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McKeesport Area News from Tube City Almanac


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James Dee Giles

April 14, 2021 |

By Administrator | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere

James Dee Giles, 83, of Mint Hill, N.C., died Monday, April 5, 2021, at Novant Health Presbyterian Medical Center in Charlotte, N.C.

Jim was born and raised in McKeesport, Pa., on August 29, 1937 and was the son of James Robert and Mary Virginia Giles. Jim was one of three children including his brother Robert and sister Judy. Jim married his wife Patti on September 22, 1978 in Willowick, OH. They later moved to Charlotte, N.C., in 1981.

Jim began his career with Celli-Flynn Architects, and was a key figure in the design of the original swimming pool with its below-ground viewing window at the McKeesport Senior High School, as well as the cafeteria design at Francis McClure School. He went on to work for Bruce Miller and Associates before moving to Ohio and then on to North Carolina.

There he worked on several notable projects for the state government and the University of North Carolina school system. Some of the notable projects included various work on: North Carolina State University, Appalachian State and UNC-Charlotte campuses. Throughout his career Jim was an active member in the A.S.H.R.A.E. chapter of NC. Jim retired from United Engineering Group, Inc./McKim & Creed in 2007. Jim continued to be a consultant in his retirement.

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Lois V Churchman Mann Phippen

March 29, 2021 |

By Administrator | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere

Lois V. Churchman Mann Phippen, 93, died Sunday, March 21, 2021, in The Villages, Fla., where she was living with her youngest daughter, Jodean.

Lois was born in McKeesport, PA, on October 14,1927, the daughter of Harvey M Churchman and Bessie Hannah Dom Churchman. 

Lois was deeply committed to her large and loving family. She was a woman of great faith in Jesus Christ. Praise, worship and church were very important to her and her family who often spent time together singing and talking about their faith. She was a joy to all who were part of her life, often offering to pray for or with anyone in need.

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Lois Whitney Servov Clark

March 29, 2021 |

By Administrator | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere

Lois Whitney Servov Clark, 86, of Ocean Springs, Miss., passed away on Thursday, March 25, 2021.

She was born on June 29, 1934 in McKeesport, PA to Bill and Dorothy Whitney. She attended St. Peter’s High School in McKeesport, PA. Lois’ life work was most notably taking care of her children and grandchildren, but the family enjoyed listening to her stories about her employment for the city of McKeesport, PA and her time at Glass Motors in Gulfport, MS. She dearly loved spending time with her family, spending time outdoors, and endlessly watching Shirley Temple movies.

She is survived by her daughter, Daryle Servov; grandchildren, Kara and Brady Davis, Jenna and Jason Carroll, Jarred and Haley Seymour, Kelsey and Matthew Brown; great-grandchildren, Whitney and Amelia Davis, Jaycee and Jules Carroll, Casen, Camille, Violet, and Jameson Seymour, and McCully and Eleanor Brown; and sister, Dorothy Mae Holtzman.

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Marcus “Marc” Glenn Stauffer Jr.

March 26, 2021 |

By Administrator | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere

Marcus “Marc” Glenn Stauffer Jr., 72, passed away on Friday, March 19, 2021 at Georgetown University Hospital in Washington, DC. Marc grew up in White Oak, PA and lived in a few places before settling in Arlington, Virginia where he spent the majority of his years.

Marc graduated from McKeesport Senior High School in McKeesport, Pennsylvania and his continued education included a bachelor’s degree from Bethany College, in Bethany, West Virginia, as well as a Master of Divinity from Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School in Rochester, New York, and Doctor of Theology from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Marc was an avid reader, lover of genealogy, wildlife, conservation, LGBTQ+ rights, political science, and he loved his morning conversations with family and friends. Marc also loved animals, as he and his husband had numerous cats and dogs throughout their lives. Marc found joy in cuddling with pets, as they brought him comfort and companionship after the passing of his husband, Steve.

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James “Jim” Emery

March 17, 2021 |

By Administrator | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere

James (“Jim”) Emery, 91, of Alachua, FL passed away on Wednesday, March 3, 2021 at Shands Hospital in Gainesville, FL after a brief illness. He was born September 1929 in Dravosburg, Pa., to the late David and Elizabeth Emery and is survived by his wife of 61 years, Nancy, his sons, James (Chris), and Glenn (Kelly), his grandchildren, James, Michael (Ashley), and Tedi Marie and his great-grandchildren, Iris and Beckett.

He graduated from McKeesport Vocational High School prior to serving in the Army during the Korean War. Upon returning home after his service he became a carpenter at Mesta Machine Company where he worked for more than 29 years. Prior to moving to Alachua, Fla., Jim was a long-time resident of West Mifflin, Pa., where he coached his boys in little league, was their "den mother" in the Cub Scouts and biggest supporter in everything they did.

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Dorothy A. Fehr

February 16, 2021 |

By Administrator | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere

Dorothy A. Fehr, age 100, of Zelienople, formerly of McKeesport and White Oak, PA, passed away on Wednesday, February 10, 2021 while under the care of Passavant Retirement Community, where she had been a resident for many years.

Born July 13, 1920 in McKeesport, she was the daughter of the late Walter and Nancy Angeline Jones.

Dorothy married the late Harry Glenn Fehr on October 22, 1942, and shared 66 years of marriage until his passing on March 12, 2009.

She was the mother of David Fehr of Sequim, WA, Douglas (Susan) Fehr of Wexford, PA, and the late Dr. Elaine (Leonard) Waters of Bradenton, FL; the grandmother of Jason (Susan) Fehr, Eric (Amy) Fehr, Justin Fehr, David Waters, Dr. Jenni Waters and Dr. Amy Waters; and great-grandmother of Madison, Jackson, Ansley, Theo, and Stella Fehr, and Jonah and Braeden Waters.

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Anne Feeney

February 08, 2021 |

By Administrator | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere

Legendary Pittsburgh-based folk singer and labor activist Anne Feeney died of complications from COVID-19 on February 3, 2021, at age 69. Anne was the beloved wife of Julie Leonardsson, mother of Amy Berlin and Daniel Berlin, mother-in-law of Monique Murad, grandmother of Sebastian and Nicholas Berlin, sister of Kathleen Feeney, and aunt of Kimberly Sever.

Anne was born in Charleroi, Pa., in 1951 to Edward J. Feeney and Anabelle Feeney, née Runner, and grew up in Brookline, Pa. Her grandfather, William Patrick Feeney, was a labor organizer with the United Mine Workers of America. Anne’s Irish roots heavily influenced her music and life. The annual St. Patrick’s Day parties she hosted in Edgewood with her then-husband, Ronald Berlin, were the stuff of local legend. Later on in her life, she hosted several cultural tours of Ireland, taking groups to visit influential poets, activists, and musicians. 

Anne devoted her life to social justice, working first as a lawyer, then as a musician, always seeking to defend the rights of the working class. Anne bought a Martin D28 guitar in high school, taught herself to play, and spent the rest of her life writing and performing songs about unions, protest movements, and civil rights. She was a fixture at venues ranging from picket lines, to bars, to performances for hundreds of thousands of rally-goers on the National Mall. Her mentors included Utah Philips, Pete Seeger, Peter Yarrow of Peter, Paul and Mary, and Faith Petric, all of whom sang Anne’s praises and her songs. Peter, Paul and Mary recorded Anne’s social justice anthem, “Have You Been to Jail for Justice,” which is still sung at protests around the globe.

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Timothy W. Gobbel

January 29, 2021 |

By Editor | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere

Timothy W. Gobbel, 68, died at BWMC Hospital on Jan. 23, 2021, after a short battle with cancer.

He was born in McKeesport, Pa., to Wilbert C. Gobbel and Carole L Gobbel on Jan. 31, 1952. Tim graduated from McKeesport High School home of the Tigers in 1969. Tim went on to Penn State University and graduated in 1973 with a B.A. in psychology.

A year later on Feb. 14, 1974, Tim married the love of his life, Pamela K. Michael, at a ceremony in State College, Pa. Tim would go on to start a family with seven kids — six boys, one girl. He did various jobs while putting himself through school for computer technology. In 1988 Tim took a job with Sibiley Memorial Hospital located in Washington, D.C.

He would then move his family to Laurel, Md., in 1989. he would go on to have an extensive and long career with Sibley Memorial Hospital for 30 years earning many awards and plenty of recognition for the outstanding and hard work he put in. Sibley would go on to merge with Johns Hopkins Medical in 2018 and Tim worked for Johns Hopkins up till his death. Tim was a family man and hard worker. A man of few words but every word so important!

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MaryEllen McGuire

January 26, 2021 |

By Administrator | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere

MaryEllen McGuire, 94, died Jan. 7, 2021, in Fair Oaks, Calif. She was born Sept. 30, 1926 in Pittsburgh, oldest of eight children. She was raised in the Catholic faith, which would later become the cornerstone of her life as she raised 10 children.

MaryEllen loved her faith, singing in the church choir, playing Bunco with her friends, and most of all she loved being a mother. She is survived by four siblings, Mercy Order Sisters Jeanne and Catherine, Bill and Marge; children Kathy, Tim, Maureen (Don), Cynthia (John), Eileen, Neal (Kristi), Anne (Troy) and Pat (Chrissi); 22 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren.

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Claudia Sue Geary

January 22, 2021 |

By Administrator | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere

A bright light went out of our lives on Christmas Day when Claudia Sue Geary ended her journey here with us. After a short stay at Halifax Medical & Brooks Rehab. in Daytona Beach, she was briefly at Halifax Hospice in Port Orange. Claudia was born in 1949 in McKeesport, Pa, graduated from Clairton High School and matriculated at California University in Pennsylvania for her Bachelor's degree.

Although a Volusia County resident for over 40 years, she maintained close ties to her McKeesport friends and relatives and for many years attended annual reunions. Claudia enjoyed exploring her family history and genealogy, which led to her being installed in 2014 into the Jane Sheldon Chapter of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution (NSDAR).

Claudia's professional career was devoted to assisting both parents and students in financing higher education. She was Director of Student Financial Aid at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, Associate Director of Student Financial Aid at University of South Florida in Tampa and for Bank of America assisted colleges & universities throughout the southeastern region. She was also past President of the Florida Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (FASFAA). Claudia enjoyed knitting, contributing numerous items to friends, relatives and charitable groups. Cooking, sharing recipes and landscaping were also favorite hobbies.

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Edward C. Spyra

January 21, 2021 |

By Administrator | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere

Edward C. Spyra, age 73, of Charles Town, WV, formerly of Glassport, passed peacefully at home on January 15, 2021.  Born in McKeesport May 4, 1947, he was the son of the late Chester and Catherine (Hickey) Spyra. 

A 1965 graduate of Glassport High School, “Spatz”  served with the United States Air force, 4258th Strategic Wing Operation during the Vietnam War.  He retired from Bechtel Corporation in 2018 with over 30 years of service.  As a project procurement specialist, he worked on major construction projects around the world which afforded him the opportunity to pursue his love of travel.  He had a deep passion for family, genealogy and photography.

Ed was the husband of Rebecca Missman Spyra for over 40 years.  He is survived by sons David (Kelly) Spyra of Seattle WA, Christopher (Lisa) Spyra of Liberty Borough and daughter Teresa Spyra of Charles Town, WV; grandchildren Jack, Caitlin and Aisling Spyra of Seattle, WA., Joshua, Noah, and Luke Spyra of Liberty Borough. Brother John (Kathy) Spyra of Wichita Falls, TX, sister Mary (Christopher) Raynak of Monroeville. Nephews Sean (Alexis) Raynak, Ryan (Tara) Raynak, niece and Goddaughter Helen Spyra, great nephews Justin Oliver and Jameson Raynak. Father-in -law Jimmy Missman (the late Bertha) brothers-in law Ray (PJ) Missman, Fred Missman, Ken (Jo) Missman, sisters-in-law, Kathy (Frank) Van Twist and Margaret Missman, nephews Ryan and David Missman, niece Kayla Missman, all of California.

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Mary Jane Collage

January 02, 2021 |

By Administrator | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere

Mary Jane Collage, 88, of Ridgeley WV, formerly of Elizabeth Township, PA, passed away on Christmas Eve, Thursday, December 24, 2020 at her home.

Born on August 13, 1932 in McKeesport, PA, she was the daughter of the late Larry and Rose (Ferrante) Cordisco. She also was preceded in death in 2015 by her husband of 55 years, Donald J. Collage, Sr. and a brother, Edward Cordisco of Lincoln, CA.

Mary Jane worked at GC Murphy Co. prior to marrying and later at Dapul Machine Co. in Elizabeth Twp for over 20 years. Her life was dedicated to the care of her husband, children and grandchildren. Mary Jane was known for her Italian pizzelle cookies and her famous meatballs.

She is survived by sons, Richard Dean Collage and wife Jean of Elizabeth Twp., Donald Jean Collage, Jr. and wife Cheryl  of Ridgeley, WV, and Denis Larry Collage of Fort Lauderdale, FL; a daughter, Kimberly Joan Collage of Pittsburgh; grandchildren, Jeffrey, Stephen, Richard, Rachel, Karalee, Kaelin, and Kelli; great-grandson, Quinten; sisters Joan Simko of South Carolina and Agnes Cordisco of McKeesport; niece and goddaughter Diane Montanti of Irwin, PA;  nephews and cousins.

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George W. Hickman

December 18, 2020 |

By Editor | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere

George W. Hickman, age 84, of Connellsville, PA passed away on Sunday, December 13, 2020. He was born in McKeesport, PA on January 5, 1936, a son of George W. and Marie Lee Hickman.

George worked as a deck hand on river boats. He is survived by his companion of 17 years, Marilyn Hickle; step children: Bob Woodworth, Bill Woodworth, Don Woodworth and Peggy Woodworth.

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William "Bill" Wright

December 16, 2020 |

By Administrator | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere

William "Bill" Wright, 52, died Dec. 11, 2020. Visitation will be from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Dec. 17 at Christ Soul Saving Station, 1013 Kennedy Ave., Duquesne, PA, where a funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Dec. 18. Arrangements in charge of Tunie Funeral Home.


Ruth Palkowitz Vlad

November 19, 2020 |

By Administrator | Posted in: Deaths Elsewhere