OBITUARIES: Pitcher, Clelland

Ruth L. Pitcher (1923 – 2018)

GREAT BARRINGTON, MA—Ruth L. Pitcher died Friday February 16, 2018 at the Timberlyn East Rehabilitation and Care Center. She was 94 years old.

She was born July 22, 1923 in Holyoke, MA, to William H. Lines and Agnes M. Weir.

Initially named Marion Ruth, her name was later changed to Ruth Laurel. She grew up in South Hadley Falls, MA, and graduated from high school in Holyoke.

She met her husband, William Burling Pitcher of East Chatham at a social event while he was serving with the United

States Army at Westover Field in Chicopee, MA. They were married on her 19th birthday, only to be separated by World

War II for three years. While he served tours in North Africa, Italy and England, she helped make capacitors for the war effort.

When the war ended, they settled at his family’s farm, Hillcrest Orchard on Frisbee Street in East Chatham, and built a home to raise their four children: Beth DeOme (Daniel) of Dipolog, Mindinao, Philippines, William (Peggy) of Gloversville, James (Christina) of Ghent and Robert (Lynette) of Spencertown.

They later moved to a Victorian home on the Klein Kill in Ghent, which provided more space for their growing family and room to entertain their children’s friends, neighbors and the many honorary relatives who called her “Mom,” “Aunt Ruth” or “Grammy.” By day, guests would lounge around the pool or play in the large lawn, and by night, they would gather around the extra-large kitchen table for cards and conversation. The coffee pot was always full, ready for a visitor.

Mrs. Pitcher enjoyed the company of animals, breeding and raising collies and, later, started a Siamese cat breeding business, Luvdat Cattery. She would watch for cardinals out her large kitchen window. She and her husband were active in the East Chatham Methodist Church for many years and, in later years, attended Bible Baptist Church in Ghent. She also worked with the 4H Club in East Chatham, teaching children how to make cookies.

The family home passed into the next generation, but Mr. and Mrs. Pitcher stayed in Columbia County, retiring to Chatham and actively supporting their grandchildren’s pursuits. They were still living on Church Street when they surpassed 70 years of marriage. They enjoyed another three years before Mr. Pitcher died March 16, 2016, at age 96. Mrs. Pitcher moved to Great Barrington shortly after.

In addition to her children, she is survived by: 14 grandchildren; 20 great-grandchildren; many nieces and nephews; a sister, Barbara Wilson of Yorktown, VA. She was predeceased by two brothers, William Lines and James Lines.

A viewing will be held Friday, February 23 from 6 to 8 p.m., at the French, Gifford, Preiter and Blasl Funeral Home, 25 Railroad Avenue, Chatham. A funeral service will be held Saturday, February 24. 11 a.m. at the Bible Baptist Church, 1323 County Route 23, Ghent, with her son, the Rev. William S. Pitcher, officiating. Interment will follow at Cemetery of the Maples, East Chatham, led by her son-in-law, the Rev. Daniel DeOme.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Chatham Rescue Squad, P.O. Box 352, Chatham 12037.

Condolences may be conveyed at

Elaine Clelland

TIVOLI—Elaine Clelland, 65, of Tivoli died unexpectedly February 18, 2018.

She is survived by: her loving husband, Rogers Clelland; children and stepchildren, April (Jon) Meredith, Heather (Jim) Casey, Megan Couse, Jason (Kariann) Clelland, Tiffany (Joe) Lester; 13 grandchildren; her sister-in-law, Betty Thayer; two brothers and many loving friends.

She was predeceased by her son, Jonathan Clelland.

Mrs. Clelland enjoyed life to the fullest and will be deeply missed.

Calling hours will be held Wednesday, February 21 from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Yadack-Fox Funeral Home, 209 Main Street, Germantown.

Services will be held Thursday, February 22, 11 a.m. at the funeral home with burial following in the Valley View Cemetery in Germantown.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Columbia-Greene Humane Society, 111 Humane Society Road, Hudson 12534. Condolences may be expressed at

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