Charles H. Matthews
Charles H. Matthews, a Riverhead native who later moved to Flanders, died Oct. 12, 2003 at St. Charles Hospital in Port Jefferson at the age of 78.
Born in Riverhead on April 11, 1925, he was the son of Frank and Nellie (Perry) Matthews. A self-employed roofer, Mr. Matthews was known as always having a joke for his friends and family. His wife, the former Priscilla Williams, and a sister, Lillian Bartalomy of Mastic Beach, survive him.
A memorial service for Mr. Matthews will be held Friday, Oct. 17, at 10 a.m. at Riverhead United Methodist Church, the Rev. Dr. Hea-young Park officiating. Cremation will be private. Funeral arrangements are under the care of F.J. McLaughlin Funeral Home, Riverhead.
Muriel Adelaide Palmer Reeve, 81, of Riverhead died Nov. 29, 2003 after a two-year illness.
She was born in Dover, N.J., on May 27, 1922, to Roscoe and Dorothy (Dixon) Palmer, and moved to Riverhead when she was in third grade. She graduated from Riverhead High School, worked in the Suffolk County Clerk's office for 12 years and was long active on the board of Cooperative Extension. Mrs. Reeve served as president of Riverhead Free Library from 1975 to '76, on the library's board of directors since 1967 and as its vice president from 1970 to '74.
Predeceased by a son, Laurence, she is survived by her husband of 62 years, Halsey; two daughters, Linda Peddie of Faria Beach, Calif., and Lesley Noble of Mohrsville, Pa., a son, Lindsay, of Riverhead; six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
A graveside service will be held today, Dec. 4, at 10 a.m. at Riverhead Cemetery, the Rev. Christopher David officiating.
Memorial donations may be made to Dominican Sisters Family Health Services Inc. of Suffolk County in Hampton Bays or East End Hospice in Westhampton Beach.
Thomas J. Emma
Thomas J. Emma of Riverhead, formerly of Shoreham, died at Central Suffolk Hospital in Riverhead on Nov. 27, 2003. He was 70.
He was born in Brooklyn on Feb. 9, 1933, to Joseph and Mary Emma. Mr. Emma earned a master's degree in engineering at Stevens Institute in New Jersey and worked for Grumman Corp. as a mechanical engineer for 36 years until his retirement. He lived in Shoreham for 30 years before moving to Saddle Lakes, Riverhead, three years ago.
He is survived by his wife, Lillian; a daughter, Gina Dowling of Melville; one grandson; and two siblings, Mary Ahearn and Leonard Emma.
Visitation was Nov. 29 and 30 at O.B. Davis Funeral Home in Miller Place. A funeral mass was celebrated on Dec. 1 at St. Mark's R.C. Church in Shoreham, with interment at St. Charles Cemetery in Farmingdale.
Memorial donations may be made to the Central Suffolk Hospital intensive care unit or East End Hospice.
Kazimierz Buczynski, renowned to kielbasa lovers from coast to coast as the owner of Lech's Market in Riverhead's Polish Town, died Feb. 4, 2004 at his home in Hampton Bays. He was 63.
"Cosmo," as he was known to his friends and family, was born in Poland on Dec. 9, 1940, to Michael and Wladyslavia Buczynski, and came to the U.S. at age 12. Mr. Buczynski lived in Speonk, Southampton and Riverhead before moving to Hampton Bays in the late 1970s.
He went to work at Lech's in the early 1960s, then worked as a butcher at Thompson's Food Town in Hampton Bays from 1966 to 1981. And then Walter Lech called Mr. Buczynski to say he was retiring and offered to sell him the shop. "He jumped in with both feet," said his daughter, Barbra Merker of Flanders.
"He kept the old recipes, exactly as Mr. Lech taught him," said his daughter. "Why change a good thing?" His fans agreed. "He mailed things to Hawaii, Alaska, California, Florida, New Hampshire -- all over," said Ms. Merker. "I always wondered, don't they have any kielbasa there?"
Mr. Buczynski was also known for his style. "He was Daddy," said his daughter. "He was spunky. He spoke his mind. If you didn't like it, there was the door. But people loved him."
Longtime family friend Raymond Baldwin of Riverhead will attest to that. "If you didn't have enough money for milk or bread, he'd say, 'Just pay when you come back.' He was stern but had a very big heart. He really did."
"He'd give you the shirt off his back, but no handouts. You had to be trying," said Ms. Merker. Sometimes he'd jot the item in a book, but then he'd never look at it again, she said, adding that people would come in to pay for the item and Cosmo wouldn't remember that there was a debt. "He was strong on the outside, but he was a softie," said his daughter. "I hope he knew how many people loved him."
Mr. Buczynski is survived by two daughters, Ms. Merker and Debbie Bahner of Riverhead; a son, Charlie, of Riverhead; one granddaughter; a brother, Bohdan, of Nashua, N.H.; a sister, Irene, of California; a longtime companion, Carol Stolz of Westhampton Beach; and a former wife, Sherill van Riene of Riverhead.
Visitation was Feb. 8 at F.J. McLaughlin Funeral Home in Riverhead. A service was conducted there on Feb. 9. Interment followed at St. John's Cemetery in Riverhead.
Michael Wayne Pace
Michael Wayne Pace of Flanders died at Central Suffolk Hospital in Riverhead on Feb. 6, 2004. He was 60.
He was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, on Nov. 4, 1943, to Michael and Katherine Pace. After serving in the Army from 1962 to 1968, Mr. Pace worked as a self-employed carpenter specializing in cabinet making. He was also volunteered time to the Flanders-Northampton Ambulance Co. and the Flanders Little League.
Mr. Pace is survived by his wife, MaryAnn; three sons, Michael, Carl and John; a daughter, Angela; his mother; four grandchildren; and two brothers, Robert and Richard.
Visitation was Feb. 8 at Reginald J. Tuthill Funeral Home in Riverhead. A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on Feb. 9 at St. John the Evangelist R.C. Church in Riverhead, the Rev. Raymond Nugent officiating. Interment followed at Calverton National Cemetery.
Edward George Zebroski
Edward George Zebroski, 85, of Mattituck died Feb. 4, 2004 at Riverhead Nursing Home.
The son of Louis and Stephanie Zebrowski, he was born in Riverhead on Jan. 3, 1919. Mr. Zebroski served in the U.S. Army during World War II, and was a member of the VFW and the American Legion. He worked as a firefighter at Westhampton Air Base for many years, and then at Northport Veterans Administration Hospital.
"Ed will be remembered for his love of the local waters, where he could be found walking along the shores, clamming and scalloping," said a family tribute.
He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Virginia; two daughters, Susan Evans of Cutchogue and Ninette Rochefort of Brattleboro, Vt.; two sisters, Martha Sledjeski of Greenport and Christine Finch of Tucson, Ariz.; a brother, Louis, of upstate New York; a half-brother, Stefan, of East Marion; six grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
Visitation was Feb. 5 at DeFriest-Grattan Funeral Home in Mattituck. Religious services were conducted there on Feb. 6 by the Rev. George Gaffga. Interment with military honors followed at Calverton National Cemetery.
Helen Bittner of Woodstock, Ga., died Jan. 24, 2004 at Woodstock Nursing Home. She was 87.
She was born in Maspeth on May 13, 1916, to Frederick and Helen Meyer. Ms. Bittner lived in Mattituck and Glenwood Mobile Park in Riverhead before moving to Georgia. She was a member of the Mattituck Fire Department Ladies' Auxiliary, a Mattituck Presbyterian Church elder, a member of the Riverhead Homemakers, and an avid knitter, crafter and seamstress.
Survivors include two daughters, Marilyn Block of Riverhead and Diane Downs of Marietta, Ga.; five grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.
A service was held on Feb. 4 at F.J. McLaughlin Funeral Home in Riverhead, the Rev. George Gaffga of Mattituck Presbyterian Church officiating. Interment followed at Calverton National Cemetery.