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Obituaries: Rifenburg, Philipson, Dickerson, Rickert


Churchill W. Rifenburg (1917 – 2013)

RHINEBECK—Churchill W. Rifenburg, 95, a lifelong Tivoli and Red Hook resident, passed away Tuesday, April 9, 2013 at Northern Dutchess Hospital.

Born June 24, 1917 in Madalin, he was the son of the late Santi and Bertha May (Shook) Rifenburg.


Mr. Rifenburg was inducted in the U.S. Army November 9, 1942 as a corporal in the 21st Coast Artillery. Stationed at Fort Miles, DE, and Fort Monroe, VA. He joined the 103rd Division 410 Regiment-Anti-tank Company at Camp Howze, TX. He participated in the European Theater of Operations—landing at Marseille and continuing in combat through France, Germany and into Austria. For his service, he earned the American Defense Medal, the European African Campaign Ribbon with three Battle Stars, the Bronze Star, Army of Occupation and World War II Victory Medal.

While on a three-day-pass from his military service, Mr. Rifenburg married Catherine Postver March 4, 1943 at St. Sylvia’s Church in Tivoli. She predeceased him December 23, 2010.

For nearly 30 years and until his retirement in 1980, Mr. Rifenburg worked as an engineering supervisor for the New York State Department of Transportation-Taconic State Parkway.

Hel was a longtime member of both the Harris Smith Post 524 American Legion and the Monumental Lodge #374, F&AM in Tivoli.

He is survived by: his son, Churchill “Dennis” Rifenburg of West Palm Beach, FL; his grandsons, Kevin Rifenburg of Red Hook and Christopher Rifenburg of Tivoli; his granddaughter, Jennifer Huber of Germantown; his two daughters-in-law, Barbara Rifenburg of Red Hook and Jennifer Rifenburg of Boston, MA, and his five great grandchildren.

In addition to his beloved wife Catherine, he was predeceased by two sons, Kevin and Timothy Rifenburg, and his siblings, Harry, Kenneth, Alexander, Belle and Edith Rifenburg.

Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, April 13, 2013 at Burnett & White Funeral Homes, Red Hook. Burial with military honors will be at Red Church Cemetery, Tivoli.

Friends may call at the Burnett & White Funeral Homes on Friday, April 12, 2013 from 5 to 8 p.m.

Harris Smith Post #524 will conduct services at 7 p.m. and Monumental Lodge #374 will hold services at 7:30 p.m.

Donations may be made in Mr. Rifenburg’s memory to the Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 758517, Topeka, KS 66675.

Arrangements are under the direction of Burnett & White Funeral Homes 7461 South Broadway, Red Hook. For directions, or to sign the online guest book visit

Robert Luther Philipson (1962 – 2013)

HUDSON—Robert “Robbie” Luther Philipson, 51, of Claverack passed away Tuesday, April 9, 2013 at Columbia Memorial Hospital after a long illness.

Born March 21, 1962 in Shawnee, Oklahoma, he was the beloved son of Mary and Jack Darragh of Claverack and the late Albert Philipson; the devoted brother of Becky Philipson Malendes and her husband, John of Wappinger Falls, Doyle Philipson and his wife, LeaAnne of Blue Point, Long Island, Michael Philipson of Claverack, Edward Price and his wife, Crissi of Freeport, Long Island, Christine Darragh Bernstein and her husband, Alan of West Palm Beach, Florida, and Connie Darragh Buell and her husband, Eben of Freeport, Long Island. Also surviving are his sister-in-law, Diana Philipson of Babylon, Long Island; his wife, Maria Evalia Philipson of Wichita, Kansas; his son, Kenneth Philipson of Wichita; his daughter, Katelyn Philipson Donahoe of Simi Valley, California; 29 nieces and nephews; four great-nieces and nephews.

He was predeceased by his brother, Albert Philipson.

Visiting hours are 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday, April 14 at the Bates & Anderson – Redmond & Keeler Funeral Home.

The family thanks his superb caregivers at Columbia Greene Dialysis Center in Ghent, especially Sarah Wilbur, and her team, all of his caring physicians, including Dr. Vinod Gupta and Dr. Inna Kudria, the nurses at Columbia Memorial Hospital, and the staff of Community Hospice of Columbia Greene.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation or to Robbie’s favorite charity, “random acts of kindness.”

Violet Dickerson (1910 – 2013)

GHENT—Violet Dickerson, 102, formerly of Hudson, died Thursday, April 11, 2013 at the Whittier Nursing Home.

Born in Westport, June 18, 1910, she was the daughter of the late Alexander and Amy Passino.

Mrs. Dickerson worked at the Universal Match Factory for more than 25 years. She was a member of St. Mary’s Church, a member of the Columbia Memorial Hospital Ladies Auxiliary (Greenport Branch), a member of the Golden Agers and Whalers, and a life-member of the Greenport Fire Company Ladies Auxiliary.

She was predeceased by her husband, Glenn Dickerson; her son, Theodore Dickerson; three sisters, Mabel Sheldon, Ella Passino, and Loretta Passino Dickinson and a brother, Earl Passino, Sr.

Mrs. Dickerson is survived by: her daughter-in-law, Madeline (Lee) Dickerson of Greenport; a grandson, Robert (Kathleen) Dickerson of Fairport; a granddaughter, Susan (Ed) Rogalski of Bedford, MA; five great-grandchildren, Helena, Natalie, Olivia and Mitchell Dickerson, all of Fairport, and Sarah Rogalski of Bedford, MA, and several nieces and nephews.

A calling hour will begin at 9 a.m. Monday, April 15 at the Bates & Anderson – Redmond & Keeler Funeral Home, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 10:30 am at St. Mary’s Church in Hudson.

Interment will be in Cedar Park Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to St. Mary’s Church in Hudson or to Community Hospice of Columbia/Greene.

John Joseph Rickert, Jr. (1931 – 2013)

OLD CHATHAM—John Joseph Rickert, Jr., 81, of Old Chatham passed away, Saturday, April 13, 2013 at his home.

Born June 20, 1931 in Albany, he was the son of the late John Joseph and the late Gertrude (Phillips) Rickert, Sr. and the husband of Jean (Taylor) Rickert.

He was an avid bow hunter, a New York State Department of Environmental Conservation bow hunting instructor and was the former member/owner of Capitol Archery Lanes in Albany.

Mr. Rickert was employed by Tobin First Prize in Albany for 27 years and was a Foley Belsaw certified small engine mechanic. Before his retirement, he was employed for 13 years as a maintenance mechanic for the Chatham Central School District. He also earned a National Defense Ribbon.

Besides his wife, Jean, he is also survived by: his five children, John Joseph Rickert, III, of Galway, Ronald Edward Rickert of Old Chatham, Laurie Jean Guido of Meridianville, AL, Joseph Matthew Rickert of Valatie and Timothy John Rickert of Burlington, VT; his brother, Greg Rickert of Vermont; his sisters, Donna Evans of Schenectady, Patricia Shultis of Albany, Margaret (Peg) Deeb of Glens Falls and Ruthie Pellitier of Vermont; 17 grandchildren and eight great grandchildren and several nieces and nephews.

There will be no calling hours or funeral. Contributions may be made to the Community Hospice of Columbia/Greene, 47 Liberty Street, Catskill 12414.

Arrangements are with the Raymond E. Bond Funeral Home, Valatie.





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