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OBITUARIES: Halstead, Ashby, Choinsky, Fernandez, Hellermann, Critelli, Probst, Cawley


Joanne Halstead (1952 – 2017)

CHATHAM—Joanne (Davis) Halstead of Chatham passed away peacefully at home Thursday, February 9, 2017.

Born March 1, 1952 in Hudson to Kenneth and Charlotte (Alamillo) Davis, she was a lifelong resident of the Ghent/Chatham area.

Surviving are: her loving husband of 47 years, John Halstead; her daughter, Amy (Mark) Massey; her son, Adam (Laura) Halstead; her grandchildren, Emma and Bryce Halstead, who were her heart and joy; siblings, Kenneth W. Davis, Harold (Donna) Davis, Judith (Charles) Siter, Thomas (Laura) Davis, Gary (Ann) Davis, Donald (Lynda) Davis and Peter (Ellen) Davis; sisters-in-law, Ann (Dan) Halstead, Carolyn (John) Mosandel; many nieces and nephews.

In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by siblings, James Davis, Charlene Davis and Frank Davis.

Mrs. Halstead attended Chatham Central Schools and worked for many years at Barnwell Nursing and Rehabilitation Center before retiring in 2014. She enthusiastically went above and beyond in her care for the residents of Barnwell.

The happiest times for her were flower gardening, watching all the wildlife in her yard, Sunday drives on the backroads of Columbia County, vacations to the southern coast of Maine and most importantly all the special times with her family.

Mrs. Halstead was a loving wife, devoted mother and the best “Grammy” ever. She was loved, is missed and lasting memories will be in the hearts of many.

Family will receive friends Wednesday February 15, 2017 from 5 to 7 p.m. at French, Gifford, Preiter & Blasl Funeral Home, 25 Railroad Avenue, Chatham.

Private interment at the Chatham Village Rural Cemetery will be at the convenience of the family.

Kindly consider a contribution in Mrs. Halstead’s name to the Chatham Rescue Squad or the Chatham Area Silent Food Pantry, in lieu of flowers.

Condolences may be conveyed at

Dale E. Ashby (1967 – 2017)

ANCRAM—Dale E. Ashby, 49, of Ancram passed away suddenly Thursday, February 9, 2017 at his residence.

He was born September 9, 1967 in Carmel, a son of the late Phil and Alice (Miller) Ashby.

He was employed as a finishing technician with Pawling Engineered Products in Pawling.

Among his favorite sports were baseball, football and NASCAR.

On June 8, 1985 in Patterson, he married Deborah Anne Reilly, who survives him at home.

He leaves: his beloved wife, Deborah of Ancram; his loving children, Erin Ashby of Ancram and Robert Roberts of Catskill; his siblings, Philip and Kathy Ashby of Accord, Debbie and John Ruby of Wingdale, Richard and Genn Ashby of Dover and Gloria Williams of Avon Park, FL; his mother-in-law, Ida Miller of Ancram; two sisters-in-law, Brenda Reilly of Ancram and Kathy Ashby of Accord; many nieces and nephews.

In addition to his parents, Mr. Ashby was predeceased by a daughter, Amber Ashby; a brother, Mark Ashby; a sister, Donna Miettinen; a niece, Tina Ashby and his stepfather, Richard Odell.

Friends are invited and may call Wednesday, February 15, 2017 from 3 to 7 p.m. at the Peck and Peck Funeral Home, 8063 State Route 22 in Copake.

Spring interment will be in the West Copake Cemetery.

For those who desire, contributions may be offered to the Ronald McDonald House, 139 South Lake Avenue, Albany 12208.

To send an online condolence visit

Wayne Francis Choinsky

EAST STROUDSBURG, PA—Wayne Francis Choinsky, 69, of Effort, PA, died Tuesday, February 7 in Lehigh Valley Hospital-Pocono.

He was the husband of Patricia (Jacoby) Choinsky. They would have observed their 48th wedding anniversary February 21.

Born in Germantown, he was a son of the late Frank and Florence (Rumsey) Choinsky.

He had worked as a lab technician for Minerals Technology (formerly Pfizer) in Easton for more than 30 years, retiring in 2008. Along with his wife, he also owned and operated Have a Heart Thrift Store in Mt. Effort.

Mr. Choinsky was a U.S. Navy veteran and a former volunteer in the Wilson Boro Fire Department. He studied theology through the Calvary Bible Institute of the Calvary Baptist Church in Lansdale and he was the founder of the Laymen Evangelist Ministries. His work and his ministry were very important to him and he took great pride in the fact he rose through the ranks to an important position at Minerals Technology.

In addition to his wife, he is survived by: five children, Wendy Saddler of Bensalem; Daniel Choinsky of Effort; Seth Choinsky of Effort; Micah Choinsky of Bangor; and Ivori Choinsky of Effort; four sisters, Jane Woods of Red Hook, Winta Feane of Syracuse, Diana Sprauer of Elizaville and Holly Simays of Washington; two brothers, Frank James Choinsky and Wendell Choinsky, both of Germantown; and five grandchildren, Micah Wayne Choinsky, Jr., Mariali Angel Choinsky, Steven A. Trayes, III, Julia Trayes and Michael Trayes.

Memorial services will be held at a later date.

Condolences may be emailed to

Ethel V. Fernandez (1913 – 2017)

GREENPORT—Ethel Fernandez, 103-years-old, died peacefully Sunday, February 5.

She was born June 11, 1913 to the late William and Virginia Garrison.

She was employed at Columbia Memorial Hospital for many years but what she really loved and enjoyed was raising her kids and grandkids and helping anyone in need. She never turned anyone away who needed a place to stay or a hot meal.

She will be missed dearly by her friends and her family.

Survivors include: her son, Frankie Fernandez; her daughter, Juanita Walthour; her stepson, Manuel Fernandez; stepdaughter, Elizabeth Hall; grandchildren, Billy Fernandez, Lontrice Fernandez, Alicia Fernandez, Angelika Fernandez, Jason Fernandez, Justin Fernandez, Michelle McEachern; great-grandchildren, Lavon Fernandez, Namija Fernandez, Shaquita Fernandez, Kunique Marable, Shontasia Branch, Creshawn Mackey, Precious Taylor and Tamya Taylor.

She was predeceased by: her brother, William Garrison; grandson, Steven Fernandez; two special friends, Helen Brandow Mosley and Cynthia Kenney Simpson.

Memorial, visitation and funeral prayers were at the Sacco-McDonald-Valenti Funeral Home, 700 Town Hall Drive, Greenport, Saturday, February 11. A celebration of her life immediately followed at 24 Aitken Avenue, Hudson.

William D. Hellermann (1939 – 2017)

GHENT—William D. Hellermann, 77, died Monday, February 6, 2017 at Whittier Rehabilitation and Skilled Nursing Center. Obituary information is incomplete.

There are no services scheduled.

Arrangements are with the Sacco-McDonald-Valenti Funeral Home, 700 Town Hall Drive, Greenport.

Anthony B. Critelli (1935 – 2017)

HUDSON—Anthony B. Critelli, 82, formerly of Poughkeepsie and most recently Ghent, died Saturday, February 11 at Columbia Memorial Hospital.

Born January 14, 1935 in Poughkeepsie, he was the son of Frank and Giovannia (Gigliotti) Critelli.

Affectionately known as “Uncle Tony” or “Private Benjamin,” Mr. Critelli worked for more than 35 years in maintenance at the Hudson River Psychiatric Center in Poughkeepsie. He was well known for always lending a helping hand and doing odd jobs throughout Poughkeepsie and the surrounding areas. Great joy came from helping his friend Mike Sigarelli at Mike’s Take 5 Deli.

Mr. Critelli enjoyed old movies and jigsaw puzzles, and he loved food, especially his mother’s pizza and baccala. Socializing was also a favorite activity and he was known to enjoy a few brews at The American Legion or Fitzgerald’s Bar.

Left to cherish his memory are: brothers, Frank and Victor Critelli; sisters, Mary Critelli, Margaret Refenberger and Mary McNally; several nieces and nephews and great-nieces and nephews. In addition to his parents, Mr. Critelli was predeceased by siblings, John, Frank, Geraldine and Anna Critelli, Virginia Pittsley and Fran Storms.

Visitation hours are Friday, February 17 from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Bates & Anderson-Redmond & Keeler Funeral Home, 110 Green Street, Hudson.

Dorothy Frances Probst (1925 – 2017)

SCHENECTADY—Dorothy Lasher Probst, 91, passed away peacefully Sunday, February 12 at Capital Living and Rehabilitation Centre.

She was born November 21, 1925 in Hudson, to the late Leon Lasher and Margret Guisler of Tivoli. In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by her sister, Marion Blakeman of Jacksonville, FL.

Mrs. Probst graduated in 1943 from Hudson High School. She then completed her education in 1944 at the Albany Business College. Upon graduation she was employed at Bond and Sheldon in Albany. Mrs. Probst continued her career working in various roles within the New York State government. She retired in 1990 as executive assistant to the Commissioner of New York State, Division of Criminal Justice.

She moved to Delanson with her then husband, Fred J. Probst in 1956. She was a longtime parishioner of Our Lady of Fatima Church in Delanson and a member of their Rosary Society. She was a member and one time president of the Electric City Twirlers, Square Dance Club.

She is survived and loved by: her two daughters and their spouses, Sherrylyn Keeshan and Alvin Keeshan, Jr., of Poughquag and Diane Probst and Russell Green of Guilderland; her grandchildren, Alvin Keeshan, III, of Hopewell Junction, Jennifer Ramos (Keeshan) of Poughquag, Christopher Keeshan of Larchmont, Ryan Glennon of Guilderland, Brendan Glennon of Albany; several great-grandchildren; her five nieces, Margaret Preusler of Switzerland, FL, Joan Waters of Jacksonville, FL, Carol Blakeman of Ocala, FL, Linda Marsh of Jacksonville, FL, Karen Zosch of Mendon, NJ, and their spouses and children.

A memorial service will be held at Our Lady of Fatima Church in Delanson, Saturday February 25, 2017 at 10 a.m.

Donations in lieu of flowers may be made to the Community Hospice of Schenectady County. Grave interment will occur this spring at the Red Church Cemetery, Route 9G in Tivoli.

Arrangements are with Simple Choices, Inc., 1088 Western Avenue, Albany.

Joseph W. Cawley (1948 – 2017)

RHINEBECK—Joseph William Cawley, 68, a 35-year resident of Millerton, formerly of Amenia, died Sunday, February 12, 2017 at Northern Dutchess Hospital following a lengthy illness.

Mr. Cawley retired from the Wassaic Developmental Center in 1991 after 25 years of service as a therapy aide supervisor. He also drove school bus for the Webutuck School District for many years.

Born August 9, 1948 in Sharon, CT, he was the son of the late Michael and Edna (Connor) Cawley. He was a graduate of Webutuck High School. Mr. Cawley will forever be remembered as a loving and caring grandfather to his four beloved grandchildren. He will be dearly missed by all.

Survivors include: his son, Joseph Cawley of Millerton; a brother, Michael Cawley and his wife Diane of Copake; four grandchildren, Jennifer and Janine Cawley of Millerton and Leah and Adam Cawley of Rhinebeck; his former wife, Lorraine Phillips of North Carolina and several dear friends.

Calling hours will be held Wednesday, February 15, 2017 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Scott D. Conklin Funeral Home, 37 Park Avenue, Millerton. Funeral services will follow at 7 p.m. at the funeral home. The Reverend Henry Prause will officiate. All other services will be private. Memorial contributions may be made to the Millerton Fire Company, P.O. Box 733, Millerton 12546 or to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, 457 State Street, Binghamton 13901. To send an online condolence visit

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