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Chester County Press

Obituaries for the week of January 10

01/10/2022 12:39PM ● By Steven Hoffman
Catherine E. McCullough
Catherine E. McCullough passed away peacefully on Dec. 30 while she was surrounded by her loving family at Christiana Hospital in Christiana, Del. after a short, but very acute, illness. She was a 65-year-old resident of Landenberg.
She was the wife of James McCullough, with whom she shared 40 years of marriage.
Born in  Dungannon, Co. Tyrone, N. Ireland, she was the daughter of the late Noel McHugh and the late Brigid Kerr McHugh
A geography honors graduate of Queens University, Belfast, Catherine was an accomplished teacher and administrator before leaving the paid workforce to become a full-time homemaker to her children, during which time she dedicated herself to their education and development.  She joined the Board of Governors of their elementary school where her quiet unassuming personality incrementally influenced policy and materials.  She also continued her own interest in learning by volunteering at the City of Derry Genealogical Center.
In 1994 her life was transformed by a move to the U.S. by the whole family as a result of her husband, James, being offered a transfer to work for the parent company of his then-employer, DuPont (UK) Ltd.  It was a three-to-five-year assignment that became six years, seven yers, and then it became permanent.  Catherine embraced her life in the U.S., driving for her family to become U.S. citizens, which they did in 2008.  She often said she was motivated to vote for the Irish Presidential candidate.  And when people looked at her, she just said, “You heard of O’Malley, O’Donnell, O’Leary, well, I’m voting for O apostrophe Bama.  He’s Irish!”
Not permitted to work in her early years, Catherine refused to be confined to the house and reached out to become a docent at the Delaware Museum of Art where she rose to be the President of the Docent Board, even attending the National Docent Symposium.  She also was an associate member of the Board of Trustees in that same capacity, where contrary to protocol she made her opinion known.  Catherine loved art and remained active in the docent corps for 24 years.  She was an acknowledged expert among the corps in Pre-Raphaelite art, especially the Morris-Rossetti Chairs.  She loved educating inner-city dis-advantaged children in art, harking back to her own early years in education.
In addition to the Delaware Museum of Art, Catherine also worked part-time at Hagley Mills where the DuPont story began.  She often joked with her husband that she was working at E.I. DuPont’s original headquarters and James was only working at a peripheral location.  She liked to tease him.  Even as he rose to the number two position in DuPont information technology, she often reminded him he was only there because she was here!
Catherine made lifelong friends at both the Delaware Art Museum and at Hagley.  She also retained lifelong friends that she had in her life before America, in Derry, even some dating back to her own elementary school years in Dungannon, and some among the ex-pat community in America from her early days going to the International Women’s Club.  Catherine was a friend everybody could rely on.
In addition to art, Catherine loved reading and traveling. She loved traveling to the locations of the books she read.  James tagged along as her driver.  Now she has undertaken her final journey into the arms of God, where she is most welcome.
In addition to her husband, she is survived by  her son, Christopher McCullough, of Frisco, TX, her daughter, Jennifer Weeks, and son-in-law, Jim Weeks of Newark, Del., and her daughter, Katrina Morgera, of Newark, Del., and one grandson  Ben Morgera, of Newark, Del. She is survived also by her siblings, Maire Flanagan and Oliver McHugh of Dungannon, Co. Tyrone, N. Ireland, and Noel McHugh of London, England.
Services were held at the Kuzo Funeral Home in Kennett Square on Jan. 5 and a funeral mass took place on Jan. 6 at St. Gabriel of the Sorrowful Mother Church in Avondale. Burial will be held privately.
In lieu of flowers, a contribution may be made to the American Lung Association, 55 W. Wacker Drive, Suite 1150, Chicago, IL 60601.
To view  her online tribute and to share a memory with her family, please visit

Edwin Jackson Cook, Jr.
Edwin Jackson Cook Jr., 82, of Kennett Square, passed away on Dec. 26 at Twin
Pines Nursing Home in Chatham.
Ed was born on March 11, 1939 in West Chester. He was the son of Edwin Jackson Cook Sr.
and Marguerite Bantom Cook.
Ed was predeceased by his parents, his younger brother Robert H. Cook, and his former wife
Joanne McConnell Cook.
Ed shared 15 years of marriage with the late Mary Jane Sammons Cook.
Ed was a member of Chatham United Methodist Church for many years and most recently
attended Trinity Evangelical Free Church.
Ed wore many hats in his lifetime. A farm boy at heart, Ed was the president of the FFA in high
school. He graduated from Kennett High School in 1957. His first job was as a farmhand at
the Wollaston Farm. Some of his favorite memories were made at the Wagner Farm with his
friend Harold Wagner. He worked at Grandway and Hewlett Packard in the 1970s and 1980s.
Throughout his life, Ed delivered the Daily Local News, telephone directories and medicine for
the local pharmacy. He was often seen zipping about in his little red ford pickup truck.
In the late 1980s and early 1990s, he was a fixture in the West Grove and Kennett Square
communities. He was known as “Mr. Ed,” the Proprietor of the local newsstand that featured
cards and penny candy. During this time he was a proud member of the Avon Grove Lions
Club. He believed in supporting the local communities and shopping local.
Ed worked as a security guard at various places including: Jenner’s Pond, Kendal-Crosslands
and the Luther House. He loved the communities there and was still working at Luther House in
Ed was passionate about classic cars and local Chester County history. He was a great talker
who loved a good story.

Ed is survived by his sister, Vivian (Cecil) of Oxford; his three children, Dianna Wright of Kennett Square, David Cook of Exton, and Dawn Lagunas (Alex) of Lancaster; his grandchildren, John Lozada (Amanda) of Kennett Square, Heather McMillan of Avondale, Joshua McMillan (Jennifer) of Landenberg, and Max, Chazz and Joana Lagunas of Lancaster and his great-grandchildren, Tyrus McMillan, Joe and Kylie Lozada and Anthony and Samuel McMillan.
Due to Covid concerns, services and interment at Union Hill Cemetery will be private. Please
share your sympathies and stories online at
In lieu of flowers a contribution can be made to the Kennett Heritage Center at 120 North Union
Street Kennett Square, PA 19348.
Arrangements are being handled by the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc. in Oxford.

Norma Marie Pia
Norma Marie Pia passed away on Dec. 31 at Jenner’s Pond Retirement Community in West Grove.  She was 85.
She was the wife of the late Louis J. Pia, who died in 2009, and with whom she shared 56 years of marriage.
Born in New York, NY she was a daughter of the late Secundo Pavese and the late Henrietta Tartaglino Pavese.
Norma was a longtime member of St. Gabriel of the Sorrowful Mother Church in Avondale.
Norma enjoyed watercolor painting and golf. She was an excellent cook and enjoyed preparing many loving meals for family and friends. Most of all, Norma will be remembered for her kindness, caring and compassion for her husband, children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. She will be greatly missed by all who had the pleasure of knowing her. 
Survivors include two sons, John J. Pia (and his partner Susan Sagers) and Michael L. Pia (and his wife, Nancy) of Chadds Ford; one daughter, Theresa A. Crossan of Landenberg; ten grandchildren, Michelle Braun (Derek), Meredith Kosmoski (Peter), John M. Pia (Stephanie), Kristin Hayman (Jordan), Lisa Reed (Hunter) Amy Clark (Jamie), Michael W. Pia (Stephanie) Jennifer Basciani (Vince), Nicholas Toto and Allison Fehnel (Andrew); and 22 great-grandchildren, Crew Braun, Piper and Paisely Kosmoski, Penelope and Paris Pia, Evalyn Hayman, Sawyer and Cohen Reed, Abby and Tyler Clark, Louis and Oscar Pia, Vinnie and Lucy Basciani, Nicky, Kayla, Leeah, Mason, Madison and Kaden Toto, and Gia and Emmy Fehnel.
Norma’s funeral will be held privately at St. Gabriel Catholic Church in Avondale. 
Contributions in her memory may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital  
Arrangements are being handled by Matthew J. Grieco of Grieco Funeral Home & Crematory Inc. (484-734-8100). 
To view her online obituary, please visit

Frances V. Dezzi
Frances V. Dezzi, age 80 of Kennett Square (formerly of Briarcliffe, Delaware County), passed away on Jan. 3 at St. Martha Center in Downingtown.  
Born in Philadelphia, and raised in Upper Darby, she was the daughter of the late Francis and Alice (Morrison) Green. 
Fran was formerly known as Sister Mary Michael of the order Sisters of the Most Precious Blood Convent, in Shillington, Pa. Upon leaving the convent, Fran met the love of her life, her late husband, Vincent J. Dezzi. They enjoyed 35 years of a loving marriage.  During her marriage, Fran volunteered her time cleaning and doing floral arrangements for her former church, Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Church in Secane, Pa.  She devoted over 35 years of service to the church.  In her free time, Fran enjoyed being with her family as much as possible and most of all, she loved being a ‘mom-mom’ to her grandson Matthew.
Fran is survived by her son, Vince Dezzi; daughter, Kathy Barron and her husband John; grandson Matthew; sister, Alice Green; and brothers, Patrick Green and Tommy Green.  She is also survived by brothers and sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews, and cousins.  
In addition to her parents and husband, she is also preceded in death by her brother Johnny Green.
Family and friends will be received on Thursday, Jan. 13 from 10 to 11 a.m. at the St. Patrick Church, 212 Meredith St. in Kennett Square, where a Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 11 a.m.  
Burial will follow mass at St. Peter & Paul Cemetery in Springfield, Pa.  
Arrangements are being handled by the Kuzo Funeral Home in Kennett Square. 
Please visit Fran’s online memorial by going to

Elizabeth Sturgill
Elizabeth Sturgill, 68, passed away on Dec. 27 at home in Nottingham.
She was the wife of Jerry Sturgill of Nottingham.
Born in Havre de Grace, Md., she was the daughter of the late Louis and Dorothy Usilton.
Elizabeth was a member of Porters Grove Baptist Church in Rising Sun, Md.
She loved her dog, Scooter. She Enjoyed going to the beach and playing volleyball, and attending car shows with her husband.
She is survived by her husband; one step-daughter, Angela Smith of Port Deposit, MD; six grandchildren, Tina Smith, Robert Smith, Anthony Smith and Aaron Smith of Port Deposit, Md. and Brooke Sturgill and Dylon Sturgill and their mother, Debbie Sturgill of Nottingham; two great-grandsons, Barrett and Bane Nickel; and two brothers, Jerry Usilton and Wayne Usilton.  
She was preceded in death by one son, Jerry Joe Sturgill. 
A memorial service will be held at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Elizabeth’s memory may be made to Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc., 86 Pine Street, Oxford, PA 19363, to help offset funeral costs.
Arrangements are being handled by the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc. in Oxford.
Online condolences may be made at

Ellen H. Hayes
Ellen H. Hayes, of West Grove, and formerly of Brewton, AL.,  passed away peacefully on Jan. 7 at Jenner’s Pond Retirement Community, where she had resided since 2015. She was 86.
Born in Tuscaloosa, AL, and raised in Birmingham, she was the daughter of the late James and Stella (Johnson) Harmon. She was a former member of First United Methodist Church of Brewton and a current member of West Grove United Methodist Church.
Ellen graduated from the University of Alabama in 1956, where she was a member of Phi Beta Kappa, Mortar Board, and Phi Mu Sorority. After graduation, she supported her family by working as a researcher at the University of Alabama at Birmingham while her husband Bob completed medical school. 
In 1962, her family moved to Brewton, where she lived for more than 50 years. During that time, she raised three children and worked at T. R. Miller Mill Company and West Gate Village Nursing Home.  Seeing a need in her community, Ellen was one of the founders of the Food Pantry at FUMC of Brewton. She also served the homeless community for many years by collecting donations for the Waterfront Rescue Mission in Pensacola, FL. In 2015, Ellen and her husband Bob were both recognized as Brewton's Citizens of the Year for their contributions in improving their city and surrounding community. 
Ellen was a voracious reader and loved spending time with her family, dear friends, and pets Sam and Moose.
Ellen is survived by Dr. Robert L. Hayes, Jr., her husband of 65 years; a daughter, Stacey Hunting (and husband Ray) of West Chester; three grandchildren and their spouses, Robert and Alicia (Kingston) Hunting, Lindsay and Victor van den Bergh, and Caroline and Patrick Jupe; three great-grandchildren; and brother Hugh Harmon of Dunedin, FL. 
She is preceded in death by her beloved sons, Bob Hayes and Jim Hayes, as well as her parents and brother Bruce Harmon.
Services are private.
Donations in Ellen’s memory may be made to the Waterfront Rescue Mission, 
P.O. Box 870, Pensacola, FL 32591.
To view her online tribute and to share a memory with her family, please visit

James “LeRoy” Bruce, Sr.
James “LeRoy” Bruce, Sr., 92, of Quarryville, entered into rest on Jan. 6, while at home with his family by his side. Born in Emily, Bucks County, he was the son of the late Charles and Anna (Wintersteen) Bruce. 
He was the loving husband of Betty (Crawford) Bruce for 35 years. 
LeRoy had worked as the farm manager at the New Bolton Center of the University of Pennsylvania for over 50 years. He loved spending time outdoors, especially hunting in Potter County. LeRoy enjoyed farming, gardening and most importantly he loved people. He was known for being able to have a conversation with anyone.
In addition to his wife, Betty, he is survived by five children, Kathleen Caudill (Eddie) of Kennett Square; James L., Jr. (Rissa) of Crozet, VA; Karen Scherer (Rick) of Cochranville; Linda Conway (Bobby) of Ocean View, Del.; and Bruce Akerley (Becky) of Quarryville. Also surviving are 21 grandchildren and 27 great grandchildren. 
He was preceded in death by a daughter, Lisa Swenson, two brothers, Charles and Robert and a sister, Betty Clark. 
The family would like to extend a heartfelt thanks to the Brandywine River Valley Hospice staff for their care of LeRoy during his illness. 
A service celebrating LeRoy’s life will be announced at a later date. 
Private interment will be in the New London Presbyterian Cemetery. Kindly omit flowers. Memorial contributions may be made to the National Future Farmers of America Foundation, 6060 FFA Drive, Indianapolis, Indiana 46278. 
An online guestbook can be found at