OBITUARIES: VanAlstyne, Corbett, Singler, Todriff, Rivenburgh, Almonte, Pazera, Morrison, Coon, Payson


Rebecca L. VanAlstyne (1960 – 2022)

Becky VanAlstyne

VALATIE—The soul of Rebecca Lynn VanAlstyne passed beyond this world, Thursday, June 23, 2022.

She was a rock for her family and friends. Her unexpected passing leaves behind heartbreak in the many lives she touched.

Known as “Becky” to those she loved, she was a talented, selfless, generous and kind soul. Growing up, she attended Shalmont High School with her brother and sister. She went on to graduate from Buffalo State with a degree in drafting and used her knowledge as a senior mechanical design engineer for more than 30 years at MTI in Albany.

She took pride in her work and was both a highly-valued friend and coworker there. Her talents extended far beyond the three dimensional drafting she did at work. She is best known by some for her skillful basket-making. Those lucky enough to own a “Becky Basket” may have a rare Ash Nantucket, pack-basket, Native American-style or an original design. She was a devoted wife, mother, sister and daughter. She spent much of her life doing things for others while never asking for anything in return. In September 1985 she married her best friend, Peter VanAlstyne. They went on to have three children and a life full of happy moments. Her hands were never idle. In winter, they were giving support to those she taught to ski or passing around hot cocoa after a Christmas Eve walk in the snow. In the spring, they’d be perched atop the handlebars of her bicycle or busy making her famous lasagna in the kitchen. In the summer they’d be covered with sweat and dirt from working in one of her many gardens or holding on to her husband on the back of his motorcycle. In fall, she’d build leaf piles for her children to jump into or create epic music playlists for dance parties in the living room. She loved her husband, children and grandchildren ferociously, with pride and with her whole heart. Family was the most important part of her life and she always chose to put their needs above all else. She had a courageous spirit and was always ready for a new adventure. She planned to spend her future days teaching her grandchildren that important lesson. Her most common phrase in the past few months was, “I just love those grandbabies!” She wanted to show them all the things she did with her own children—playing in her gardens, teaching the art of crafts, cooking holiday Italian classics, hiking through the woods, and exploring beloved vacation spots like Gloucester, the Adirondacks and Acadia.

Mrs. VanAlstyne is survived by her: husband, Peter VanAlstyne; her three children, Carolyn Mann, Jill Papaleo and Benjamin VanAlstyne; her three beloved grandchildren, Nellie Papaleo, Ava Papaleo and Greyson Mann; her sister, Shelley Trepess; brother, Kenneth Kieft and father-in-law, Richard VanAlstyne.

A Celebration of Life service will take place September 17 in her gardens starting at 2 in the afternoon for all her friends and family. Contact one of her children for location and details. Arrangements are under the direction of the Raymond E. Bond Funeral Home, Valatie.

Gail Corbett

Gail Corbett (1971 – 2022)

HUDSON—Gail Corbett, age 50, a lifelong resident of Hudson died in the company of her loving family, Thursday July 14, 2022 at Columbia Memorial Hospital.

Born November 11, 1971 in Hudson, she was the daughter of the late Winfield and Victoria Rose (Joslin) Hotaling. She is survived by: her husband, Paul Corbett, daughters, Ashley Corbett (Nelson), Christina Corbett (Michael); two brothers, Dusty (Peggy) Heinze, Freddy (Michelle) Valentine; her sister, Theresa Lentz (James) as well as her grandchildren, Bentley, Madison, Mikayla and Riley.

Calling hours and funeral services were held July 18, 2022 at the Sacco Funeral Home, 700 Town Hall Drive, Greenport. Following cremation the family will announce a reception gathering at a later date.

Janet Singler

Janet M. Singler (1949 – 2022)

ALBANY—Janet Mae Singler was born November 16, 1949 in Hudson and passed peacefully July 4, 2022 in Albany.

She is survived by: her husband, Joseph Singler; children, Al (Rebecca) Schulze, Kim (Kevin) Harman, April Wagoner, Philip (Amy) Salvatore; grandchildren, Maria, Julia, Alan Mykal, Nathaniel, Sebastian, Owen; brothers, Raymond (Deborah), William (Judy) Bender and their families. She was predeceased by her parents, Albert and Loretta Bender. She was a graduate of Germantown Central and C-GCC with an associates degree in psychology. She attended the Livingston Memorial Church, where she was a member of the women’s guild and was also a member in The Piecemaker’s of Cairo quilting guild.

She had a helping heart, she worked with the teen parents program to give young parents help and advice with children. Later she drove school buses for children with special needs. She was always offering and arranging help. If she could not help someone herself, she would search until she found someone who could.

She enjoyed working in her yard, planting flowers, tending vegetables, and sharing the plants she had along with the harvests she gathered. She was creative—painting on anything that stayed still for too long, but her favorite canvas was slate tile. She expanded her creativity into quilting where she could share her warmth in colorful quilts to wrap up in.

Services were held at Bates & Anderson July 11, 2022. Burial was private. Her family plans a celebration barbecue Sunday, August 7 at Palatine Park in Germantown. In lieu of flowers, consider donating to AMC Trauma ICU or the Center for Donation and Transplant. These teams were an incredible asset in fulfilling Mrs. Singler’s last helping wish to be an organ donor. Contact her daughter, Kim for information on how to donate.

Lillian R. Todriff (1941 – 2022)

KINDERHOOK—Lillian Rose Todriff, 80, of Kinderhook passed away July 8, 2022.

The daughter of the late Ralph and Violet (Robinson) Fish, she was born November 17, 1941 in Sharon, CT.

She worked for NYS Division for Youth for 38 years retiring in 2003. She was a member of numerous senior groups and loved to organize senior trips. She was a member of the Kinderhook Elks #2530 and was recently named 2021-2022 Elk of the Year.

In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by five siblings. She is survived by: her children, Timothy (Genevieve) Todriff, Sr., and Dean (Tracylynn) Todriff, Sr.; her grandchildren, Timothy, Jr., (Erin), Jonathan, Justin, Dean, Jr., and Zachary Todriff; four great-grandchildren; her siblings, Marion Mueller, Stanley Fish; several nieces, nephews and friends.

According to her final wishes, there will be no wake or funeral services. Cremation took place through the care of Simple Choices, Inc.

To honor Ms. Todriff, donations may be made to AnimalKind Inc, 721 Warren Street, Hudson 12534, (518-822-8643) or American Cancer Society, 1 Penny Lane, Latham 12110 (518-220-6902). Relatives and friends are invited to pay their respects online at:

Patricia Rivenburgh (1935 – 2022)

CATSKILL—Patricia Rivenburgh, 86, of Chatham passed away peacefully at Greene Meadows Rehabilitation Center, July 9, 2022.

“Patty,” as she was known, was born September 28, 1935 in Albany, the daughter of Betty and Ken West.

She was predeceased by her loving husband, Fred Rivenburgh and beloved dog, Tessa. She is survived by: sons, Reid (Cecilia) of Santa Fe, NM; Neil (Rumiko) of Lawrenceville, GA; granddaughter, Sarah, also of GA; companion, Greg Pickens of Chatham; siblings, Barbara (Ray) Ranzoni of North Adams, MA; Dean (and Mary) West of Chatham; and Donna (and Tom) Packet of Chatham.

She graduated from Chatham High. As a young woman, she worked as a telephone operator and at Travelers Insurance, and then she was a full-time homemaker and loving wife and parent. She had a good life and enjoyed her family and friends in Columbia County. She will be missed dearly.

Funeral services will be private. Condolences may be conveyed at

Angelica A.R. Almonte (1957 – 2022)

HUDSON—Angelica A. Rodriguez Almonte, 65, of Hudson died Sunday, July 16, 2022 at Columbia Memorial Hospital.

Born in Santiago, Dominican Republic, she was the daughter of the late Juan Antonio and Rosa Emilia (Abreu) Rodriguez. She was a school teacher in the Dominican Republic prior to her residence here. She will be missed by her two loving daughters; several brothers and sisters. Services may be announced at a later time. Arrangements are with the Sacco Funeral Home, Greenport. Leave condolences at

Julie Pazera

Julie E. Pazera (1968 – 2022)

HUDSON—Julie Elizabeth Pazera of Hudson passed away peacefully July 7, 2022 with family by her side. She was 54.

Her death leaves a very large hole in the hearts of all who loved her as she was truly one of a kind. She was smart, creative and introspective. She loved tie-dye and long skirts. She was a great reader and especially loved books full of suspense and intrigue. She loved music, notably Bob Dylan. She also loved to cook and experiment with various vegan recipes, often posting pictures of her favorite foods, urging all to try.

She graduated from Hudson High School in 1986 and kept in touch with many of her high school friends. She loved Hudson and Becraft Avenue especially and almost never missed a family party even after moving away. She attended Marist College, receiving a degree in psychology. Soon after graduation, she went to visit her brother in Tucson, AZ, and stayed for nine years. While there, she studied at the Desert Institute of the Healing Arts, met many friends and fermented new interests that would remain with her throughout her life.

Seeking a change, she moved to New Orleans where she worked as an archivist, a psychic and licensed tour guide. She was well-respected for her psychic abilities and was, more than anything, an empathetic listener to many people who sought her out. She lived in New Orleans for nearly 20 years, a city that she adopted and, in turn, loved her. Her “family” there supported her and her interests: art, music, poetry, performance. New Orleans was also where she adopted Mu, her cat companion of 14 years. Together, she and Mu, made countless trips back to Hudson, so as not to miss any family get-togethers.

Ms. Pazera leaves behind: her beloved mother, Elizabeth Pazera; sister, Kim of Boston; brother, Joe, his wife, Ann, and nieces, Emily and Sofia of Springfield, MO; a large extended family of aunts, uncles and cousins, who will forever miss her. She was preceded in death by her father, Joseph Pazera.

A celebration of her extraordinary life will be held at a later date. Donations may be made in her name to one of her favorite places in Hudson: AnimalKind, 721 Warren

St., Hudson 12534, or to one’s local animal shelter.

“RIP Julie. May you find eternal peace among the stars. You will be missed and never forgotten.”

Visit to leave condolences.

Dawn Morrison

Dawn M. Morrison (1956 – 2022)

HUDSON—Dawn Marie Morrison, 66, of Hudson was reunited with her loving husband in Heaven, July 13, 2022 at Columbia Memorial Hospital.

She lived a life full of love and happiness. Her pride and joy was her family, especially her two sons and grandchildren. She was a collector of all things primitive and roosters. She had an eye for decorating her home, loved to spend her summer days yardsaling or out to lunch with the ladies. She was well-known around town at her favorite dining establishments.

She worked a number of jobs through her life, all focused around helping others. Most recently in her final years, she was Michael S. Johnston’s most beloved bus attendant.

Mrs. Morrison was predeceased by: her parents, Catherine and Joseph Wallach; her devoted and loving husband, Joseph W. Morrison, Sr., and her nephew, Paul Wallach.

She leaves behind family who loved her with all of their hearts: her brothers, Joseph (Muriel) Wallach of Niverville and Paul Wallach of Valatie; her sons, who were her absolute heart, Joseph W. Morrison, Jr., and wife Jennifer of Stuyvesant, and Todd J. Morrison and wife Rose of Germantown; the light of her life, her grandchildren, Hailey, Katie, JoJo, Landon, Gabby, Jennie and Harmony; many beloved nieces and nephews; her dear cousin, Lorri; her best friends in life,who have been at her side, Patty, Audrey and Marilyn;her dog, Baby and her two cats, Ruby and KoKo.

She is remembered always with fond memories of laughter, love, courage and strength.

A memorial service for Dawn and Joseph Morrison (who passed in November 2020) was held at Bates and Anderson-Redmond & Keeler Funeral Home, July 19, 2022. Funeral services were private July 20, 2022 at Ceder Park Cemetery.

Contributions in memory of Mrs. Morrison may be made to the Columbia-Greene Humane Society.

Howie Coon

Howard E. Coon (1935 – 2022)

GHENT—Howard “Howie” E. Coon, 87, a longtime resident of both Red Hook and Germantown passed away Friday, July 15, 2022 at the Ghent Skilled Nursing Facility.

Born January 24, 1935 in Red Hook, he was the son of the late William N. and Evelyn (Rhynders) Coon. He married Susan Pearl Kight, July 12, 1986 at the Rowe United Methodist Church, Milan. She predeceased him January 3, 2018.

He proudly served his country in the United States Air Force from 1952-1956.

He was a mail carrier based in the Red Hook Post Office from 1966 to 1992. He could often be found walking his route through the village.

He enjoyed being outdoors, watching a good sports game or participating in a round of golf. He was an avid bowler and golfer and a big fan of the Boston Red Sox. He took great pride in the condition of his well-manicured lawn. Above all he enjoyed having his family together.

Mr. Coon is survived by: his loving children, Dru (Joe) Ary of Hillsdale, Michael (Merilee) Coon of Red Hook, Sue Jacobson (Tim Zacheus) of Clifton Park; his step-children, Rene (Paul) Roosa of Valatie and Roger Kight of Red Hook; his sisters, Sandra (Gordon) Keeler of Millerton and Helen Coon Daniels of Hudson; his grandchildren, April-Jo (David) Whalen, Hollie (Bryan) Van Tassel, Dave Coon (Lina Aguilar), Joe (Sarah) Coon, Chris Coon, Steve Coon, Paulie Roosa and Halley (Angelo) Santelli; his 16 great-grandchildren, Riley, Parker and Fiona Whalen, Ellie and Cooper Van Tassel, Ben, Maggie, Marcus and Brett Coon, Alita Aguilar-Coon, Lucas, Owen, Mad-ain and Quinlee Roosa, and Fiona and Enzo Santelli; his former spouse, Mary Athanas; in addition to extended family and friends.

In addition to his wife, he was predeceased by his siblings, Shirley Scism, Alice “Sis” Mabie, Marian Coon and Elmer “Buddy” Coon.

Friends may call at the Burnett and White Funeral Home Thursday, July 21, 2022 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Funeral services will begin at 1 p.m. Burial will immediately follow at St. John’s Reformed Church Cemetery in Upper Red Hook.

Memorial donations may be made in Mr. Coon’s memory to Make-A-Wish America, 1702 East Highland Avenue, Suite 400, Phoenix, AZ 85016 or Tunnel to Towers Foundation, 2361 Hylan Boulevard, Staten Island 10306.

Arrangements are under the direction of Burnett & White Funeral Homes, 7461 South Broadway, Red Hook.

Ron Payson, Sr.

Ronald S. Payson, Sr. (1938 – 2022)

CRARYVILLE—It is with great sadness that the family of Ronald Sears Payson, Sr., announce his passing, after a brief but valiant battle with cancer, July 19, 2022.

“Ron” was born October 17, 1938, in Springfield, MA, to Peter and Beatrice Payson. He spent his early years in Springfield, MA, where his father managed the fondly remembered Jane Alden’s Ice Cream Parlor on Sumner Avenue, across from the entrance to Forest Park. After graduating from Chicopee High School, he entered the Army in 1957 and spent much of his deployment at Fort Richardson, Anchorage, Alaska Territory, with his brother Peter. While in Alaska, he served as a helicopter mechanic, and was a goalie on the Army hockey team, which won the first Alaska State Championship in 1958. After leaving the Army in 1960 he moved back to Massachusetts where he met and married his first wife, Cynthia Henderson, who died in 1965. They had a daughter Melinda in 1966 and son, Ronald, Jr. in 1968.

He attended the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where he received his BS in zoology and MS in ecology in 1970. Soon after, he and his family moved to Germantown and he began his career at Columbia-Greene Community College in Athens, as one of its founding professors, teaching anatomy and physiology, ecology and genetics. To enrich the instruction of his nursing students, he obtained an RN degree and an EMT in the early 1980s. In 1992 he was awarded the President’s Award for Excellence for exemplary contributions to Columbia-Greene’s mission, and he retired two years later as full professor and Technical and Scientific Studies Division chair. He later worked at Hudson Valley Community College as the director of the Center for Effective Teaching, and he finished his career working as the controller at Catamount Ski Resort.

He married his second wife, Karen Lunning, in 1977, and moved to Craryville, where they lived until his passing. He had a lifelong passion for opening student’s eyes to the wonders of the world and the value of learning. The water, the ocean, and its animals were great interests of his, and he organized and led numerous student expeditions in the Caribbean and on Cape Cod with the Northeast Marine Environmental Institute. Volunteering and helping others were also very important to him. He was a founder of the Hudson River Sloop “Clearwater” Group in the 1970s, which helped to clean up the Hudson River. He used his EMT certification with the Craryville Fire Department and spent several weeks volunteering with the Red Cross at ground zero after 9/11. He loved airplanes, animals and the outdoors. His favorite pastime was fishing—there was never just one more cast! He obtained a private pilot’s certificate at the airport in Great Barrington, MA, and he loved to fly over the beautiful Berkshire Mountains. In his later years he and his wife enjoyed the wildlife in their backyard, the company of his five cats, and spending time with his children and grandchildren. To the end, he enjoyed engaging in deep conversations with whomever was willing on topics of science, politics and life philosophies.

He is survived by: his wife of 45 years, Karen; his brother, Peter Martin Payson, Jr. of Springfield, MA; his daughter, Melinda Payson of Clifton Park; his son, Ronald Payson, Jr., of Williston, VT; his daughter, Angelique Bernstein of Troy; his daughter, Karissa Payson of Copake Lake; his grandchildren, William and Nicholas of VT, Meredith of CO, Braxton, Liam, and Eli of NY, and Reagan and Maggie of WI, and his five cats. He was predeceased by his sister, Jerry Lee Payson, and his son, Marcus Payson.

Calling hours will be held Saturday July 23 from 5 to 7 p.m. at M. Grimaldi Funeral Home, 25 Railroad Avenue, Chatham. Donations may be made to The Aplastic Anemia and MDS International Foundation, Shriners Hospitals, your local animal shelter, or by making a blood donation to the American Red Cross. A celebration of life event will be held for family and friends at a to-be-determined date.

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