Beacon Obituaries

Rita Johnson (1920-2018)

Rita F. Johnson, 98, of Beacon, and formerly of Washingtonville, died June 24, 2018, at Fishkill Center for Rehabilitation & Nursing.

She was born Feb. 24, 1920, in Manhattan, the daughter of Peter and Lauretta (Boland) McGrath. She married Einar Johnson, who died before her.

Until her retirement, Rita was a cashier/clerk for ShopRite in Vails Gate. She enjoyed family gatherings, reading, shopping, senior trips and going to Atlantic City.

She is survived by her sons Dennis Johnson and Edward Johnson (Barbara), both of New Windsor; four grandchildren: Kelly Dominick (Christian), Keith Johnson (Desiree), Ashley Johnson and Erin Johnson; and five great-grandchildren: Branden, Kaci, Emily, Izaiah and Cody.

A graveside service took place at Mount Hope Cemetery in Hastings.

Marie Kassirer (1918-2018)

Marie Kassirer, 99, died June 28, 2018, eighteen days shy of her 100th birthday, although she always insisted she was living in her 100th year. She was born July 17, 1918. She married Benjamin Kassirer, who died before her.

Marie was an avid and accomplished duplicate bridge player. She owned and operated a number of businesses in which she was involved until the very end. Of all her endeavors, Marie enjoyed writing as a Maryknoll correspondent.

She is survived by her children Eli Kassirer (Tammy Raffaele) and Rachel Zimak (Danny); her grandchildren Dav, Rebecca, Lauren, Jason and Avi (Megan); and her great-grandchildren Nevaeh, Nayelie and Alexena.

Dolores Nelms

Dolores Nelms (1924-2018)

Dolores Marie Nelms, 93, died June 24, 2018.

She was born Dec. 12, 1924, in Ponce, Puerto Rico, the daughter of Adela Ramos and Inocencio Cambrelen. In 1925, Dolores, her mother and her older brother, Inocencio Jr., moved to New York, where they lived on 116th Street and York Avenue for many years.

At age 16, Dolores went to live with her aunt, Titi Concha and her husband Mario Duvivier, where she completed her schooling as a seamstress. While living with Titi Concha, Dolores met James Carl Nelms, who used to visit his cousin Edna, Titi Concha’s next-door neighbor.

Dolores was a stay-at-home mom who took in sewing jobs to supplement their income. Dolores was very creative and any job she took, she made it a fun project for her and her three daughters. The girls have fond memories of her creations, which included dancing dolls, and other toys for children.

When all her girls were in school, Dolores started working for the Department of Education, in the cafeteria. She also went back to school, attending La Guardia College and transferring to SUNY New Paltz after the family moved to Beacon, from which she earned a bachelor’s degree in education.

After earning her master’s degree and working as a teacher’s aide, she became a teacher. Her favorite classes were first through third grade.

Dolores is survived by her children, Janie Johnston (Operaul); Lydia Coleman (Aldee); Dolores Simmons (Gregg Swope); and James Nelms (Robin). She also is survived by 14 grandchildren, 31 great-grandchildren, seven great-great grandchildren, her sister Lucrecia Cooper and a sister in law, Katherine Nichson.

A mass was held on July 6 at St. Joachim-St. John the Evangelist Church in Beacon, followed by interment at Fishkill Rural Cemetery.

Alberta Wallin

Alberta Wallin (1954-2018)

Alberta Marie Wallin, a former resident of Beacon and Peekskill, died on her 64th birthday, July 3, 2018, at the Sharon Health Care Center in Connecticut.

Born July 3, 1954, in Peekskill, she was the daughter of Harold Thomas and Rose (Nuzzi) McCoy.

Alberta worked for many charitable organizations, including the Salvation Army and Goodwill. She loved being a mom and spending time with family and friends.

She is survived by her daughter, DeAnna Leigh Mandigo (Arthur) of Poughkeepsie; her grandchildren, Amanda Mandigo-Wilson and Brandon Mandigo of Kentucky; her brother, Howard McCoy Jr., of Fishkill; and her former husband, Anthony Romano of Poughkeepsie.

Bill Watson

Bill Watson

William E. Watson, 79, of Beacon, died June 29, 2018 at his home.

The son of Alfred and Grace (Goote) Watson, he graduated from Tarrytown High School in 1957. After graduation, Bill traveled across the U.S., Canada and Mexico with his family and sister. Soon after, Bill served in the U.S. Army as an airplane mechanic. He was stationed in Germany.

Upon his return to the States, he met and later married Dorothy W. Adams. She died in 2009.

Bill began employment at Consolidated Edison at Indian Point in 1962, working his way up to the position of senior reactor operator. During his tenure, one of his many responsibilities included writing safety policies for the facility. He was affectionately known as “Bull” by many of his co-workers. He retired after 39 years with the company.

He had a love of history and could discuss any topic. He also loved conducting famly research, both of his own family and that of friends.

He is survived by his sons, Gary Popp (Doreen), Stephen Popp (Michele Yannone), William J. Watson and Andrew Watson; his sister, Gail Schamberg (William); and his best friend, Susan Heady.

A Mass of Christian Burial was held July 5 at St. John the Evangelist Church in Beacon with burial at Cold Spring Cemetery.

Memorial donations may be made to the Animal Rescue Foundation (, Mid Hudson Animal Aid ( or to the Dutchess County SPCA (

Comments are closed.