Our Teachers
Dates of Birth and Death for Ithaca Faculty circa 1960


Frank R. Bliss                                       1896 - 1970
Dr.John W. Graves                                1924 - 2017


Gordon C. Myer                                         1931 - 2017

Social Studies

Richard Caslick                                    1921 - 1989
Kasimer Hipolit                                    1917 - 1977
Curtis L. Pfaff                                       1922 - 2005
Lilly Reichmann                                   1907 - 1997


Dr. Clara S. Gage        1906 - 1987
Robert Holgate           1919 - 2006                  
Edith Showacre          1929 - 2005
Elizabeth Whicher      1916 - 1995              
Milicent Ocvirk            1908 - 2002
Marjorie Wilson          1928 - 2009
Jane C. Catalfano        1911 - 1997
Ruth York                     1911 - 1989


Dr. William Beischer  1934 - 2006
Miss Mayfred Claflin   1891 - 1982
Miss Dora M. DePew.  1908 - 1961
Kenneth W. Elmore   1916 - 1993
Martha Neighbour      1919 - 2000
Joseph Moresco         1926 - 2012


Bernice Finch               1900 - 1967
S. Carolyn Marsh         1904 - 1994
Vito Mason                   1928 - 2008

Foreign Language

Josephine Ernstein     1904 - 2001
Samuel Catalfano       1911 - 1982
Will-Robert Teetor     1926- 2000

Physical Education

Joseph Tatascore       1902-1978
​Donald Culligan          1923-2016


Eva Firra                        1919 - 2005
Phyllis M. Seager.          1917 - 2022
Oliver York                              -1972

Home Economics

Ethelwynn Cornelius   1907 - 1994


Edgar M. Clemens          1926 - 2006
Muriel C. Weeks             1916 - 2008
Dr. Dewitt Zien               1918 - 1994
Dr. Laweence Bach        1921 - 1987
Dr. Roger W. Ming          1921 -2013
Richard W. Steinbaugh  1927 - 2016

Driver Education

Robert K. Fiske             1918 - 2000
Robert E. Congdon       1922 - 2013

Industrial Arts

Donald F. Henry             1920 - 2011
Elmer J. Woodams        1893 - 1980


Albert E. Bedworth       1924 - 2004


Elizabeth Stocking    1909 - 1986


Samuel J. Catalfano      1911 - 1982
Sylvia Fowler                  1913 - 1998

This list is by no means all inclusive. I have chosen not to include some because of multiple listings of persons with the same names. When they are verified, the correct entries will be added.
OBITUARIES and TRIBUTES to our honored, departed faculty:

    CURTIS L. PFAFF, social studies chairman

HACKETTSTOWN, NJ–Curtis L. Pfaff, 82, of Heath Village, died Sunday, April 3, 2005 in the Hackettstown Community Hospital.

Born on Dec. 16, 1922 in Deer River, N.Y., he was a son of the late John L. and Naomi Wisner Pfaff.

Mr. Pfaff retired in 1978 after 32 years as an educator for the Ithaca New York Public School System and also with Cornell University. He received his bachelor's and master's degrees degree from the University of New York Albany campus. He resided in Ithaca, from 1949 to 1994 and from 1994 to 2000 he lived in both Belvidere, and in the summer months in Stillwater Township. He was a veteran of World War II and he served in the army from 1943 to 1946.

He was a member of St. James Episcopal of Hackettstown. He was a member of the American Legion Post of Belvidere, the Disabled American Veterans. Mr. Pfaff was a former member of the Blairstown, and Ithaca, N.Y. Rotary Club, the Stillwater Township Taxpayers Association, the Fairview Lake Community Club and the Fairview Lake and Watershed Conservation Foundation.

He is survived by his wife, the former, Margaret "Peggie" Wilhelm; a son Eric of Charlestown, Mass.; two daughters, Leslie Bresnahan of North Andover, Mass., and Cynthia Wilson of Washington, D.C.; a brother Eugene Pfaff; five grandchildren and several nieces and nephews.

A memorial service was held in the Heath Village Auditorium, Schooleys Mountain Road, Hackettstown. Burial will be at Sunnyside Cemetery, Carthage, N.Y., at a later date.

         DR. William A. Beischer
ITHACA – Dr. William A. Beischer, PhD., 72, of 21 Sun Path, Ithaca, NY, passed away Thursday, October 7, 2006, at the Cayuga Medical Center, Ithaca.
He was born on September 7, 1934 in Little Falls, the son of the late William and Lydia (Ristock) Beischer. He was a graduate of Little Falls High School and President of the Class of 1952. He received his Associate's, Master's and Doctorate degrees from Cornell University, Ithaca.
He was united in marriage to his wife of 49 years, the former JoAnn Howe on June 15, 1957 at the United Methodist Church, Little Falls.
Dr. Beischer was a member of the First Presbyterian Church of Ithaca and an affiliate member of the First Presbyterian Church of Tequesta, Florida. He was also a member of the Acacia Fraternity at Cornell University, Phi Delta Kappa, and served as a member of the Bolton Water Commission. Bill also enjoyed active membership in The Cayugans, a men's music club. He was honored as an outstanding educator by the Ithaca Jaycees, noting some of his work to form a computer mathematics program, several programs involving race relations and drug abuse prevention, and selfless efforts to improve the lives of his students.
Dr. Beischer was highly respected as an educator for the Ithaca City School District, beginning his career as a mathematics teacher at Ithaca High School in 1957, where he remained until 1962, when he was appointed vice principal of the school. He later became the vice principal for the DeWitt Middle School, Ithaca, where he remained until his retirement in 1993 after 36 years of service. His life's work with students, and helping those with troubled lives turn themselves around, brought him great joy.
He is survived by his wife JoAnn, Ithaca; two sisters-in-law, Claudia Howe and Millie Howe, both of Little Falls; two nephews, Robert M. Howe and Brad Howe, both of Little Falls; two nieces, Cindi Norejko and her husband, Paul, Little Falls, and Tara Hardsey and her husband, Jesse, Little Falls; grand niece and nephews, Emily Hardsey, Kyle Howe and Nathan Miller; and several cousins.
Funeral services will be held on Tuesday, October 10, 2006, at 10:00 a.m. from the Chapman-Moser Funeral Home, Inc., 42 N. Ann Street, Little Falls. Interment will take place in Rural Park Cemetery, Inghams Mills, NY.
Relatives and friends are invited to pay their respects at the funeral home on Tuesday, October 10, 2006, from 9-10 a.m. and to attend the funeral services to follow.
It is the wish of the family that contributions in memory of Dr. Beischer be considered to the First Presbyterian Church, 315 N. Cayuga St., Ithaca, NY 14850, the Lansing Fire Dept. EMS, 80 Ridge Rd., Lansing, NY 14882, or to Hospicare of Tompkins County, 172 E. King St., Ithaca, NY 14850. Envelopes are also available at the funeral home for this purpose.
   Vito E. Mason

SILVER SPRING, MD - Vito E. Mason, 80, of 306 Colesville Manor Drive, Silver Spring, Maryland, passed away on November 25, 2008 of natural causes. He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Rosina Mason; three daughters and their husbands, Rosina and Daniel Whitfield of Greensboro, North Carolina, Joli and Ken McCathran of Washington Grove, Maryland, and Rebecca and Rob Simmons of Aldie, Virginia; and six grandchildren, Rose and Emily McCathran, Skyler Whitfield, and Benjamin, Kira, and Sean Simmons.

Prof. Mason lived a spectacular life. Born on January 6, 1928 in Elizabeth, New Jersey, as the son of Lithuanian immigrants, he came to be Professor Emeritus of Music at American University in Washington, DC. He was also a world traveler, and a loving husband, father, and grandfather.
He loved people and enjoyed making them smile. With his booming voice and buoyant, raucous laugh he would joke with people all the time, brightening their day.
In his career as a Professor of Music he also became an internationally acclaimed choral conductor, adjudicator, and clinician. Highlights include performing with his choir at the White House, with the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center, Wolf Trap Farm Park, and countless festivals, concerts, and all-state choruses throughout the country and in many parts of the world.
Before moving to the Washington, DC area, for 14 years he served as the Director of Choral Music at Ithaca High School in Ithaca, New York. Vito was also the Choir Director of the First Presbyterian Church in Ithaca for 12 years (1954-1966), when Rev. Walter Dobbs was minister.
He has been listed in "Outstanding Educators of America," and "Who's Who of World Musicians." He is also the recipient of the prestigious Porter W. Averill Award for his distinguished work in choral conducting and music education.
A memorial service is planned for December 14, 2008, at 1:00 p.m. at the Lutheran Church of the Reformation, 212 E. Capitol Street SE, Washington, DC 20003, where he also served as the Choir Director for many years.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be sent to the Vito E. Mason Vocal Music Award, c/o the Ithaca City School District, 400 Lake Street, Ithaca, New York 14850; or the Stained Glass Restoration Fund at the Lutheran Church of the Reformation.
 Click to keep message open.
"I have just received an email from Vito Mason's daughter,
Joli , that Rosina, Vito's wife, died the second Sunday in May. As you may know,
I have stayed in touch with them over the years. I attended Vito's funeral in
DC, and renewed my friendship with Rosina at that time. Judy and I even spent a
weekend with her at their home in Maryland. They loved  their camper and
travels, and delighted in getting my reports from the road. In the last several
years, we have emailed each other on a weekly basis. 
I thought that you might want to alert classmates of our mutual loss - truly the end of an era.
I hope you all have a wonderful reunion. We are having great fun touring the
West , visiting family and friends, including Elaine (Tutton) and Phil Newcomb."
Much love to all, Ron and Judy Winchell



              MURIEL C. WEEKS

ITHACA – Muriel C. Weeks, beloved mother, teacher, grandmother and great-grandmother, passed from this earth on March 13, 2008 in Billings, Montana surrounded by family. Muriel was born in East Greenbush, NY on September 15, 1916 to Everett and Marie Crear. She spent a happy childhood with her brothers, Paul and Everett; and sister, Elaine, in Albany, Glen Falls and in the Adirondack Mountains of NY near the village of Schroon Lake where she enjoyed the mountains, fields and woods, and the one room schoolhouse. The Adirondacks eventually became her permanent home.

Muriel graduated valedictorian from Schroon Lake High School in 1933 at age 16. She attended Albany State College for Teachers, eventually majoring in science. On graduating in 1938, the country was in the depths of depression and teaching jobs were scarce. Muriel returned to Schroon Lake and married Sidney R. Weeks. Together they had three daughters, Sondra-1940, Judy-1943, and Nancy-1944.

When the marriage ended, Muriel returned to obtain her Master’s degree in Education at Albany and became the teacher she always wanted to be.

She began her career teaching at Ellenberg, NY in 1949 and then in 1953 became a teacher of Biology at Ithaca High School, Ithaca, NY, touching the lives of many until she retired in 1978.

During this time she had the honor of being selected into a program of Teacher Education in East Africa at Nkozi Teacher Training College in Nkozi, Uganda from 1968 thru 1970. It was the highlight of her career, fostering a love of Africa and enabling her to also visit other overseas destinations.

Muriel never stopped learning and never stopped teaching others. She shared her love and appreciation of nature with family and friends, often sharing the simple joy of a walk together in the woods. Her grandchildren have fond memories of these walks where she could name all the plants and animals including genus and species. She was the inspiration and anchor of her family, a great lady who will be sorely missed.

Muriel is survived by two daughters, Nancy Poolet and Sondra Quick; seven grandchildren, Valerie McKenzie, Cherie McGinn, Danny McKenzie, Michael Quick, Laura Haynes, Alex Poolet and Robert Lesson; eight great-grandchildren, Anna and Korin O’Dohercy, McKenzie "Lizzie" McGinn, Kyle McKenzie, Connor and Malachi Quick, Cassandra Poolet and Grace Poolet; and one great-great-grandson, Andrew Eddy.

A memorial service will be in Schroon Lake at a later time and will be announced.







           ROBERT H. HOLGATE

ALPINE, NY – Robert H. Holgate Sr., of Culver Road, Alpine, NY, died Saturday, January 28, 2006, at Cayuga Medical Center. Born November 5, 1919 in Philadelphia, PA, he was the son of Paul B. and Beatrice Holgate. He was predeceased by his eldest son, Robert Jr.; and by his wife Priscilla.

Bob earned both his undergraduate and graduate degrees at Cornell. His studies, however, were interrupted by the war in Europe where he flew 30 missions over Germany. On his return, he taught literature at Cornell and Syracuse University, and then joined the faculty at Ithaca High School. With the exception of one year, 1960-61, when he taught at Wantaugh High School on Long Island and was Chairman of the English Department, he taught at Ithaca High School from 1955 until his retirement in 1979. He is known by countless HIS alumni as an inspiring teacher who brought passion to the teaching and learning of the English language and its literature. Bob was devoted to his students and he held them all to exacting and caring standards. Especially through his coveted elective in creative writing. Bob shared his love for the art and craft of written expression with many successive classes of Ithaca students to whom he dedicated his teaching career. Bob Holgate is survived by six children, Richard, Tamara, Paul, Lisle, David and Ashley; their spouses, 11 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

Friends may call at Bangs Funeral Home at 1:30 p.m. on Friday, February 3rd, with a memorial service at 3 p.m. In lieu of flowers, please make a contribution in Bob’s memory to a charity of your choice.


Principal Frank R. Bliss
Principal Frank R. Bliss
Researchers have generally agreed that the building principal is most responsible for creating the academic and social climate within a school building. If that is true, Mr. Frank R. Bliss, principal of Ithaca High since 1930, was the "architect" for most of what happened during our four years at Ithaca. He stayed on for another two years before retiring. We honor the memory of Mr. Bliss' service to the students and community of Ithaca.
      Samuel J. Catalfano

Samuel J. Catalfano, 71, of 916 E. State St., Ithaca, died in Tompkins Community Hospital, Wednesday, Sept. 15, 1982. He was a native of Rochester, the son of Rose Catalfano and the late John Catalfano.
Mr. Catalfano served in the Ithaca School System for 38 years as head of the Foreign Language Department, and as pupil personnel director. He was graduated from Cornell University in 1935 and was a member of Phi Beta Kappa. Mr. Catalfano retired in 1973.
He was an Army veteran of World War II from 1943-46, serving in the European Theater, where he was wounded and decorated. He was a former Treasurer of the Special Children’s Center Board and was a member of Planned Parenthood and community chest committees. He was a member of New York State Guidance Association, the National Education Association and the New York State Retired Teachers Association.
In addition to his mother in Rochester, Mr. Catalfano is survived by his wife, Jane Clapp Catalfano of Ithaca; two daughters, Joyce Catalfano of Morgantown W.Va. and Janet Snyder of Concord, N.H.; two sisters, Marcella Cavalier and Mary Catalfano; a brother, Joseph Catalfano, all of Rochester; two grandchildren, Jennifer and Ian Snyder, both of Concord, N.H., and several nieces and nephews.
Funeral Arrangements will be announced later by Herson Funeral Home of Ithaca. Burial will be in Groton Cemetery. Memorial donations may be made to Special Children’s Center, 21 Wilkins Road, Ithaca, 14850.
Eulogies from the Tattler
Miss Dora DePew

  (Friday, June 2, 1961) Miss Dora DePew used to say she “would rather teach geometry than eat a chocolate soda.” This characteristic enthusiasm for her work made a noticeable impact on her students, many ooof whom would return during their college vacations to reminisce and report their accomplishments. She inspired several of her students to decide on mathematics teaching as a career.
Miss DePew would always tell her classes that if they would work as hard as they could, she would help them as much as she could. In the classroom she insisted upon strict discipline and never let the classes forget that she was in charge. Yet she did this without harshness and rarely lost her sense of humor.
In one of her classes were a boy and a girl, aptly described by her longtime associate, Miss Martha Neighbour, as “one of those lovey-dovey couples.” One day while this class was concentrating on an assignment, and she was cruising about the room, as was her custom, observing them, she happened to come up behind the boy as he leaned over toward his beloved and softly whispered, “Dear...” Miss DePew promptly answered, “yes?”
Miss DePew had a great interest in all forms of music. Every Christmas she looked forward to having the Brass Choir play as much as the Brass Choir looked forward to the enthusiastic welcome and the candy she would have for them. She also enjoyed attending concerts and liked to hear the entire orchestra trumpeting forth with all its might. She felt slightly cheated when the orchestra took time away from its program to allow a small ensemble to perform.
Miss DePew participated in many activities. For a number of years she was in charge of the school clubs’ treasuries, and at one time she played basketball with the girls after
school. As Our Miss Brooks, in the 1956 Spring Production, she ran away with all the honors, playing the role that came most naturally to her, and on which she was always an expert on stage and off – the teacher.
In most of Miss DePew’s classes, it wasn’t a question of passing toe regents, it was the question of getting a 100. She never failed to correct her regents papers immediately and was proud to announce how many 100’s her students had earned that year. Yet she was no less proud of the passing grades made by her less able students with whom she had worked many hours after school and in the evenings.
Miss DePew was vitally interested in the cadet teacher program. Mr. William Beischer and Mrs. Ann Holley were formerly cadets under her supervision.
Another of her outstanding qualities was her love for individuality. Her students were constantly encouraged to think for themselves. Her friends always found her ready to listen to their ideas. She would often say, “I guess I’m just too open minded. When someone presents an argument, I see so much good in it that I can’t help but agree. Then when another person expresses his point of view, I can see good in that also. So there I am – agreeing with both.” This ability to see the good in the thinking of everyone and to foster individual thought won her the admiration and love of many.
Miss Dora DePew
A very wise man has said “A teacher affects eternity: He never knows where his influence ends.”
Because of the kind of person she was, we know a great deal about the influence of Miss Dora DePew, for 17 years a member of our faculty.
Her influence touched her students, who found her classes challenging and stimulating. She made them want to do their best because she herself did her best. She was eager to learn, eager to teach.
Her influence touched the faculty, not only the teachers in her department but the rest of them also. Her honesty, her deep concern for the best in education, her sympathy, her humor – these qualities everyone knew in her. Perhaps some became better teachers because, unconsciously, they measured themselves by her standards.
Her influence touched many students who hoped to become teachers. Through these cadet teachers, as they went from her classes to many scattered communities, something of Miss DePew entered the life of other school systems in addition to our own.
Her influence reached out far beyond her classes into the homes of this community as the sons and daughters of those homes came and went in her classroom.
This influence, which touched so many people, was a good influence. It was based on her love and respect for her students, for her colleagues, for mathematics itself.
Miss DePew’s influence will go on and on in the lives of those who knew her, for she was one of the great teachers. “A teacher affects eternity: he can never tell where his influence ends.”

Sylvia (Farino) Fowler, 85, formerly of 304 Worth St., Ithaca, died Wednesday, November 11, 1998. She was born June 7, 1913 in Spangler, Pa., daughter of the late James E. and Theresa (Rammetta) Farino, and moved to Ithaca in 1931 following her older sister, Anna Mancuso. The rest of the Farino family moved in1938.
She and Malcolm Fowler met when they were attendants at the wedding of Ann (Macall) and Joseph Mars. Three years later, on July 12, 1941 they were married at the Immaculate Conception Church by Monsignor Donald Cleary, a friend of the groom. They had 50 years together.
Mrs. Fowler was employed for over 45 years in the Ithaca community. She worked in the office of Atty. Alan Treman and was Asst. to the Executive Director of the Camp Fire Girls. In 1955 she began a 20 year career in the Guidance Department of Ithaca High School and in 1959, the Class of 1959 dedicated the Annual Yearbook to her. Mrs. Fowler was active in many organizations including the Junior Guild, Republican Party, Camp Fire Girls, and retired school professionals. She retired in 1975 and for the next 15 years spent each winter in Florida.
She is survived by her two children, Judi Fowler Quagliaroli (John) of Needham MA and James Fowler (Judy) of St. Clair, MI; five grandchildren, Kristine Fowler Baguzis (Stan), Bradley Fowler, Peter Quagliaroli, Mathew Fowler (Chanel), and James Quagliaroli; great-grandchildren, Zachary and Elena Baguzis. She is also survived by her sister, Angela “Billie” Casciotti (Philip), her brother, Louis Farino (EllaMae Corrington); four nephews, Richard Sheffield, Milton Shoemaker, Thomas Farino and Louis Farino; four nieces, MaryJane (Shoemaker) Murdoch, Doneen (Mancuso) Miller, JoAnn (Leone) Johnson and god-daughter LaRae (Farino) Hulbert; another godchild, Rachel (Worthen) Nelson of Barkhamsted, CT; her dear Worth St. neighbors, many friends and former co-
workers. She was predeceased by her husband, Malcolm [“Red”] Fowler, sisters Anna Mancuso and Yolanda Leone; brothers, James and Thomas Farino.


             Donald F. Henry

(1920 - 2011) July 16, 2011 WW II Veteran Educator Don was born July 15, 1920 in Taylorville, NY to Anselm and Minnie Henry. He passed away peacefully at his daughter's home in Pennellville, NY surrounded by his family following his 91st birthday. Donald and his loving wife, Genevieve were long term residents of Ithaca, NY, having lived the past several years in Bradenton, FL. A 1943 graduate of Oswego State University, Oswego, NY, Don's career included 34 years of teaching Industrial Arts education in Ithaca Schools, having served as Dept. chair, as well as president of NY State Drivers Ed. Certificate # 5 issued in 1946. Justly proud of his WW II service, he spent his 24th birthday in Normandy with Patton's Army, 257th Ordnance Battalion Headquarters. Donald is survived by his wife of 68 years, Genevieve, of Oswego, NY, along with their five children, Donald Jr., of Ithaca, NY, Michael of Las Vegas, NV, Richard of Tully, NY, Jack of Winter Springs, FL, and Janine Henry Sicchio of Pennellville, NY. He was pre-deceased by their infant daughter Mary Teresa in 1948. He is also survived by sisters, Helen Allan of Buffalo, Patricia VanderBogart of Rome, NY, Barbara DeVito of Watertown, Joan Henry of Watertown, Nancy Lawlor of CT, and brother William of Oswego, NY. He was predeceased by brothers Robert of Bradenton, FL, Russell of Alexandria Bay, NY, Harold of Watertown, NY, and sister Doris of Dexter, NY. He is survived by 14 grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren. Don's Life will be celebrated with a memorial Mass at Holy Family Church at 129 Wintrop St., Watertown, NY on Thursday July 21, at 11 am. Contributions in Don's memory to: South East Guide Dogs, at 4210 77 St., East, Palmetto, FL 34221

            EDGAR M. CLEMENS

Edgar M. Clemens died Sunday, September 3, 2006 at the Fairmount Homes in Ephrata. He was born May 8, 1926 in Souderton, Pa., son of the late Raymond and Esther (Moyer) Clemens. Edgar graduated from Goshen (Ind.) College in 1950 after serving two years in the Civilian Public Service. Later, he studied at Penn State Univ.

and the University of New Hampshire and was awarded Masters Degrees from both institutions. He taught high school sciences at Belleville (Pa.) Mennonite School (1951-54) and at Christopher Dock (Pa.) High School (1954-59). He began teaching at Ithaca (N.Y.) High School in 1959 where he taught chemistry until his retirement in 1989. He moved to New Holland, Pa. in 2004. Edgar married Rhoda Hostetter in Gap, Pa. August 16, 1952. Throughout his 45 years in Ithaca, he took an active part in church and community. He served as an elder in the Bethel Grove Church and taught Bible Studies and Sunday School. Edgar loved to sing and over the years was usually part of a choir, chorus or male quartet. Edgar is survived by his wife, Rhoda; children, Fredric (Carol Brimer) of Goshen, Ind., Rosa (Thomas Hines) of Philadelphia, Jonathan (Ruth Keidel) of Baltimore, Marcia (Edmund Ludwig) of DeRuyter N.Y., Conrad (Andrea Gerlak) of Tucson, Ariz., and Andrea (Ian Zuercher) of Goshen, Ind. He was predeceased by his daughter Darlis. He is also survived by 19 grandchildren and three siblings, Olive (James Kuhns) of Harrisonburg, Va., Mildred (Henry Paul Yoder) of Phoenix Ariz., and R. Wayne (Donella Peachey) Clemens of Souderton, Pa. A service will be held at New Holland Mennonite Church, 18 Western Ave. in New Holland, on Saturday, September 9 at 2 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Fairmount Homes, 333 Wheat Ridge Dr., Ephrata PA 17522 or to Mennonite Central Committee, 21 S. 12th St., PO Box 500, Akron, PA 17501. Arrangements are by Groff-High-Eckenroth Funeral Home.

Sister Raymond Mary, 8th Grade teacher 1955-1956
Sister Raymond Mary, 8th Grade teacher 1955-1956

Sister of St. Joseph Raymond Mary (Mary Catherine Davis) died on May 10, 2011, at the age of 85.

Sister Davis entered the congregation from her home parish of St. Alphonsus in Auburn in 1944. She earned a bachelor's degree in education in 1953 and a bachelor's degree in history and English in 1960 from Nazareth College in Pittsford.

Sister Davis taught at Blessed Sacrament, St. Monica and Holy Apostles, Rochester; Mother of Sorrows, Greece; Immaculate Conception, Ithaca; and at Sacred Heart, Auburn, where she also served as principal. From 1963-69, she was assigned superior of the motherhouse in Pittsford. She then returned to education and served as principal at Nazareth Hall, Rochester; Immaculate Conception, Ithaca; Christ the King, Irondequoit; and St. Patrick, Seneca Falls, until 1986. After a brief illness, she worked in the office at St. Francis de Sales/St. Stephen, Geneva, until her retirement in 1998. Returning to the motherhouse, she continued doing congregational service for several years.

She is survived by her sister-in-law, Nancee Davis; her cousin, Mary Sears; several other cousins; and her sisters in the congregation. Her funeral liturgy was celebrated in the motherhouse chapel on May 16, 2011, with burial in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery.

Sister Raymond Mary taught eighth grade at Immaculate Conception School in Ithaca. Many members of the Ithaca High School Class of 1960 had her as their teacher.

               Jane Stoutenburg Jordan

Jane Stoutenburg Jordan, former principal of Boynton Junior High School in Ithaca, passed away in her sleep November 4th in Tequesta, FL. Born 1917 in Binghamton, NY, Mrs. Jordan was the daughter of Dr. Abram W. and Mary Galvin Stoutenburg. She was a graduate of Binghamton Central High School in 1934 and Cornell University in 1938 where she also received a Master's degree in education. A longtime resident of Ithaca, Mrs. Jordan retired as Assistant Superintendent of the Ithaca School District. Jane was a member of the Ithaca Country Club, the Stoutenburg-Teller Family Association, the American Association of University Women, and The Riverbend Country Club in Tequesta, FL. Jane was an avid golfer, bridge player, and hostess. She was an adventuresome traveler, having taken trips that included the Orient Express rail tour and an African Safari. Jane was a doting aunt to her five nieces and their families. She is survived by Karen (Wayne) Kniffin, Susan Mattison, Barbara (Michael) Hogan, Anne (Charles) Farrington and Sally Thomas; 10 great nieces and nephews, and seven great-great nieces and nephews. Jane was predeceased by her siblings, Elizabeth Stoutenburg and H. William Stoutenburg; and her husband of 17 years, Robert M. Jordan. Mrs. Jordan also leaves her stepchildren: Margaret (Robert) Forbes, Patricia (James) Coggins, Nancy (Thomas) Franz and Thomas Jeffrey Jordan. A Memorial Mass will be offered at Saint Patrick's Church, 9 Leroy St., Binghamton, NY at 11 a.m. on November 26th. Interment will follow at St. Patrick's Cemetery. Arrangements by Taylor & Modeen Funeral Home, Jupiter, FL and McDevitt and



The following information was provided by Millie Pirko Triff in an e-mail to John David, Class of 1961,on January 15, 2012.

Dr. Lawrence Bach, Biology Teacher, Passed Away 1987

I have information on how and when Mr. Bach (Biology teacher) died if you want to add it to that link.

As you know, I live in Hancock and Mr. Bach, it turns out, was originally from Hancock. I didn't know this until I was married, had three children, and had moved to Hancock in 1975. I was sitting in church one Sunday morning with my family waiting for the morning service to begin when all of a sudden a voice from the back of the church softly "shouted" -- Millie Pirko!!! My first thought was "Who in the world in Hancock knows my maiden name?" I turned around and there was Mr. Bach, beaming at me.

Fast forward to today. I was reading my weekly issue of The Hancock Herald where they have excerpts from the paper from 100 years ago, 50 years ago, and 25 years ago. In the Herald I got this week I read in the 25 year ago notes:

Lawrence E. Bach, 65, Ithaca, died Friday, January 2, 1987 after suffering a heart attack while shoveling snow at his home. He was born in Hancock, a son of Christian F. and Mabel (Wagner) Bach. He was a graduate of Hancock Central School, Class of 1939, of which he was president.

He was such a sweetheart of a man and I remember taunting him with difficult questions in Biology just to see him stammer and blush. Shame on me!! Apparently he forgave me because he gave me a big hug that morning in church.

Robert Elmer Congdon of 118 Troy Road, Ithaca, passed away at home on August 9, 2013 at the age of 90. Robert was born in Syracuse on October 31, 1922, a son of the late Harry and Elizabeth Congdon. Bob grew up in Ithaca and met his future wife, Barbara Porter, at the age of 14. The two would marry in August of 1943, and this year would have been their 70th wedding anniversary. After attending Ithaca College for one year, Bob was drafted into the United States Army during World War II. He transferred to the Air Force and attended Bombardier school. Upon being honorable discharged in 1945, Bob returned to Pennsylvania and earned his Bachelor's Degree from East Stroudsburg College. Following his graduation Bob returned to Ithaca and took his first job as a physical education teacher in Virgil and soon after took a second teaching job in Hancock. Several years later, Bob took a job at Ithaca High School where he would teach physical education and coached JV football, basketball, and baseball. Bob was an advocate for driver's education and believed it should always be a part of the curriculum. After 14 years at Ithaca High School, Bob took a job as the Associate Professor in the School of Allied Health and Physical Education at Ithaca College. He continued to coach basketball there for the next 25 years. Bob and his wife, Barbara live in a home on Troy Road, where many grandchildren and great grandchildren have happily run and played over the years. His home away from home was located in Cape Cod where his family built many memorable times. Above all, Bob had unconditional love for his family. His lifelong goal was to provide for his wife and children, while instilling in them the importance of family and hard work. Bob is survived by his wife, Barbara; two sons, Robert (Mary Jo) Congdon Jr. of Ithaca and William Congdon of Ithaca; three daughters, Susan (Steven) Flanders of Trumansburg, Nancy Congdon of Ithaca, and Janet Congdon of St. Thomas; eight grandchildren, Caren Congdon of Nutley, NJ, Rob (Michelle) Congdon of Minden, NV, Tara (Andrew) Gross of Lansing, Shannon (Stuart) Eubank of Greensboro, NC, Aaron Flanders of Ithaca, Bobbi Jo Kimmich of NYC, Mary (Scott) Garin of Ithaca, and Patrick (Danielle) Kimmich of Ithaca; seven great grandchildren, Camden, Noah, Jacob, Samantha, Ryan, Brooke, and Quincy; and a nephew and niece, Jerry Congdon and Sally (Shelly) Morgan. In addition to his parents, Bob was preceded in death by a brother, Harry Congdon Jr; and sister in law, Shirley Congdon. A Funeral Service will be held at 11:00AM on Wednesday, August 14, 2013 at the Agape Bible Church, 264 Applegate Road S., Ithaca. In lieu of flowers, the family asks those who wish to remember Bob in the form of a contribution to kindly consider Hospicare, 172 E. King Road, Ithaca, NY 14850 or the Alzheimer's Association , PO Box 96011, Washington, DC 20090. 

Roger W. Ming, 92, of Newfield, passed away peacefully after a brief illness on Monday, December 23, 2013. He is survived by his wife: Alta L. Ming and his son, Roger W. Ming Jr. also of Newfield. Funeral services will be held Saturday, January 11, 2014 at 11:00 A.M. at the First Assembly of God Church,197 Bostwick Rd. Ithaca, with Pastor John Sotero Officiating. Friends may call from 10:00 to 11:00 AM prior to the service. A reception will follow the service in the fellowship Hall. In lieu of flowers, if desired, please make donations to the First Assembly of God Church in memory of Roger W. Ming. Bangs Funeral Home will be in charge of arrangements.


Marjorie Wilson Penalver died on August 25, 2010. She was the first African-American teacher hired by the Ithaca School District (in 1955) and taught English at IHS. Born on March 26, 1928, she was a native of Greensboro, North Carolina. She received a Bachelor’s Degree in English from Bennett College for Women in 1948. Her teaching career spanned 48 years, beginning at Lincoln High School in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, and ending at The Learning Center in Encino, California, where she was a tutor, in 1996.

Her move north led her to the love of her life and husband of 50 years until his death in 2008, Theodore “Ted” Penalver. Although being married to an Air Force serviceman required the family to move frequently, Marjorie secured teaching positions everywhere their travels took them. She headed the English Department at Edison High School in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania from 1963 to 1967, and taught English, speech, and journalism at Edmunds High School in Sumter, South Carolina from 1967 to 1970. The following year she taught English at Okaloosa Walton Junior College in Niceville, Florida and also English as a Second Language to foreign-born prisoners incarcerated at Eglin Air Force Base. Upon returning to Ithaca in 1973, she resumed her teaching position at IHS. She became Vice Principal in 1979.

In 1986 Marjorie was given an award by the Tompkins County Human Rights Commission for her role in implementing multi-cultural education. The Marjorie N. Penalver Award still exists and is given to the educator who has done the most in the area of human rights by increasing awareness of diversity or issues of oppression within Tompkins County. A member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority for over 40 years, Marjorie was a charter member and founder of the sorority’s Ithaca Alumnae Chapter, which

celebrated its 30th year in 2009. The Delta Sigma Theta Ithaca Alumnae Chapter Penalver Award, established in 1986 in honor of both Marjorie and Theodore Penalver, is a scholarship award presented each year to African American senior high school students who have demonstrated strong academic motivation and diligence combined with a contribution towards multi-culturalism. 


Jane C. Catalfano, 86, of 916 East State Street, Ithaca, New York died at home on Tuesday, December 16, 1997.
Jane was born in Buffalo, New York on January 8, 1911, the daughter of Susie Sykes and Fred Irving Clapp.
She graduated from the Canandaigua Academy in 1928 and the University of Rochester in 1933. She came to Ithaca in 1935 to teach in the Ithaca Public Schools.
Jane was a member of the Ithaca Women’s Club and the Ithaca Area Retired Teachers Association. She was predeceased by her husband Samuel J. Catalfano in 1982 and brother Fredrick DeLancey Clapp in 1994. She is survived by her daughters Joyce A. Catalfano of Morgantown,, West Virginia and Janet L. Catalfano of Concord, New Hampshire and grandchildren, Jennifer L.M. Snyder of Olympia, Washington and Ian R.I. Snyder of Concord, New Hampshire.
Calling hours will be held on Sunday, December 21, from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Herson Funeral Home. 110 South Geneva Street, Ithaca, New York. Burial will be in the Groton Rural Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Hospicare of Tompkins County, 172 King Road, Ithaca, New York 14850.
Coach Joe Moresco was a guest of Steve Shippos and the Class of 1961.
Coach Joe Moresco was a guest of Steve Shippos and the Class of 1961.

ITHACA — One of Joe Moresco’s contemporaries and chief rivals on the football field, former Union-Endicott coach Fran Angeline, was also one of Moresco’s great friends in the coaching fraternity. And when the former Ithaca High coach passed away on Tuesday, at age 86, Angeline was profoundly affected. “I can’t say enough about him,” Angeline said Tuesday. “It’s a huge loss to me. We’ve lost a great competitor, a great friend and a great coach. I will miss him personally.” Moresco, who guided the Little Red to 141 victories and a state title in 28 years at the helm, died Tuesday morning at his Ithaca home. He was 86. “I thought the world of him,” Angeline said. “I just can’t think of enough positive adjectives to describe Joe Moresco.”
Former players felt the same way about the man who arrived in Ithaca in the mid-1950s and built Ithaca High football into a state powerhouse. He also coached baseball at Ithaca. “He was very, very tough, very disciplined. But he was fair,” said Rick Wells, who played football and baseball for Moresco in the early 1960s. Wells is now retired and lives in the Gettysburg area. “A lot of people don’t realize how good of a coach he was, not only in football but baseball as well,” Wells said. “We played a game every day, and we would go through situations every day, so come game day, baseball-wise we were well rehearsed. Football-wise, if you didn’t like contact, then you better stay home.”
Current Ithaca College football coach Mike Welch credited Moresco for helping shape his career. “When I became head coach at Ithaca, he was a bit of mentor for me,”
Welch said. “He followed me very closely, and he gave me a lot of encouragement. “He was a constant. He gave me a thumbs up when things were going great and a ‘hang in there’ when things weren’t. “He became a very good friend.”
“He was a great football man,” said Bill Bryant, the former Ithaca athletics director who took over the football program this past fall. “He loved what he did, and he certainly affected the lives of thousands of young men in his time as a football coach. He was really the one that transformed not only football but athletics in general at Ithaca,” Bryant said.
Moresco — who attended high school in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., graduating in 1944 — coached at Ithaca from 1956-83, compiling a 141-81-14 record. His best years were from 1968-72, when the Little Red went 41-1-1, including a 36-game unbeaten streak, undefeated Southern Tier Athletic Conference teams from ’68-72, and a state championship in 1970. Including a stint at Canisteo High, Moresco finished his high school coaching career with 155 victories, which ranks 109th all-time in the state. In 2000, the Ithaca district re-dedicated the football facility at Ithaca High as Moresco Stadium at Bredbenner Field. He is a member of the Section 4 Hall of Fame, the Ithaca High Athletic Hall of Fame and the Mansfield University Hall of Fame. Moresco is survived by his wife of 64 years, Shirley, and children, Joseph III, Nancy, Tim, Teri and Barbara, plus 10 grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.
Calling hours
Friends are invited to call from 3 to 6 p.m. Thursday at Bangs Funeral Home, 209 W. Green St., Ithaca. A Mass of Christian burial will be held at 10 a.m. Friday at the Immaculate Conception Church, 113 N. Geneva St., Ithaca.
Reprinted from The Ithaca Journal, 11/28/2012
Richard W. Steinbaugh. Science Teacher

Richard W. Steinbaugh, of Ithaca died February 11, 2016 after a
short illness and hospitalization. He taught at Ithaca High School
for 35 years in the Science Dept. He was a great Biology teacher
and will be sorely missed by the many he touched and inspired.
He is predeceased by his beloved wife Mildred who passed away in May 2010. He is
survived by his sons, David of Port Angeles, WA, and Doug of Sarasota, FL. A
Memorial of Remembrance will be Held at Christ Chapel at a later date.
The Class of 1917 recognized Dr. Boynton, Superintendent of Schools,for his twenty five years of service to the school district. They stated, in their tribute, that Dr. Boynton's goal was to make this
The Class of 1917 recognized Dr. Boynton, Superintendent of Schools,for his twenty five years of service to the school district. They stated, in their tribute, that Dr. Boynton's goal was to make this "not only one of the finest schools in the state, but
The school building was only two years old when the 1917 version of the Ithaca High School Faculty reigned. The proud tradition of outstanding educators continued down through the years. This section is to honor those teachers who meant so much of our successes during our years at Ithaca High School.
Fall Creek School Faculty Circa 1950s
Fall Creek School Faculty Circa 1950s

Coach Donald Culligan
Coach Donald Culligan

Donald Culligan left quite the impact on the Ithaca community as a teacher, coach and elected official. Achieving numerous high school coaching records and having a basketball court and street named in his honor will keep his name in the public eye, but Culligan’s true legacy will live on through the lives he impacted in more than 40 years of public service.
"To be a part of their everyday lives was very special," Culligan told the Ithaca Journal in 2004. "I'm sure I got a lot more out of it than they did."
Culligan died Sunday at age 93. He and his late wife, Jane Elizabeth Kimple Culligan, were married for 71 years and raised five children. The family grew larger as the years passed by with 13 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.
From 1956-1973, Culligan accumulated a 226-116 record as coach of the Ithaca High boys basketball team while winning five Southern Tier Athletic Conference championships and five Section 4 titles. He also was Ithaca's athletic director from 1970-78 before retiring, served on the Tompkins County Board of Representatives from 1957-92 and was president of Section 4 from 1974-75.
“What he did that really impressed me was everything we did in practice was pointed toward game situations; he had us prepared for every situation,” said John Stone, who was a member of Culligan’s first title team in 1959 and later coached the Little Red from 1982-93. “His attention to detail was just amazing.”

ADDITIONAL OBITUARY TEXT:Donald James Culligan, son, husband, United States Marine, father, grandfather, great-grandfather; former teacher, coach, and Tompkins County Representative, departed from his beloved South Hill for the next world on Sunday, November 6, 2016. Born on May 8, 1923 to Leontine Myers Culligan and George E. Culligan, Jr., Don lived an outsized life that profoundly influenced his family, students, athletes, friends, and community members. He and his late wife, Jane Elizabeth Kimple Culligan, were married for 71 years and raised 5 children: Thomas J. Culligan (Patrice, Amelia Island, FL.); Nancy J. Culligan (Ithaca, NY); Mary Ann Culligan Pitzer (Brian, Ithaca, NY); Kathryn Culligan Simon (John David Jones, Lexington, KY); and Paul G. Culligan (Michele, Troy, NY). Their home was always a lively gathering place for their extended family that included 13 grandchildren; Christa, Burke, and Brad Culligan; Patricia (Hohman), Joseph, and Susanne Yengo; Scott, Brent, and Matthew Pitzer; Claire Eileen Simon; Michael, Brian, and Kasey Culligan; and 12 great-grandchildren.An alumnus of Ithaca High School (Class of 1941), Don entered the United States Marine Corps on February 12, 1943 where he was assigned to the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing - Marine Night Fighter Squadron 533 based at Cherry Point, North Carolina. He served in the Pacific Theater of World War II in the Marshall Islands. A beneficiary of the GI Bill, Don earned his bachelor's degree in 1948 and his master's degree in 1951 from Ithaca College. He was a loyal supporter of Ithaca College and its athletic teams, attending many basketball and football games with friends well into his 80's. In 2006 Don was honored by his alma mater with a Lifetime Achievement Award. Don's 30 year successful career as a physical education teacher and athletics coach began in 1948 in Virgil, NY. Two years later he moved to Sherburne, NY where he coached football and basketball teams to undefeated seasons and conference championships. The Culligans had a lifelong affection for Sherburne, returning many times to visit friends and former students at class reunions. Don "Coach" Culligan was a legendary figure at Ithaca High School from 1956 - 1978. During that period he taught physical education, driver education and served as director of athletics. He coached many outstanding varsity basketball teams throughout his tenure compiling a 226-116 record, five Southern Tier Athletic Conference championships and five New York State Section IV titles. In 1969, he was named Coach of the Year by the Ithaca Journal, an honor that he shared with his friend and legendary Ithaca High football coach Joe Moresco. Don retired from the Ithaca City School District in 1978. He was inducted into both the Section 4 Hall of Fame and the Ithaca High School Athletic Hall of Fame. In recognition for his dedication and service, the center court at the Ithaca High gymnasium was named Culligan Court in 2004.The Signal, November 12, 2016 - See more at: http://www.legacy.com
Dr. John Graves, Vice Principal and Counselor
John W. Graves, formerly a resident of Ithaca for 24 years, passed away at the age of 93 on February 4th, 2017, at his residence at Greystone Farm Assisted Living in Salem, NH where he resided with his wife Helen. He graduated from Ithaca College in 1943 and became an instrumental music teacher and Director of the Marching Band at Ithaca High School in 1947. Later he became a guidance counselor at IHS and then became the principal in 1961 - 1971. John also received his doctorate in education from Cornell in 1962. The family remembers many happy years living in Ithaca. John is survived by his wife Helen, son Eric of Woodland Hills, CA, and daughter Anne Bartlett of Manchester, NH. He is also survived by nieces and nephews, three grandchildren and four great grandchildren.
Published in Ithaca Journal on Feb. 10, 2017
Gordon C. Myer, husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, artist, former teacher and coach, passed into the loving arms of God on April 23, 2017 at the age of 85.
He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Laura Winnick Myer, children, Christine Radi (Steven), JoAnn Myer-Foland, and Rhonda Salay (Christopher); five grandchildren, Jennifer Radi Greenberg (Brian), Mark Foland, Stephanie Radi Klitsch (Brendan), Jody Foland and Michael Radi; four great-grandchildren, Meredith, Sydney and Joshua Greenberg and Oliver Klitsch; siblings Durwood, Edward (Gail), Bettye, Philip (Patricia) Myer and JoEtta (Jay) Hoffman; and many nieces and nephews.
Gordon Campbell Myer was born on October 12, 1931 in Hydetown, P.A. to Charles and Edna Myer. He graduated from Titusville High School in 1949 and went on to obtain a Bachelor of Science degree in Art Education from Edinboro State Teachers College in 1953, a Masters in Art Education with a minor in Fine Arts from Penn State University in 1956 and a Masters of Fine Arts from the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) in 1966. He began his teaching career at Candor Central School (1953-55) and became an art teacher at Ithaca High School in 1956. Over his 41 years at IHS, he became the head of the Art Department and taught painting, ceramics, crafts and photography.
Gordon is well known for his artwork, especially his watercolor on canvas paintings and wet-on-wet technique. He won numerous awards and exhibited his original paintings, ceramics and batiks in shows throughout the northeastern United States. His works are represented in many private collections.
He was a well-respected athletic coach. He coached the IHS Girl’s Varsity Tennis Team for 22 years (1979-2001) with a record of 225 wins and 89 losses. The team won the STAC Championship 5 times, Division I Championship 6 times and Section IV Championship 4 times. Dominating in 1991-92, the team won 30 consecutive matches and went 53-1 from 1991-1994. He also coached the Cornell Women’s Softball Club Team (1983-1985), IHS Girl’s Varsity Softball Team (1980-1982), and IHS J.V. Baseball team (1956-1973). Gordon was inducted into the Ithaca High School Athletic Hall of Fame in 2006.
He touched the lives of many families in the Ithaca area as Director of the Kiwanis Baseball Program (1959-70 as AD; 1971-83 as Director) and through the Ithaca Youth Bureau’s Stewart Park Day Camp (1958-70 as an art, archery & tennis counselor and 1971-82 as the Director).
Gordon was a faithful member of Immaculate Conception Church and a member of the Knights of Columbus. He was devoted to his family and spent countless hours traveling with his children and grandchildren to a variety of activities from baton competitions to tennis, softball, volleyball, horseback riding, music, theater and school events.

Obituary: Phyllis M. Seager

Phyllis M. Seager, 105, died on May 16, 2022, at the Masonic Care Community under the care of the devoted staff of the Saranac Household.


Phyllis was born on January 18, 1917, in Syracuse to Nina (MacDonald) and William H. Mallory.

She graduated from Nottingham High School at age 16. Phyllis received a B.S. from Syracuse University School of Education and Business Management in 1938 and an M.S. in 1950. During college, she received an honorary membership in Phi Kappa Phi for academics and activities. All four years, she sang in the Hendricks Chapel Choir and continued to sing in other choirs throughout her life.


From 1946-1968, she taught business subjects and driver education at Ithaca High School. From 1968 – 1972, as Assistant Professor of Secretarial Science, she set up the Secretarial Science Department at the newly established Tompkins County Community College.


After retiring from teaching, Phyllis joined New Horizons for the Handicapped as Coordinator, where she worked to install ramps at public buildings, such as the newly constructed Herbert Johnson Art Museum at Cornell. Subsequently, she joined the Cornell University Council as Executive Assistant to the Director. Throughout her life, Phyllis enjoyed golfing, bowling, swimming, singing and traveling.


Survivors include a daughter, Carol Seager and her husband, Richard Loe, of New Hartford; a son, Robert Seager and his wife, Janet, of Edmonds, Washington; five grandchildren, Sara and Emma Loe, Jill, Kendal, and Robby Seager; three great-grandchildren, Edie, Miles, and Nathan; and two nieces, Jane Park and Margaret Wenge. Phyllis was predeceased by her brother, John Mallory; two former husbands, George Seager and Nader Maroun; and her long-time traveling companion, Richard Dower.


In keeping with Phyllis' wishes as a secular humanist, there was no public ceremony. Interment in Onondaga Valley Cemetery, near her mother and father, was attended by family. Please consider any memorial contributions to The Southern Poverty Law Center, Montgomery, AL and Doctors Without Borders. Messages of sympathy may be left at Friedel, Williams & Edmunds atwww.fwefh.com.