Obituaries for the week of Dec. 10
By J. Chambless
LIVONA SMITH, SR.
Livona Smith, Sr., 94, of Toughkenamon, passed away on Nov. 30 at his residence.
He was the husband of Marian Stafford Smith, who passed away in 2015, and with whom he shared 69 years of marriage. Born in Philadelphia, he was the son of the late John Harrison Smith and the late Dora Woolfork Smith. He was a crane operator at NVF in Yorklyn, Del., retiring in 1989 after 48 years of service. Livona enjoyed working on cars, bowling, and being with his family and friends.
He is survived by two sons, Livona Smith, Jr. of Toughkenamon, and William R. Smith and his wife Yvonne of Toughkenamon; one brother, James Smith of Toughkenamon; three grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. He was predeceased by three brothers and three sisters.
His burial at Philadelphia Memorial Park was held privately. To view his online tribute and to share a memory with his family, visit www.griecocares.com.
JAMES C. KIRBY
James C. (Jim) Kirby, 57, of East Pennsbury Township, passed away unexpectedly on Nov. 25 at his residence.
He was the husband of Sangela McAllister Kirby, with whom he shared 17 years of marriage. He was born in Philadelphia to the late Harry J., Jr., and Rita Pitts Kirby. In addition to his wife, he is survived by two sisters, Marianne Kirby Rhodes and Joan R. Kirby. He is also survived by nephews, nieces, cousins, and great-nieces and great-nephews. He was predeceased by a brother, Harry III.
He worked for many years in his own construction business. He attended Unionville High School and Delaware County Community College.
Family and friends are invited to his memorial service on Dec. 29 from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m., with a memorial remembrance service at 11:30 a.m. Burial will be held privately. To view his online tribute and to share a memory with his family, visit www.griecocares.com.
SHIRLEY J. THOMAS
Shirley J. Thomas, 81, of Okeechobee, Fla., formerly of Kemblesville, passed away on Nov. 29.
She was the wife of the late Charles Thomas, who passed away in 2003. Born in Arkansas, she was the daughter of the late Eliza and Elmer Heath. For many years, Shirley and her husband worked in the mushroom growing industry in Pennsylvania. After moving to Florida, they established a sod planting and nursery business and they worked there until retirement.
Shirley is survived by her son, Brian Thomas, husband of Karen Sue of Okeechobee; brother and sister-in-law, Donald and Rose Heath, of Santa Fe, Texas; three grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by a daughter, Debbie; and a son, Randy Thomas.
A service was held Dec. 6. To leave an online condolence, visit www.dewalds.com.
Catherine Schilling, 96, of Kennett Square, formerly of Wilmington, Del., and Naples, Fla., passed away on Nov. 30 at Kendal-Crosslands Communities in Kennett Square.
She was the wife of William Schilling, who passed away in 2000, and with whom she shared 53 years of marriage. Born in Plainfield, N.J., she was the daughter of the late Jane Mackenzie Rothery and the late Claude Rothery. She was a graduate of Skidmore College and Columbia University. Catherine enjoyed and performed music throughout her life. She was a member of numerous bands, orchestras and ensembles, including the Kennett Symphony and the Naples Concert Band, through which she made many lasting friendships. Catherine will be remembered for her infectious laugh, her sweet and cheerful disposition and her love of the Chester County countryside, dogs, old movies, coffee ice cream and the British royal family.
She is survived by her three children, Christine (Eric) Siegel of Ann Arbor, Mich., William Schilling of Philadelphia, and Catherine Schilling of Chicago, Ill.; two grandchildren; and one great-granddaughter. She was predeceased by her daughter, Jane Catherine and her husband, William.1 One South Broad St., 14th Floor, Philadelphia, PA 19107; or Kendal-Crosslands Communities, Staff Support Fund, PO Box 100, Kennett Square, PA 19348. To view her online tribute and to share a memory with her family, visit www.griecocares.com.
ROSEMARY S. KINSEY
Rosemary S. Kinsey of Kennett Square, 79, went to be with her King, Lord and Savior on Dec. 3 after a courageous battle with cancer.
Rosemary was a very active member of The Presbyterian Church of Kennett Square. She was a choir member and taught Sunday school. She was beloved by all that she served, and many children called her Grandma, as she treated and loved them like they were her own. She was an active member of the Longwood Garden Club and was a volunteer as well. Prior to her retirement, she was an administrative assistant at the Chester County Courthouse. Post-retirement, Rosemary worked for Willowdale Chapel as a teacher in their Celebrate Recovery and MOPs programs. She also worked part-time for Mrs. Robinson’s Tea Shop in Kennett Square, where she enjoyed learning about specialty teas and sharing her beautiful spirit with everyone who walked in the door.
Rosemary was born in Logan, W. Va., in 1939 to Kenneth Scragg and Elizabeth Scragg (Estepp). She later moved to Washington, D.C., where she met the love of her life, Lewis P. H. Kinsey. They were married in 1959.
She is survived by her husband, Lewis P. H. Kinsey of Kennett Square; her daughter, Tish Copeland (Jason); her son, Stockton Kinsey (Tina); and four grandchildren. She is also survived by one sister, Edra Grieser of Parrott, Ga.; and two brothers, Kenneth Scragg of Oak Hill, Fla., and Randall Scragg of Mimms, Fla. She was predeceased by her brother, Keith Scragg; and her sister, Wilma DiGillio.
A service was held Dec. 8. Interment was at Union Hill Cemetery in Kennett Square. In lieu of flowers, send a donation to a foundation that Rosemary found great joy in supporting. Water For Life https://my.lifetoday.org/give is an organization that digs clean water wells in third-world countries. Online condolences may be made at www.elcollinsfuneralhome.com.
LUZ CARMEN RIOS
Luz Carmen Rios, 67, of Wilmington, Del., formerly of Kennett Square, passed away on Dec. 4 at Compassionate Care Hospice at St. Francis Hospital.
Born in Arecibo, Puerto Rico, she was the daughter of the late Justo Rios and the late Digna Rivera. Luz was a housekeeper at the Friends Home in Kennett Square for over 35 years, retiring in 2015. She enjoyed dancing, taking walks, crocheting, and being with her family and friends.
Luz is survived by two sons, Edwin Fonseca and his wife Robin of El Mirage, Ariz., and Carlos Rios and his wife Robin of Downingtown; two brothers, Jose Rivera of Wilmington, Del., and Carlos Rios of Ephrata, Pa.; four sisters, Mary Rios of Oxford, and Elizabeth Morales, Maricelli Morales and Diana Morales, all of Wilmington, Del.; and seven grandchildren
Her service and burial were held privately. To view her online tribute and to share a memory with her family, visit www.griecocares.com.
JOHN A. MANCINO, JR.
John A. Mancino, Jr., 89, of Embreeville, passed away on Dec. 5 at the VA Medical Center in Wilmington, Del.
Born in Kennett Square, he was the son of the late John A.Mancino, Sr., and the late Angeline Fazio Mancino. John was a supervisor at Lukens Steel Company in Coatesville, retiring after 45 years of service. He was a member of St. Patrick Catholic Church and the Italian American Club, both in Kennett Square. John was an award-winning wine maker, and he also enjoyed hunting, fishing, playing golf, going to the race track, and being with his family and friends. He served his country as a member of the U.S. Army.
He is survived by two brothers, Albert Mancino and his wife Jeanne of Wilmington, Del., and Sebastian “Sonny” Mancino of Kennett Square; two sisters, Florence Morales of Wilmington, and Mary Crossan of Avondale; and a host of nieces and nephews. He was also predeceased by two brothers, Dominic Mancino and James Mancino.
A visitation will be held from 9 to 10 a.m. Dec. 13 at the Kuzo & Grieco Funeral Home (250 W. State St.. Kennett Square). His funeral mass will follow at 10:30 a.m. at St. Patrick Catholic Church (212 Meredith St., Kennett Square). Burial will be in St. Patrick’s Cemetery in Kennett Square. In lieu of flowers, a contribution may be made to St. Patrick Church, 205 Lafayette Street, Kennett Square, PA 19348. To view his online tribute and to share a memory with his family, visit www.griecocares.com.
JAMES S. MACKEY
James S. Mackey, 89, of Landenberg, and Rehoboth Beach, Del., passed away on Dec. 7 at his residence.
He was the husband of Fern Barber Mackey, who passed away in 2001, and with whom he shared 48 years of marriage. Born in West Grove, he was the son of the late Raymond S. Mackey and the late Nancy Thompson Mackey. He farmed the family farm until the mid-1960s, but he was always a farmer at heart. He was a carpenter, retiring in 1993 from PKF Mark III in Newtown. He was a member of Manor Presbyterian Church in Cochranville, and the New London Masonic Lodge No. 545. He enjoyed collecting antique tools, going to auctions, watching old movies on TV, and being with his family and friends.
He is survived by one son, Raymond J. Mackey and his wife Louise of West Grove; three daughters, LeAnne Pugliese and her husband John of West Grove, Joyce Mackey Holton and her husband James of Landenberg, and Gail Bridgham and her husband Russell of Isle of Palms, S.C.; one brother, David Mackey of Punta Gorda, Fla.; 11 grandchildren; and ten great-grandchildren.
A visitation will be held from 10 to 11 a.m. Dec. 12 at the Manor Presbyterian Church (505 Street Rd., Cochranville). His funeral will follow at 11 a.m. Burial will be in the Faggs Manor Cemetery in Cochranville. To view his online tribute and to share a memory with his family, visit www.griecocares.com.
Herbert Sheets, of Oxford, passed away peacefully on Dec. 5, just 15 days before his 97th birthday.
In 1951, he married Ola M. Hall Sheets, with whom he shared 34 years of marriage. Ola passed away in 1985. Born in Rugby, Va., in 1921, he was the son of the late Charles and Malinda Weaver Sheets. He was a decorated veteran of World War II. Arriving at Normandy in June 1944, he fought from Omaha to the Elbe River, where his battalion stopped to meet up with the Russian Army. Fighting in Normandy, Southern France, Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe, they were in combat for 201 consecutive days. Herbert enjoyed hunting and was a passionate fisherman, often bringing home trophy sized fish. He was an avid fan of the Philadelphia Phillies and Eagles, and could tell you all the stats of both sports. Over the last ten years, he often spoke about going to be with the Lord and was at peace with it. He will be greatly missed.
He is survived by his five daughters, Joyce (Charles) Wilson of Christiana, Jalana Thomas of Lancaster, Elizabeth (Richard) Gehrman of Wahoo, Neb., Sara Stava of Quarryville, and Martha (Michael) Pell of Peach Bottom; two sons, Jeffrey (Tamathe) Sheets and Benjamin (Joan) Sheets, both of Oxford; 15 grandchildren; 19 great-grandchildren; one great-great-grandchild; two sisters, Faye Henderson of Marion, Va., and Nell Farmer of Mouth of Wilson, Va.; and one brother, Joe Sheets of Mouth of Wilson, Va. He was preceded in death by his parents, Charles and Malinda Sheets; and nine siblings.
A funeral will be held at 11 a.m. Dec. 15 at the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc. (86 Pine St., Oxford), where friends and family may visit from 10 to 11 a.m. Interment with full military honors will be in Union Cemetery of Freemont, West Nottingham. In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to Honor Guard, American Legion Mason Dixon Post No. 194, 338 E. Main St., Rising Sun, MD 21911. Online condolences may be made at www.elcollinsfuneralhome.com.
PHILIP L. GILBERT
Philip Louis Gilbert died peacefully in his sleep on Nov. 28.
He was born in 1927 in New York City, and was the only child of Isadore Humphrey Gilbert and Estelle Bernstein Gilbert. Phil attended Woodmere Academy, graduating in 1944. He attended Swarthmore College, graduating in 1948 with a BA in chemistry. He received his MBA from Adelphi University. Phil met Alice Wade Higley in their freshman year at Swarthmore, and they were married the November following their graduation. In 1998, they retired to Kendal-Crosslands Communities in Kennett Square. Phil and Alice were introduced to the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) at Swarthmore College and became convinced Friends after their graduation. Phil is remembered as an active Quaker. He served on many national Quaker organizations. In retirement, Phil enjoyed working with his wife to raise money at the London Grove Meeting annual flower sale.
Phil lived to care for people. His conversion to Quakerism followed his experiences during
World War II, including his work on the Manhattan Project, living with a stream of Jewish refugees while in high school, and his broad education at Swarthmore College. His business life included
creating and marketing innovative blood products at Certified Blood Donor Service; working in marketing hospital and pharmaceutical information at IMS America; and managing Northeast
Paramedical Inc., which designed, crafted and wholesaled prosthetic limbs.
Philip is survived by his children and their spouses, Esther Gilbert (Christine), Elizabeth (Richard) and Thomas (Ellen); his five grandchildren; and his two great-grandchildren. Alice, his wife of 64 years, predeceased him in 2012.
A Quaker memorial service is planned for Crosslands at 2 p.m. on Feb. 2, 2019. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Phil’s name to Swarthmore College. To view his online tribute and to share a memory with his family, visit www.griecocares.com.
ELWOOD T. BOYD, JR.
Elwood Thomas Boyd, Jr., 74, of Cleveland, Ga., formerly of West Grove, passed away on Nov. 22 at home.
He was the husband of Ruth Ann Donnelly Boyd, with whom he shared 55 years of marriage. Born in Coatesville, he was the son of the late Elwood Boyd and Elizabeth Boyd Taylor. He was employed as a service manager and mechanic, and previously owned Boyd's Exhaust in Oxford. He had lived in Georgia for the past 20 years.
He is survived by his wife; one daughter, Yvonne Boyd of Atlanta, Ga.; a sister, Barbara Shoun and husband Mike of Carlisle; and two aunts who helped raise him, Mary Hilton of Coatesville, and Ruth Schoch and husband Fred of Cochranville. He was preceded in death by a brother, William “Skeets” Taylor.
A celebration of life will be held Jan. 19 at 11 a.m. in the community room at the Penn Township Building (260 Lewis Rd., West Grove). Contributions in his memory can be made to the Arthritis Foundation, 1355 Peachtree St., N.E., Suite 600, Atlanta, GA 30309.
DENNIS L. HILL
Dennis Lloyd Hill, 61, of Cockeysville, Md., formerly of Rising Sun, Md., passed away on Dec. 5 in the University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center in Towson, Md., surrounded by his loved ones.
He enjoyed reading and studying the Bible. He was an avid, self-taught guitarist. He enjoyed listening to country music when he wasn’t playing it, as well as fishing, spending time on his boat, and visiting museums. He was an expertly skilled carpenter by trade. Dennis was a veteran of the U.S. Army and served as an Indirect Fire Infantryman. He was born in West Grove, and lived most of his life in Rising Sun, Md.
He is preceded in death by both parents, James Hershel and Janet C. Hill (Horn). Dennis is survived by his wife, Maureen Gayle Hill (Hamilton); his son, Aaron Lee Hill and his wife Erika of El Paso, Texas; his daughter, Jennifer Lynn Cain and her husband Jason of Oxford; two grandsons, Levi Cain and Saul Munoz; two stepdaughters, Amy Hatfield and boyfriend Jeff Byrd of Millsboro, Del., and Heather Walls and her husband Kent of Pasadena, Md.; three step-grandchildren; four brothers, Ronnie Hill of Lancaster, Pa., Larry Hill of Oxford, Roy Hill of Oxford, and Gary Hill of Peach Bottom; and three sisters, Marie Herrera of Altus, Okla., Angela Eisenfelder of Nottingham, and Donna Steiner of Altus, Okla.
A visitation will be held at Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc. (86 Pine St., Oxford) on Dec. 13 from 6 to 8 p.m., and Dec. 14 from 10 to 11 a.m. The funeral service will follow visitation on Friday morning at 11 a.m. Interment will be in West Nottingham Cemetery in Colora, Md. Online condolences may be made at www.elcollinsfuneralhome.com.
ROBERT TAITT MANTELL, SR.
Robert Taitt Mantell, Sr., 90, of Kennett Square, passed away on Dec. 9 at Neighborhood Hospice in West Chester.
He was the husband of the late Alice M. Ohlfs Mantell, who passed away in 2015, and with whom he shared 60 years of marriage. Born in Philadelphia in 1928,he was the only child of the late Raymond A. Mantell and the late Anne Taitt Mantell. He joined the Army but later joined the Air Force Reserves and retired after 20 years of service as a Major. Robert Studied at Lehigh University and joined the Theta Delta Chi Fraternity. He graduated in 1952. Following college, he began work at Scott Paper Company, where he met Alice Ohlfs. Robert and Alice were married in 1955. The two had three children, Robert (1957), John (1959) and James (1960). Robert enjoyed going to his Uncle's house on the Sassafras River with friends and family, where he developed a love for the Chesapeake Bay. In the early 1990s, he realized his dream of having a home on the river. Alice and Robert got their real estate licenses and began a career shift in their mid-50s. Robert loved traveling with his wife, utilizing plane rides from the Air Force as well as going on cruises. He was a lifelong member of the Presbyterian Church. He was also an active member of the Kennett Senior Center and enjoyed going to their social events, and the Chadds Ford Historical Society. He was a former Pennsbury Township Supervisor.
Robert was predeceased by his son, John R. Mantell, in 1987. He is survived by his two sons, Robert T. Mantell, Jr., and his wife Kathleen of New London, and James F. Mantell and his wife Annie of Morton, Pa.; four grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.
A visitation will be held Dec. 14 from 10 to 11 a.m. at the Presbyterian Church of Kennett Square (211 S. Broad St., Kennett Square). A service will begin at 11 a.m. Interment will take place at Union Hill Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be mailed to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Attn: Membership Department, 6 Herndon Avenue, Annapolis, MD 21403. To view his online tribute and to share a memory with his family, visit www.griecocares.com.
THELMA I. HOWELL
Thelma I. Howell, 88, of Oxford, passed away on Dec. 8 at Ware Presbyterian Village, Oxford.
She was the wife of the late Russell B. Howell, Sr. Born in Lancaster, she was the daughter of the late Reese B. and Osa Meadows Webb. Thelma was employed by Hewlett-Packard. She was a member of Gospel Lighthouse Free Will Baptist Church in Nottingham.
She is survived by two sons, Russell B. Howell (Wilma), and James D. Howell (Linda); and grandchildren. She was preceded in death by a daughter, Nancy W. Watson; and a son, Frederick D. Howell. She was the last survivor of eight siblings.
A funeral will be held at 11 a.m. Dec. 13 at the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc. (86 Pine St., Oxford), where family and friends may visit from 10 to 11 a.m. Interment will be in Union Cemetery of Fremont in West Nottingham, Pa. In lieu of flowers, donations in her memory may be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, PO Box 1000, Dept. 142, Memphis, TN 38148-0142. Online condolences may be made at www.elcollinsfuneralhome.com.