James B. McCullagh
James (Jim) Bernard McCullagh, 98 of Riverview, Fla., passed into eternal glory on Aug. 31, 2022, at Twin Creeks Assisted Living. Born in Hemlock, Mich., on Nov. 20, 1923, youngest of seven siblings, James was a pillar in any community he resided in.
He is survived by his four children: James P. (Mary) McCullagh, Riverview, Fla., Mary Jo (Pat) Kemp, Hartford City, Ind., William T. (Carol) McCullagh, Bangor, Maine, and Michael J. (Angie) McCullagh, Corinth, Maine; 14 grandchildren, Shannon (David) Lennon, Sarah (Justin) Ball, Christina (Nich) Kuzma, Andrew Poulson, Damon (Maddie) Kemp, Trevor Kemp, Matthew McCullagh-Stratton, Thomas (Myrtle) McCullagh, Emma (Andrew) Fitzgerald, John (Meegan) McCullagh, Gabrielle McCullagh, Dayna (Josh) Mansfield, Rachel Beckwith and Megan Beckwith; and 19 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his wife of 56 years, Mary L. McCullagh; grandson, Vincent McCullagh; and six siblings.
He was a World War II and Korean War Navy veteran. He retired to Florida in 1981 from Wolohan Lumber Company (VP) that he cofounded in 1964. He established The Toymakers in New Port Richey, Fla., a volunteer group of people that makes wooden toys and donate them to children’s charities. From 1983 to 1997 over 120,000 toys were delivered. The organization is still flourishing. He has since volunteered with the Sun City Center Emergency Squad, then further volunteered at South Shore Hospital in transporting. He is a lifelong member of numerous Catholic Churches.
His hobbies included farming, coin collecting, woodworking and tinkering with any home project. He was fiercely devoted to his family and always supported his children and grandchildren in their endeavors. Proverbs 13:22: a “A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children….” In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to toymakers.org of New Port Richey.
Charles (Chuck) Alber of Sun City Center, passed away peacefully on June 20, 2022. He was preceded in death by his wife, Patricia, of 72 years, in March 2022.
Chuck was an active member of the Sun City Center Men’s Club and Knights of Columbus for many years and was also an avid golfer.
He is survived by his three children: Kathy (John) Baker, Mike (Carole) Alber and John Alber; 10 grandchildren; and 12 great-grandchildren.
Chuck served in the U.S. Navy and will be interred in the Sarasota National Cemetery where his wife Patricia is also buried.
The funeral will be held Thursday, Sept. 15, 2022, at 10 a.m. at Prince of Peace Catholic Church.
Mark Thomas Kreidler
Mark Thomas Kreidler, 54, of Riverview, Fla., passed away unexpectedly on Aug. 3, 2022. He was born May 29, 1968, in Virginia to Robert F. Kreidler, and Maryhelen Kreidler Shawkey.
Mark Thomas is preceded in death by his father, Robert, and his son, Rhys. He is survived by his sister Michelle. Mark Thomas leaves behind his soul mate and true love, Shari; daughters, Margaret (21) and Keegan (11); as well as his sons, Ryan (24) and Ciaran (22).
Mark Thomas Kreidler was an amazing man who was a dedicated father, husband and brother. He also was a man of many talents and interests: swimmer, lacrosse player, artist, firefighter, EMT, linguist, ASL Interpreter/teacher, swimming timer and diving judge, soccer/football/field hockey sideline coach, clown, cosplayer, Master D&D player, storyteller, craftsman and a connoisseur of all things weird, strange and unusual. Most recently he had rediscovered his deep love for God and was pursuing a Masters in Divinity.
Mark Thomas valued connection with others above all else. He never met a stranger and would help anyone who wanted help.
Mark Thomas is greatly missed by his wife, children and sister. They ask that if you know Mark Thomas Kreidler and have been touched by him, please come to the memorial service being held at St. John’s the Divine Episcopal Church in Sun City Center, Fla., on Sept. 17 at 11 a.m. If you wish to help Shari and her family, please consider going to https://gofund.me/7c851901 and leaving a donation.
Karen L. Shook
Karen L. Shook, a loving wife, parent and good person, passed away on Aug. 17, 2022, at South Shore Hospital, after complications from cancer. She was born as Karen Lee Smart, Aug. 8, 1943, in Marion, Ind., living a full and loving life. She had four children, 10 grandchildren and a husband of 46 years, all of whom thought the world of her in every way possible.
Karen was a 1961 honor graduate of Marion High School, the 1961 Prom Queen, and worked in the restaurant business and later in the insurance industry in Marion and Muncie, eventually moving to Evansville, Indiana, in 1971. While in Evansville she worked as a chemist for Mead-Johnson, working with bone cement and other products that today are critical in industry and medicine. She married Dr. Dale Shook on Dec. 3, 1976. In 1978 Karen and her family moved to Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, to work for the Arabian-American Oil Company. There Karen worked in personnel and project management and was active in various area programs, including the Dhahran Outing Group that travelled extensively throughout Europe, Asia and the Middle East.
Returning to the U.S. in 1983, Karen and family lived in Columbus, Ohio, until 1985, when they moved to Europe with the Boston University International Graduate Program, where her husband was a professor. There Karen was active in a number of local activities in Germany, Italy and the Netherlands, including language and cultural program studies in each of those countries.
After returning the United States in 1987, Karen applied her significant international experience as a student adviser at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., while completing her B.A. degree in management. Next, she applied her background to her own business, a bed & breakfast with a conference center. She owned and operated the Wayside Inn in Saratoga Springs from 1988 to 2007. Between 1995 and 2001 Karen also was co-director of the SUNY Albany Saratoga Weekend MBA Program and coordinator of the SUNY Albany – Russian Studies Cultural Awareness Program.
In 2007, she and her husband moved to Huntington, W.Va. There Karen owned and operated Crumpets & Tea, a popular local tea room, for over nine years. In 2017 Karen and Dale retired to Sun City Center, Florida, both working for The Home Depot, until shortly before her passing.
Karen is survived by her husband Dale; four children, Jeff, Jill, Jere and John; and 10 grandchildren, Sebastian, Stephen, Jack, Aryel, Jeffrey, Gracie, Samantha, Evan, Liam and Quinn. In addition, she had many friends at The Home Depot and in the Sun City Center Community.
Throughout her entire life Karen always had a positive and caring outlook toward life and other people, inspiring all who knew her. She will be missed in a world that sorely needs more people like her.
Celebration Of Life
Celebration Of Life for Norm Francis will be held on Sept. 10 at Calossa Golf & Country Club from 1 to 3 p.m.