Mary Prouty, aged 76, died in her Indiana home on Sept. 30, 2021, after a nine-year struggle with stage four cancer.
She is survived by her loving and devoted husband of 53 years, Walt, and her two children, Rachel Prouty Simpson and Chris Prouty; her grandchildren, Sophie, Aidan, Asher and Logan; as well as her loving sister, Patricia Formella.
Mary earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Wisconsin. She was an educator who first worked in Madison, Boston and Pittsburgh Public Schools, before welcoming her children into the world. She later returned to her love of teaching through tutoring students with learning differences. She treasured history and followed that passion to become a docent for the Indiana Historic Landmark Society. Her strong faith led her to active participation not only in her home parish of Saint Pius X but also as a member and leader of the Interfaith Alliance of Indianapolis, where she valued her experiences learning about other faith traditions and making good friends along the way. She has always shown compassion to community members in need and leaves a legacy of good works, including the “Underneath It All” program through Interfaith Alliance of Indianapolis. She continued that neighborly compassion by joining the Emergency Squad when she and Walt became snowbirds in Sun City Center, Florida. Friends in Florida also knew Mary in her leadership roles in both the International Forum and the SET Club.
There will be a Celebration of Life in the Florida Room in the Atrium Building in Sun City Center on Friday, Dec. 3, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you take a page out of Mary’s notebook (as well as a second commandment – “love thy neighbor as thyself”) and take a friend or neighbor out for a meal and a conversation.
Robert Gale 81, passed away on Oct. 29, 2021, under the care of Tampa VA Hospice House after a battle with cancer and complications of diabetes. A proud Navy veteran. Bob moved to Wimauma from East Troy, Wisconsin, in 1976 with his family and started a scrap business and rented mobile homes. Bob loved to travel and spent many happy days in the Caribbean Islands, Costa Rica, Trinidad/Tobago and most of the USA. His hobby was acquiring Classic Cars combined with travel. He made many trips north to purchase antique cars and fire trucks, then drove them with Marian on the country roads with many stops in between to his home in Wimauma, Fla. His family and friends joined him on many of those journeys. He loved Christmas and, especially, going to the Disney Resorts at Christmas and traveling around many different counties to look at the Christmas lights. Bob, for many years, would take friends and family on a hayride around surrounding areas and see the Christmas lights and caroling, then go back to his and Marian’s place and enjoy the tasty food and friendship. Life was an adventure for Bob, and he had many colorful stories to share. His family, friends and fellow car buffs will miss his familiar greeting, “What’s the good word?” Bob was preceded in death by his son, Robert D. Gale. Bob is survived by Julie Gale Davis, Donald Gale, Marian Gale, Jack Carnagey, Carolyn Carnagey Songy and extended family.
Richard P. Dechance Sr.
Richard Phillip Dechance Sr. died Nov. 16, 2021, of cancer in Sun City Center, Fla. at the age of 80. He is survived by his wife Katherine; his children, Yvonne (Gary Blackburn) Dechance, and Rick Dechance; his step-children, Mary K (Steven) Smethers, Paul (Renee) Schwartz, Richard Schwartz, Monica (Brad) Nelson, Susan (Chris) Jones, Karen (Scott) Grinker, Holly (Mike) Pomraning and James (Anna) Schwartz; 20 grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; and his siblings, Don (Darlene) Dechance, and Phyllis (Sonny) Randol.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Phillip and Mary Dechance, and his first wife Gladys.
Richard was born and raised in Inglewood, Calif., graduating from UCLA before accepting an Air Force commission. An award-winning B-52 navigator-bombardier, he served in the Vietnam War before spending the rest of his 22-year military career as an instructor, completing a master’s degree from the Air Force Institute of Technology, and retiring as a major in plans and operations. After retirement he had a successful second career as a technical writer.
His interests ranged from photography and woodworking to cooking and technology, with a special love for orchestral music.
An avid sports enthusiast, he could frequently be found following everything from baseball and football to races and rodeos. He continued his passion with golf, in particular, by retiring to the courses at Sun City Center, where he met and married Katherine and took joy in the adventures of her extended family. The couple frequently traveled together, from a European Viking cruise to numerous cross-US road trips in their cherished Tesla.
Those who knew and loved him are encouraged to raise a glass of Drambuie in his honor.
Memorial donations may be made to the Cholangiocarcinoma Foundation https://cholangiocarcinoma.org/donate/ or the American Cancer Society https://donate3.cancer.org/. A memorial mass will be held in Sun City, Fla., and a Celebration of Life Service will be held in Spokane, Washington, at a later date.
Lillian G. Connine
Lillian G. Connine, 95, of Saint Petersburg, Fla., and formerly of Sun City Center, Fla., and Norwich, N.Y., passed away in peace and went to be with the Lord on Sunday, Nov. 14, 2021, with her daughters by her side.
Born on Jan. 26, 1926, in Mount Kisco, N.Y., Lillian was the daughter or Charles and Johanna (Illar) Groff. She graduated with the Norwich High School Class of 1943. On June 14, 1952, Lillian married Robert E. “Bob” Connine, who died on Oct. 16, 2017. In Norwich, she was a private and confidential secretary to W. A. Seeley, president, and William Kingman, treasurer, of the Chenango and Unadilla Telephone Corporation. Lillian was also a member of the Order of the Eastern Star, Norwich Chapter #367.
In 1970, her husband was offered a position with GTE Corp. of Brandon, Fla., (now Verizon), where the family relocated. In Florida, Lillian attended several insurance schools and seminars and was an insurance salesperson and underwriter for Brandon Insurance Agency Inc. In 1987, she retired from Poe & Associates Inc. of Tampa, Fla. Lillian was a member of the East Hillsborough Insurance Women’s Association.
Lillian and Bob retired in Sun City Center, Fla., in 1993. She was an active member of St. Andrew Presbyterian Church. There she was an elder and held several offices at St. Andrew, Sun City Center United Methodist and other churches over the years. For three years she and her husband were on the committee for the Good Samaritan Charity Ball, one of Sun City Center’s main annual events. She and Bob also served on the Sun City Center Security Patrol for 10 years. Lillian and Bob travelled extensively in the U.S., Europe and Israel and enjoyed Hawaiian cruises. They also enjoyed spending time at their summer residence in Alexandria Bay, N.Y.
Lillian is survived by her children, whom she adored, Callie (James) Henicke, of Clifton, Texas; Barbra Anderson, M.A., of St. Petersburg, Fla.; and Tad R. Connine, M.D., P.A., of Florida. Also surviving are six adoring grandchildren, Tanner Jenkins, of Lithia, Fla.; Tara (Nathan) Cole, of Valrico, Fla.; Hanna Jo (Chris) Smolik, of North Richland Hills, Texas; Reese (Emily) Anderson, of Keller, Texas; Tyler (Sirisha M.D.) Connine, M.D., of Buffalo, N.Y.; and Sydney Connine, of Lithia, Fla. Two-great-grandchildren, Brody and Parker Cole, also survive. Also surviving are her nephews, James (Helen) Groff, of Franklin, N.Y.; Steven (Karla) Groff, of Garden Valley, Idaho; and niece, Sonja (Gerald) Puffer, of Franklin, N.Y.; and several grand-nieces and nephews.
A Celebration of Life Service was held at 10 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 20, 2021, in the chapel at Hyde Park United Methodist Church, 500 West Platt Street, Tampa, FL 33606. A grave-side service will also take place in the spring in Norwich, N.Y., where she will be laid to rest next to Bob Connine, her husband of 65 years.
Contributions in Lillian’s memory may be made to Hyde Park United Methodist Church missions programs, Tampa, Florida, https://hydeparkumc.org/give/.