GUARNIERI, Jane Surowiec, 91, of Throop, died Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020. Mass of Christian burial at 1 p.m. today in St. Hyacinth’s Church. Burial in St. Joseph’s Cemetery. No calling hours. Arrangements are by the Plis Funeral Home.
BALLONI, Lillian I., 85, of Auburn, died Thursday, Feb. 13, 2020. Mass of Christian burial at 10 a.m. Monday in St. Alphonsus Church. Burial in St. Joseph’s Cemetery. Calling hours from 4 to 7 p.m. Sunday at the Cheche Funeral Home Inc., 1778 Clark St. Road, Auburn.
AUBURN — Matthew A. Cook, 40, of Auburn, passed away unexpectedly on Monday, Feb. 10, 2020.
Matt was born in Sayre, Pa., on April 11, 1979. He was a resident of Auburn for the majority of his life. He was employed with MEDENT as an assistant hardware manager. Matt was passionate about basketball, whether it was coaching his team, playing pick-up games with friends, or watching it on TV; he had a love for the game. He was an Eagle Scout and an influential leader in his church youth program. He was known for his quick wit and humor.
Matt is survived by his wife, the love of his life and best friend for over 20 years, Kelly Crawford Cook. Matt and Kelly were married Aug. 12, 2000, in the LDS Palmyra Temple, Palmyra, N.Y. He was also survived by his children, who meant the world to him and made him proud every day, Kaleb, Alyssa, and Caitlyn; his parents, Albert and Dorothy (Paige) Cook; his brother, Fran Cook; and Daniel Lyman Perrine, who was like a brother to him.
Visitation will be held from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday, Feb. 15, 2020, in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, 3166 Miller Road, Auburn. A memorial service will immediately follow at 12:15 p.m. in the church.
In lieu of flowers, contributions in Matt’s memory may be made to his family through Venmo; account name Cook Family
Arrangements are with White Chapel Funeral Home Inc., Auburn.
MORAVIA — Monica Marie Shetler Slater, 61, of Moravia, died Feb. 11, 2020, at her home surrounded by her loving family.
Born Aug. 22, 1958, in Syracuse, she was the daughter of the late James and Rita M. Kline Shetler. Having been a lifelong resident of the area, she had been a 1975 graduate of Moravia High School. Working for various places in the area she had made a career of working for Cross Filtration in Moravia for more than 30 years. Shortly after high school she married Donald W. Slater and had celebrated July 2, 43 years of marriage.
Monica had enjoyed reading mysteries, volunteering at school functions which included plays and games, volunteering with the New Hope Fire Department, helping her husband with various lawn maintenance and landscaping projects, and spending time with her daughter and grandchildren.
Besides her husband, Donnie, she is survived by her children, Kenneth Slater, of Perkinston, Miss., and Stefanie (Edward) Raymond, of Moravia; grandchildren, Ariana and Scott Raymond; sisters, Maria (Merton) Suits, and Ann Shetler; sister-in-law, Judy (Mark) Cuddeback; brothers-in-law, Stanley (Brenda) Slater, and Carl (Linda Greene) Slater; and several nieces and nephews.
A memorial service will be held at noon Saturday, Feb. 15, at the Zirbel Funeral Home, 115 Williams St., Groton, NY. Family will receive friends from 10 a.m. to noon prior to the services. Spring interment will take place in the Kelloggville Cemetery.
Memorial contributions can be made to New Hope Fire Department or to Hospice of CNY.
PORTER Sr., Mr. Leon, 77, of LaGrange, Ga., passed away Sunday, Feb. 9, 2020. A memorial service at 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 15, 2020, at Brew Funeral Home, 48 South St., Auburn. Burial will be in Fort Hill Cemetery.
COOK, Matt A., 40, of Auburn, passed away on Monday, Feb. 10, 2020. Visitation from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, Feb. 15, 2020, in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, 3166 Miller Road, Auburn. Memorial service will immediately follow at 12:15 p.m. in the church. Arrangements are with White Chapel Funeral Home Inc., Auburn.
BURGAW, N.C. — Jeffrey Scott Saphara, 48, beloved husband, daddy, son, brother, and loyal friend left this earth way too soon, leaving a big hole in our hearts.
Jeff was born in Mount Kiscoe, N.Y. on March 1, 1971 and passed away on Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2020.
He was preceded in death by his mother, Linda Osterhout Hook.
Left to cherish his memory are his wife, Jennifer Willett Saphara; his daughter, Emma Saphara; father, Laurence P. Saphara and his wife, Pamela; sister, Kimberly Saphara Peck; nephews, Zachary Decker, Jacob Peck, and Nathan Peck; many aunts, uncles, cousins, and loyal friends.
Jeff served his country proudly for five years in the U.S. Army.
Jeff’s greatest passion in life was his family, friends, and sports. Over the last several years he was able to combine both loves as he coached with Pender Youth Soccer Association. What started as “just one season” became an ongoing service that he loved as it allowed him to share his love of sports and athletics with pride and joy as he coached Emma’s team. “His girls,” wife and daughter, were always bringing him into their adventures. No matter how silly the request would be Jeff always joined in; he would laugh and say, “any day with my girls is a good day.”
As a family we are deeply saddened by Jeff’s passing, but we are so grateful for the times we had with him. We are comforted in knowing how much he loved us and are certain Jeff continues to be with us, watching over us and caring for us as always. We will carry on with our lives trusting to see Jeff again when God reunites us in heaven. Until then … thank you for loving us. We are so grateful God made us a family.
AUBURN — Robert Louis Tonzi, 87, of Lake Avenue, Auburn, passed away Feb. 11, 2020, at The Commons on St. Anthony Street.
Born in Auburn, he was the son of the late Louis and Christine Vicciarelli Tonzi. Robert was a graduate of Holy Family High School and Auburn Community College. He was a four year Navy veteran serving his country during the Korean War. Bob coached local basketball and baseball for many years and enjoyed Notre Dame football and watching the Yankees. He was an avid golfer and was a member of Highland Park Golf Club for more than 55 years. Bob was employed with NYSEG for 35 years and was a communicant of both St. Alphonsus Church and St. Mary’s Church.
He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Lois (Maloney) Tonzi; two children, Sean (Joanne) Tonzi and Therese Tonzi; a sister, Barbara (Jim) Stracuzzi; two grandchildren, Michael and Erin Tonzi; and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was predeceased by an infant son, Michael; an infant daughter, Maria; a brother, James Tonzi, and sister-in-law, Teddi Tonzi.
Calling hours will be from 4 to 6 p.m. Friday, Feb. 14, at Langham Funeral Home, LLC. A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated at 10:30 a.m. Saturday in St. Mary’s Church with burial in St. Joseph’s Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to The Matthew House.
AUBURN — Pauline Costello, of Auburn, passed away Feb. 10, 2020, three months shy of her 96th birthday.
Pauline was born May 19, 1924 in Auburn, to Joseph and Mary (Zucchero) Callea. Pauline worked for many years at Auburn Nursing Home where she retired from. Pauline loved to spend time with her family; she loved shopping, scratching scratch offs, but most of all, the casino.
Surviving Pauline are her children, Linda (Edward) LaDouce, Michael (Anne) Costello, Paula (Robert) Jones, and William (Sara) Costello; grandchildren, Jena, Michael, Mathew, Kristi, Greg, Jesse, Katie, Joel, Casey, and Hannah; great-grandchildren, Amelia, Adisen, Michael, Sarah, Liam, Maeve, Colbie, Baylee, Boston, Braxton, Vivianna, Vanson, Connor, Anthony, Lily, Medow, River, Max, and Henry. Pauline would have been a great-great-grandmother in July to Brynlee Pauline. Pauline is also survived by her cousin, Erna DiMatteo; her sisters-in-law, Claira Rusin and Jean Callea; and her adopted daughter, Terri Cuddeback.
Pauline was predeceased by her husband, William “Whitey” Costello; her parents and siblings.
Friends and family may call from 3 to 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 13, at Heieck-Pelc Funeral Home, LLC, 42 East Genesee St., Auburn. A Mass of Christian burial will be offered at 10:30 a.m. Friday, Feb. 14, in St. Francis Church. Entombment will be in St. Joseph’s Mausoleum. Fleming, N.Y.
THROOP — Jane Surowiec Guarnieri, 91, of Throop, died Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020, at St. Mary’s Hospital in Amsterdam, N.Y.
Mrs. Guarnieri was a life resident of the Auburn area, the daughter of the late George and Josephine Antosz Surowiec. She was retired from Simplex Manufacturing. She was a communicant of St. Hyacinth’s Church. She was a member of the Rosary Sodality, the Perpetual Help Society of the church, and sang in the church choir. She was a former member of the S.K. Post American Legion Auxiliary.
Jane is survived by her daughter, Bonnie (Ronald) Cromer, of Gloversville; her son, Robert Guarnieri Sr., of Throop; eight grandchildren; 10 great-grandchildren; and nieces and nephews.
Besides her parents, she was predeceased by her husband, Antonio, in 1969; her son, David in 1983; three sisters and three brothers.
Mrs. Guarnieri’s Mass of Christian burial will be offered at 1 p.m. Friday in St. Hyacinth’s Church. Burial will be in St. Joseph’s Cemetery. There are no calling hours.
EMMI, Frank M., 96, of Auburn, died Sunday, Feb. 9, 2020. Mass of Christian burial at 11 a.m. Thursday in St. Francis Church; burial will follow in St. Joseph’s Cemetery. Calling honors from 4 to 7 p.m. today at the Cheche Funeral Home Inc., 1778 Clark St. Road, Auburn.
TONZI, Robert Louis, 87, of Auburn, passed away Feb. 11, 2020. Calling hours from 4 to 6 p.m. Friday, Feb. 14, at Langham Funeral Home, LLC. Mass of Christian burial at 10:30 a.m. Saturday in St. Mary’s Church with burial in St. Joseph’s Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, contributions to Matthew House.
COSTELLO, Pauline, 95, of Auburn, died unexpectedly Monday, Feb. 10, 2020. Mass of Christian burial at 10:30 a.m. Friday, Feb. 14, 2020, in St. Francis Church. Calling hours from 3 to 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 13, 2020, at the Heieck-Pelc Funeral Home, LLC, 42 E. Genesee St., Auburn.
SENECA FALLS — Travis Ronald Backs, 28, passed away unexpectedly Thursday, Feb. 6, 2020, at his home.
He was born in Auburn and currently was residing in Seneca Falls. Travis attended Union Springs Schools and would graduate from Jordan-Eldridge High School, class of 2011. He was currently employed by Gould’s Pumps in Seneca Falls as a foundry worker. Travis was an avid outdoorsman and especially enjoyed fishing. He cherished his family and friends and adored his niece, MaKenna, and nephew, Trystan.
He is survived by his loving mother, Holly Blaisdell Kline, and stepfather, Jeffrey Kline, of Weedsport; beloved girlfriend, Brandy Townsend and her daughter, Grace Lynn; a sister, Amanda Backs and companion, Nathan Mosher; maternal grandfather, Albert Blaisdell; paternal grandmother, Margo Peluso; nephew, Trystan Mosher; niece, MaKenna Mosher; several aunts, uncles, cousins, and very special friends, CJ Jackson and Bon Colonesse.
Travis was predeceased by his grandfather, Ronald Ward, and maternal grandmother, Mary Blaisdell.
Calling hours are from 4 to 7 p.m. this Friday at the Pettigrass Funeral Home, 196 Genesee St., Auburn. A service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday morning at the funeral home. Burial will be held at the convenience of the family in the spring in Mt. Pleasant Cemetery in Port Byron.
In lieu of flowers, due to Travis’ strong passion to help those with Alzheimer’s, or anyone in need of assistance, the family requests any donations be made in his memory to either the Alzheimer’s Association or Seneca Falls Nursing Home.
BACKS, Travis Ronald, 28, of Seneca Falls, passed away Thursday, Feb. 6, 2020. Calling hours are 4 to 7 p.m. this Friday at Pettigrass Funeral Home, 196 Genesee St., Auburn. Services at 11 a.m. Saturday at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers, contributions to either Alzheimer's Association or Seneca Falls Nursing Home.
LAGRANGE, Ga. — Mr. Leon Lewis Porter Sr., 77, of LaGrange, Ga., passed away Sunday, Feb. 9, 2020, at River Towne Care and Rehabilitation.
Mr. Porter was born Aug. 14, 1942 in Auburn, N.Y., to the late Louis Leon Porter and Mary Elizabeth Stall Porter. He worked for Winn Dixie until his retirement. Mr. Porter loved to travel, and was always ready to go at a moment’s notice. He enjoyed walking and going to dirt track races.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by siblings, Frances Porter, John Porter, and Terry Deyo.
Survivors include his daughters, Brenda Porter and Sherry (Robert) Gilman; sons, Leon Porter Jr., Michael Porter (Rebecca Swartz), and Mark (Pauline) Porter; brother, Frank (Lois) Porter; several grandchildren and great-grandchildren; other relatives and friends.
A memorial service will be held in Auburn, N.Y., at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to St. Jude’s in memory of Leon L. Porter Sr.
Those wishing to share a condolence or remembrance with the family may do so by visiting www.shlagrange.com.
Arrangements are by Striffler-Hamby Mortuary, 1010 Mooty Bridge Road, LaGrange, GA.
THROOP — Kenneth Paul Hahn, 68, son of the late Paul L. and Ellen “Janie” Hahn passed away peacefully in his sleep at home in Throop.
Kenny was loved deeply by those who were close to him and he showered those he loved with gifts and good deeds. He was an exceptional artist, author, musician, and photographer. He loved to read and had a brilliant mind. Kenny graduated from Port Byron Central School in 1970.
He is survived by his brother, Paul L. Hahn and his wife, Wendy, of Shelton, Conn.; nephew, Timothy James Hahn and his wife, Tereze, of Seattle, Wash.; niece, Karissa Hahn and her boyfriend, Andrew, of Los Angeles, Calif.; several cousins, aunts, and uncles.
In addition to his parents, Kenneth was predeceased by his brother, Steven Lester Hahn.
Visitation will be from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2020, at Brew Funeral Home, 48 South St., Auburn.
WEEDSPORT — Sharon L. “Shooma” Dodier, 78, of Weedsport, passed peacefully at Matthew House on Feb. 8, 2020, with her family by her side.
Mrs. Dodier was born in Copenhagen, N.Y., on March 18, 1941, to the late James and Evelyn Lee Wilson. She was a 1959 graduate of Copenhagen Central School. Sharon was previously employed by the Town of Elbridge and retired from the Town of Brutus as clerk to the assessor and court clerk. She was an avid Redskins football fan, and absolutely loved the 30 plus years she spent camping at River Forest Campgrounds in Weedsport. Camping gave her great joy and peace; she made many friendships there over the years, and of course had her Redskins flag flying at her campsite.
Sharon is survived by her sister, Cindy (George) Myers, of Weedsport; her nephews, Michael (Tammy) Harris, of Cedar Falls, Iowa, and Brian (Guadalupe) Dodier Harris, of Gloucester, Va.; her brother, James (Vivian) Wilson, of Elbridge; sister-in-law, Cindy Wilson, of Camillus; along with several special nieces and nephews.
In addition to her parents, Sharon was predeceased by her husband, Gaston (Gus) Dodier; her longtime companion, Richard (Dick) White; her siblings, Kay Hosmer, Lee Wilson, Patricia Heath, and Stephen Wilson.
Calling hours will be held from 4 to 6 p.m. (today) Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020, in the Sennett Federated Church, 7777 Weedsport-Sennett Road, Auburn, with a funeral service to immediately follow at 6 p.m. Burial will take place in the spring in Mt. Pleasant Cemetery in Elbridge.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Sharon’s name may be made to Hospice of the Finger Lakes, Matthew House, or the Sennett Federated Church.
Arrangements are with White Chapel Funeral Home, Weedsport.
AUBURN — Frank M. Emmi, 96, the husband of Anita Cristello Emmi, of Auburn, died Sunday, Feb. 9, 2020, in The Commons on St. Anthony.
Born in Auburn, Frank was a veteran of World War II, having served with the United States Army Air Force from 1942 to 1945. Frank was a gun armorer specialist on P-38, P-47, and P-51 aircraft all in 30 and 50 caliber as well as 20 mm weaponry. He also handled the synchronization of the gun camera to the guns recording aerial victories for the pilots. He served with the vaunted 39th fighter squadron of the 35th fighter group of the 5th Air Force. With this well-traveled historic fighter squadron, Frank saw action in New Guinea, Netherlands, Bismarck Archipelago, Luzon, Northern Solomons, Western Pacific, East Indies, Philippines, and Okinawa. Frank retired after more than 34 years at Buckeye Pipe Line Co. and enjoyed gardening and operating Frank’s Nursery on Canoga Road.
Within the past month, Frank and his wife, Anita, lost their precious son, Frank to cancer. He passed away Jan. 2, 2020, in Huntington, N.Y., and was mourned deeply.
In addition to his wife, Anita, Frank is survived by his treasured son’s wife, Janet Emmi, of Long Island; brother, James Emmi, of Syracuse; three sisters, Rose Mailloux, of Auburn, Nancy Avery, of Ithaca, and Rita Canas, of Connecticut; sister-in-law, Lorraine Emmi, of Auburn; granddaughters, Leeann, Sarah, and Elizabeth Emmi, all of Long Island; and several nieces and nephews.
In addition to his parents, Louis and Filomena Spinelli Emmi, and his son, Frank was predeceased by five brothers, Tony, Sam, Mike, Steve, and Alfred Emmi; and two sisters, Mary Emmi and Josephine Kuczek.
Friends are invited to join the family for a Mass of Christian burial to be offered at 11 a.m. Thursday in St. Francis Church. Burial with full military honors will follow in St. Joseph’s Cemetery. Calling honors will be conducted from 4 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 12, at the Cheche Funeral Home Inc., 1778 Clark St. Road, Auburn.
MCCALL, John A., 93, of Auburn, died Thursday, Feb. 6, 2020. Service at 1:30 p.m. (today) Sunday, Feb. 9, at the Cheche Funeral Home Inc., 1778 Clark St. Road, Auburn. Calling hours from noon to 1:30 p.m., prior to the service.
DODIER, Sharon L. "Shooma", 78 of Weedsport, passed away on Feb. 8, 2020. Calling hours will be held from 4 to 6 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 11, in the Sennett Federated Church, 7777 Weedsport-Sennett Road, Auburn, with a funeral service to immediately follow at 6 p.m. Burial will take place in the spring at Mt. Pleasant cemetery in Elbridge.
AUBURN — John A. McCall, 93, the husband of the late Gladys Freeman McCall, of Auburn, died Thursday, Feb. 6, 2020, in Auburn Community Hospital.
A native of Saratoga Springs, N.Y., John lived most his life in the Auburn area and retired from McQuay. He was a jack of all trades and could do any mechanical, auto, home or electrical repair. John had a zest for life and a tremendous sense of humor, telling riddles and humorous anecdotes. He enjoyed following the New York Yankees, sharing his own unique sayings, and loved the time spent with all of his grandchildren.
He is survived by one daughter, Janice Regis (Frank Walters), of Auburn; and one son, John Jr., of South Carolina.
In addition to “his Gladys,” John was predeceased by two sons, Neal McCall and Guy McCall; and one daughter, Tina Currier.
Friends are invited to join the family for a service to be offered at 1:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 9, at the Cheche Funeral Home Inc., 1778 Clark St. Road, Auburn. Calling hours will be conducted from noon to 1:30 p.m., prior to the service.
MELBOURNE, Fla. — Leroy L. Compson, 97, of Melbourne, Fla., and formerly of Weedsport, N.Y., passed away peacefully on Jan. 30, 2020, at the Vitas Inpatient Hospice Center in Rockledge, Fla.
Leroy was born in Lyons, N.Y., the son of Leroy and Ella Compson and upon graduation from Lyons High School in 1943, enlisted in the Army Air Corps. He was a tail gunner/armorer assigned to the 717th squadron of the 449th Bomb Group (Heavy). He was a member of the initial cadre of B24 bombers sent to Grottaglie, Italy in late 1943. He flew 50 combat missions over Europe that included bailing out over then Yugoslavia and avoiding capture with the help of the local Yugoslavian partisans. After 15 days hiking through the countryside with the partisans he was able to return to allied lines and eventually return to Grottaglie and complete the remainder of his missions. He was awarded the European-African-Middle Eastern Service Medal, Good Conduct Medal, Distinguished Unit Medal, and the Air Medal with six oak leaf clusters. In 2016 he was awarded the French Legion of Honor Medal by the French Republic in a ceremony in central Florida for his service in World War II. Upon his discharge from active duty, Leroy enrolled in watch making school at Morrisville College graduating with an associate’s degree in Horology.
On Feb. 25, 1948 he married Agnes F. Hicks from Bennington, Vt., a nursing student at Syracuse University. They were married in Hendricks Chapel at Syracuse University. Leroy and Agnes settled in Weedsport, N.Y. where they owned and operated L.L. Compson Jewelry and Gift Store for more than 25 years. After closing their store, Leroy worked for the Roth Jewelry Co. in Syracuse as a watchmaker and in retirement as an independent watchmaker. Leroy and Agnes enjoyed many years of traveling with their Airstream trailer and friends in their Airstream club. Upon retirement and after being snowbirds for several years they eventually moved to Melbourne, Fla. Leroy was a 73-year member of the Masonic Lodge in Weedsport and attended the Melbourne Masonic Lodge when in Florida. He was Past-President of the New York State Watchmakers Association. He was also active in the Cayuga County Boy Scouts of America, First Presbyterian Church in Weedsport, Presbyterian Church of the Good Shepherd in Melbourne, Wally Byam Airstream Club of Central NY, 449th Bomb Group Association, and the Salvation Army of Melbourne.
Leroy is survived by his wife of 71 years, Agnes, of Melbourne, Fla.; his son, Loren and wife, Joyce (Shepherd), of Queensbury, N.Y.; grandchildren, Keith (Rebecca) Compson, of Cary, N.C., Christopher (Rebecca) Compson, of Pittsford, N.Y., and Maria (Brian) Whitney, of Glens Falls, N.Y.; six great-grandchildren; and dear friends, Rev. Sandy Hill and her husband, Bob, of Merritt Island, Fla.
Leroy’s family would like to express their gratitude to Vitas Hospice for their compassionate care.
There will be no calling hours. A memorial service will be held in the Presbyterian Church of the Good Shepherd in Melbourne, Fla., in the future at the convenience of the family. Interment will be in the Memorial Garden at the Presbyterian Church of the Good Shepherd.
Memorial donations in Leroy’s memory may be made to Vitas Hospice Care, 4450 W. Eau Gallie Blvd., Melbourne, FL 32934 or the Presbyterian Church of the Good Shepherd, Florida Avenue, Melbourne, FL 32901.
Arrangements are by Ammen Family Cremation and Funeral Care, Melbourne, FL 321-724-2222. Condolences at afcfcare.com.