Obituaries: Hotaling, Snyder, Kern, VanSteenburg, Sheldon

Dustin James Hotaling (1990 – 2013)

COPAKE—Dustin James Hotaling, 22, of Millerton passed into the arms of the Lord, Sunday, August, 25.

He was born December 7, 1990 in Sharon, CT.

He is survived by his mother, Stacy Hotaling Hurn, stepfather, Jesse Hurn, and his biological father, Calvin Nason.

In addition to his parents, he is survived by his brothers, Kenneth M. Hotaling, II, Cory D. Hotaling and Dillon J. Hotaling; half-sisters, Crystal Hammann and Rebecca Nason; step-brothers, Nicholas and Jordan Hurn; step-sisters, Ashley and Cassandra Hurn; grandmother, Lynn Turner Miller and her husband, Bob; aunt, Tara L. Morey; uncle, Ryan J. Hotaling; cousins Tyler, Trent and Trevor Morey; niece, Hailey Lyn Hotaling; nephew, Jordan Hotaling; several aunts, uncles, and cousins on the Nason side of the family; and his beloved dog, Fifi.

Calling hours will be held at the Peck and Peck Funeral Home, in Copake, Friday, August 30 from 5 to 7 p.m. Graveside services will take place at the Irondale Cemetery in Millerton, Saturday, August 31 at 10:30 a.m. Friends may meet directly at the cemetery.

To assist the family, contributions may be made in Mr. Hotaling’s name to P.O. Box D, Copake 12516.

To send an online condolence visit

James M. “Apple Jack” Snyder (1958 – 2013)

BENNINGTON, VT—The circle has been broken along with our hearts. James M. “Apple Jack” Snyder, 55, of Depot Road, Petersburgh died Tuesday August 27, 2013 at Southwestern Vermont Medical Center after a courageous battle against cancer surrounded by his loving family.

Born January 4, 1958 in Bennington, he was the loving son of William C. and Janet M. Hennessey Snyder, Jr., with whom he resided.

A lifelong resident of Petersburgh, Mr. Snyder was a 1976 graduate of Berlin Central High School. He started a career while still in high school in 1974 with W. J. Cowee, Co., Inc. in Berlin. That career as a forklift operator lasted until April 2013, when he was forced to retire due to his illness.

Mr. Snyder was a former member of the Petersburgh Volunteer Fire Department and was a member of their muster team known as the Petersburgh Ridgerunners. They set and still hold many competition records. He was a former member of the Petersburgh Rod & Gun Club and the Hoosick Falls Eagles. He was an avid NASCAR fan, especially of Jeff Gordon and an avid Detroit Tiger fan.

Mr. Snyder loved hunting, fishing and playing softball. He once pitched 37 consecutive innings in a tournament.

Survivors besides his parents include: his siblings, Susan (Charles) Bedford of Berlin, Richard Snyder of Petersburgh, Deborah J. (Shawn Betit) Snyder of Hoosick Falls, John (Jo Jo Carman) Snyder of Naples, FL, Scott (Cindy Roper) Snyder of Panama City Beach, FL, Barbara (Leonard Nicpon) Snyder and Billie Jo (Ron) Brock all of Berlin; many nieces, nephews, great nieces and great nephews.

A celebration of Mr. Snyder’s life will take place on Saturday, August 31, 2013, 2 p.m. at the Thomas M. Barber Funeral Home, 66 Armsby Road, Petersburgh, where many a story will be shared. Burial will follow in the Meadowlawn Cemetery.

Relatives and friends are invited to the funeral home for visitation on Saturday from 11 a.m. until the start of the service. Memorial contributions would be appreciated and may be given to either the Petersburgh Volunteer Fire Department or the Petersburgh Rescue Squad.

The Snyder family extends special thanks to Dr. Orion Howard and the staff of the Southwestern Vermont Cancer Center for the kindness and compassion shown to Mr. Snyder during the past two years.

Dorothy Kern (1921 – 2013)

SPENCERTOWN—Dorothy Kern, 92, of Punsit Road, Spencertown went to be with her Lord at her home, Wednesday, August 28 surrounded by her family.

Up until several days ago, she was sitting on her porch enjoying the sun.

She was the daughter of the late George and Martha (Danner) Finger, born February 13, 1921 in the Bronx.

She graduated from Evander Childs High School, class of 1939. Living in the Bronx as a child, she enjoyed trips to the country to visit her great aunt on Fire Hill Road, Spencertown. She eventually met her husband on a blind date and was married in 1945 to Raymond Kern, now deceased, and began her career as a farmer’s wife.

Mrs. Kern shot the buck of her life in 1947 which weighed in well over 200 pounds. She enjoyed deer hunting, fishing and with her husband enjoyed square-dancing all over the area. They received several awards.

Mrs. Kern also enjoyed walking well into her 80s. She was also well-known for her gardening and sewing including quilting. Mrs. Kern was a faithful steward to the St. Peter’s Presbyterian Church Spencertown for 43 years having served as elder, deacon and taught Sunday school for 32 years. She also served on its Women’s Guild.

She is survived by: her daughter, Karolyn and her husband Mark Shepard of Spencertown; grandsons, Daryl McLeod and Glenn Shepard and his wife Ramie and her great granddaughter, Juniper Rose Shepard. She was predeceased by her brother, Frederick Finger.

A memorial service will be announced and held at a later date. Memorials may be made to the St. Peter’s Presbyterian Church, P.O. Box 14, Spencertown 12165 or the Community Hospice of Columbia-Greene. 47 Liberty Street, Catskill 12414. To send online condolences visit

Walter VanSteenburg (1949 – 2013)

PITTSFIELD, MA—Walter “Steamie” VanSteenburg, 64, of Pittsfield, MA, and formerly of Valatie died Wednesday, August 28, 2013 at Berkshire Medical Center.

Born April 14, 1949 in Hudson, he was the son of the late Ben and Eva (Pulver) VanSteenburg.

Mr. VanSteenburg worked as a bartender at the Tradewinds and the Paramount in Valatie.

He is survived by: his wife, Robin (Wood) VanSteenburg, of Amsterdam; his brother, Ben “Skate” VanSteenburg (Bonnie) of Valatie; two nieces, Tracy Dugan and Cammie Fix and four great nieces and nephews.

A graveside service at Prospect Hill Cemetery in Valatie will take place at a date to be announced. Arrangements are with the Raymond E. Bond Funeral Home, Valatie.

Calvin A. Sheldon (1936 – 2013)

HILLSDALE—Calvin A. Sheldon, 76, of Mitchell Street, Hillsdale passed away Wednesday, August 28, 2013.

He was born October 1, 1936 in Glen Cove to the late Herbert C. and Janet (Beam) Sheldon, Sr.

Mr. Sheldon was a graduate of Roeliff Jansen Central School, class of 1954 and served his country with the United States

Army from 1956 to 1958.

From 1960 to 1991, Mr. Sheldon was the owner and operator of Sheldon Glass Service in Hillsdale. The business is still in the family, now operated by his daughter and son-in-law.

He was an avid runner and had completed the Boston and New York City and Long Island marathons along with several other races including the Utica Boilermaker. He also enjoyed competing locally in antique tractor pulls. He was a member of the former Roeliff Jansen Lions Club. An avid golfer, he was a member of the Wyantenuck Country Club and played in many local leagues and tournaments. He also enjoyed watching NASCAR and was the proud owner of a 1993 Mustang Cobra and a 2012 Mustang Boss.

Mr. Sheldon had a long and distinguished career in service to the Town of Hillsdale and Columbia County. He served on the Hillsdale Planning Board from 1968 to 1969 and as Town Supervisor from 1970 to 1980. He also served as a town councilman, Republican committeeman, chairman of the Hillsdale Board of Assessment Review, Republican majority leader of the Columbia County Board of Supervisors and chairman of the Board of Supervisors. Mr. Sheldon also served as a trustee and chairman of the Board of Trustees for Columbia-Greene Community College and was chairman of the Columbia County Job Training Program.

Survivors include: his daughter and son-in-law, Jan and Mike Keefner of Hillsdale; his two granddaughters, Whitney and Kayla Keefner also of Hillsdale; his siblings, Carol Feil and husband Bob of Mobile, AL, Jon Sheldon and wife Faye of Centerville, TN, Robert Sheldon and wife Ruthie of West Cornwall, CT; his companion, Donna White of Hillsdale and a sister-in-law, Signe Sheldon of New Hartford.

He was predeceased by his wife, Nancy B. Sheldon in 1985 and a brother, Herbert Sheldon in 1991.

Friends are invited and may call Tuesday September 3, 2013 from 4 to 7 p.m. at his daughter’s residence, 3025 State Route 23 in Hillsdale.

Funeral services will be held Wednesday September 4, 2013 at 11 a.m. from the Church of St. John in the Wilderness, Route 344, Copake Falls. The Reverend John Thompson will officiate.

Interment will follow in St. John’s Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Nancy B. Sheldon Memorial Scholarship Fund, c/o Dollars for Scholars, PO Box 44, Hollowville 12530.

To send an online condolence visit


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