Skip to main content

Chester County Press

Obituaries for the week of April 11

04/10/2022 11:46PM ● By Steven Hoffman
Barbara Ann Phillips
Barbara Ann Phillips, 75, of Landenberg, entered into rest on March 29 at home.
She was the wife of Albert G. Phillips, with whom she shared 58 years of marriage.  
Born on April 14, 1944 in Miller’s Creek North Wilkesboro, NC, she was the daughter of the late James M. and Ivnel Nichols Snyder. 
She is survived by her loving husband; two sons, Christopher G. Phillips and Steven Phillips (Tracey) all of Landenberg; and four sisters, Shirley Bibber (Rick), Carolyn Hensley (Herbert), Linda Ranallli and Susan Spain (Barry).  
She was preceded in death by one sister, Darlene Wyatt.
Funeral services were held on April 4 at State Line Baptist Church in Rising Sun, Md.
Interment will be in the adjoining cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Forgotten Cats, Inc., 4023 Kennett Pike, Suite 422, Greenville, DE 19807.
Arrangements are being handled by the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc. in Oxford. Online condolences may be made at

John R. Williams
John R. Williams, a resident of West Grove who formerly lived in Somers Point, NJ, passed away on March 28 at Jenner’s Pond in West Grove. He was 89.
He was the son of the late Daniel and Millie (Falcone) Williams; and brother of the late Thomas D. Williams; loving father of Suzanne Barnard (Richard) and Barbara Fasick (Douglas); and devoted grandfather of Zachary and Olivia Barnard and DJ and William Fasick.
He grew up in Roseto a small Pennsylvania community between Stroudsburg and Easton.  After graduating from high school there, he received a football scholarship to the University of Delaware, where he graduated with a degree in Civil Engineering in 1955.
He then went into business for himself, specializing in home maintenance, especially fabric cleaning and maintenance, in Somers Point, NJ. He also was involved in sales, and was affiliated for a time with Market America, a product brokerage company headquartered in Chicago.
A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on April 2 at Sacred Heart Church in Oxford.
Interment will be private.
In lieu of flowers, the family has requested contributions to the University of Delaware. Please forward donations to, Gifts Processing, 83 E. Main St, 3rd Floor, Newark, DE 19716. Make checks payable to 'University of Delaware' and include on the memo line "in memory of John R. Williams.” Gifts can also be made on the University of Delaware's secure website, ( Donations will be directed to the Men’s Football fund at the University of Delaware.
Arrangements are being handled by the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc. Oxford, PA. Online condolences may be made at

Joan Walsh
Joan Walsh (nee Kinsella) of West Grove peacefully passed away on March 23 at Jenner's Pond Retirement Community. She was 92.
She was the beloved wife of Thomas A. Walsh, with whom she shared 64 years of marriage.  Born in Philadelphia, she was the daughter of the late Michael and Winifred Kinsella and the sister of the late Michael D. Kinsella.  
Joan and Tom lived in Glenolden, Pa. for over 56 years before moving to Chester County to be near their family.  Joan was an active member of St. Gabriel's Catholic Church in Norwood, Pa. and more recently, at Assumption BVM Catholic Church in West Grove.  
In addition to her husband, Joan is survived by three daughters, Deborah (Carmen) Giannantonio of Kennett Square, Donna (Barry) Francisco of Sea Isle City, NJ, and Susan (John) Winiarski of West Grove.  She is also survived by six grandchildren, Greg, Julianna, Andrew, Chrissy, Jimmy and Megan. 
Joan will be remembered by all who knew her as a loving and caring wife, mother, and grandmother who always enjoyed spending time with her family.  She will also be remembered as a devoted friend and for her kindness, sense of humor and positive outlook on life.  Joan loved to travel, play bridge, spend time at the shore, volunteer within the community, and enjoy a good happy hour at sunset with family and friends.
At the family’s request, services and interment will be held privately.  In lieu of flowers, please consider contributions in her memory to Jenner’s Pond Endowment Fund, 2000 Greenbrier Road, West Grove, PA 19390. 
Funeral arrangements are by Matthew J. Grieco of Grieco Funeral Home & Crematory of Kennett Square. Condolences may be shared at

Lena Oliveri D’Antonio
Lena Oliveri D’Antonio passed away peacefully in her home on March 15. She was 88. 
Born on January 18, 1934 and raised in the Doe Run area of Unionville, she was the daughter of the late Antonio and Madalena Olivieri.
She attended Unionville High School. She then supported the operations at D’Antonio Mushrooms for over 65 years, but her most cherished role was that of wife, mother, and grandmother. A true matriarch, she was fierce, no nonsense and full of energy. She had a style and grace that couldn’t be taught and kept her house, like her clothes, in impeccable condition.
Her marriage to her late husband, Emidio, was the kind of love story most people only read about. They shared 60 years of adventures together. She hosted spaghetti dinner for her family every single Sunday and secretly loved that her house was always filled with people. Even though she often announced she was “done cooking for the day,” there was always another meal to be made or another pot of coffee to be brewed when one of her sons walked in the door.
She loved doing puzzles, shopping, playing the slot machines, and spending time with her sisters. Lena will be dearly missed by all.
Lena is survived by her three sons and their wives, Anthony and Melanie D’Antonio, Steve and Sheila D’Antonio and David and Kathleen D’Antonio; four grandchildren, Stephanie D’Antonio Boughner (Josh), Michelle D’Antonio Jurich (Dewey), Michael D’Antonio, Olivia D’Antonio; seven great grandchildren; her sisters, Nancy Petrucci and Josephine Wroten; her sister-in-law, Maryann Benko; and many nieces and nephews. 
She was preceded in death by her husband, Emidio D’Antonio; sisters, Anna Mastrippolito and Splendora Oliveri; and a brother, Louis Oliveri.
Services were held on March 22 at St. Gabriel’s of the Sorrowful Mother Church in Avondale, and the private graveside services took place at St. Patrick Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in her name to Penn Hospice Development Office, 3535 Market Street, Suite 750, Philadelphia, PA 19104 or online at
Arrangements are being handled by Kuzo Funeral Home in Kennett Square.

Paul Ruggieri
Paul Ruggieri, 61, of Kennett Square, passed away April 4 at his residence.  
Born on June 19, 1960, in West Chester, he was the son of the late Dino and Joy (Johnson) Ruggieri. 
Paul worked for the family mushroom business in Kennett Square before becoming a correctional officer at the Chester County Prison.  In his free time, he enjoyed fishing, hunting, cooking, Philadelphia sports and playing fantasy football. Paul volunteered his time with the City Gate Mission, helping those in need.  He enjoyed time away often, visiting Avalon, NJ, and most of all, he loved spending time with his daughters and grand-dogs. 
Paul is survived by his daughters, Maddie Ruggieri (Steve) and Marina Ruggieri (Matt); his siblings, Lisa Adams (Keith), John Ruggieri (Lori) and Pete Ruggieri (Stephanie).  In addition to his parents, he is preceded in death by his brothers Mark and Dean Ruggieri. 
All services will be private.  Contributions may be made to the City Gate Mission, 17 North 7th Ave., Coatesville, PA 19320 to continue the work that was so important to Paul.

Lois Burns Foster
On April 4, a beautiful spring morning, Lois Burns Foster passed peacefully into her Savior’s arms. She had her family by her side at the time of her passing.
She was the widow of Dr. Claude Foster, who died in September of 2012. She was born in Chattanooga, TN to W.T and Lillis Burns and was one of 7 children.
She graduated from Central High School and worked two years at the DuPont Nylon plant. She attended King’s College in Delaware City, Del.
She was a Licensed Practical Nurse and worked for 12 years at Kendal at Longwood, where she was a resident for the last 9 years.
She is survived by her son, Steve (Lori ) Foster of Newark, Del; her daughter, Charissa Foster of Pennsville, NJ; brothers, Carroll Burns of Atlanta, GA, and Ken Burns of Beaufort, SC; and her sister, Charlotte Lively of Mosely, VA. She also had five grandchildren, Tyler Foster of Boothwyn, Pa., Kelsey Foster of Wilmington, Del., Alex Funari of Pennsville, NJ, Dylan Foster and Luke Foster of Newark, Del.
She was a longtime member of First Baptist Church of Kennett Square, where she enjoyed singing in the choir.
At her request, funeral services will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to First Baptist Church of Kennett Square. Arrangements are being handled by Kuzo Funeral Home in Kennett Square. 

Geraldine Marie (Murtha) Spiess
Geraldine Marie (nee Murtha) Spiess, age 68, of Lincoln University, passed away on March 25 at Christiana Hospital in Newark, Del.  She was the wife of Kenneth E Spiess, Jr., with whom she shared 27 years of marriage.  Born in Philadelphia, she was a daughter of the late James J Zecca, II and the late Geraldine Solometo.
Geraldine graduated from Saint Maria Goretti High School in Philadelphia in 1971. She was a grocery clerk and shop steward for Acme Markets for over 20 years at the New Garden location before retiring in 2010.
She enjoyed working in her yard, cooking, and spending time with her family, especially her 14 grandchildren.  Most of all, she will be remembered as a people person. She loved virtually everyone she met.  
In addition to her husband, she is survived by four sons, John Porto (Danielle) of Oxford, Greg Spiess (Sasha) of Kennett Square, Andrew Spiess (Kelly) of Claymont, Del. and Brad Spiess of Wilmington, Del; one daughter, Mary Silva (Bryan) of Petaluma, Calif.; one sister, Carol Pepe of Philadelphia; two nieces, Carrol Schoenleber (Dan) and Linda Pepe; her sister-in-law, Denise Zecca; and thirteen grandchildren, Aalyna, Haylie, Andrew (Drew) Jr., Vincent, Jayla, Nicholas, Sienna, Caleb, Gemma, Mason, Aiden, Benjamin, and Karmina. She was predeceased by a brother, James J. Zecca III and a grandson John Porto, Jr.
Her life celebration service was held on April 6 at New London Presbyterian Church.  Interment will be held privately.  Contributions in her memory may be made to Shriners Hospital for Children, P.O. Box 1525, Ranson, WV 25438. On the memo line, list In memory of Geraldine Spiess, or make an online contribution at
Arrangements are being handled by Matthew J. Grieco of Grieco Funeral Home & Crematory of Kennett Square. 484-734-8100.  To view her online obituary, please visit

Sonia “Sunny” L. Leighton
Sonia “Sunny” L. Leighton, of West Chester, passed away on April 5 at the Pocopson Home. She was 88.
She was the wife of Harry F. Leighton, who passed away in 2003, and with whom she shared 48 years of marriage.
Born in Lancaster, she was the daughter of the late Henry A. Hartman and the late Marguerite E. Firestone Hartman.
She was a homemaker, but had worked part-time at Hank’s Restaurant in Chadds Ford and at Betty’s in West Chester.
Sunny enjoyed traveling with her best friend Edie and gardening. She also did volunteer work and was a history buff. She especially enjoyed being with her family.
She is survived by two daughters, Linda L. Gray (and her husband Joseph) of West Chester and Lori L Mason (and her husband Robert) of  Coatesville; one sister, Cathey Laudato of Pottstown; five grandchildren and four great grandchildren.
Sunny was predeceased by two sisters, Gail Haly and Mary Ellen McDevitt.
You are invited to visit with her family and friends from 11 a.m. to noon on Thursday, April 14 at the Kuzo Funeral Home, 250 West State Street in Kennett Square. Her memorial service will follow at noon. Burial will be private.
In lieu of flowers, a contribution may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, 399 Market Street, Suite 102, Philadelphia, PA 19106.
To view her online tribute and to share a memory with her family, please visit

Audra Sue Conley Shuler
Audra Sue Conley Shuler passed away on April 4 at the age of 85, or maybe 86 (more on that later) in Herndon, Virginia.  
She was born in Weston, West Virginia to Laurence and Mary Conley.
She survived her husband, Henry Powell “Buck” Shuler, and is survived by their daughter, Laura Paige Moses, son-in-law Kevin Moses, and grandsons Gareth Lange and Carson Moses. She is also survived by her brother L.Fred Conley, sister-in-law Ann F. Conley and several nephews, nieces, and cousins.
Sue was a graduate of Towson University and spent decades teaching elementary school in Harford County, Maryland before her retirement. 
Sue was an educator, beloved housewife, mom, aunt, friend and, upon retirement, a volunteer charity worker.  She was an involved and tireless Congregant/Elder at Union Presbyterian Church and later an active and involved Congregant at Oxford Presbyterian Church.  She was strong in her faith and would always invoke God when any good news was shared— “Isn’t God Wonderful.”
Her one vice was chocolate, and her one vanity was her age, which she would go to great lengths to avoid divulging. But, above all, she was a kind and caring woman who always wanted to make sure that no one, even the nurses attending her as she lay dying, should be ‘put out’ on her account.  She will be greatly missed by her family and good friends.
Service will be a private.  In lieu of flowers, the family is sure that, if you are inclined to make a donation, Sue would want it to be to Oxford Presbyterian Church or your favorite charity.

Beverly Marie Savidge
Beverly “Bev” Marie Savidge, of West Chester, passed away on March 21 at the Pocopson Home. She was 92.
Born on Aug. 11, 1929 in Mt. Carmel, Pa., she was the daughter of the late Costy and Anna (Bernake) Pranskavich.
Bev was a graduate of Mt. Carmel Area High School.  She moved to Lewisburg, Pa. and worked in food service at Bucknell University. Later in life, she moved to West Chester to be closer to friends. In her free time, she enjoyed bowling, knitting and had a passion for animals.
Bev is survived by her children, Joseph Savidge (Patricia) and Susan Savidge, her granddaughters, Jessica and Heather and four great-grandchildren. She is preceded in death by her siblings, Monica Moreto, Jenny Germain, Anne DiRico, Emily Lewis, Jose Pranskavich and Bill Pranskavich.
A private burial will take place at All Saints Cemetery in Elysburg, Pa. Please visit the online memorial by going to

Chester County High School Sports