Richard E. Fehr,
Vietnam war vet
Richard E. Fehr died May 12, 2018, near his Florida home.
Rick, as he was known, was born Nov. 15, 1947, in the Bronx, son of William and Evelyn (MeKeel) Fehr. He had four siblings: his older brother the late Bill Fehr, and his younger siblings, Patty Barbo, Gerry Fehr, and the late Virginia (Fehr) Leffler.
In 1966, Rick enlisted and served honorably in the U.S. Army both stateside and in Vietnam. Once his active duty ended he married his high school sweetheart, the late Jane Anne (Thompson) Fehr, and they moved into their own apartment on West 195th Street, where they brought home their new son Bill.
A year later, he moved his growing family to Brooklyn, Conn., where he and Jane lived for nearly 40 years.  Rick worked as a lineman for Southern New England Telephone for several years during some seriously harsh weather conditions, before he finished his college degree at night, and became a “life-force” of management in the telecommunications industry.
While raising his family in rural northeastern Connecticut he was an active member of the community as a volunteer firefighter and member of the Veteran of Foreign Wars and the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. An accomplished athlete in, as he put it, “any sport with a ball,” he shared his passion of the game with the local youth through coaching and officiating.  Rick helped start the Killingly-Brooklyn Micro-Midget Football league and he coached the start-up Vikings for several years. Rick also volunteered his lineman and splicing skills to help build the original lighting infrastructure at Killingly High School’s football field almost four decades ago. Rick spent many seasons working in his favorite sport as a certified Little League and American Legion baseball umpire. His strike call was loud and unique, duly fitting his larger than life persona.
During his short retirement, Rick continued to enjoy woodworking and following his beloved New York Yankees with a dedication only comparable to his late wife, Jane’s.  Always a lover of the outdoors and being active, he also developed a new passion for exploring the biking trails and kayaking waters of Florida.
Rick leaves behind his brother Gerry; sister Patty; son Bill Fehr (Lissa); daughter Betsy Hensley (Joel); three grandchildren: Karsen Fehr, and Ethan and Maya Hensley; nieces and nephews.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10 a.m. May 26 at Our Lady of LaSalette Church, Brooklyn, with burial with military honors n Sacred Heart Cemetery, Wauregan. Donations: your local Little League or Veteran’s Association. Gagnon and Costello Funeral Home, 33 Reynolds St., Danielson.

Gordon D. Smith,
U.S. Army vet
PUTNAM — Gordon Douglas Smith, 63, died May 19, 2018, at home after a battle with cancer.
He was born March 9,1955, son of the late Winsor Smith and Lois (Adams) Smith. During his childhood, he attended Woonsocket schools. Gordon loved to share stories of the fun and high jinx that he and his friends would get into and, as their antics continued through their young adult years, he often started his stories with, “So we were having a few beers” and ended with, ‘Thankfully, we knew all of the cops.” Upon his high school graduation in 1973, he enlisted in the U.S. Army. Though he planned on making a career in the Army, his dreams were cut short when he was severely injured in an Army truck accident and was honorably discharged a short time later.
Gordon went on to make a living driving tractor trailers which eventually led him to Synagro Technologies, where he worked for 27 years until he was forced to leave due to illness. Throughout those years, he displayed a work ethic second to no one and drove millions of miles accident free.
On Dec. 18,2004,, he married the love of his life, Lisa Blackmer-Smith. True to Gordon’s trickster ways, they surprised everyone when they secretly arranged for a justice of the peace to arrive at a family Christmas party where they exchanged vows by the Christmas tree. As an experienced and keen motorcycle rider, Gordon traveled all over the U.S. on his bike. Though he owned a Harley Davidson, he was quick to tell people that it didn’t matter what he rode, as long as the wheels rolled, and he could feel the wind in his face.
Gordon had a funny and often self-deprecating sense of humor and spent a lot of his life making those around him laugh. A jack of all trades, he was lovingly called MacGyver by his family because he could fix or build anything and often did so with next to nothing in supplies. Though riding his bike with his wife was his favorite pastime, he also enjoyed kite flying, model trains, playing guitar and harmonica, jigsaw puzzles, singing, and mowing his lawn. He loved studying maps and knew every body of water and bridge over it and could give you explicit directions on how to get to any state in the U.S. from memory. Gordon’s home away from home was on top of Mount Washington in New Hampshire. He knew every detail about the mountain and its Cog Railway. He knew as much about the mountain and railway as any historian and looked forward to his annual rides on his bike to the summit. He had a genuine love of life and greatly appreciated the smallest of things life had to offer.
In addition to his wife, Gordon leaves his children, Joshua Smith and fiancé Ewelina and their daughter Isabella of Blackstone, Mass., Lindsey Kudzal (Raun) and their son Dustin of Putnam, Michelle Bousquet and her partner Sean Smith of Thompson, and Lauren Bousquet of Putnam, and Courtney Smith of Cranston, R.l..; sisters Donna Bailey (Dean) of  Westerly, R.I., and Lisa Smith of Westerly; his dogs, Harley and Shy.
Visitation is from 9 to 11 a.m. May 26 followed by a Celebration of Life at 11 in Gilman Funeral Home and Crematory, 104 Church St., Putnam. Donations: Dorian J. Murray Foundation, P.O. Box 1225, Westerly, RI, 02891. 

Keith M. Brytowski
PUTNAM — Keith M. Brytowski, 39, of South Main St., died unexpectedly May 16, 2018, in Day Kimball Hospital.  He was the fiancé of Kristen Gentile.  Born in 1978 in Worcester, he was the son of Jan and Sandra (Page) Brytowski of Thompson.
Keith worked as a self-employed flooring contractor.  He loved bass fishing, drawing, playing in pool leagues and was a great cook and host.  He was a connoisseur of good food and drink.  He was great at everything he did.
In addition to his parents and fiancé, he leaves his brother, Todd Brytowski (Melissa) of Putnam; sister, Jennifer Beckett of Putnam; daughter, Ella Brytowski; stepchildren, Gabriella Hoel, Christian Hoel, Kaitlyn Gilmore, and Mackenzie Livingston.
Visitation is from 5 to 8 p.m. May 23 in Gilman Funeral Home and Crematory, 104 Church St., Putnam.

Patricia Bellerose
W. PEABODY, Mass. — Patricia F. Bellerose (born Frances Bernice O’Connor), 95, died on May 15, 2018, in W. Peabody after living a long life and in her last years suffering from late stage Alzheimer’s Disease.
She was born March 17, 1923, in Irvington, N.J., and is the last of her generation in a family. She was the daughter of Anastasia (Farley) and Edward O’Connor. 
She graduated with honors from Immaculate Conception High School, Montclair, N.J., and worked in Newark, N.J., as a clerk at Prudential Insurance before finding her true path in music as a vocalist for several orchestras in the Big Band Era. Principally, she was lead vocalist for Billy Butterfield, Lenny Love, and giant of the Swing Era, Jimmy Dorsey, among others.  Traveling the country, she performed and recorded many songs familiar today as jazz standards of the time.  Her NYC gigs included standing engagements at the iconic Rainbow Room and as vocalist at the Hotel Edison Green Room with the Henry Jerome Orchestra. During that time, she also competed on the televised Arthur Godfrey Talent Scouts (The American Idol of the day) and won with the prize of repeat appearances to a national audience. In the press she was called a “comely Irish songbird” noting her glamour and beauty and was featured in many publications and newspaper articles about music. In 1946 she scored the cover of Down Beat Magazine. 
In 1955 she married fellow musician, Richard “Dick” Bellerose, a trombonist who had played with many well-known bands such as Benny Goodman. Together they continued working in music until the 1960s when they began raising their family in Putnam.  She continued singing at local venues and was much sought after to perform at family weddings. Following the death of her husband, she retired to Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., and lived there for more than 20 years.  During that time, she was a well-loved volunteer at the Cleveland Clinic, Ft. Lauderdale, took Spanish lessons, and finally learned to play the piano.
She leaves a son Richard L. Bellerose; daughters Susan Stewart Cotter (John) and Carolyn McGarry (James); grandchildren Emily and Abigail Stewart (and their father Robert) and Julia and Elizabeth McGarry;  nieces Margaret “Peggy” McGann (O’Connor), Karen Carolan (O’Connor), Lynn Maute (O’Connor); nephews Douglas O’Connor and James O’Conner and their families. She is predeceased by her husband, Richard A. Bellerose in 1992 and her brothers James (“Billy”) O’Connor and Edward O’Connor. 
A Mass of Christian Burial was May 22  in St. Mary Church of the Visitation Church, Putnam with burial in St Mary Cemetery.  Gilman Funeral Home and Crematory, 104 Church St., Putnam.

Ronald Poirier
DANIELSON — Ronald Poirier, 81, of Danielson, died May 14, 2018, at home. He was born Aug. 25, 1936, in Wauregan, son of the late Bertrand and Adrienne (Meunier) Poirier.
Ronald was a communicant of Sacred Heart Church in Wauregan until its closing in 2017. He enjoyed traveling throughout the U.S., visiting every state more than once but never Hawaii or Alaska. He loved driving and buying cars. He worked for over 30 years in shipping at Pervel Industries and also worked for Foxwoods Casino as a liquor supervisor.
He leaves a sister Marilyn Willard (David) of Wauregan; a brother Bert Poirier (Ellen) of Woodstock; a sister-in-law Sandi Poirier of Brooklyn; nieces Jennifer Bianca and Erica Willard; nephews Alan Poirier, Ryan Poirier, Christopher Poirier, David Willard, Randy Willard and Jason Willard; great nieces Danielle, Katie, Sofia, Alyssa, Renee and Lauran; great nephews Alex, Mason, Bryce, Andrew, Kyle, Samuel and Alex. He was predeceased by a brother Richard “Sam” Poirier.
The Mass of Christian Burial was May 17  at Sacred Heart Church, Wauregan, with burial in Sacred Heart Cemetery. Donations: American Diabetes Association, 306 Industrial Park Rd., Suite 105, Middletown, CT 06457. Gagnon and Costello Funeral Home, 33 Reynolds St., Danielson.

Keith B. Fredrickson,
Vietnam war vet
DAYVILLE — Keith B. Fredrickson, 69, died May 7, 2018, at Davis Place, Danielson.  He was born in New Britain, son of the late Carl Fredrickson Jr. and Emma (Culver) Fredrickson and lived in Dayville for the past 15 years.  He was a U.S. Army Vietnam veteran.  Keith was employed at the CT Valley Hospital.
He leaves his wife of 19 years, Carla S. (Richardson) Fredrickson of Dayville; a son Keith J. Fredrickson of Middletown; a stepson James L. Kent and his fiancee Lynne Paulhus of Sterling; two stepdaughters, Claudette Kent of Southbridge and Jennifer Surrette of N. Grosvenordale; five grandchildren and one great-grandson; a brother, Carl Fredrickson of Woodstock.
Services were private. Shaw-Majercik Funeral Home, Webster.

Michael McGovern,
Air Force vet
WEBSTER — Michael H. McGovern, 60, died May 17, 2018, after a long battle with cancer.
He was born Jan 4, 1958, the son of Dolores (Cimochowski) McGovern of N. Grosvenordale and the late John McGovern.
Mike graduated from Tourtellotte Memorial High School in 1976. 
He enlisted in the U.S. Air Force and served with the security police.  He was the head waiter at the former Colonial Club Restaurant and was a popular bartender at T.S.K.K. Club in Webster.  He was an accomplished stone mason in the tri-state area where he left his legacy.
He was a lover of life and family and was always a kid at heart.  He loved the great outdoors, fishing, gardening and bird watching.  He liked to gamble and was a fan of the Red Sox and NASCAR. 
He leaves his son Garrett McGovern of Worcester; his best friend and love of his life, Susan Czesnowski; grandson Jayden; a brother John E. McGovern of Woodstock;  sisters, Judy Mossy (David) of Thompson, Nancy Piasta of Webster; a niece Angela Kennedy (James) of Thompson; two nephews David and Ron Mossy of Thompson. 
Donations: Beacon Hospice, 36 Williams St., Leominster, MA 01453.  Shaw-Majercik Funeral Home, Webster.


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