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Chester County Press

Obituaries for the week of May 13

05/14/2019 08:43AM ● By J. Chambless


Helen Jean Arkatin, 87, of Nottingham, passed away peacefully on May 5, at home with her family by her side.

She was the wife of the late Paul Arkatin, with whom she shared 36 years of marriage. Born in 1932 in Hartly, Del., she was the daughter of the late Walter and Dorothy Barclay Booth. She spent many years in Earlville, Md., with her parents before moving to Pennsylvania to raise her own family. Helen was an active member of Sacred Heart Church in Oxford and a member of the Young at Heart. While Helen enjoyed flowers, vacations in Wildwood, N.J., bird watching and bingo, her most treasured times were spent with family.

She is survived by six children, Louetta Crossan, Marlene Dunn (Earl), Suzette Thompson (Harry), Ronald Arkatin, Theresa Bare, Paul Arkatin (Laura); 11 grandchildren; 21 great-grandchildren; one great-great-grandchild; four siblings, John Henry Booth, Walter Booth, Jr. (Joan), Phyllis Crawford (Brodie) and Patricia Jamison; and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband, Paul; and two brothers, Lauder and Russell.

A Mass of Christian Burial was held May 8. Interment was in Oxford Cemetery. Visit



Jeffrey W. Havelow, 58, of Lincoln University, passed away on April 26.

Born in West Chester, he was the son of Evelyn P. Lee Cubbage of Lincoln University, and the late George H. Havelow, Jr., of Oxford. A 1980 graduate of Oxford Area High School, Jeffrey enjoyed football, soccer, basketball, and track and field. Soon after, he enlisted and was honorably discharged from the United States Army. He was a member of Gaililee UAME Church in Avondale. Jeffrey worked in the construction industry as a journeyman roofer, and he worked with horses, one of his many passions. A true outdoorsman, he  enjoyed camping, fishing, bow hunting and hiking; and he especially enjoyed spending quality time with family and friends.

He is survived by his mother, Evelyn P. Lee Cubbage, and stepfather, William Cubbage of Lincoln University; two children, Lvon Yoder and Kimberly Condiff; four brothers, Kevin Havelow, Sr., of New Castle, Del., Matthew Havelow of Philadelphia, George H. Havelow III of Newark, Del., and Gregory Havelow of New Castle, Del. He is also survived by his loving fiancé, Paula; and her daughter, Melissa. He was preceded in death by a sister, Jacqueline Henderson; and nephew, Darius Knight.

 A service was held May 10.  Online condolences may be made at



Anthony (Tony) DiFrancesco, 84, of Landenberg, entered into eternal life on May 5 at Brandywine Living in Longwood, Kennett Square.

Born In Teramo,  Italy, he was the son of Giovanni and Angela DiFrancesco (Misticoni). After immigrating to the United States in 1955, Tony found his way to Downingtown. He began working different jobs while studying to become an American citizen. He met his wife, Josephine Ciprietti, and began working in the mushroom industry with his father-in-law. He went on to learn many trades, including carpentry and pool building, but went back to his most passionate, mushroom growing.  He built his passion into his own business in 1977 when he started DiFrancesco & Sons Mushrooms. He enjoyed being an usher at St. Gabriel’s Church, gardening, traveling, driving his backhoe, digging holes, and spending time with his family, especially his grandchildren.

Tony is survived by his children, Anthony DiFrancesco and his wife Dana, Robert DiFrancesco and his wife Renee, and Angela Crognale and her husband Vince, all of Landenberg; his siblings, Domenic DiFrancesco (Elisa) of Italy, Michelina D’Anzi (Giuseppe) of Downingtown, Gilda Napoleone (Dante) of Downingtown, and Armando (Marisa) of Italy; and many nieces and nephews. He is also survived by his seven grandchildren, all of whom were his pride and joy.  He was predeceased by his wife of 54 years, Josephine DiFrancesco; his parents; and his brothers, Mario and Michael DiFrancesco.

A funeral was held May 14. Entombment was in Cathedral Cemetery in Wilmington, Del. In lieu of flowers, contributions in his memory may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, 399 Market Street, Suite 102, Philadelphia, PA  19106; or the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Disease, PO Box 5014, Hagerstown, MD 21741-5014. To view his online tribute and to share a memory with his family, visit



Dorothy Cuddy Akerman, 103, of Landenberg, passed away on May 13 at her residence.

She was the wife of the late Wilson Collins Akerman, with whom she shared 61 years of marriage. Born in Kennett Square, she was the daughter of the late John and Lola (Keating) Cuddy. Dorothy was a mail carrier and worked in the Landenberg Post Office for many years. She was very active in the Landenberg Willing Workers and in Landenberg Church Women's Society.

Dorothy is survived by one son, William H. Akerman and his wife Lydia (Richardson); daughter Ruthann Vaganov of Landenberg; nine grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren; and three great-great grandchildren. Dorothy was preceded in death by her husband Wilson; son, James W. Akerman and wife Audrey (Bailey); sisters Ruth Cuddy Brittingham, Margaret Cuddy, Regina Cuddy; brother John L. Cuddy; and stepsister Alice (Hickey) Torello.

A funeral will be held May 17 at the Landenberg United Methodist Church (205 Penn Green Rd., Landenberg). The viewing will be held from 10 to 11 a.m. The funeral service will follow at 11 a.m. Burial will be in Union Hill Cemetery in Kennett Square.  In lieu of flowers, a contribution may be made to the Landenberg United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 36, Landenberg, PA 19350.



Willetta “Jean” S. Conklin, 93, of West Grove, passed away on May 10 at Jenner’s Pond. 

She was the wife of Donald S. Conklin, who passed away in 2011, and with whom she shared 62 years of marriage. Born in Ames, Iowa, she was the daughter of the late Clifford Tebbitt Stanhope and the late Marjorie Garretson Stanhope. She was a homemaker.

She is survived by one son,  Roger Conklin and his wife Marie of Broomall; two daughters, Gail Crawford of Bel Air, Md., and Patricia Ihde of Branchburg, N.J.; one brother, John W. Stanhope of Orwell, Vt.; one sister, Nancy F .Hume of Orrington, Maine; one granddaughter, Kathleen Crawford Yust; and one great-grandson, David Crawford Yust.

Services and burial will be held privately. To view her online tribute and to share a memory with her family, visit



Robert E. Torricellas, 83, of Peach Bottom, passed away on May 10 at Lancashire Hall Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Lancaster.

He was the husband of Susan St. John Torricellas, and the late Donna Torricellas, who passed away on 2007. Born in Delaware County, he was the son of the late Arthur and Helen Gillespie Torricellas. Robert was a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, serving during the Korean War. He was a member of the IBEW Electrical Workers Local 357. Robert enjoyed country music, playing the steel guitar, dancing and gardening. He was a kind and loving man who enjoyed spending time with family and friends.

He is survived by his wife; one son, Greg Torricellas (Annamarie McConaghy) of Havertown; one stepson, Russell Weiss (Kelly) of Middletown, Del.; six grandchildren; and one sister, Andrea Glidden of Milton, Del.

A funeral will be held at 11 a.m. May 15 at Calvary Missionary Baptist Church (35 Sylmar Rd., Rising Sun, Md.), where friends and family may visit from 10 to 11 a.m. Interment with full military honors will be in the adjoining church cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, 399 Market St., Suite 102, Philadelphia, PA 19106-2117.




Shelva Jean Hoosier, 80, of West Grove, passed away on May 8 at Jennersville Hospital-Tower Health, West Grove.

She was the wife of the late Howard R. Hoosier. Born in Elizabethton, Tenn., she was the daughter of the late Ferhl and Nell Hart Norris. Jean lived in West Grove most of her life. She enjoyed collecting pottery and spending time with her children.

She is survived by her one daughter, Judy Melendez (Edward) of Landenberg; two sons, Randy S. Hoosier and Richard E. Hoosier, both of West Grove; and three grandchildren. She was preceded in death by two sons, Michael Hoosier and Bobby Hoosier.

Services were private. Visit



Johnny Dale Smith, 51, of West Grove, passed away on May 4 at his home.

Born in Elizabethton, Tenn., he was the son of Frankie Jean White Bowhall of Nottingham and the late Thomas E. Smith. Johnny was an avid hunter and fisherman. He had a great love for the outdoors, as well for family and friends.

He is survived by his son, Johnny D. Smith, Jr.; one daughter, Dakota L. Smith; mother, Frankie Jean Bowhall; stepfather, Howard Jay Bowhall; three sisters, Debbie Penfield (Wesley), Lorraine Owens and Amy Wilson (Zachary); and special companion, Gwen Sensenig. He was preceded in death by his father, Thomas E. Smith; and brother, Jimmy E. Smith.

A funeral was held May 13. In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to PA.BOJC, c/o Casey Falls, 179 Megan Circle Aston, PA 19014. Visit



William Marion White, “Billy,” 66, of Rising Sun, Md., passed away on May 8.

He was born in West Grove in 1952 to Evelyn B. White and the late Rodney L. White. For most of his professional career, Billy delivered flowers for Floral Plant Growers in Rising Sun, Md. He was a sociable man who never met a stranger. Billy was an avid fan of all sports, starting at the very young age of 4. Later in life, he enjoyed cheering for his favorite teams, the Baltimore Ravens and the Orioles. He was a devoted father and attended all of his son’s sporting events. Billy enjoyed tending to his flower gardens, barbecuing and eating crabs. He also liked taking his family on vacations.

 Billy is survived by his beloved wife of 25 years, Lynda White; son, Billy White; daughter-in-law, Victoria White; mother, Evelyn White; two sisters, Susan Montgomery and Juanita White; sister-in-law Mary White; brother-in-law, Harold Montgomery; nephew, Jimmy Montgomery; great-nephew, Cody Coale; cousins, Debbie Harris-Lambert, Lynn Harris and Lenny Goodie; his dog, Jacky; and many other extended family members. In addition to his father, Billy was preceded in death by his brother, Rodney Wayne White; mother-in-law, Carole Anne McCoy; niece, Melissa Montgomery-Coale; and aunt, Madolyn Harris. 

A visitation will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. May 19 at R.T. Foard Funeral Home (111 S. Queen St., Rising Sun, Md.). A celebration of Billy’s life will be held at 11 a.m. on May 20 at R.T. Foard Funeral Home, where family and friends may begin visiting at 10 a.m. Burial will follow at Brookview Cemetery. To send online condolences, visit

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