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Chester County Press

Obituaries for the week of January 17th

Jane Leslie Gregg-Ortiz
Jane Leslie Gregg-Ortiz, 63, of Oxford, passed away on Jan. 10, 2024 at Union Hospital in Elkton, Md.

She was the wife of Israel “Rock” Ortiz.

Born in West Grove, she was the daughter of the late Harold W. and Carolyn M. Cunningham Gregg.

Jane retired as a bus driver from Krapf Bus Co. in Oxford.

She was a member of St. John’s United Methodist Church in Elkton, Md.  

Jane was Judge of Elections in Elk Township for many years. She was also a member of the Red Hat Society and was an avid gardener and loved her animals. Jane was good-hearted and helped anyone in need.

She is survived by her husband; one son, Andrew West Gregg (Julia) of Oxford; three grandchildren, Amelia, Hope and Tommy Gregg; one sister, Sandra (Don Bromley) of Oxford; nephew, Dave Quinlan (Annie) of Nottingham; five great-nieces and nephews, Sarah, Ryan, Chloe, Kaylee and Logan; one brother-in-law, Jose Ortiz of Coatesville; three sisters-in-law, Gladys Ortiz of Puerto Rico, Annacelli Ortiz of Allentown and Virginia Ortiz of Allentown; nieces and nephews, Myra, Jose, Jessica, Xavier, Angel, Michelle, Celines, Detsire Mary, Pablo Enrique, Jose Alfredo; and her beloved dog, Harvey.

She was preceded in death by one son, Thomas Gregg and a brother, Thomas Wayne Gregg.

Funeral services will be held 11 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 20, 2024 at the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc. at 86 Pine Street in Oxford, where friends and family may visit from 10 to 11 a.m.

Interment will be in St. John’s United Methodist Church Cemetery in Elkton, Md.

Arrangements are being handled by the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc. in Oxford. Online condolences may be made at  

Ronald C. Volk
Ronald C. Volk, 76, died in Avon, Indiana on January 9, 2024.

He was born in Pennsylvania to the late Calvin and Gladys (Bryan) Volk. He graduated from Kennett High School and joined the U.S. Marine Corps where he served for six years including a tour in Vietnam. He worked in industrial sales for over 45 years, even after he “retired.” He was an avid fan of Penn State, the Philadelphia Eagles and Flyers, and the Drum Corps. He loved to read and spend time with his family, especially watching his grandchildren perform in marching band and show choir. 

He was active in his church and was incredibly generous, helping everyone he could. 

He was preceded in death by his late wife Carol. He is survived by a brother, Thomas Volk and a sister, Barb (Mark) Underwood, of Pennsylvania, two daughters, Jennifer Volk and Karen Kinnaman, and two grandchildren, Konnor and Kamryn Kinnaman. 

Per his request, there will be no memorial service. There will be a private burial. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to Tunnel to Towers Foundation (

Andrew J. Vannoy
Andrew John Vannoy died on Jan. 1, 2024 at his home in West Chester. He was 39 years old.

He was preceded in death by his paternal grandparents, Bernard Vannoy Sr. and Dorothy (Hilton) Vannoy and his maternal grandparents, Lonnie Hughes and Mary (Willen) Hughes. 

He is survived by his parents, Parke C. Vannoy and Teresa (Hughes) South, a sister, Debra Sadler, two brothers, Brian L. South and Eric D. South, and two children, Adalynn J. Vannoy and Aven J. Vannoy.  

Drew lived every day for his children. He was an avid Philadelphia Eagles fan. 

Contributions in Drew’s memory can be made to the Kennett Square Missionary Baptist Church, 408 Bayard Road, Kennett Square, PA 19348.  

Funeral services were held on Jan. 9 at the Kennett Square Missionary Baptist Church. Interment followed at Union Hill Cemetery.

Arrangements are by Matthew Grieco of Grieco Funeral Home & Crematory, Inc. (484-734-8100) of Kennett Square. To view Andrew's online tribute and to share a memory with his family, please visit

Phillip Patrone
Phillip Patrone, age 88, passed away on Jan. 7, 2024 at Merrill Gardens in West Chester. Born in Marcus Hook, Pa., he was the son of Antonio and Rose (Fecondo) Patrone. 

Phil is survived by the love of his life, Rosemarie (Cleary) Patrone, with whom he shared 64 years of marriage. In addition to Rosemarie, he is survived by his son, Michael Patrone, Michael’s wife, Jun and his daughters, Riley and Leah; his son Phillip Patrone, his wife, Michelle (Chronister), and their two sons, Sam and Alex; and his sister, Anna Marie Scone, and her husband, Allan. Phillip was predeceased by his brother, Benjamin. 

Phil graduated from Eddystone High School in 1953 and shortly thereafter became a carpenter in the commercial construction industry.  As his career progressed, Phil worked as an estimator, superintendent, and project manager but always preferred being outside and working as a superintendent.  Over the years, he developed an expertise in building hospitals such as Lankenau Hospital in Wynnewood, Pa., Suburban Community Hospital in Norristown, Pa., and Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Camden, NJ.  He worked for just two companies over his 54-year career:  J.J. Deluca Company and Nason & Cullen Inc. He retired from the construction industry at the age of 72. 

He served his country in the U.S. Army and Army National Guard from 1960-1965 in support of and following the Bay of Pigs Invasion of Cuba. 

He was an active member of Saint Agnes Catholic Church in West Chester. He and Rosemarie enjoyed many deep friendships they built there. 

Phil had a love for all Philadelphia sports and after many years as a season ticket holder, he became a passionate Eagles fan. He also cheered on the Phillies and Flyers. Phil loved to cook, travel and find new “outstanding” restaurants which he recommended to his family and friends.  He shared his enthusiasm for golf with his buddies, sons and grandchildren. 

His greatest enjoyment came from being a loving husband, and a very involved Pop Pop, father, and friend. As he grew older, his biggest pleasure came from family gatherings centered around meals. He taught his children and grandchildren how to prepare homemade pasta and the Feast of Seven Fishes Christmas Eve meal. 

A mass of Christian burial took place on Jan. 16 at Saint Agnes Catholic Church in West Chester.

Interment will follow at Birmingham Lafayette Cemetery in West Chester. 

Contributions in his memory may be made to the American Heart Association at  

Arrangements are being handled by Matthew Grieco of Grieco Funeral Home & Crematory, Inc. (484-734-8100) of Kennett Square.  To view his online tribute, please visit

Raymond Davis
Raymond Davis, of West Grove, passed away on Dec. 22, 2023 at Chester County Hospital in West Chester. He was 82.

His wife, Rosemary Cheryl (Reid) Davis, with whom he shared 50 years of marriage, was lovingly by his bedside as he transitioned to the afterlife.

Raymond was born on Aug. 6, 1941 in Philadelphia. He was the oldest son of five children. He was born to the late Raymond Davis and the late Mattie Little. Ray had one brother, Albert Neal, and one sister, Norma Davis, precede him in death.  

Ray graduated from Overbrook High School in 1959. After graduation he enlisted and served in the U.S. Army where he was part of the 101st Airborne Division. Ray was honorably discharged from his post with the military. He was extremely proud of being a part of the Airborne group and consistently wore a hat or shirt with the 101st Screamin’ Eagles symbol pridefully displayed.  

Ray was employed by PECO Energy Company. He worked as a maintenance supervisor at their Limerick and Peach Bottom facilities and retired after 30 years of service.

As a young man, Ray enjoyed boxing so much that his friends called him “Sugar” Ray due to his hand speed and his enthusiasm for the “sweet science.”  He also was a good artist, liked building model cars, trucks, airplanes, and jigsaw puzzles.  He enjoyed do-it-yourself projects and anything he could get into to find use for the plethora of tools that he had in his workshop. As he got older and had kids, Ray could be found at sporting and music events for his two sons, proudly cheering and watching them perform.  He absolutely loved motorcycles and would profess that he was going to get another one, “one day” almost daily.  Later in life, he loved being a grandfather.  Spending time with his grandchildren filled him with extreme joy, pride, and love.    

Over the years Ray accumulated several nicknames.  As mentioned above, “Sugar” Ray was from his earlier days.  As his sons and their friends got older he would go on to be known as “Rayzor” by some, because of his sharp, tell it like it is responses and come backs.  Others referred to him as “Rawl” for the same reason.  Still over time, he was affectionately referred to as Pops among his sons and grandchildren. No matter what you called him, Ray will be remembered for his strength—physical and his ability to roll with the punches when life got  tough, his protective nature, and his sharp wit and humor.  

In addition to his wife Cheryl, he is survived by two sons, Marc Davis (and his wife Michelle) of Troy, Alabama, and Jason Davis (and his wife Allison) of Mount Joy, Pa., and four grandchildren, Jason Jr., Braydon, Cameron, and Madalyn.

Also surviving are two brothers, Rev. Robert Williams-Neal (and his wife Rev. Camille) of Louisville, Kentucky and James Neal of Newportville, Pa., three nieces, Minister Tonya Belton of Philadelphia, Andrea Williams-Neal of Alexandria, VA, and Robin Williams-Neal of Louisville, Kentucky, three nephews, Marcus Tunnell of Philadelphia, Devon Williams-Neal of Louisville, Kentucky, and Colin Williams-Neal of Louisville, Kentucky, three great-great nieces, Maryyah Tunnell, Milan Tunnell, and Miracle Tunnell, and his brother-in-law, Samuel Reid, Jr.

The Davis family would like to thank each and every one of you for the outpouring of concern, support, and love as they move through the emotional pain of losing Ray. The family is hurting, but they know that the Lord knows best and take solace that he is at peace and is forever a part of them.

Services were held on Dec. 29 at Episcopal Church of the Advent Chapel in Kennett Square.

Interment was held privately. Contributions in his memory may be made to the memorial fundraiser benefiting American Legion Post 491 Kennett Square in Ray's honor

Arrangements are by Matthew Grieco of Grieco Funeral Home & Crematory, Inc. (484-734-8100) of Kennett Square. To view his online tribute and to share a memory with his family, please visit

David L. Carter
David L. Carter, 87, of Oxford, passed away on Jan. 7, 2024 at Citizens Care Nursing Home in Havre de Grace, Md.

He was the husband of Viola Nickle Carter, with whom he shared 66 years of marriage.

Born in Glen Roy, Pa. he was the son of the late Charles F. and Edith Everett Carter.

David was employed with Penn Fuel in Oxford. After retirement, he became a school crossing guard and mowed lawns. 

He was a member and volunteer for the Union Fire Company  No. 1 in Oxford and the Fire Police.  

David had a great sense of humor and enjoyed nature, long walks and mowing lawns.

He is survived by his wife; four sons, Charles E. Carter (late Betty) of Oxford, Stephen W. Carter of Oxford, Jeffrey S. Carter of Oxford and Brian K. Carter (Kristen) of Oxford; five grandchildren, Chuck, Jr., David, Andrew, Erin and Scott; three great-grandchildren, Patrick, Kinsley and Travis; and one brother, Richard Carter (Lottie) of Conowingo, Md.

He was preceded in death by three brothers, Bill Carter, Frank Carter and Don Carter; and three sisters, Edith Nickle, Ethel Moran and Frances Carter.

Funeral services were held on Jan. 10 at the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home in Oxford.

Interment will be private.

Arrangements are being handled by the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc. in Oxford. Online condolences may be made at  

Shirley Porter VanSant
Shirley Porter VanSant passed peacefully at the age of 89 while surrounded by her loving family on Jan. 3, 2024.

Born to parents Warren and Ethel Porter on Sept. 18, 1934, Shirley Ann was the oldest of six children. 

A West Grove native and a graduate of Avon Grove High School, she had several jobs throughout her life including bank teller, secretary at Suburban Propane, and later sharing her love of cross-stitch working at a cross-stitch store. Her favorite and most rewarding job were that of the family matriarch caring for her children and grandchildren.

Lovingly called “Mommom,” she was the heart of the family. She enjoyed birdwatching, cross-stitch, crafts, card games, bingo with her sister, cooking and baking, gift-giving and card-making. Her love language was sending homemade cards to family and friends for every birthday and anniversary, and spoiling loved ones with an abundance of home-made treats. Her favorite moments with family included holidays, annual vacations to the beach, and a bucket list trip to Ireland.

She joins in heaven her parents, husband Richard VanSant, brother Daniel Porter, cherished sister and best friend Naomi Hogan, and beloved son Darren VanSant.

She leaves behind a family who adored her: daughter and son-in-law, Denise and Tom Talley, daughter-in-law, Kim VanSant, three brothers, Warren Porter, Donald Porter (Phyllis), David Porter (Elwanda), brother-in-law Martin Hogan, five granddaughters, Kara Phipps (Jason), Elisha Deni (Justin), Laura VanSant (Rob), Alyssa Kilby (Jason), Megan Monte (Quentin), seven great-grandchildren, Julia, Derek, and Natalie Phipps, Brielle and Camryn Kilby, Everly Deni, Cordelia Monte, and numerous treasured nieces, nephews, and friends. She will also be missed by her constant canine companion, Lily.

She was a testament of the strength of family bonds and traditions, and her legacy will be continued through the family she leaves behind.

A funeral service was held on Jan. 9 at the New London Presbyterian Church in New London. Burial will be in the adjoining church cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions in her memory to Willow Tree Hospice, 616 E. Cypress St. Kennett Square, PA or St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.

To view Shirley’s online tribute and to share a memory with her family, please visit

Louva Ann Gibbs
Louva Ann Gibbs, of Cochranville, Pa., passed away on Jan. 8, 2024 at Christiana Hospital in Newark, Del. She was 84.

She was the wife of the late D. Lawrence Gibbs.

Born in Townsend, Tenn., she was the daughter of the late Ray W. and Susie Bryant Lawson.

Louva was employed as a school teacher for both the Avon Grove School District and Octorara Area School District.

She was a member of Manor Presbyterian Church, Cochranville. 

She is survived by one son, David Gibbs (Kay) of New Holland, one daughter, Karen Hoffman of Niceville, Fla., and four grandchildren, Kamri Hoffman, Kolby Hoffman, Joshua Gibbs and Claire Gibbs. 

She was preceded in death by two sisters, Wilma Jean Gray and Mary Britt, and three brothers, Cecil Lawson, Howard Lawson and Clyde Ray Lawson.

Funeral services were held on Jan. 13 at the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc. in Oxford. Interment will be in Oxford Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the American Cancer Society, PO Box 22718, Oklahoma City, Ok, 73123-1718. 

Arrangements are being handled by the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc. in Oxford. Online condolences may be made at  

Jane Fetters Roten
Jane F. Roten died while surrounded by her beloved family after a brief illness on Jan. 7, 2024. She was an 84-year-old resident of Oxford.

She was the wife of Roy L. Roten, also of Oxford.

Jane was the daughter of the late John N. and Frances Whiteside Fetters. Jane was born in Oxford.

Jane was a graduate of Oxford Area High School Class of 1957. She worked for the Bell Telephone Company in Oxford and the Oxford Area School District in the Cafeteria, then became a homemaker. She was a den mother of Cub Pack 39 and served 14 years. She enjoyed working with plastic canvas, camping and going to the mountains. She really enjoyed all of her grandchildren, Andrew, Lee, Tabitha, Samuel, Mercedes, Noah (deceased) and Josh as well as all of her great-grandchildren, Max, Victoria, Tommy, Claire, Cole, Jenna and Abel. 

She was a member of the First Baptist Church of Oxford where she served as a Sunday School Teacher for over 40 years.

In addition to her husband, she is survived by three sons, John E. (married to Pyong Choe Roten) of Winter Springs, Fla., Donald L. Roten (married to Kathy Dorety Roten) of Oxford, and Thomas J. Roten (married to Donna Patrick Roten) of Nottingham. Also surviving are six grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren, and her widowed sister, Barbara A. Sammons (married to Luther Buster Sammons, Jr.) of West Grove.  

She was preceded in death by her grandson, Noah D. Roten and her sister, Doris and her husband Harry Bachman.

Funeral services were held on Jan. 12 at the First Baptist Church of Oxford with Rev. Luke Fenstermacher officiating. 

Interment will be in Oxford Cemetery in Oxford.

In lieu of flowers, donations in her memory may be made to First Baptist Church of Oxford. 

Arrangements are being handled by the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc. in Oxford. Online condolences may be made at  

Robert Lewis Thompson
Robert Lewis Thompson, 99, of Honey Brook, Pa., passed away on Dec. 27, 2023 at Chester County Hospital.

Bob was born in Philadelphia on Oct. 17, 1924 to Charles Franklin and Mildred (Spragle) Thompson. 

Growing up in Lansdowne, Pa., he attended Lansdowne High School, and joined the Lansdowne Fire Company as a junior firefighter while in high school as part of his wartime civil service.  After graduating as part of the Class of 1942 he began working at age 17 for the Pennsylvania Railroad, which helped instill a love of trains.  

He was drafted into the U.S. Army two days after his 18th birthday. A proud member of the 2nd Infantry Division, Bob landed at Utah Beach June 22, 1944 and participated in campaigns in the Normandy and Brittany regions of France, liberating the city of Brest before moving to the Ardennes region of Belgium along the border with Germany.  

Approximately two months later, the relative quiet was shattered by the Battle of the Bulge. In the first night of fighting, Robert’s unit was cut off, and they spent two days behind enemy lines before he and the others were captured. Robert spent the rest of the war in three different prison camps, including a 120-mile forced march between camps.  Always an optimist, he stated the march between camps was the best part of the war. He wasn’t getting shot at, he got to see Bavaria, and the food was better than in the camp. He was liberated from the camp in Moosburg at war’s end in May of 1945.  For his wartime service, Bob was awarded multiple medals and the Bronze Star. In his humility, he would mention that “all you had to do was show up” to get them.  In 2011 he was appointed a “Chevalier” of the French Legion of Honor medal by the government of France. Bob was extremely proud of his military service, did numerous speaking engagements, published his memoirs, and made several return trips to Europe to retrace and share his steps with his family.

After the war, Bob immediately returned to employment with the Pennsylvania Railroad earning a bachelor’s degree and eventually a master’s degree in engineering from Drexel University and spent most of his career in the foundry industry. He continued his active membership with the Lansdowne Fire Company until 1976 and was honored with a lifetime membership. Bob also volunteered as a Boy Scout leader with Troop 157 in Lansdowne, from 1965 to 1976.

Bob met Nancy Bross while enjoying furlough on the beach in Ocean City, New Jersey before being discharged from service.  They married after a “whirlwind courtship of four years”. Bob and Nancy were married 63 years until Nancy’s death in 2012 and had four children.  They were long-time residents of Lansdowne and Walnutport, PA, before residing at Tel Hai.

Bob loved the staff and his friends at Tel Hai. His favorite things included dinners together, the “R.O.M.E.O.s”, hosting happy hours, going out to eat oysters, and playing Pinochle and Bridge.

Bob was predeceased by an older sister Jane, his wife Nancy, and son Robert L. Jr. He is survived by daughter Patricia Costa (Edward), sons Richard and John Thompson (Victoria), two daughters-in-law Karen Thompson and Rhodora Thompson, 13 grandchildren and 14 great grandchildren.

A celebration of life was held at the Chapel at Tel Hai Retirement Community in Honey Brook, Pa. on Jan. 13.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to The Philadelphia Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends, 1515 Cherry Street, Philadelphia PA, 19102 or The Tel Hai Care Assurance Fund, P.O. Box 190 Honey Brook, PA 19344 or CARE at

Arrangements are being handled by Matthew Grieco of Grieco Funeral Home & Crematory, Inc. (484-734-8100) of Kennett Square.  To view Bob's online tribute and to share a memory with his family, please visit