Category: Obituary

notes about the passing of an alumnus

James A Santoli ’65 (BUS)

James A Santoli ’65 (BUS) passed away peacefully in the comfort of his daughter’s home surrounded by his loving family. James was the manager of the UConn basketball team in 1964-1965.

Bonnie Mack (aka Bonnie Jacob) ’55 (Neag)

Bonnie Mack (aka Bonnie Jacob) ’55 (Neag), died on October 11, 2018 at her home in Jupiter, Florida.  Bonita Ann Barnard was born in 1933 in Winsted, CT. She graduated from the University of Connecticut  with a bachelor’s degree from the Neag School of Education.  She married Walter Phelps Jacob Jr. in 1958, and had one son, Walter Phelps Jacob III.  She taught music in Pittsford, NY and after moving to Lake Wylie, SC, she taught in Gastonia, NC.  She enjoyed playing bridge, golf and tennis.  Years after her husband Walter passed away, she married William F. Mack in 1985, and eventually moved to Jupiter, FL.  She is survived by her husband “Bill”, son “Walter”, daughter-in-law “Nancy”, grandson “Walter IV”, and brother “Norm”.

Bruce L. Thomas ’57 (SSW)

Bruce L. Thomas ’57 (SSW) died of multiple health issues, notably kidney cancer on October 9, 2018. He leaves his wife of 57 years, Sally Folger Thomas, his son Richard F. Thomas and his daughter Alice T. Cervantes. He died at home in Warren, Ohio.

Mary Anne (Pfeiffer) Whalen ’65 (CLAS)

Mary Anne (Pfeiffer) Whalen ’65 (CLAS) died in Bakersfield, California on May 23, 2018. She is survived by her husband of 53 years, David J. Whalen Ph.D., her sister Kathie Pfeiffer, her children: Jerry Whalen of Springfield, Missouri and Kate Gill of Bakersfield, as well as their spouses Jennifer Whalen and Louis Gill.  She has six Grandchildren: Nolan, Anthony, Kiera, Bridget, Maille and Liam.

Theresa M. Werick PhD ’95 (CLAS)

Theresa M. Werick PhD ’95 (CLAS) of Buffalo, NY passed away on September 7, 2018. Theresa was born on March 22nd, 1950 to Ralph and Esther Werick (née Treanor) (deceased) and is survived by her five siblings Margaret Ackley,  Mary  Werick, William Werick, Katherine Werick, and Joanne Werick.

Terry attended high school at Holy Angels Academy, graduating in 1968. She graduated from The University of Texas at San Antonio in 1985 where she studied Psychology and Sociology and, in 1995, earned her PhD in Biobehavioral Genetics from the University of Connecticut with an emphasis on Schizophrenia research. Subsequently, Terry worked for several pharmaceutical companies conducting clinical research trials in order to further the research, understanding and treatment of various illnesses – a calling for which she had great passion. She accomplished all this and more while raising her three children, often as a single mother.

Fred Kenice McClafferty ’50 (CLAS)

Fred Kenice McClafferty ’50 (CLAS), of Bloomfield and Stamford, Conn., who had a passion for New York Times crossword puzzles, pineapple upside-down cake, golden retrievers, platform tennis, and UConn women’s basketball, died May 23. He was 88.

He grew up in Greenwich Village and attended La Salle Academy in Manhattan, then graduated from UConn. In 1954, he married the love of his life, Jane Reimer McClafferty, and they were together for 63 years.

He was a public information officer in the U.S. Army before building a career in media and advertising, first at ABC and later at NW Ayer. He truly found joy after he retired and went into the antiques business with Jane full time.

More recently, he was a beloved part of the Seabury community in Bloomfield, Conn., where he served on the stage crew for musical theater productions, helped oversee the residents’ workshop, and built boardwalks, bridges, and benches for others to enjoy.

Loraine (Canfield) Fischer ’50 (CLAS)

Loraine (Canfield) Fischer ’50 (CLAS) died in Peterborough, N.H. on June 16. She was the widow of Robert A. Fischer, Jr. ’51 (ED), who died in 2015. They were married for 64 years, both were retired teachers, and after retirement, had a small farm in New Hampton, N.H.

Dale Humphrey Aborn ’52 (CLAS)

Dale Humphrey Aborn ’52 (CLAS), 90, of Largo, Florida moved on from this life March 10, 2018. He was a U.S. Army Veteran and Life Member of American Legion Post 252, Seminole, Fla. He is survived by his loving wife of 64 wondrous years, Carlene (Mello) Aborn; daughter, Roni Ann Aborn; sons, Scott Mello Aborn and Keith (Duina) Harry Aborn; sister, Jean (Aborn) Garrell and her husband Bill, and many other loving family and friends. He graduated from the University of Connecticut (1952), where he was an All-American Soccer player, a member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon (???)(1950), and active in many student activities. He was a top salesman for International Silver Corporation, Meriden, Conn. While working for Raymond James & Associates Inc (1975), Dale was awarded the Distinguished Salesman’s Award, by the Sales and Marketing Executive International (SME). During his retirement he spent many hours at Osceola High School, Seminole, Fla, assisting in the library media center and tending the lovely gardens between the media center and cafeteria. He was known to all as a helpful and generous friend. He was a good man, loving husband, and a great Dad. He passed from this life while in the compassionate care of Suncoast Hospice.

Monica Elizabeth Spencer Bell ’78 (ED)

Monica Elizabeth Spencer Bell ’78 (ED) of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, died in the company of her husband and other family members on Oct. 22, 2017 at the University of Utah Medical Center in Salt Lake City. Life was a dance for Monica. She tap-danced and pirouetted through schools and hundreds of dance lessons while performing in many musicals and recitals. At UConn, where she performed as a Jet girl in West Side Story, she earned a BA in English Education. Monica spent many summer vacations with her parents and siblings visiting grandparents in Cheyenne, Wyoming, where her mother had grown up, instilling in her a lifelong love of the west. There was always a painting of the Teton Mountain Range hanging over her parents’ fireplace. Monica’s early career as a computer programmer led to a successful consulting business in New York City. In the early 1980s, she helped businesses automate processes using the new personal computer. In the late 1990s, Monica started her second career as a recruiter and career coach, helping thousands of professionals take the next steps in their careers. Monica and Bob Bell were married in Connecticut and lived there for several years before a job change relocated them to Alexandria, Virginia. Bob and Monica matched steps for 22 years sailing, traveling, working, volunteering, running marathons, dancing at every opportunity, and loving each other. Annual visits to Jenny Lake Lodge in Grand Teton National Park were an important element of her spiritual renewal. After retirement in 2013, they moved to Jackson, Wyoming, where Monica proclaimed, “My body has finally joined my spirit.” Giving back through volunteer work was paramount to Monica. She served on the board of directors for the Senior Center of Alexandria and First Night-Alexandria, and volunteered for numerous children’s literacy programs. Monica loved riding horses and volunteered with the Jackson Hole Therapeutic Riding Association. In the summer of 2016, she became a rider herself at JHTRA after suffering a major brain hemorrhage. In spite of the grueling physical therapy, Monica maintained her positive spirit and resiliency, often saying, “My new purpose is to inspire others by how I handle the adversity in my life.”