OBITUARIES: Wolters, Spierto, Simmons, Nicholson, DeSimone, Marsters

Gladys R. Wolters (1923 – 2017)

COPAKE—“The world was very lucky to have Gladys Rodas Wolters as a part of it for 94 years.”

Born December 24, 1923 Christmas Eve in Puerto Rico, the youngest of 16 children, she moved to New York City as a young woman just prior to World War II and married Jan “John” Theodore Wolters, a Dutch engineer. They started their family of six living on Hudson Street in New York City near his sister’s family until they saved enough to purchase a farm in Hillsdale in 1958, where she lived for many years. She was happiest working in her garden, singing in her kitchen, dancing as she walked and caring for children. She had six children and fostered many others.

She worked for many years in nursing homes caring for the elderly. She was well-known for putting on large holiday feasts and inviting anyone to a place at her table or to visit her homes in NYC, Hillsdale or Playa Santa, PR.

She will be remembered for her positive outlook, a contagious laugh and spirit of forgiveness.

She was the youngest and last surviving sibling in her family. She is survived by: four children, Peter Wolters of FL, Maria Wolters of MA, Joseph Wolters of FL, and Jan Wolters of NY; four grandchildren, Georgette Yakman, Gregory Fox, Willis and Isabel Hand; two great-grandchildren, Emily and Nathan Hjulstrom; many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends around the world who all smile at the mention of her name and remember her warmth, antics, cooking, crafts, singing and laughter.

There will be a small celebration of her life, Sunday, August 6 in Copake. Mass will be at 10 a.m. at Our Lady of Hope Church, 8074 State Route 22, with a small graveside ceremony in the Copake Falls Cemetery at 12:30 p.m. Information can be found through

Thomas A. Spierto (1922 – 2017)

KINDERHOOK—Thomas A. Spierto, age 94 ¾, left this earth July 13, 2017 with his girls by his side. He joins his beloved wife, Mary in heaven. He was surrounded with love by his daughter, Anne Marie Mink (Scott Crowe), Julianne Montross (Matthew), and Danielle Mink (Mocha).

He was born in New York City and was raised by his beloved aunts. He grew up in Little Italy, proud of his heritage and neighborhood. He enlisted in the U.S. Army, 258 Armored Division, starting in Fort Drumm, and eventually in the World War II European Campaign in France, Germany and England. He returned from the war and married his wife, Mary, on “the hottest August 28 ever” (1948). They were married 40 years before her sudden passing. He worked for the U.S. Post Office for more than 30 years as a carrier in Manhattan, enjoying every minute of his interactions with people.

In the 1960s, he visited his friend on Kinderhook Lake, and felt he had found his paradise. He purchased a camp on East Shore Drive that “felt like heaven” he said. Later, when he retired from the post office, Mr. Spierto and his family moved full-time to his slice of heaven. He was an Ichabod Crane bus driver for a short time, then ran a parking lot in downtown Albany, where he greeted everyone with a smile and a story.

Upon his second retirement, he was able spend more time with his treasured granddaughters. While to everyone he was “Grandpa” or “Uncle Tom,” to his granddaughters he was their world.

Mr. Spierto’s last months were spent at home, right on the lake where the stories and laughter continued. He will be missed by his family, friends, neighbors and all dogs and kids he came in contact with.

The family extends its gratitude to Cathy C as well as Elizabeth Hanlon from Hospice and the Albany VA Home Care, especially Loretta.

Friends, family, and neighbors called at the Raymond Bond Funeral Home, 1015 Kinderhook Street, Valatie, July 16. A Mass of Christian Burial was held July 17, 2017 at St. John the Baptist Church, 1025 Kinderhook Street, Valatie, followed by interment with military graveside services at St. John’s Cemetery. A celebration of a life well-lived followed at the Kinderhook Lake Improvement Association Community Hall.

Donations in Mr. Spierto’s memory may be made to: Patriot Flight, Inc., P.O. Box 190, Delmar 12054, in honor of his amazing trip to Washington, DC, to give other veterans this incredible opportunity as well.

James A. Simmons (1953 – 2017)

ANCRAM—James “Jimmy” Allen Simmons, 63, was called home Saturday, July 1, 2017 at his residence.

He was surrounded by family and his lifelong partner after a long battle with liver cancer.

He was born October 15, 1953 in Poughkeepsie, a son of the late Irene Frances Daniels and George Robert Simmons, Sr.

Mr. Simmons loved cooking, animals, old movies and fishing but most of all being amongst family and friends.

He leaves behind his longtime partner of 31 years, Earl Bellamy, Jr. of Ancram; an adopted son, Matthew J. Shepherd, his girlfriend and their children of Poughkeepsie. He also leaves a sister and brother-in-law, Jonna and Stanley O’Dell and a brother, John Green, all of Edwardsville, PA; a host of nieces, nephews cousins, aunt, uncles and many, many friends.

He was predeceased by three brothers, George R. Simmons, Jr., Charles F. Simmons and Robert W. Simmons, Sr.

James, you touched the life’s of many people and will be extremely missed. RIP.”

Private cremation was held under the direction of the Peck and Peck Funeral Home of Copake.

Private memorial services will be held at the convenience of the family.

In Mr. Simmons’ memory kindly consider a donation to one’s local chapter of the American Cancer Society.

To send an online condolence visit

Thomas Nicholson (1954 – 2017)

KINDERHOOK—Thomas Edward “Tut” Nicholson of Kinderhook left this life July 10, 2017.

He was born December 21, 1954, the son of late Mary (DeCrosta) and Michael Nicholson.

He leaves behind his wife, Susan OBrien and two children, Michael, 25, and Natalie, 22; his sister, Karen Nicholson of Washington, DC; his brother, Robert and wife Laurie Nicholson of Claverack; brother, Brian and wife Theresa Nicholson of Hudson; brother, Jefford Davis and wife Nancy of LaHabra, CA; nieces and nephews, Nicole Schwenker, Michael Ciritto, Lucas Nicholson, Nathan Nicholson, Caitlin Nicholson and Brendan Nicholson; great-nieces and great-nephews, Grace and Sydney Schwenker, William, Malcom and Charles Ciritto, Leah and Sophia Nicholson and his cat, Tiger Lily. He was predeceased by his brother, Michael Nicholson and dogs, Bob and Rosie.

Mr. Nicholson graduated from Hudson High School, attended Columbia-Greene Community College and was retired from the USPO. He told wildly funny stories and was the charming life of the party. He loved family, friends, horse racing, Saratoga Race Track, Nantucket, oysters, pizza, the ocean and beach, his 1994 Miata, classic movies, history, genealogical research, politics, sports and a good time.

He loved life and the world is a dimmer place without him.

Donations may be made to Backstretch Employee Service Team of New York.

Mr. Nicholson’s life was remembered and celebrated July 15 at the Bates & Anderson Funeral Home, 110 Green Street in Hudson.

Anne C. DeSimone (1928 – 2017)

RHINEBECK—Anne C. DeSimone, 88, of Hudson passed away July 17, 2017 at the ArchCare-Ferncliff Rehabilitation Center. Born July 22, 1928, she was the daughter of the late Julian C and Anna T (Bray) Race. She attended and graduated from St. Mary’s Academy in Hudson.

On February 26, 1949, she married Emanuel V. DeSimone, who predeceased her in 1972. She worked as a bookkeeper for the Columbia County Treasurer’s Office where she made long-lasting friendships and enjoyed interacting with the public.

A devoted parishioner of St. Mary’s Church, she was also a member of the VFW Ladies Auxiliary of Stottville.

Mrs. DeSimone graced others with her beautiful smile and a simple touch of appreciation. Her passion for life was apparent, from her love for dance and music to her creativity and the personalized art that she bestowed upon everyone. Her kindheartedness and her prayerfulness are just a few of the attributes that will be everlasting memories.

Mrs. DeSimone is survived by: her four daughters, Donna Anne Kralick of Florida, Gail Patricia and her husband Walter of Florida, Annamarie DeSimone of Massachusetts, and Victoria and her husband Arthur of Red Hook; her eight grandchildren, and 14 great-grandchildren.

Known to all as “Sis,” she was one of seven children and is survived by: her two brothers and a sister, Hugh Race, John “Jack” and his wife Carole Race, and Mary Lou and her husband Timothy Race. Three sisters, Geraldine Gritmon, Ellen Cooper, and Jean Gaudette predeceased her.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered Friday, July 21, 2017, from St. Mary’s Church at 1:30 p.m. Burial will follow in Cedar Park Cemetery. Visitation will be held Thursday, July 20 from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Bates & Anderson – Redmond & Keeler Funeral Home, 110 Green Street, Hudson.

Rita B. Marsters (1928 – 2017)

LIVINGSTON—Rita B. Marsters, 89, of Hudson and longtime resident died Monday, July 17, 2017 at Livingston Hills Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.

Born March 25, 1928, she was the daughter of the late Reginald and Irene (Tetreault) Barnes.

Mrs. Marsters was a printer with the Charter Supply Company in Philmont for 12 years and also worked at the Kayden Bros. Pocketbook factory in Hudson. She was a communicant of St. Mary’s Church. She was predeceased by her two husbands, Guy Girard and Albert Marsters.

She will be greatly missed by her loving family including: two sons, Robert (Lan) Girard and Daniel (Laurie) Girard; her daughter, Linda F. Campbell; six grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; many nieces and nephews. In addition to her husbands, she was also predeceased by her son, Gary Girard.

Calling hours will be Friday, July 21, 2017 from 9 to 10:30 a.m. at the Sacco-McDonald-Valenti Funeral Home, 700 Town Hall Drive, Greenport. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated 11 a.m. at Holy Trinity Parish, 429 East Allen Street, Hudson with Fr. Winston Bath officiating. Burial will follow in Cedar Park Cemetery.

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