Obituary: Joan M. Fedak

Joan M. Marshall Fedak, age 85, of Stratford, beloved wife of the late, John N. Fedak, passed away peacefully on June 26, 2022 in Bridgeport Hospital, with her loving family by her side.

Joan was born in Bridgeport on October 2, 1936 to the late George and Mary Marshall. Joan was a lifelong resident of Bridgeport and Stratford where she also worked, married, and raised her family.

Joan was married to the late John N. Fedak for 48 years. They both were active and popular in their local communities and in all their children’s activities. Joan prided herself on her values around work and she always held full-time employment whilst raising her six children.

Joan held various roles over the years such as an administrative position at E&F Construction. She worked many years at Conco Medical. Her last and most beloved role was as Dietitian Assistant at St. Vincent’s Hospital where she worked up until she retired at 80 years old. Joan met and worked with many wonderful people throughout her life, and some have become lifelong friends. Joan was passionate about her pets, gardening and spending quality time with her family and grandchildren.

Survivors include Joan’s beloved children, Lynn Wellington, John Fedak and his wife, Andrea, Janice Genetti and her partner, Jeff Elliff, Laura Elliff and her husband, John, Julie Fedak and her wife, Gemma Cheney, and Peter Fedak and his wife, Shera Lynn, 13 cherished grandchildren: Ryan and Sarah Wellington (DiBari), Nichole, Ashley, and Zachary Fedak, Joseph and Julia Genetti, Danielle and Jenna Quintiliano, Madison and Emma Fedak and Bowen Fedak, two great-grandchildren, Lucas and Luke, four siblings, James Marshall and his wife, Angela, Nancy Platt and her husband, Cliff, Susan Marshall, Ellen Marshall and her husband, Bob, close family friend, Lorraine Zartarian along with several nieces and nephews.

Friends may call on Thursday, June 30, 2022 from 10:00 to 11:30 a.m. at the Galello-Luchansky Funeral Home, 2220 Main Street, Stratford. Interment will follow in Gate of Heaven Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, those who so desire may contribute to Joan’s favorite charity, ASPCA, PO Box 96929, Washington, DC, 20090. To celebrate her life, please visit us at www.galellofuneralhome.com

Obituary: Andrew N. Glad

Andrew N. Glad, age 69, of Stratford, the beloved husband of Karla (Ahlberg) Glad, passed away on Friday, April 29, 2022. Born in Bridgeport on May 2, 1952, to the late Nicholas and Valerie (Shostack) Glad, he was a lifelong Stratford resident and Lordship boy at heart. A graduate of Stratford High School, class of 1970, Andy went on to the University of Bridgeport where he also briefly taught his lifelong passion of graphic design. Andy started his own graphic design business where he supported clients throughout the area for 45 years. He won numerous awards for his artistic and philanthropic work, including the prestigious Lighthouse Award from the Stratford Community Fund. He was a founding member of the Stratford Arts Guild, and involved, among numerous other groups, in the Stratford Jaycees, Stratford Red Cross, Stratford Sister Cities and Sterling House Community Center. Andy was an avid music lover and was a member of various bands in his youth as a bass guitar player. However, his favorite roles were father and grandpa. In addition to his beloved wife of 46 years, Karla, Andy is survived by his son, Carl Glad, and his wife Amy of Stratford, his daughter Haylee Herman, and her husband Jonathan of Norwalk, his cherished grandchildren Anderson and Caroline Glad, along with a large extended family. Friends and family may visit on Tuesday, May 3 from 4-7 pm in the Adzima Funeral Home, 50 Paradise Green Place, Stratford. Interment will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to The ALS Association Connecticut Chapter. For more information or to make an online condolence, please visit www.adzimafuneralhome.com

Rosemary Elizabeth Martin Hayduk

Rosemary Elizabeth Martin Hayduk of Stratford, CT left us during the early hours of March 17. She died peacefully at home in the presence of loving family members. Rosemary leaves behind her husband Lani and his children and grandchildren; her son Jeremy and his wife Jaime, grandchildren Mia, Leo, and Bianca; son Geoffrey and his wife Allison, granddaughters Mollie and Andi; and daughter Torey and husband Troy, grandson Nathaniel.

Forever optimistic, always on the move, loving life to the fullest, Rosemary will be missed by all the people she has collected over her lifetime. Her interests and accomplishments are many: actor, singer, educator, middle school counselor, organizer, President of the Connecticut Delegation of Stratfords of the World international organization and Stratford Sister Cities chorus, and best of all – a devoted and dedicated mother, an affectionate and adoring “Grammy”, and an enthusiastic loving wife.

A Celebration of her Life will be held at Downtown Cabaret Theatre, 263 Golden Hill Street, Bridgeport, CT on Thursday, May 5, from 5:00 – 8:00 pm. An online recording of the evening will be available later for those unable to attend. In lieu of flowers or gifts, a donation in Rosemary’s memory to the DTC Theater would be deeply appreciated.

Obituary: Joan Joyce

Softball great who struck out Ted Williams, dies at 81

Joan Joyce, one of America’s greatest female athletes, who set records in basketball and golf but was best known as a hard-throwing softball pitcher, hurling 150 no-hitters and 50 perfect games in addition to striking out retired ballplayers Ted Williams and Hank Aaron at exhibitions, died March 26th at 81.

Her death was announced by Florida Atlantic University, where she was the head softball coach and previously led the women’s golf team. The school did not say where or how she died, but she had been away from the softball team this spring after undergoing a medical procedure.

Ms. Joyce was one of the most intimidating players in softball history, amassing a career pitching record of 753 wins and 42 losses over more than two decades, with a lifetime earned-run average of 0.09. Standing about 5-foot-10, she was also a ferocious hitter, with a lifetime batting average of .324, according to FAU.

Instead of a traditional windmill pitching style, she used a slingshot delivery, with her right hand starting high behind her back and swinging forward past her hips. A study in the mid-1960s found that she threw nearly 120 miles per hour, although Ms. Joyce later told the Hartford Courant her pitches were never timed with a speed gun and “were probably in the 70s” — fast enough to confound most batters, especially since she typically played on a mound that was 40 feet from home plate, rather than the Major League Baseball distance of 60 feet 6 inches.

When she threw back-to-back shutouts to lead the Raybestos Brakettes to a women’s softball championship in 1973, Sports Illustrated declared that she “dominates her sport as no athlete, male or female, has ever dominated a sport.” John Bruno, the general manager of the San Jose Sunbirds, later joked that he and his club would “have to spike her Coke or something” if they faced Ms. Joyce and her pro team, the Connecticut Falcons, in a seven-game playoff series.

Ms. Joyce was inducted into the National Softball Hall of Fame in 1983, the International Women’s Sports Hall of Fame in 1989 and the International Softball Federation Hall of Fame in 1999. Yet softball was far from her only sport: She also competed on the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) tour for nearly two decades, played and coached the Connecticut Clippers volleyball team and played basketball for the U.S. women’s national team, becoming a three-time Amateur Athletic Union all-American and scoring a record 67 points in a tournament game. According to Sports Illustrated, she also won the Connecticut state bowling title just three weeks after taking up the sport.

Sportswriters compared her to Babe Didrikson Zaharias, an all-American basketball player and track and field star who won gold medals at the 1932 Olympics, played pro golf and pitched at Major League Baseball exhibition games. Like Zaharias, Ms. Joyce reveled in pitching to current and former ballplayers — notably Williams, one of the finest hitters in baseball history. She was 20 when she first struck him out in August 1961, drawing cheers from an overflow crowd of some 17,000 people who filled the bleachers and spilled out onto the field at her hometown stadium in Waterbury, Conn.

Williams, the “Splendid Splinter,” was 42 and a year into retirement when he was enlisted to appear at the exhibition, a fundraiser for children with cancer. He agreed to participate only after taking a few pitches in advance from Ms. Joyce, who later said that she held back during their first meeting because of a sore arm. He got a hit but was impressed.

“How’d you throw that curveball?” he asked, prompting Ms. Joyce to demonstrate her technique.

“He looks at me and says, ‘Girls shouldn’t know that.’ I looked at him and I said, ‘This girl does know that,’” she told ESPN in 2011.

She said Williams fouled off three pitches during the exhibition and threw his bat down in frustration before striking out, misjudging her drop ball. “You know, I had really mixed emotions about it,” she recalled. “I thought, ‘Maybe I should have let him hit a couple — just for the show.’ However, I was too competitive. I’ve always said that if my mother put a bat in her hands and came up to hit, I’d have to strike her out, too.”

When Williams faced Ms. Joyce a second time, at a fundraiser in 1966, he struck out once again. “Hammerin’ Hank” Aaron fared no better at an exhibition against her in 1978, when he was 44 and two years out of the big leagues.

“She was something else,” he said at the time. “That softball comes at you and rises up around your head by the time you swing at it.”

Joan Mary Joyce was born in Waterbury on Aug. 18, 1940. Her parents were factory workers, and her father played softball and encouraged his children to do the same. She practiced throwing at home by hurling balls into a makeshift backstop, created by stringing chicken wire between two trees.

When she was about 12, she successfully tried out for her brother’s Little League team as a catcher. “The first game that we played, I hit a triple and a single and did very well — and they decided that girls couldn’t play on the team after that,” she told ESPN.

Ms. Joyce launched her playing career in the Amateur Softball Association (ASA) in 1956, joining the Brakettes, a Stratford, Conn., club sponsored by a brake parts company. She remained with the team for almost all of her amateur career, aside from a few years playing with the rival Lionettes of Orange, Calif., while studying at Chapman College (now a university). She retired after the 1975 season, having won 12 national championships and eight MVP awards, and was named to the ASA all-American team 18 straight years.

In 1976, she partnered with a group including tennis star Billie Jean King, golfer Jane Blalock and sports entrepreneur Dennis Murphy to found the International Women’s Professional Softball Association. She was a player-manager and part owner of the Connecticut Falcons, but the league folded after the 1979 season, shortly after she stopped playing to focus on golf.

Encouraged by her friend Blalock, she developed a powerful golf drive, launching the ball some 275 yards. She set a record in 1982, when she needed only 17 putts to finish a round, and finished as high as sixth at LPGA tournaments, where she said she was often approached by pitchers and coaches asking for softball advice.

“Before you know it, I’ll be out there showing them,” she told the Associated Press in 1982. “They do the throwing, I do the teaching.”

Ms. Joyce settled into a long career as a coach, joining FAU in 1994 and building the school’s softball program from scratch. Her teams won 1,002 games and lost 674, winning 12 conference titles and making it to 11 NCAA tournaments. She was named conference coach of the year eight times and coached the golf team from 1996 to 2014.

Survivors include a sister and brother.

“I’ve done the things I wanted to do … and I didn’t let anyone stop me,” Ms. Joyce said, according to the Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame, which inducted her in 2007. “One thing, though — when I grew up my biggest idol was Mickey Mantle. Now kids can also look to the women who play.”

Obituary: Alexander F. Pinto

Alexander Frank Pinto, 84, passed away peacefully on February 18, 2022 with his loving family by his side. Al was born in Bridgeport on March 14, 1937 to Frank and Olympia (LaConte) Pinto. Al was the beloved husband of Mary Ellen (Skene) Pinto, whom he married in 1959. Al and Mary Ellen met at Stratford High on the very first day of high school. Al has been a Lordship resident for over 55 years where neighbors happily called out, “Hey, Al” anytime they saw him doing yard work, getting his coffee and newspaper at the corner market, or attending Mass at Our Lady of Peace Church.
Al was the most loving and devoted father to six children: Ellen, Danny, Jerry, Chris, Michael and Catherine. Al genuinely celebrated his kids’ successes and guided them through any setback with grace and love. Al also had a deep love and relationship with each of his children’s spouses, John, Indah, Melissa, Lauren and Butch.

One of Al’s greatest joys in life was being a grandfather to 11 grandchildren: Natalie, Aaron, Alex, Elizabeth, Cathlyn, Quinn, Lucia, Tate, Marina, Lane and Mac. Even sweeter, was the chance to see his entire family gathered around his pool on summer Sundays and holidays or around his dining room table on a Sunday because Mary Ellen had made “gravy.” (Italians know…) Al was extremely proud of the meeting place his home became to his family, immediate and extended. December 24th was an especially awaited event at the Pinto home where children of family and friends looked forward to a special visit with Santa every Christmas Eve. Al believed in building a strong family and spending time together. He instilled that ritual in his children and grandchildren and they are better for it. Professionally, Al spent many happy and dedicated years working for and managing LA Barnaby & Sons. It was not  uncommon to drive through town and hear him say, “I put that roof on.” He loved being a salesman , interacting with people and making connections that lasted him a lifetime. He prided himself on getting to work rain or shine, always dressed impeccably.

For a few years on Sunday evenings, “Big Al” was a volunteer driver for the Stratford EMS on Able 1. After hosting Labor Day each September, Al and Mary Ellen enjoyed time on the Cape for well-deserved rest and relaxation and to spoil their grandkids with  ice cream and beach time. Al also loved watching a good sporting event on TV or in person. Seeing his own kids and grandkids, play sports brought him immense joy. His children’s friends, teammates and coaches held “Mr. Pinto” in the highest regard.
In addition to his parents, Al is predeceased by his younger brother Frankie, whom he loved immensely and missed dearly. His sister, Catherine, survives him sisters in law Peggy and Lois (Ed), brother in law Jim, and many wonderful nieces and nephews who adored their “Uncle Al.”

The family would like to thank Al’s very kind and dedicated caregivers, Veronique and Nellie, hospice nurse Angela, and longtime physician and friend, Dr. Yousuf Ali. In 2010, Al spoke about living with Wiskott Aldrich Syndrome at the New Horizons New Hope Conference in Chicago. Al is revered by this community as being one of the oldest patients with this very rare blood disorder.

Friends are invited to attend a Mass of Christian Burial on Monday, February 28th at 11:30 a.m. Directly at Our Lady of Peace Church, 651 Stratford Road, Stratford. Friends may call on Sunday from 4-7 p.m. at Pistey Funeral Home, 2155 Main Street, Stratford. The family requests that masks be worn. To promote social distancing, please follow the directions of attendants and signage. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Wiskott Aldrich Foundation at PO Box 156 Austell, GA 30168 in an effort to fund ongoing research and treatment. You may also use this link:

https://interland3.donorperfect.net/weblink/weblink.aspx?name=E340959&id=5
Visit pisteyfuneralhome.com to express condolences online.

 

Welcome to Stratford

Cora Anne Fabian

Proud parents Rachel & Stephen, and big brother Lucas are thrilled to announce the birth of Cora Anne Fabian. Cora was born June 23, 2021 at 11:28 pm, weighing 5 pounds 13 ounces, and measuring 18.9 inches long. The family could not be happier with their little blessing.

 

Obituary: Donald “Otto” Felix

Donald “Otto” Felix, 84, of Stratford, CT quietly passed away on May 28th, 2021 after a long and courageous fight with cancer.

Don (“Otto)” to his close friends) was born on August 24, 1936 Bridgeport, CT to Helen and Otto Felix. As evidenced by the lifelong friendships he held with a close-knit group of fellow East Enders, his upbringing played a central role in shaping his optimistic and selfless outlook on life. Don graduated Harding High School in 1954 then proudly served his country in the United States Army. Don was a consummate professional and worked hard his entire life to provide for his family, starting in Manufacturers Box Company, moving on to EDDCO and finally retiring from Curtis Packaging in 2001.

Every year since 1980 he created a unique and whimsical Christmas ornament for each and every family member and close friends from Stratford to Portland, OR. These are cherished reminders of his creativity and sense of humor, they will have a more meaningful impact in the years to come. An avid Red Sox fan who finally saw them break through “The Curse” in 2004 and go on to win three more championships, much to the chagrin of his Yankees supporting pals. He was something to everyone, a simple greeting, a helpful gesture, a lighthearted joke, these are the small interactions that left a piece of him in everyone he met. Husband, father, grandfather, friend, neighbor – to all these roles Don brought kindness and generosity.

He is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 58 years, Annette; his children Laura Haley Stratford, CT; Donald (Hiroe) Felix, Portland, OR. Grandchildren are Evan Felix and Cody Haley; several niece and nephews; his childhood friend James Gerwien; and all his friends from church. He was predeceased by his mother Helen (Bailey) Felix, his father Otto Felix and his sister Betty Lou (Felix) Bray.

A special Thank You to the nurses and doctors at the VA Hospital in West Haven for all the love and care they gave Don in his final months; we are eternally grateful.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Don’s name to Veteran’s Hospital CLC T3W, 950 Campbell Avenue, West Haven, CT 06516. Make checks to: VA Healthcare System on memo line Hospice/T3W – Donald Felix

To offer online condolences please visit www.dennisanddarcy.com

Obituary: Margaret Ann Bachtel

Known as Meg to most, Margaret Ann Bachtel, age 69, passed away unexpectedly on Thursday, April 8, 2021. A California transplant, Meg relocated to Stratford, CT, in 1984. Having never made her peace with New England winters, Meg retreated to the beach as often as possible and in as many different locations as she could manage.

Meg enjoyed a rewarding and ground-breaking career, culminating as the Director of Market Research for a large marketing firm. She spent decades advocating for LGBTQ and women’s rights including serving as a leading advocate of the Same Sex Co-Parent Adoption legislation, a celebrated founding member of the Triangle Community Center in Norwalk, and an active member of the Stratford DTC. Meg’s love of literature and community involvement led her to become a past president of the Stratford Library Board with a lifetime position, an organization she cherished and for which she worked tirelessly.

A self-proclaimed cat lady, Meg also volunteered with multiple organizations to transport, rehome, and provide love to all felines. She had a particularly soft spot for misfits and became mom to many over the decades.

Meg is survived by two families, the one she was born into and the one she made. She was a beloved and treasured member of both. Her kind heart, generous spirit, fierce mind, and sharp wit earned her friends and family everywhere. She will be remembered for the love she shared graciously and the passion with which she embraced life and encouraged others to do the same.

A gathering at the beach will be scheduled for later this year. For additional information or to share a message of condolence, visit www.wrmcdonaldfuneralhome.com.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Meg’s honor to Stratford Cat Project, www.stratfordcatproject.org or Triangle Community Center, www.ctpridecenter.org.

Obituary: John Joseph Williamson

John Joseph Williamson, “Jack”, passed to his new life on March 14th in his home, after many years of enduring Alzheimer’s and never losing his smiling personality.  Born in Somerville, Massachusetts, on December 14, 1930 to Theresa (Heggarty) and William Williamson, Jack’s life centered around his faith and love for his family.

Upon graduating high school in 1950, Jack entered the Society of Jesus and was ordained a Jesuit priest in 1963. After completing his final year of studies in Wales, UK, he accepted an assignment in Jamaica to work as a missionary.  There, he taught mathematics for several years at St George’s College in Kingston. Jack then turned the page, returned to Connecticut, and chose to enter family life.

He married Mary Ellen Schwartz, a decision that their five children— Leilani, Marites, Ricky, Joy and Megan (three of whom were adopted from the Philippines)- are very happy about.

Survivors, in addition to his beloved wife of almost 51 years, Mary Ellen Schwartz Williamson, include three daughters: Marites Belcourt and her husband Chris; Joy Lawrence; Megan Gallant and her husband Chris; eight grandchildren, including Jasmine and Noah Belcourt; Samantha, Gregory and Ryan Lawrence; Madison, Cody and Chase Gallant; a sister Beatrice O’Hara and numerous nieces and nephews around the country.

In addition to his parents, Jack was predeceased by his son and daughter, Ricky and Leilani; sister and brothers Margaret, William, Lawrence and Paul.  Funeral services, entrusted to the Adzima Funeral Home in Stratford CT, are by invitation only due to COVID restrictions.  Heartfelt thanks to Vitas Hospice Care, especially Beverly and Ricky, for their loving care of Jack and his family.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to KAIROS Prison Ministry or Alzheimer’s Association.  Visit www.adzimafuneralhome.com to send condolences and more information

Lois Meri Burritt

Lois Meri Burritt, age 83, of Stratford, beloved wife of the late Arthur L. Burritt, passed away on March 1, 2021 in Bridgeport Hospital.

Lois was born in Bridgeport on September 5, 1937 to the late Frank X. and Alma (Pjura) Barvenik and had been a lifelong area resident. She was a graduate of Stratford High School class of 1956. Survivors include her devoted children, Arthur Burritt and his wife Peg of Pennsylvania, Susan Santillo and her husband Mark of New Hampshire, and Melissa Pinto and her husband Chris of Stratford, 11 cherished grandchildren, Arthur, Christopher, Matthew, Eric, Gregory, Christopher (Cortney), Danielle (Tom), Kris, Alex, Elizabeth, and Cathlyn, 3 great-grandchildren, Isabella, Emily and Savannah, a brother Frank Barvenik Jr., and his wife Trina, several nieces and nephews, and many dear friends. In addition to her beloved husband and parents, Lois was pre-deceased by his daughter-in-law Penny.

Due to the current health situation the family has elected to have a private family service. The Adzima Funeral Home-Stratford has been entrusted with the funeral arrangements For more information or to make an online condolence please visit www.adzimafuneralhome.com