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Obituaries: Atwood, Groves, Seiler, Bemiss


Dr. Gilbert Atwood, 83, chemist, inventor

HUDSON—Dr. Gilbert Richard Atwood passed away Saturday, October 29, 2011.

He was born April 9, 1928 in Taunton, MA, the son of Gilbert Humphrey and Louise Rogers Atwood, and grew up in Moon Township, PA.

He received a BS degree in chemistry from Carnegie Institute of Technology, an MS from Prudue University and a PhD in physical chemistry from the University of Pittsburgh. He worked for Koppers Company in Pittsburgh, PA, and Union Carbide Corporation in Tarrytown.

His invention and patents of separation and purification of transformer fluid to remove PCBs started the Unison Division of Union Carbide for which he received the first Chairman’s Award.

He was a past master of Pleasantville Hiawatha Lodge # 434 and a DDGM, F. & A.M., a 32nd Degree member of the Scottish Rite and a Shriner. He was a past patron of OES and an advisor of the Rainbow Girls. He was a life member of the American Chemical Society and Sigma XI, the Mayflower Society and had been very active in the Pleasantville Methodist Church.  His avocation was playing the piano and organ and singing in choirs.

He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Donna Elaine Oelschlager Atwood; son, Stephen Parker Atwood and Linda; daughter, Elaine Atwood Henderson and Craig; grandchildren, Stephen Christopher Atwood, Donovan Richard Atwood, Craig Tyler Henderson and Alyssa Elaine Henderson. He was predeceased by a grandson, Bradley Clark Henderson, 1998 to 2004.

Funeral services were Wednesday, November 2, 2011 at the Bates and Anderson Funeral Home, 110 Green Street, Hudson.

In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the Scottish Rite Children’s Dyslexia Center, 3579 Masonic Way, Pittsburgh, PA 15237 or the Shriner’s Children’s Hospital in Springfield, MA.

Alberta Groves, retired North Chatham postmaster

CASTLETON—Alberta Groves, a lifelong resident of North Chatham, passed away October 29, 2011 at the Resurrection Nursing Home.

She was preceded in death by her husband, John C. Groves.

She is survived by: her daughter, Cathy Huntley (Alex) of Lanett, AL; granddaughter, Bonnie Haug (Larry) of Rainier, OR; grandson, David Huntley (Marsha), Fort  White, FL; great grandsons, Mason Roberts (Rachael) of Fort Pierce, FL, Sheldon Roberts of U.S. Army, Ft. Bragg, NC; great-granddaughters, Anna Marie Huntley of Fort White, FL, and  Layla Nichols Roberts of Fort Pierce, FL.

Mrs. Groves was a graduate of Albany Business School. She was a 4H leader, Sunday school teacher and served on many local boards throughout her lifetime.

She began employment at North Chatham Post Office in 1949 and served as its postmaster since 1971. She retired in December 2007.

Visitation will be at the North Chatham Methodist Church, Saturday, November 5 at 1 p.m. with the funeral to follow at 2 p.m.

Burial will be at the North Chatham Cemetery. Arrangements are with the Raymond E. Bond Funeral Home, Route 9, Valatie.

Flowers will be accepted. Memorial donations may be sent to: Rensselaer County Hospice; North Chatham Methodist Church; North Chatham Volunteer Fire Company; North Chatham Historical Society or the Columbia County Humane Society.

Diane Seiler, 68, homemaker, crafter

VALATIE—Diane E. Seiler, 68, of Valatie died Monday, October 31, 2011, at Barnwell Health Facilities.

Born in Kenmore, March 19, 1943, she was the daughter of the late Thomas and Leona (Ebling) Aitcheson.

Mrs. Seiler was a homemaker and loved crafts and spending time with her family.

She is survived by three sons, Michael E. Bewick and Thomas J. Buick, both of Valatie and Daniel P. Bewick of Chaffee; two brothers, Thomas G. Aitcheson of Florida, Douglas Aitcheson of Dunkirk; and 13 grandchildren.

A memorial service was held Wednesday, November 2 at the Christian Community Church, Route 9, Kinderhook. Interment will be at the convenience of the family. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Teen Challenge International USA, 5250 North Towne Center Drive, Ozark, MO 65721.

Robert Bemiss, 65, outdoorsman, carpenter

VALATIE—Robert L. Bemiss, 65, passed away October 31, 2001 after bravely fighting a long illness.

Mr. Bemiss was a resident of Kinderhook for 45 years and was most recently of Hernando, FL.  He was the youngest son of the late Charles “Red” and Evelyn (Clapper) Bemiss. He grew up in East Chatham and graduated from Chatham Central School.

Survivors include:  his wife of 46 years, Linda (Engel) Bemiss; his two children, Robert Jr. “Andy” (Stephanie Tanaka) of Chatham and Beverly (Greg Wojnar) of Schodack; siblings, Yvonne “Bonnie” Kimok of Pittsfield, MA, Myma Lapier or Kinderhook Lake, Nellie Hall of Charleston, MA and William (Jane) Bemiss of East Chatham; and several nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by a brother, Howard Bemiss.

Mr. Bemiss loved the outdoors, flowers, birds and working in his yard. He loved tinkering around his house and was an impressive carpenter. He was an avid golfer and hunter and through the years he enjoyed bowling and was an outstanding baseball player. He served in the US Army from 1966 to 68 and retired from the New York State Thruway Authority in 1999. He then worked at the Copake Country Club for several years. The Bemisses were “snow birds” for 10 years and then moved into their dream home in Florida in November of 2010.

A memorial service was held Saturday, November 5 at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church, Route 9, Valatie with the Reverend James Slater officiating. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to The Community Hospice of Columbia/Greene, 47 Liberty Street, Catskill 12414. Arrangements were with the Raymond E. Bond Funeral Home, Route 9, Valatie.



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