Obituaries September 26, 2013

Published on: September 26, 2013

Jesse Booth

Jesse Booth, 90, of Sun City Center, Fla., passed away in his sleep at home on September 16, 2013. Jesse was born in Miami, Arizona, on July 1, 1923. He was the only son of Blanche E. Hawkins and Jesse Virgil Booth.

Although he was born in Arizona due to his father’s employment in a copper mine, he lived there for only six months and then his parents and he moved to Long Beach and Los Angeles, Calif., where they lived for five years.  As an adult, during football season, Jesse rooted for USC, his “kindergarten alma mater.”

Actually, Jesse was a Texan. His family had settled in Wise County, Tex. several generations earlier in and near a small town called Chico.  Jesse attended elementary school there, where his aunt (Blanche’s sister Browneyes) was his first grade teacher.  Then the family moved to Dallas, where they settled in the Oak Cliff area.

More job changes for Jesse’s father took him to Mississippi for a short time, and back to Texas again — this time Houston, where Jesse graduated from Lamar High School.

Although Jesse’s father was a University of Texas graduate, Jesse decided to go to Texas A & M, a move which positively affected his life until the day he died.  Jesse was an Aggie to the core.  He was selected by his fellow corpsmen to be an Aggie yell leader, one of four.  For his senior year, he was selected Head Yell Leader. He had many, mostly hilarious, stories to tell of his yell leader days, such as when he and his buddies would hitchhike to the out-of-town games.  Jesse led the Aggie Muster on April 21, 1945, at  the Charles de Gaulle Hotel in Paris, France, which was attended by any Aggie graduate who could make it there. A picture of that event hangs in the Aggie Museum in College Station, Tex.

When World War II broke out, Jesse and his classmates knew it was just a matter of time until they were involved in the fighting. Jesse wanted to be in the Army Air Corps, and tried to register as such, but he was rejected because he was too tall.  Eventually, he was in the regular Army and became a topographical map-maker under Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower. When reconnaissance pilots flew over France and other parts of Europe, Jesse and his platoon would transcribe the pictures into maps, showing roads, troop movement, etc.  For the rest of his life, Jesse loved all kinds of maps.

Most of his time in the Army during the war was spent in England, although after D-Day, he was sent to France.  While in England, he was stationed at Kew Gardens, London. One day about a week after arriving, Jesse and his buddy Scottie got a leave to go sightseeing in London. On that fateful day, he met the love of his life — his future wife Peggy Ruth Freeman.  She was walking on the same street with her friend Sheila, and the two soldiers stopped to ask directions. They ended up in a pub, and the rest, as they say, is history. Six months later Jesse and Peggy were married. They were married for 69 years.

Upon returning to the United States at the war’s end, Jesse went to Beaumont, Tex., where Peggy had gone before the end of the war to live with Jesse’s parents. The two moved to their own little apartment.

Jesse accepted a job with Sun Oil Company as a scout, the bottom rung of the ladder. Over the years, he moved up with the company until his last job was that of Offshore Leasing Negotiator for the continental United States. He often spoke of his many travels representing the company and the various characters, both within and without the company, that he had met.

Eventually, while living in Houston, he and Peggy welcomed two girls, Judy Ann and Betty Jean, into the family. In 1963, the family moved to Lafayette, La., where Jesse continued his landman activities for Sun. He met and drank coffee with many good ol’ Cajun boys. During those years, he also developed a love of Cajun food.

In 1970, Jesse was transferred back to Houston and then to Dallas in 1977, where he retired in 1985. Upon retirement, Jesse became involved in other pursuits, such as real estate agent and travel planning. He began to cook and enjoyed trying out recipes, particularly chili.

Mostly, Jesse and Peggy enjoyed traveling. They had a time-share apartment in the Kensington area of London, and they visited Peggy’s relatives in various areas of England for over 30 years. One of their favorite places was Le Jules Verne Restaurant at the Eiffel Tower. On their fiftieth anniversary, they celebrated with a flight on the Concorde to London and a return cruise to New York on the QE II. After that, they enjoyed 15 cruises together, including going through the Panama Canal, the Alaskan inside passage, a Mediterranean cruise, and the last one to Australia and New Zealand.

Jesse also enjoyed learning how to fly. Although he was not allowed to join the Army Air Corps in 1944, he did learn to fly when he was 55 years old, living in Houston. Upon moving to Dallas, Jesse continued his lessons, and eventually learned to do aerobatics with renowned pilot Gene Soucy as his teacher. One of Jesse’s outstanding achievements was flying across the English Channel with Peggy. They landed in France, had lunch, then flew back to England.

In 1989, Jesse and Peggy moved to Sun City Center, Fla., where they quickly became involved in the life there. They volunteered for the Emergency Squad, joined the Art Club, and enjoyed an active social life until a few years ago when ill health began to plague each of them.

Jesse’s family and friends will always remember his love and pride in his beautiful wife Peggy. They will also remember his quick mind, his dry sense of humor, and his integrity.

Jesse was predeceased in death by his wife Peggy in March 2013. He is survived by daughters Judy Ann Booth Richman of Tampa, Fla., and Betty Jean Booth File (Kevin) of Colorado Springs, Colo.; and grandchildren   Kelsey Nicole and Jason Booth File, both of Colorado Springs, Colo.

The family wishes to thank Pastor Ed Schafer from Trinity Baptist Church for his faithful friendship with Jesse and Peggy. They also wish to thank all of Jesse’s caregivers, both from Visiting Angels and private, especially Pearl, Marivic, and Eliza. They all went above and beyond in their care of Jesse. Thank you to all who prayed for the members of the Booth family throughout the past several years. Most of all, thank you to God who lovingly watched over, supported, and carried Jesse and family.

A memorial service was held on Saturday, September 21, 2013, at Zipperer’s Funeral Home in Sun City Center. A private interment will be held at the Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell.

Beryl F. Breen

Beryl F. Breen, 89, of Zephyrhills ,Fla. passed away peacefully on September 5, 2013 at Royal Oak Nursing Center in Dade City, Fla. Her two sons, Terry Breen and David Breen, were at her bedside when she died.

Beryl was born on February 15, 1924 in Norwood, (Middlesex) England, to a close family that included an older brother and three younger sisters. She was very outgoing and a “go-getter” as a young girl and remained so for the rest of her life. She was a Girl Guide in England and enjoyed long bicycle trips to the country with family members and friends. She graduated from school, became employed as a typist, and met her husband-to-be (Philip Breen, a U.S. Army Air Forces Sergeant) at a dance in London. They were married on January 6, 1945 at Holy Trinity Church (a Church of England parish) in Southall. Philip returned to the U.S. in October, and Beryl arrived on the Queen Mary the following February. They settled into the family home on Shelton Road in Nichols (Trumbull), Conn. Philip returned to his prewar position at Burritt Lumber Company in Bridgeport, Conn. while Beryl cared for her two sons, who were born in May 1946 and December 1947. The family relocated first to Fairfield, Conn. and shortly after to Nichols in the early 1950s.

Once the boys were of school age, Beryl wanted to have her own career. She taught herself how to drive a car and then worked at an ENT doctor’s office in Bridgeport, Conn. To supplement her income, Beryl obtained a real estate broker’s license and operated Breen Real Estate out of her home. Beryl was a terrific cook and a great hostess, most notably at a series of lively holiday parties with their wonderful friends in Nichols. She was the life of the party and her laughter could be heard above the din of any large gathering. Beryl was also very active in the community. She was a Sunday School teacher at Nichols Methodist Church, a Cub Scout den mother and involved in the local PTA.

The Breens continued to move up in their respective careers in the 1960s. Philip was named Vice President of Young & Halstead in Mt. Kisco, N.Y., while Beryl joined Westport Bank & Trust, initially in customer service and soon after as an assistant loan officer.

After Young & Halstead closed its doors years later, Philip and Beryl saw an opportunity to get involved in one of their favorite interests, namely antiques. As a result, they purchased Deerfield Antiques in Deerfield, Mass. in 1978 and operated that business for several years. They also brought their goods to antiques shows throughout the Pioneer Valley and beyond. They relocated to Zephyrhills, Fla. in the late 1980s to escape New England’s cold winters. While there, Philip ran the 6th Avenue Mobil Home Court in Zephyrhills while Beryl did the bookkeeping for the business.

Although they both retired several years later, Philip enjoyed restoring and selling furniture while Beryl kept busy as usual at antique shows and markets. Beryl eventually gave this up after her beloved husband died in September 2001.

Beryl was much loved by family and friends and will remain in our hearts forever. She is survived by her sons, Terry Breen (and his wife Doreen Breen) of Thomaston, Conn., David Breen (and his wife Geraldine Breen) of Wimauma, Fla.; granddaughters Amanda Breen McNally (Clifton, N.J.), Jennifer Breen-Gonzalez (Pelham, N.Y.) and Catherine Breen (Thomaston, Conn.); great-grandchildren Naiya and Akin Gonzalez (Pelham, N.Y.); two sisters in England, Sonia Coats and Edna Richardson; and many nephews and nieces in the U.S. and U.K.

A celebration of her life will be held after the 10 a.m. service on November 24 at Nichols United Methodist Church, 25 Shelton Rd., Trumbull, CT 06614. All family and friends are invited to attend.

Richard A. Brown

Richard A Brown, 71, of Sun City Center, Fla., former resident of Norton, Mass., died September 12, 2013 after a long battle with cancer.

He was born to Mildred and Murray Brown in Boston, Mass. on October 27, 1941.  He was a graduate of Natick High School and Bentley College. During his career, he worked as an accountant for Princess House, Inc. of Taunton, Mass. and for Proctor & Gamble in Cincinnati, Ohio.

He and his wife moved to Kings Point in Sun City Center in 1998, where he worked as a guard at the Kings Point front gate until retirement.

He is survived by his loving wife of 31 years, Lorraine A. (Demers) Brown of Kings Point, Sun City Center, Fla.; daughters Debra (Scott) Jarousky of Attleboro, Mass. and Karin (Scott) Foster of Smithfield, N.C.; son Michael (Karen) Brown of Norton, Mass; step-children Lynne (Jesse) Higginbotham-Choate of Winslow, Maine and Jerry Higginbotham of Greensboro, N.C.; sister Sylvia (Joseph) Hurvitz of Boca Raton, Fla.; brother David (Carol) Brown of Lawrenceville, N.J.; grandchildren Kaitlin MacDonald, Meghan Brown, Ryan Brown, Dylan Foster, Garrett Choate, Samantha Choate, Alexander Jarousky and Nathaniel Jarousky; brother-in-law Donald (Lori) Demers of Westminster, Md.; and many nieces and nephews.

He was an avid fan of all Boston sports. He enjoyed golf, lawn bowling, many years of coaching in youth sports in Norton, Mass., spending time with his family, and traveling with his wife.  He will be remembered most for his bright smile, his kind heart and the love he gave to his family and friends.

In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting that donations be made to any of the following charities: Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, Fla.; Chronic Disease Fund, Plano, Tex.; Florida Cancer Specialists Foundation, Fort Myers, Fla.; or Sun City Emergency Squad, Sun City Center, Fla.

Memorial services will be held in Kings Point and in Massachusetts at a later date.

Patricia Lee Euchner

Patricia Lee Enz Euchner, age 86, passed away on August 24, 2013, at Homewood Residence in Sun City Center, Florida. She was born in Lafayette, Indiana, on September 6, 1926.

Pat met her husband Bruce while attending Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana; they were married 52 years. Pat and Bruce resided in Avon Lake, Ohio (outside of Cleveland), for most of their married life. Pat was very active in Avon Lake community affairs including serving on the Lorain County Board of Mental Health and as president of the parent teacher association. Pat was named Avon Lake woman of the year in 1969.

Pat and Bruce retired to Sun City Center, Florida, in 1996, where they were members of the Caloosa Golf and Country Club and Prince of Peace Catholic Church. Pat was active in the Prince of Peace choir and also served as president of the Woman’s Guild (now known as the Council of Catholic Women).

Pat was preceded in death by her husband Bruce (2000) and her son Eric (2013). She is survived by daughters Renée Euchner of San Jose, Calif., Jenée John of Manhattan Beach, Calif., and Elaine Abraham of Annandale, Va.; and nine grandchildren.

A memorial service at Prince of Peace church will be announced.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to the employee fund at Freedom Plaza/Homewood Residence, in care of Kevin Knopf, Executive Director, 1010 American Eagle Blvd., Sun City Center, Florida 33573.

Carol A. Foster

Carol A.Foster  of  Henrietta, N.Y. and Sun City Center, Fla. passed away unexpectedly on Wednesday, September 18 at age 62. She was predeceased by her father, Glenn Thompson. She is survived by her loving husband of 42 years, Glenn Foster; sons Glenn (Betsy) and Sean Foster; grandchildren Christian, Liam and Colin; mother Jean Thompson; sisters Kathleen (Dom) Mariani and Merle Williams; several nephews and one niece.

At the family’s request, services will be held privately. To share a special memory or to leave the family condolences, please visit

Bernard Halinski

Bernard Halinski, 85, of Sun City Center, passed away on September 16, 2013. Bernard was an active member of the SCC community and loved baseball, fishing, woodworking and playing cards.  He was past president of the SCC Polish and Pinochle clubs and a member of Lapidary, Ceramics and Stained Glass clubs.

Bernard is survived by his loving wife of 60 years, Leona Vivian; daughters Doreen (Michael) and Joanna; sons Thomas (Kathy), Douglas (Dawn), and Bernard Joseph (Melissa); grand-children and great-grandchildren.

A memorial mass will be held on Friday, September 27, 2013 at 3 p.m. at Our Lady of Guadeloupe Church in Sun City Center.

Marion Ann Wilhelm

Marion (Mari) Ann Wilhelm, née Serle, passed away September 21, 2013.  Born May 7, 1924, Mari, as she liked to be called, was preceded in death by her husband Donald C. Wilhelm and her son Donald Kevin Wilhelm.

Mari had a beautiful smile and engaging personality with many many friends. She had a kind word for everyone and was a devout Christian. She leaves a large family who is grieving heavily for her. She loved her husband of 67 years, her children and grandchildren; she had great-grandchildren and great- great-grandchildren.

Mari was born and raised in Akron, Ohio and later moved to Phoenix and then to Sun City Center, Fla. with her husband. She loved gardening, dancing, bingo and having fun! She inspired all she met with her generosity of spirit and kindness. She loved their many pets, dogs and cats … she loved everyone. Mari leaves daughters Sheryl Hall (husband Don Hall) and Cindy Morton (husband Tony Morton), and son Joel Wilhelm; 16 grandchildren and 25 great-grandchildren. She also leaves her brother Norman Serle (wife Sue), sister Carol Rusyn (husband Henry), and sister-in-law Peg Serle.  She was beautiful, fun, eccentric, stubborn and an angel on earth. She is greatly missed and loved.

The family will receive friends one hour prior to the funeral service at the funeral home. Funeral service will be 11 a.m. Monday, September 30, 2013 at Sun City Center Funeral Home, 1851 Rickenbacker Dr., Sun City Center, Fla. Interment will be at Sarasota National Cemetery, Sarasota, Fla.

Harold F. Wismann

Harold F. Wismann, 88, of Bonita Springs, Fla. and a former resident of Sun City Center, Fla., died September 19, 2013 in Estero, Fla. A recent resident of Bonita Springs, Harold had lived in Sun City Center since 1987 after moving from Indiana. He was born April 30, 1925 in New Albany, Ind., a son of the late Francis and Emma (née Merriwether) Wismann.

Harold received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Notre Dame where he also played football for the “Fighting Irish” and later received his MBA from Indiana University. After a distinguished career, he retired in 1987 from Rockwell International as a Regional Manager.

He was a veteran of WWII, having served in the U.S. Navy.

He is survived by his loving wife, Ellen M. Wismann of Bonita Springs, Fla; sons Bruce A. (Cindy) Wismann of Bonita Springs, Fla. and Doug F. (Laura) Wismann of St. Louis, Mo; daughters Jane E. (Mark) O’Donnell of St. Louis, Mo. and Donna Jo (Dan) Herrman of Hayes, Kan.; brother, Guy Wismann of Denver, Co; sisters Fern Loi of Ft. Myers, Fla., Betty Wismann of Sun City Center, Fla. and Faye Hammett of Louisville, Ky.; 12 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren.

The family received friends on September 25, 2013 at Shikany’s Bonita Funeral Home. A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated at St. Leo the Great Catholic Church in Bonita Springs.

Burial services with military honors were held at Sarasota National Cemetery, Sarasota, Fla.