Obituaries

Peter Coholan

A photo of Peter Coholan

Service:

Family and friends are invited to the Blenheim Community Funeral Home on
Tuesday January 24, 2017 for a gathering between 2:00 - 4:00 p.m.
Words of remembrance will be shared at 3:30

Peter James Coholan of Dealtown passed away on Thursday January 19, 2017.  Peter was born in Saint John, New Brunswick 62 years ago.  He will be missed by his wife Kerry (Finn) Coholan, by his children Erin Booth, Kasey & Michael Maguire and Peter “PJ”, by his grandchildren Colbie, Claire and Grant.  He was anxiously awaiting the birth of his fourth grandchild soon.  Peter is also survived by his siblings Beth, Lynn, Patty, Kim, Mark, Paul and Mike.  He was predeceased by his parents Marie and Patrick Coholan and by his brother John.  He will be sorely missed by his four legged daughter Mabel.

Peter was a sports enthusiast, a lifelong supporter of the Montreal Canadiens and the Hamilton Tiger Cats of the CFL.  He studied Sociology at the University of Waterloo before accepting a position at the Southwestern Regional Centre in Dealtown.  Following his retirement in 2008 he worked for five years in the cafeteria of UCC “The Pines”.

In keeping with Peter’s wishes, cremation has taken place.  Friends and family are invited to the Blenheim Community Funeral Home on Tuesday January 24, 2017 where a gathering will take place from 2:00 – 4:00 p.m.  Words of remembrance will be shared at 3:30 p.m.

Friends wishing to remember Peter with a memorial donation are asked to consider the Pet and Wildlife Rescue project (PAWR) in Chatham-Kent.

Fran Stothart

A photo of Fran Stothart

Service:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Monday January 23, 2017
2:00 p.m.

Visitation:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Monday January 23, 2017
12:00 - 2:00 p.m.

Frances Elizabeth Stothart, affectionately known to all as “Frani” passed away with family by her side at the Chatham-Kent Hospice on Friday January 20, 2017. She was predeceased by her husband Frank Stothart on March 19, 2004.

Frani was the first child born to her late parents William & Dona (Humphrey) Nealey. Her 69 short years were spent loving and caring for everyone around her.  She was an awesome Mom to Susan Longbottom of Chatham, Carol & Chuck Huckle of Blenheim, Leigh Anne & John O’Brien of Sault Ste. Marie and Butch Stothart of Blenheim.  She was the best Grandma to Missy & Tim Randall and their children Jocelyn and Megan, to Matthew & Rochelle Stothart and their children Hudson and Harper, and to Noah and Abby O’Brien.  Sadly she was predeceased by her grandson Tyler.

Being the eldest of nine children, Frani helped her parents when it came to raising her siblings Marie Smith (Leonard), Pat Ryckman (Fred), Gloria Anson (Ed), Ken Nealey (late Linda), Stacie Beaton (Doug), Tami St. Lewis (John), Dona Bechard and the late Bill Nealey. She was loved by many nieces and nephews and by her good friend Bob Marlatt.

Frani was always a friendly face working at the local grocery stores. She was a lover of nature and believed in God.  She was a valued member of the Blenheim Baptist Church.  She will be missed.

Friends and family are invited to the Blenheim Community Funeral Home on Monday January 23, 2017 where visitation will take place from 12:00 – 2:00 p.m. A Funeral Service for Frani conducted by Pastor Bill Terris will begin at 2:00 p.m. Interment will take place in Evergreen Cemetery. Friends wishing to remember Frani with a memorial donation are asked to consider the Blenheim Baptist Church or the Chatham-Kent Hospice.

Mary Vegso

A photo of Mary Vegso

Service:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Tuesday January 17, 2017
2:00 p.m.

Visitation:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Monday January 16, 2017
7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
and
Tuedsay January 17, 2017
1:00 - 2:00 p.m.

Mary Vegso formerly of Cedar Springs passed away at Riverview Gardens in Chatham on Saturday January 14, 2017 at the age of 94 years. Mary was born in Hungary, a country that she kept close in her heart and was able to return to for visits. When she was 6 years old, her mother Rose Hegedus brought Mary, her younger sister Helen Legroulx and her younger brother Joseph Hegedus, (both who have predeceased her) across the Atlantic Ocean to join their father Joseph Hegedus who had come before them to start a new life in Canada.

In 1947 Mary married Mike Vegso and eventually settled in Cedar Springs where they worked side by side growing and selling fruit at their fruitstand, Fairview Orchards.  Mary also will be remembered by students of CCI in Chatham and the Blenheim District High School where she ran the cafeterias.

Mary and Mike (who predeceased her in 1999) were the proud parents of Susan & Garth McDowell and Sandra & Kenneth Chauvin. They were also blessed in life with four grandchildren Shannon & Jim Rose, Shane & Wendy McDowell, Justine Chauvin and Taylor Chauvin as well as four great-grandchildren Sophie Rose, Katie Rose, Josie McDowell and Charlotte McDowell.

Family and friends are invited to the Blenheim Community Funeral Home on Monday where visitation will take place from 7 – 9 p.m. and again on Tuesday January 17, 2017 from 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. when a Funeral Service conducted by Rev. Wanda Burse will begin. Interment will take place in Pardoville Cemetery.

Friends wishing to remember Mary with a memorial donation are asked to consider the Pet and Wildlife Rescue efforts in Chatham-Kent (PAWR) since animals and their welfare were very important to her.

John Thompson

A photo of John Thompson

Service:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Saturday January 14, 2017
11:00 a.m.

Visitation:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Saturday January 14, 2017
10:30 - 11:00 a.m.

John Robert Thompson passed away at the Chatham Kent Health Alliance on Tuesday January 10, 2017. John was born 66 years ago to his parents Bob and the late Jennie (Shepley) Thompson. He is survived by his sisters Rose Marie Johnston and Kathleen Donahue and by his step-mom Sandy Thompson. John was raised in Wallaceburg where he worked as a Welder and Journeyman, married and had a son who he named after his own dad Bob. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews. Predeceased by his brothers-in-law Archie Johnston and Michael Donahue.

Friends and family are invited to the Blenheim Community Funeral Home on Saturday morning where a time to meet with John’s family will take place at 10:30 a.m. A Memorial Service conducted by Pastor Eric Skillings will begin at 11:00 a.m. In keeping with John’s wishes, cremation has taken place and a private family interment will take place in Evergreen Cemetery at a later date.

Friends wishing to remember John with a memorial donation are asked to consider the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada.

John’s family wishes to express many thanks to the staff of the Blenheim Community Village for the care and compassion that you gave to John over the past more than 10 years.

Paul Malott

A photo of Paul Malott

Service:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Thursday January 12, 2017
1:00 p.m.

Visitation:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Wednesday January 11, 2017
2:00-4:00 & 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Paul Edwin Malott, formerly of Blenheim passed away suddenly at his home in Bourget, Ontario on Thursday January 5, 2017. Paul was born in Chatham 73 years ago to the late George & Ethel (Furman) Malott.  He was one of five children and was the last surviving member of his family, having been predeceased by his sisters Helen Knott, Jean Lewis, Barbara Fields and Nina Ward.

As a young man Paul helped his father work on cars in a shop on Lumley Street in Blenheim. He met the love of his life Roberta “Bunny” Haydon and began a journey that would span almost 55 years.  Together Paul and Bunny raised two children; Robert & Susan (Mayea) Malott and Vicki & Henry Petersen.  They are the proud grandparents of Christina & Gaetan, Shawn & Heather and Brittany & Zac and great-grandparents of Sophia and Benjamin.  Paul is survived by three brothers-in-law Murray Knott, Floyd Lewis and Donald Ward.  Also survived by several nieces and nephews.

Paul began a career at Southwestern Regional Centre as a Health Care Aide and retired from a Departmental Management position in Transportation. Earlier on in his spare time you would see Paul and his fishing buddy Dave Richards loading up his fishing boat to spend hours on the water trying to catch “the big one that always gets away”.  Later on Paul enjoyed helping Bunny raise Yorkie and Pomeranian pups, and travelling in their motorhome after they retired.

Family and friends are invited to the Blenheim Community Funeral Home on Wednesday from 2 – 4 and 7 – 9 p.m. A Funeral Service for Paul will be held in the Funeral Home on Thursday January 12, 2017 at 1:00 p.m.  In keeping with Paul’s wishes, cremation will follow.

Friends wishing to remember Paul are asked to consider a charity of their choice in lieu of flowers.

Elizabeth VanDerMolen

A photo of Elizabeth VanDerMolen

Service:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Saturday January 7, 2016
4:00 p.m.

Visitation:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Saturday January 7, 2016
1:00 - 4:00 p.m.

Elizabeth VanDerMolen of Blenheim, beloved wife of the late Eppie VanDerMolen (2001) passed away at home on Thursday January 5, 2017. Elizabeth was born in Holland; one of eleven children to the late Catherina & John Heuvelmans. She is survived by her siblings Ann Dorssers, Truus Ermers, Mary Vandenberg, Cathy Denomy, Theo Heuvelmans, Gerard Heuvelmans, John Heuvelmans, Leo Heuvelmans and Chris Heuvelmans. She was predeceased by her sister Angela VanRaay.

Elizabeth was the proud mother and mother in law of Bob & Lynn VanDerMolen, Jackie & Aron McGaffey, John & Patty VanDerMolen, Anthony & Jamie-Lee VanDerMolen, Jim & Lisa VanDerMolen, Debbie Payne & Dan and Cindy VanDerMolen. She was predeceased by her son Andy VanDerMolen and her daughter Karen VanDerMolen. She is survived by many grandchildren and great-grandchildren including her pride and joy Brian Beriault.

Elizabeth loved watching nature shows and crime shows. She loved nature. She spent many hours working in her garden or sitting by the water. She loved to fish and she could crack a good joke anytime.

Friends and family are invited to the Blenheim Community Funeral Home on Saturday January 7, 2017 for visitation from 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. A Memorial Service will begin at 4 o’clock. Friends wishing to remember Elizabeth with a memorial donation are asked to consider the Heart & Stroke Foundation.

Victor Cross

A photo of Victor Cross

Service:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Saturday January 7, 2017
11:00 a.m.

Visitation:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Friday January 6, 2017
6:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Victor Johnston Cross, born August 20, 1929 to Myrtle Rinnert Cross & Russel Cross in Dawn Township, Ontario passed away on Monday January 2, 2017.

Vic grew up on the farm with his siblings. He learned about hard work, horses, making maple syrup, skating and fell in love.  Vic went out on his own at age 16 to explore life and worked on many farms across Ontario, Manitoba and British Columbia.  Later he sailed the Great Lakes on large cargo ships.  He met his bride, Molly on Christmas Day 1950 at his parents’ home, they danced the evening away. It was love at first sight. They married March 8 1952.  His 2nd love was horses. They moved to the farm near Blenheim with their 3 daughters in 1965. Vic built a precision racetrack and began training and racing his horses across southern Ontario.  He retired from Crown, Cork and Seal in Chatham. During the first years of retirement he planted many trees on the farm, at one point we thought he was starting a tree farm. Thank-you for the shade and the beauty of the snow blanketing the treetops and branches. His proud crop of 80 plus squash was shared by many and the largest weighed in @ 9 Lbs.  He continued to train and race horses until the age of 80. He was truly a horse whisperer. In retirement he and Molly spent 24 winters in Corpus Christi Texas where they enjoyed beaches, sunshine & many of their winter Texan friends & family.  Always ambitious, determined and easygoing attitude. His motto” if there’s a will there’s a way” kept him moving during his challenge and fight with Parkinson’s disease.

He is survived by his wife Molly of 64 years, his daughters Terry Srokosz of Blenheim, Della & Robert Johnson of Texas and Gwen & Doug Duyck of Merlin, his grandchildren Cody, Colton, Dylan & Brittany, Molly, Robbie, Jill, Reagen, Jessica, Justin and Jackie and by his great-grandchildren Callie, Forrest, Joshua, Jordyn, Toby, Aiden, Addison, Morgan, Corbin, Joel, Jack and Finn. Victor is also survived by his son-in-law Larry Srokosz and his siblings Stella & Dean Webster of Chatham, Pat & George DeMaeyer of Wallaceburg, Sam & Hat Cross of B.C. and Joanne Cross of Chatham. He was predeceased by his siblings Dorothy Cross, Mary & Fred Smith, Lloyd & Irene Cross and Frank & Theresa Cross.Cremation has taken place. Friends and family are invited to the Blenheim Community Funeral Home on Friday where visitation will take place from 6:00-9:00 p.m. A Funeral Service for Victor, conducted by Pastor Eric Skillings will take place in the Funeral Home on Saturday January 7, 2017 at 11:00 a.m.

Friends wishing to remember Victor with a memorial donation are asked to consider either the Parkinsons Society or the Foundation of Chatham-Kent Health Alliance.

Larry Gownlock

A photo of Larry Gownlock

Service:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Thursday January 5, 2017
1:00 p.m.

Visitation:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Thursday January 5, 2017
12:00 - 1:00 p.m.

Larry Gownlock of Blenheim passed away on Saturday December 31, 2016 at the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance. Born 66 years ago to his parents Edna (Bond) & the late William “Joe” Gownlock, Larry will be sorely missed by his brother Don Gownlock & Brenda Faubert and by his sister Susan Gownlock & Rob Marlatt.

For many years Larry worked beside his brother Don in construction. In keeping with his love of outdoors, Larry took a job working on the farm with Don Giffin which he enjoyed very much.

Cremation has taken place. Visitation will take place at the Blenheim Community Funeral Home on Thursday January 5, 2017 from noon until 1:00 p.m.   A Funeral Service for Larry will begin at 1:00 p.m.   A private family interment will take place in Evergreen Cemetery at a later date.

Friends wishing to remember Larry with a memorial donation are asked to consider the Cancer Society.

Antje “Ank” Postma

A photo of Antje “Ank” Postma

Visitation:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Wednesday January 4, 2017
6:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Antje Postma, affectionately known as “Ank” passed away with her family by her side at the Chatham-Kent Hospice on Thursday December 29, 2016. Ank was born in the Netherlands 67 years ago to her late parents Johanna & Frederick Hengelaar. In 1977 as a young mother and a Public Health Nurse, she emigrated to Canada. Determined to make a good life for her children, she learned to speak English by watching Sesame Street and in 1980 after completing courses in Canada she fulfilled the requirements of becoming a Registered Nurse in Canada and accepted a job at the Southwestern Regional Centre.

Ank was a wonderful mother to her daughters Johanna & Tim VanDriel of Beamsville, Gracia & Paul Hendrie of Chatham and Klarika & Mike Hamer of Port Elgin and to her son Ricky Postma of Blenheim. She was so happy when she became a grandmother to Callum, Caelyn, Daria and Rhys. She was expecting her fifth grandchild in February.

Ank will be fondly remembered by her siblings and their spouses Hennie & Joop Corba, Gerrie & Sietse deHaan, Femmie & Gerrit vanArragon, Marianne & Henk Luttikhof, Frits & Wilma Hengelaar and Susan Hengelaar (late Gerrit Jan).

In keeping with Ank’s wishes, cremation will take place. A time of visitation with her children will take place at the Blenheim Community Funeral Home on Wednesday January 4, 2017 from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. Ank’s urn will be interred in Holland at a later date.

Friends wishing to remember Ank with a memorial donation are asked to consider the Chatham-Kent Hospice.

One of life’s greatest gifts is to have friends and Mom was blessed to have many. Your support through her journey meant more to her and to us than you can ever know. We would like to extend a huge thanks to all of you and especially to Mom’s nursing friends Fay Williston, Kay Bateman, Karen Kuchta, Judith Girty and to Joanne Henderson for being there when we couldn’t be and making sure that Mom was never alone.

Johanna, Gracia, Klarika and Ricky

Harry Smith

A photo of Harry Smith

Service:

Private

Harry Stewart Smith passed away peacefully surrounded by his family on Tuesday, December 27, 2016. Harry was born 79 years ago (December 13, 1937) to the late Gladstone and Irene Smith. Harry married his childhood sweetheart Carol Warwick and they recently celebrated 59 years of marriage. Harry was the father of Brenda (& the late Rick Bokor) Colebrook, Mike and Tanya Smith, Karen and Morley Shepherd, Robin and Dave Howse, Penny and Henry Smolders, Shane Smith and Dana Pringle. Harry was proud of his 17 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren. Harry is survived by his brothers Jim, Sam and sister Betty Anne Martin. His sister Geraldine Wyman predeceases him.

Harry was an active fruit farmer in Cedar Springs for many years after taking over the family farm from his father Gladstone. Harry later moved to Guilds and then the Blenheim area to carry on with his farming passion. He retired to Blenheim and put his farming expertise into his flower gardens.

Harry was a resident of the Blenheim Community Village for the last few years. Harry’s family would like to thank the staff for their support during his stay.  Harry’s family would also like to thank Vicki Lehman for her friendship and support.  Harry fondly referred to Vicki as his “favourite daughter”.

Cremation has taken place and his immediate family will observe a private gathering.