association of Retired Federal Employees.

Mrs. Ciupek is survived by her siblings, Stephen Ciupek, of Napa, Calif; Mary Walas, of Voorheesville; and Val Ciupek, of Altamont. She is also survived by several nieces and nephews.

Her siblings Frank and John Ciupek, and Anna Intrieri, died before her.

A funeral was held on Dec. 3 at St. Matthew’s Church in Voorheesville. Burial was in St. Agnes Cemetery in Menands.

Arrangements were by the Reilly and Son Funeral Home.

Robert S. La Crosse

ALTAMONT — After a 20-year career in the Navy, including two tours in Vietnam, Robert S. La Crosse kept on helping veterans.

“He was a loving, supportive, generous person who never asked for anything in return,” said his wife of 14 years, Jean La Crosse.

 Mr. La Crosse died on Saturday, Dec. 4, 2010, at St. Peter’s Hospice Inn. He was 67.

Born on March 10, 1943 in Rutland, Vermont, he was the son of the late Moses and Winnie La Crosse.

A good-hearted man with an easy sense of humor, Mr. La Crosse enjoyed his family, said his wife. The couple met at the Punkintown Fair in New Salem, an annual fund-raiser put on by the local fire department.

His Navy career gave Mr. La Crosse a keen sense of geography, said his wife. He retired as a Petty Officer First Class. “He gained an absolutely wonderful knowledge of the world and retained that,” she said. “He was a crackerjack at world affairs and the history of countries.”

Like so many who served in Vietnam during the war, his memories of those two tours were difficult, said Mrs. La Crosse. “He worked with underwater demolition,” she said, a precursor of the Navy SEALs.

“It was a tough war,” said Mrs. La Crosse. “He had a lot of problems even now of remembrance.” The recent war in Iraq and the current war in Afghanistan, she said, “pulled it all back in.”

Mr. La Crosse continued to serve as a volunteer at the Stratton Veterans Affairs Hospital. “He would give out packets of information for soldiers on where to get help, physically and emotionally,” said Mrs. La Crosse.

 Mr. La Crosse was also a life member of the Disabled American Veterans.

He was “very interested in the environment,” said Mrs. La Crosse and he supported organizations like the Audubon Society and the National Wildlife Federation.

In recent retirement years, Mr. La Crosse worked at French’s Hollow Fairways. “He got to like golf quite a bit,” said Mrs. La Crosse. “And he always enjoyed fishing.”

She went on, “Mostly, he enjoyed family activities…He took to my whole extended family and treated them very well. They love him dearly.”

Mr. La Crosse recalled being overseas when President John F. Kennedy was shot and he was a big supporter of Jimmy Carter, said his wife.

Two years ago, after he fell while cleaning gutters, breaking his rib and lower back, Mr. La Crosse went to the hospital where a mark was discovered on his lung, said his wife. He was diagnosed with pulmonary fibrosis, for which there is no cure. His disease was difficult for him, she said, because he was used to giving rather than receiving help.

Mr. La Crosse was not a smoker, his wife said, and it was thought that the disease was due to asbestos inhalation from his Navy work. “He had very, very good support from the Stratton VA,” she said.

Mr. La Crosse always maintained his sense of humor. One of the things his family enjoyed teasing him about was a fishing trip gone awry.

“He was going to go deep-sea fishing with my son in Florida a few years ago,” said Mrs. La Crosse. When her son worried about Mr. La Crosse enduring the rough waters, he said, “I’ve seen waters crash over the deck in the South China Sea.”

But then, Mrs. La Crosse went on, with a chuckle, “He got sick and had to sit out the entire trip. We never let him live that down.”

She concluded of her husband, “He was always in a positive mood and extremely supportive of his family.”


In addition to his wife, Jean La Crosse of Altamont, Robert S. La Crosse is survived by a son, Matthew La Cross and his wife, Carrie; two daughters, Rebecca L. Bergevin and Carol Lanfear, and their mother, Linda La Cross; and grandchildren Louis and Savannah Bergevin — all of Rutland, Vt.

He is also survived by his sister, Jeanne Rizzo, of Loudonville; his brother, William La Cross of West Rutland, Vt.; and his brother-in-law, Wayne Benware, of Rutland, Vt. His sister, Rosalie Benware, died before him.

He is survived, too, by his stepdaughter, Susan La Cross.

And, he is survived by his stepchildren John VanSyckle IV and his wife, Kathy, of Clifton Park; Laura Reynolds and her husband, Todd, of Rensselaer; and Daniel Van Syckle and his wife, Sharon, of Florida.

He his also survived by his step-grandchildren, Vanessa Denisulk and her husband, Steve, of Ravena; Timothy Gilligan of Troy, Shawn Gilligan and his wife, Melissa, of Cohoes; and Desiree and Kyle Van Syckle of Clifton Park.

He is survived, too, by his step-great-grandchildren, Kyleigh, Ryan, and Izabella Gilligan of Cohoes.

And, he is survived by his nieces and nephews, Michael La Cross; Barbara La Cross; Deborah Clogston; Melinda Bassett and her husband, Ben; Tina and Kevin Benware — all of Rutland Vt.; and several great-nieces and great-nephews.

A funeral service will be held today, Dec. 9, at 11 a.m. at the Altamont Reformed Church at 129 Lincoln Ave. in Altamont followed by an interment at Saratoga National Cemetery. Friends may call prior to the service at the church from 10 to 11 a.m.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Disabled American Veterans, Post Office Box 14301, Cincinnati, OH 45250-0301 Attention: Gift Processing.

— Melissa Hale-Spencer

Therese Cunningham Miranda

VOORHEESVILLE — Therese Cunningham Miranda, a professor and a mother, died on Monday, Dec. 6, 2010. She was 46.

“She was very professional and particular,” David Miranda said of his wife, explaining why she was suited to teaching at Hudson Valley Community College’s School of Dental Hygiene, where she acted as the senior clinical coordinator. Mrs. Miranda was also elected to the HVCC academic senate.

She impressed upon students respect for their part of the medical profession. “I think it was extremely rewarding for her,” Mr. Miranda said.

The couple met when she moved into the apartment above his in an off-campus building near the University of Buffalo. “She was a really good person,” Mr. Miranda said. “A fun person to talk to.”

Mrs. Miranda earned a Bachelor of Science degree, after having gotten an associate degree from Erie Community College, and found a job in Albany while Mr. Miranda went to Albany Law School. “After we spent some time together, she saw some things in me that I don’t think anyone else saw,” he said.

They had three children, the oldest of whom is studying architecture in Chicago. Their daughter, who is musical, is a senior in high school and their youngest son is a freshman, who plays drums in the school band.

“Therese was always very encouraging,” he said. She was active with the school’s Friends of Music program, acting as president for two years. Both of their sons played soccer and she was the treasurer of the New Scotland Soccer Club. “She liked to contribute in whatever way she could,” he said.

Mrs. Miranda also reached out to people. Everywhere. The Mirandas went to France and Italy in recent years and even there, in a foreign country, she would reach out and meet new people. His wife liked to travel, Mr. Miranda said, “She just liked exploring.” She was also interested in art — the couple would often go to the Clark Institute or to New York City for the museums and galleries.

Most important to her was her family, Mr. Miranda said. She grew up in the middle of six brothers and sisters in Waverly, N.Y. and remained close to them as they grew up and spread across the country. She also stayed close to her mother, Marjorie Green Cunningham.

“She was always positive, always thoughtful, and always interested in making sure everyone was taken care of,” said Mr. Miranda.


Mrs. Miranda is survived by her husband, David P. Miranda, and her children, William Miranda, Justina Miranda, and Samuel Miranda. She is also survived by her siblings, Mary Beth Thomas, Barbara Uihlein, Kathleen O’Connor, Joseph Cunningham Jr., James Cunningham, and Michael Cunningham and by her mother, Marjorie Green Cunningham.

Her father, Joseph E. Cunningham, died before her.

A funeral mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 10, at St. Matthew’s Church on Mountainview Street in Voorheesville. A service receiving her body will be held at 4 p.m. on Thursday with visiting hours until 7:30 p.m., at which time a service of closing prayers and sharing of memories will be held. Arrangements are by the Reilly & Son Funeral Home in Voorheesville.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Voorheesville Friends of Music, 432 New Salem Rd., Voorheesville, NY 12186.

— Saranac Hale Spencer

Anna Richardson

WESTERLO — Anna Richardson of Greenville, a lifelong homemaker, died on Thursday, Dec. 2, 2010, in the Atria Senior Living Center in Guilderland. She was 79.

Mrs. Richardson was born in Albany on Jan. 28, 1931, the daughter of the late Chester and Anna (Flach) Plass. She was a devoted and loving wife, mother, and grandmother, her family wrote in a tribute.

Mrs. Richardson attended the First Baptist Church of Westerlo and loved singing in church. She loved to help with the missions and supported her late cousin Rose Klob’s work in Africa, her family wrote. She also loved to travel, especially with her late husband, Clifton G. Richardson Jr., who died in 2005.


Mrs. Richardson is survived by her son, Clifton G. Richardson III and his wife, Phyllis, of Westerlo; her daughter, Cheryl Marto and her husband, Thomas, of Averill Park; and four grandchildren: Jared and Rebekah Richardson, and Chelsey and Carissa Marto.

She is also survived by her sister, Ruth Ott and her husband, Dave, and her brother, William Plass.

Her parents, her husband, and her sister-in-law, Edith Plass, died before her.

A funeral service was held on Monday, Dec. 6 at in the First Baptist Church of Westerlo with interment in the Westerlo Rural Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Missions Fund at the First Baptist Church of Westerlo, Post Office Box 130, Westerlo, NY 12193. Arrangements were by the Cunningham Funeral Home in Greenville; mourners may leave a message at ajcunninghamfh.com.

Paul Schneider

ALTAMONT — Paul Schneider was an eclectic engineer who had a passion for sailing.

He was also the owner of the Highlands Restaurant and Tavern in Altamont before he died on Nov. 25, 2010, in Vero Beach, Fla. He was 74.

His daughters, Sheena and Michelle, ran the restaurant for him.

“He was funny,” said his daughter, Sheena Tymchyn. “Some nights, he would tell jokes down at the bar; some nights, he’d just be Mister Official. But he was pretty much all over the place. He was definitely devoted to the family; he was all about the family.”

Mr. Schneider was born on Sept. 2, 1936 in Albany, N.Y. A veteran of the United States Navy, he served from 1955 to 1957 in Little America, Antarctica.

In 2006, he came back up north and bought the Highlands Restaurant, giving his daughters a chance to run a fine-dining restaurant.

“We were both working at Albany Country Club and putting in lots of hours,” his daughter, Mrs. Tymchyn, said of herself and her sister. “And he somehow thought, if we got our own restaurant, we’d put in less hours. That didn’t work out,” she laughed.

Before buying the restaurant in 2006, Mr. Schneider was a field engineer who worked for IBM at the Pentagon.

He also loved sailing, and included his kids in the fun.

“When we were kids, we had a small Sunfish,” his daughter said. They would use it at their camp at Burden Lake in Averill Park. “He did take us to the British Virgin Islands a couple of times, and we rented a sailboat and sailed the islands. Instead of hiring a crew, we were the crew,” she said.

In 1995, Mr. Schneider sold the house he had owned in Florida, bought a boat, and sailed the Bahamas.

“He did that for about a year and a half,” said Mrs. Tymchyn. “He went through a couple of hurricanes on that boat. I always asked him, ‘Why didn’t you get a hotel room or something?’ He said, ‘That’s my house. I’ve got to save my house.’”

Upon his return, Mr. Schneider became a foster grandfather in North Carolina, and taught remedial math. He was extremely proud of this accomplishment, his family wrote in a tribute.


Mr. Schneider is survived by his five daughters: Helen E. Schneider, Sheena A. Tymchyn, Diane M. Sprague, Michelle B. Catalano and Deborah M. Davis. He is also survived by his stepdaughter Karen Brownfield of Tennessee, and seven grandchildren.

His granddaughter, Stephanie Amber Sprague, died before him.

A memorial celebration of his life will be held at the Fredendall Funeral Home in Altamont, on Sunday, Dec.12, 2010, from 2 to 5 p.m.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Animal Shelter of Schoharie, at 304 Howes Cave Road, in Howe’s Cave, N.Y.

— Zach Simeone

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