OBITUARIES: Piester, Lawrence, Smith, Kunitz, Hunt, Bottiggi, Schrader, Cross, Passino

Laura J.M. Piester (1935 – 2018)

CATSKILL—Laura Jean Moore Piester, 83, beloved wife of Harold “Bud” Piester, Jr., died Wednesday, November 14 at Greene Meadows Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.

Born September 4, 1935 in Chatham, she was predeceased by her parents, Frank J. Moore, Sr., and Anna E. Plass Moore. She grew up in Ghent and graduated from Chatham High School, Class of 1952. For many years Mrs. Piester served as assistant to the Village Clerk in the Village of Chatham.

She and her husband celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary this past June.

Mrs. Piester is survived by: her sons, H. Timothy Piester of York, PA, Todd M. Piester and his wife Karen of Tyrone, GA, and Jon L. Nguyen and his wife Mai of Perry Hall, MD; grandchildren, Kegan Marie Wilson (Mason), Kristin Campos (Bradley), Kyle Piester, Jessica Demerly (Adam), Brian and Rachel Nguyen; great-grandchildren, Raylighn and Riya Wilson and Aubrey and Cole Demerly; her brothers, John D. Moore (Lois) of Pittsfield, MA, F. James Moore, Jr. (the late Doris) of Ghent; her twin sister, Louise M. Jones (the late Robert) of Evansville, IN, and sister, Margaret J. Larkin (James) of Sheffield, MA; several nieces and nephews.

Calling hours and a funeral service were held Monday, November 19 at the Wenk Funeral Home, 21 Payn Avenue, Chatham. Burial followed at the Ghent Union Cemetery.

Expressions of sympathy may be made to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, 1 Marcus Boulevard #104, Albany 12205.

The family thanks the nurses and staff at Greene Meadows Nursing and Rehabilitation Center and the Columbia-Greene Dialysis Center for their compassionate care of Mrs. Piester and the family during her recent illness.

Gloria Lawrence (1944 – 2018)

CHATHAM—Gloria Ann Lawrence unexpectedly passed away November 14, 2018 after a brief illness at the age of 74.

She was born in Great Barrington, MA, January 1, 1944, the daughter of Frank Jones and Myrtle Simmons Jones. She was raised in Lee, MA, and graduated from Lee High School in 1962.

On July 21, 1978, she married Douglas Lawrence in Pittsfield, MA, and moved to Caanan, NY.

She was manager for eight years (1982 to 1990) at McDonald’s in Great Barrington, MA. She was an avid bowler. Her family and friends were her greatest joy. She was a beloved mother, grandmother, sister, aunt and friend and will be sadly missed by all.

Besides her husband, Douglas, Mrs. Lawrence is survived by her brother, Ronald Jones, Sr., (Ellen); sister, Loretta “Beannie” Page; her children, which include Sandra Keefner (Rich), Diane Morse (Lennie), David Page, Jr., (Tammy), Michelle Cotsonas (Chuck), Michele, Jeanne, Eva, Lisa and Doug, Jr.; two nieces; a nephew; 25 grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; great-nieces; great-nephews and her four-legged sidekick and protector, Mugsy.

Besides her parents, Mrs. Lawrence was predeceased by her son, Brian Michael Page (1974).

Calling hours for family and friends are Tuesday, November 20, 2018, 4 to 6 p.m. at the Wenk Funeral Home, 21 Payn Avenue, Chatham followed by a memorial service. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The American Cancer Society, c/o Wenk Funeral Home, 21 Payn Avenue, Chatham 12037.

Catherine A. Smith (1947 -2018)

VALATIE—Catherine A. Smith, 71, of Valatie passed away in the company of her family Wednesday, November 14, 2018 at The Grand Rehabilitation and Nursing at Barnwell.

She was born in Hudson, April 24, 1947, the daughter of the late Irving and Evelyn R. (Dietz) Fisher.

She was a receptionist for many years with Independent Living of Hudson. Mrs. Smith will be greatly missed by: her husband, David Smith; son, Jason Marshall; brothers, Willliam Fisher and Robert “Bobby” Fisher, both of Hudson, Charles “Chuck” and his wife (Helen) of Mary Esther, FL; many nieces, nephews and great-nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by her sister, Patricia D. Robertson. A private memorial service will be at the Sacco-McDonald-Valenti Funeral Home, 700 Town Hall Drive, Greenport at the convenience of the family. Burial will be in Linlithgo Cemetery Monday, November 26 at 1 p.m. with Deacon Paul Roemer officiating. Memorial contributions are requested to Independent Living, 802 Columbia Street, Hudson 12534.

Sylvia F. Kunitz (1936 – 2018)

POUGHKEEPSIE—Sylvia Frances Kunitz, a loving mother, grandmother and wife, sadly passed away after a sudden sickness at Vassar Brothers Hospital at the age of 82, Saturday, November 17, 2018.

She was born to Walter and Amy (Martin) Benson and was raised in Chatham. She graduated from Russell Sage University and subsequently got her master’s from Columbia University. She joined the staff at Pine Plains High School where she taught typing, business and shorthand for 30 years.

In the early 1990s, Mrs. Kunitz began a decade-long role as a caregiver when her husband Eric Kunitz got sick with ALS. A few years after his death in 2001, both her children Martin and Deborah Kunitz contracted the same illness. Mrs. Kunitz played a large part in caring for them for many years until they both passed.

Mrs. Kunitz was also predeceased by parents, Mr. and Mrs. Walter Benson and her sister, Lois Hotchin.

She spent her last years as a very loving grandmother to grandchildren, Rylee and Skylar Christensen and mother-in-law to Laura Pilkington and Keith Christensen. She enjoyed travel when she could to Florida and the Amish country in Pennsylvania.

Calling hours are Tuesday, November 20, 4 to 7 p.m. at the Peck and Peck Funeral Home, 7749 South Main Street, Pine Plains to commemorate Mrs. Kunitz’ long and impactful life. Funeral services and interment will be private.

Memorial donations may be made to ALS Regional Center, Lewis Golub MDA/ALS Clinic, 19 Warehouse Row, Albany 12205; or to a scholarship fund of one’s choice at the Pine Plains Central School District. To sign the online register visit

Robert W. Hunt (1948 – 2018)

VALATIE—Robert W. Hunt, 70, of Valatie died Friday, November 16, 2018 at his home.

Born January 8, 1948 in Schenectady, he was the son of the late Robert J. and Jewel (Jackson) Hunt.

He was a supervisor for the New York State Department of Transportation in Latham. He enjoyed traveling and surfing the web on his computer.

He is survived by: his wife, Claudia (Gardinier) Hunt; a sister, Roberta Whiteman of Ghent; three brothers, John Hunt of Mariaville, Tom Hunt of Kinderhook and Billy Hunt of New York City and several nieces and nephews.

Funeral services will be held Tuesday, November 20, 1 p.m. at the Raymond E. Bond Funeral Home, 1015 Kinderhook Street, Valatie, with the Reverend Kathi Jones officiating. Burial will follow in Woodlawn Cemetery, Valatie. Calling hours will be held Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. prior to the service.

Sally M. Bottiggi (1925 – 2018)

VALATIE—Sally Metzger Bottiggi, 93, passed peacefully from this world at her home in Valatie, Sunday, November 18.

The daughter of Louis and Anita Metzger, she was born in Atlantic City during a snowstorm January 17, 1925. She was raised in Ventnor, a beach community next to Atlantic City. A graduate of Holy Spirit High School in Altantic City, she studied elementary education at Framingham State Teacher’s College (now Framingham State University) in Massachusetts. After she graduated in 1946, she taught at schools in East Hartford, CT, and Westfield, NJ, before marrying Theodore “Ted” Bottiggi in June 1950. She later taught at public and parochial schools in New York, California and Ohio.

Mr. Bottiggi, a retired engineer and executive with the Carrier Corporation, moved with his wife to Valatie in 1985. Mrs. Bottiggi was an active volunteer for the Columbia County Historical Society, where her daughter served as executive director. She also worked as a tour guide and research volunteer at Olana State Historic Site.

Mrs. Bottiggi particularly loved playing and travelling with her granddaughters, Sarah and Susie, who grew up in Kinderhook. She was also involved with the Kinderhook Garden Club and was a parishioner at St. John the Baptist Church in Valatie.

Mrs. Bottiggi is survived by: her daughters, Susan M. Bottiggi (Richard Kucharski) of Alexandria, OH, and Sally B. Naramore (Bruce) of Kinderhook; her granddaughters, Dr. Sarah Naramore (Dr. Nathan Gerth) of Reno, NV, and Susan A. Naramore of Kinderhook.

There will be no calling hours. A funeral mass will be held at St. John the Baptist Church in Valatie, Saturday, November 24 at 11 am.

The family asks that in lieu of flowers a donation be made to either Community Hospice of Columbia/Greene, 47 Liberty Street, Catskill 12414 or the Valatie Rescue Squad, P.O. Box 242, Valatie 12184 in memory of Mrs. Bottiggi.

Arrangements are with the Raymond E. Bond Funeral Home, 1015 Kinderhook Street, Valatie.

Adam Schrader (1978 – 2018)

GHENT—Adam Schrader, 40, of Ghent passed away unexpectedly November 14, 2018.

He was born in Hudson, January 11, 1978 to Clyde and Ellen Schrader.

Mr. Schrader was a graduate of Ichabod Crane High School and graduated in 1998 from Hudson Valley Community College. In 2000, he graduated from SUNY Oswego with his bachelor’s in business administration and management. While attending Hudson Valley he met Marsha Haege. They were married July 7, 2001 at the Cathedral of All Saints in Albany. Known to be a hard worker, he worked for Renewal by Anderson, and most recently for Roland J. Down of Albany.

Above everything, his family meant the world to him.

Mr. Schrader will be remembered as a wonderful father, and he would do anything for his family. He was always involved in his children’s activities, whether it was in school or sports, he was there. In his limited spare time he enjoyed watching sports on ESPN, attending country concerts, and the occasional ice cream cone from Cold Stone Creamery. The one event he looked most forward to was his family’s annual vacation to Myrtle Beach. He truly cherished the time he spent with his family, the beach and the ocean.

Mr. Schrader is survived by: his loving wife Marsha; his two daughters, Emily and Payton; his parents, Clyde and Ellen Schrader; one brother, Michael Schrader; his mother-in-law, Deborah Highter; several, nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, and cousins, in addition to many great friends.

Visitation will be held Tuesday, November 20, 2018 from 4 to 7 p.m. at Bates & Anderson-Redmond & Keeler Funeral Home, 110 Green Street, Hudson. A funeral service will begin at 7 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, consider a donation to the Adam Schrader Children Memorial Scholarship Fund established at Kinderhook Bank. Donations may be made in person at any branch or mailed to 5 Depot Square, Chatham 12037.

Walter A. Cross, Jr. (1933 – 2018)

EAST GREENBUSH—Walter A. Cross, Jr., 85, of East Greenbush and Daytona Beach, FL, passed peacefully at home November 13, 2018 with his family by his side.

He fought stomach cancer for two years.

Born June 26, 1933 in Winooski, VT, he was the beloved husband and best friend of Mary Goad Cross.

He was predeceased by: his parents, Walter A. Cross, Sr., and Aline Lestage Cross; sister, Barbara Heim and young brother, Richard Cross.

He graduated in 1951 from Philip Schuyler, Albany. He was a mechanic, a teacher and a private pilot. He learned his mechanical and car building skills working at his father’s Empire Garage in Albany. He taught auto mechanics at Manpower in Albany under Ben Becker, and was an assistant professor at Hudson Valley Community College for 30 years. At HVCC he ran the engine lab and was the Northeast technical director for Plymouth AAA Trouble Shooting Contest.

He built and raced sprint cars and stock cars at tracks along the East Coast from the 1950s to the 1980s. He also was a tech inspector at area race tracks—Malta, Plattsburgh and Devil’s Bowl. He loved NASCAR and DIRT Series Racing and worked selling programs at many NASCAR tracks with his family. He was a past-president of New York State Stock Car Association and a member of North East Stock Car Old Timers (NESCOT.) He was also a past member of Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association.

He leaves: his loving wife of 66 years, Mary Cross; his children, Linda (Ed) Godfroy, Mary Susan (John) Teal, Barbara (Michael) Commander, Walter Cross, III, Michelle (Doug) Faulkner, Michael (Kelly) Cross; his grandchildren, Aimee Ryan, Lindsey (Steve) Brown, Melissa (Charles) Thomas, Daniel Teal, Allison Commander, Douglas (Liz) Faulkner, Jr., and Kyle Godfroy (Megan Darcy); his great-grandchildren, Austin and Sydney Thomas, Nicholas and Natalie Brown, Alyssa Ryan, Mollie and L.J. Faulkner; his brother, Gary Cross (Sue) of South Daytona, FL; many cousins, nieces, nephews and friends in NY and FL.

A Celebration of Life will be held Saturday, December 1 from noon to 3 p.m. at the Phillips Road Firehouse, 68 Phillips Road, Rensselaer.

The family requests donations to Community Hospice, 295 Valley View Boulevard, Rensselaer 12144 or Cancer Research Institute, 29 Broadway, New York City 10006-3111.

Arrangements are with Simple Choices, Inc., 1088 Western Avenue, Albany.

Judy K. Passino (1941 – 2018)

VALATIE—Judy K. Passino, 77, of Valatie, formerly of Nassau, passed away November 19, 2018 at The Grand Rehabilitation and Nursing at Barnwell.

Born in Albany to the late William and Helen LaRose, she was a resident of Nassau for more than 50 years. She was a loving wife, mother and aunt and will be dearly missed by all who knew her.

Mrs. Passino enjoyed going camping and mining for gemstones and gold with her husband, Larry.

She is survived by: her loving husband, Lawrence Passino; daughter, Heidi Anyos; son, Lawrence J. Passino, II; brothers, William LaRose and Richard LaRose; sister, Susan Archambeault and her adopted grandchildren, Al Walid, Walaa, Waseem, Waheeb and Wajeed Bourkia.

She was predeceased by her sister, Barbara Becker.

Relatives and friends are invited to call at the Thomas P. Mooney Funeral Home, 11 Elm Street, Nassau, Saturday, November 24 from noon to 4 p.m. There will be no formal service. Interment will be private at the convenience of the family. The family thanks the nurses and CNAs on the first floor at Barnwell for their care and compassion during Mrs. Passino’s stay. Online condolences may be offered at

Comments are closed.