Ludima Gus Burton, 94, beloved teacher, author, mother and friend, died peacefully in her sleep and in the company of her daughters, after a brief illness.
She was born in Farrell, PA, in 1920, where despite the Depression, she had a wonderful life with her siblings and parents, Jenny and Joseph Gus. After graduating in 1938, Ludima attended Hunter College in NYC, and Albany State Teachers College (now SUNY), graduating in 1946, Summa Cum Laude. She taught high school Social Studies and English at Averill Park and Northville Central, retiring in 1978. She remained an active member of Delta Kappa Gamma. Ludima loved teaching and was always pleased to be invited to class reunions and see her former students.
She married the love of her life, Guy L. Burton, in 1945 and had two daughters, Daphne and Jennifer. They resided in Northville, NY, which will always be home. After retirement, the couple enjoyed many activities, especially camping in their motor home, until Guy’s sudden death in 1981.
In 1991, at 71 years old, Ludima began her second career as an author of “sweet” romances for young adults. She was a charter member of Saratoga Romance Writers (SRWA), where she developed life-long friendships and perfected her craft.
In 1999, at age 80, she published her first book, ONLY FOR A YEAR, followed quickly by THE TYCOON AND THE SCHOOL TEACHER (2000), THE LOVE POTION (2001), THE WEDDING CAKE (2005), A SURGEON'S MIRACLE (2007), THE CHRISTMAS BALL (2008), NEVER A COUGAR (2010), DREW GETS IT RIGHT (2011) and WIFE: LOST AND FOUND (2013). Her latest book, HIS SON, HER DAUGHTER (2014) was just released.
In 2000, Ludima received The Eddy 2000 Edward H. "Eddie" Pattison Award for creativity, energy and leadership, and was inducted in the Farrell High School Hall of Fame on November 5, 2005. Always ready to give encouragement, she was a popular speaker at conferences, book signings and events, and her positive and generous spirit will be greatly missed by all who knew her. She loved life, literature, her family and friends, and animals, especially her little dogs, Nikko and Buster.
Ludima lived with her daughter, Daphne, and son-in-law, Peter Zucker, in Fultonville, NY. She is survived by her daughters, son-in-law, her dear sister, Leona Dubay (Hermitage, PA), and numerous nieces and nephews and their families. Ludima cherished her grandson, Mathew Zucker (Amsterdam, NY), and his wife, Lindsay, and was looking forward to the birth of their first child, due in January.
Valerie L. (Steiger) Luna, 65, of Milltown died Thursday, Nov. 21, 2013 at St. Peter's University Hospital, New Brunswick. Born in Elizabeth, Mrs. Luna lived in South River before moving to Milltown 42 years ago. She was employed for 18 years as a librarian for the Spotswood Pulbic Library, retiring in May of this year. Previously she was a librarian for the East Brunswick Library. In 2007 she was nominated by her peers as "Librarian of the Year." She was a founding member of the Brunswick Book Review and Readers Club and was a board member of the NJ Romance Writers. Mrs. Luna was a congregant of Christ Memorial Lutheran Church, East Brunswick. She was a founding member of the Brunswick Women's Connection which offered support for group bible study and prayer. She was a former member of the American Cancer Society .
Surviving are her husband of 42 years, Peter F. Luna Sr.; her two sons, Peter F. II of Milltown and Daniel C. of East Brunswick; her sisters, Lorraine Adams of Inverness, NJ; her four brothers and sisters-in-law, Robert and Krystina of Montgomery, Ellery and Marie of Monroe Twp., Larry and Debra of Spotswood and Warren and Doreen of Sinking Springs, PA; seven nieces and two nephews.
A memorial service will be held at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, November 26th at Christ Memorial Lutheran Church, Old Stage Road, East Brunswick. Private burial will take place at Evergreen Cemetery, Hillside. Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to the Lester Memorial Home, 16 W. Church St., Jamesburg. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Doctors Without Borders at www.doctorswithoutbordgers.org or American Cancer Society at www.cancer.org or Christ Memorial Lutheran Church, East Brunswick. To send condolences to the family visit www.LesterMemorialHome.com.
Carolyn F. (Fulgenzi) Hanlon writing as Cara Summers, 73 of Liverpool, passed away September 10, 2013 at Upstate University Hospital.She was born in Detroit, MI on July 28, 1940 the daughter of the late Andrew and Janet (McLaughlin) Fulgenzi. As a young woman, she graduated from Dominican High School in Detroit and completed her undergraduate education at Catholic University of America in Washington, DC. Carolyn continued her studies attending Syracuse University receiving her Master's in English Education. After retiring as a teacher with the Fayetteville-Manlius School District, Carolyn joined the faculty at Syracuse University as an adjunct professor in the writing department. Concurrently, she was also teaching at Onondaga Community College. Carolyn took great pride in authoring over 42 romance novels for Harlequin Publishing Company and received many awards for her publication. She was a parishioner of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church in Baldwinsville.
Surviving to cherish her memory are three sons: Kevin D. (Gert) Hanlon of Liverpool, Dr. Brian A. (Mary) Hanlon of Ft. Myers, FL, Brendan J. Hanlon of Liverpool; four grandchildren: Marian and Andrew Hanlon and Andrew and Jessica Fulmer; a sister, Janet Fulgenzi, OP of Adrian, MI; a brother, Andrew A. (Julie) Fulgenzi of Rochester, MI, many nieces, nephews, cousins and many friends and colleagues.
Please considercontributions in Carolyn's memory to the Foundation for Upstate Medical University, 750 E. Adams Street CAB 326, Syracuse, NY 13210.
Lois Joan Wencil, 66, of Millburn Township died on Wednesday January 23, 2008 surrounded by her loving family. Born in Paterson she has lived in Millburn Township since 1980. Lois was employed by the NJ Commission for the Blind & Visual Impaired until 2001. Lois graduated Magna cum Laude from Seton Hall University in 1963 with a BA in Education and earned her Masters in Special Education from Jersey City State College in 1971. Lois was a member of the NJ Romance Writers of America, the National Federation of the Blind, the Guide Dog Users of America and of the Papermill Playhouse Senior Players. Lois Wencil the wife of the late Wyllis Wencil, is survived by her children Stephen W. Wencil, Elaine "Beth" Wencil and her husband Roshan Jain and the late Clifford Parker, her granddaughter Amber and her faithful seeing eye dog Timberwolf. The Funeral Service will be held at the First Baptist Church of Millburn, 132 Spring Street on Saturday, January 26th at 11am. Friends may call at Bradley, Smith & Smith Funeral Home, 415 Morris Avenue, Springfield on Friday January 25th 2-4 and 7-9. Interment at Sunset Memorial in Cranbury, PA. In lieu of flowers contributions in her memory may be made to the Seeing Eye Inc. PO Box 375 Morristown, NJ 07963.
NJRW March, 2001
Karen Plunkett-PowellScott 48, of Rumson NJ, an author, book editor and contributor to the Bayport Times, died Saturday, May 17, 2003 at the St. Barnabas Hospice Unit at Monmouth Medical Center. She graduated from Centenary College, Hackettstown, receiving a degree in communications. In line with her beautiful and caring personality, she quickly became involved with Venture-Venture, a program that empowered the disadvantaged. Shortly after, she started writing children's stories, and they were published by Humpty-Dumpty and Highlights magazines. She also wrote children's plays, notably "Spirit, Season and Song," which toured for seven years. She is the author of the books "Remembering Woolworth's: A Nostalgic History of the World's Most Famous Five and Dime" and "The Nancy Drew Scrapbook." In addition to her hectic schedule she was an editor and book doctor who worked diligently with a children's theater group in Rumson, Dollars for Scholars. She also contributed to the Asbury Park Press Historical Vignettes series. Her most recent contribution was an article on the U.S. Navy airship Shenandoah, which was published on Sept. 16, 2002. She wrote under the name Karen Plunkett-Powell. In an interview on her Woolworth's book, she told the Press, "I like to write 'now-stalgia,' to write about topics from the past but where the memories are so strong they live on." She was a caring and generous person who befriended all and welcomed them into her home. Born in Jersey City, she lived there before moving to Middlesex County suburbs, then to Rumson in 1992.
She was predeceased by her father, Kenneth Plunkett. Surviving are a son, Jason Powell at home; her husband, Arthur Scott; her mother, Rose Marie Lancellotti Plunkett; a brother, Kenneth John Plunkett; two step daughters, Penny Scott and Cindy Moreau; a stepgrandchild, Max Moreau; and many family and friends.
Pat Graversen 65. Born in West Virginia, Pat Graversen published her first novel, INVISIBLE FIRE, with Fawcett Books in 1981; THE FAGIN came out in hardcover from A&W Publishers in 1982. After a hiatus during which she concentrated on raising her family, she published DOLLIES in 1990 and STONES in 1991, both through Zebra Books.
Graversen then signed a five-book contract with Zebra. Under its terms, the publisher brought out SWEET BLOOD and a paperback edition of THE FAGIN in 1992, and both BLACK ICE and PRECIOUS BLOOD in 1993.
A short story by Graversen, "Ups and Downs," appeared in DARK SEDUCTIONS, an anthology of erotic horror put out by Zebra in 1993. She collaborated with her son Paul Erik on two young adult novels, GHOST TRAIN (published by Zebra,) and YIN-YANG. Her final novel was GRAYTHINGS, the last under her five book contract.
Graversen grew up in West Virginia, which she recalled as a "mystical, wonderful place," and traveled extensively before she married and settled in Toms River, New Jersey. Two of her children had entered school before she first considered writing fiction.
"When I took the kids to the park, I would bring along a notebook and write there," she recalled.
That first year, she turned out almost 40 short stories. She sent them to small magazines, and most were rejected. Finally, in 1979, Nuggett published "Lenny Sent Me," a "psycho story" about an ex-con who hunts down the sister of a man he befriended in prison.
She then completed her first book manuscript, INVISIBLE FIRE, and connected with an agent who sold it to Fawcett. Although the novel had a few plot elements in common with Stephen King's FIRESTARTER, it was no imitation; her book actually came out first.
Her next publication, THE FAGIN, featured a villain who kidnapped small boys for a Satanic cult. Graversen began to develop a specialty --child-in-peril plots, usually involving the supernatural.
DOLLIES drew upon her brief stint as a real estate agent. "I showed one house that scared me," she said. "When I took the people downstairs, there was a room in the basement with all these dolls in it. There was also a light swinging from the ceiling, as if someone else had just been down there.
"Sometimes it's only a small thing that gives you the idea. When I get one, I write it down in my idea book. It could be a name, or a sentence I hear."
STONES tells the story of a mother and her adolescent daughter who are menaced by the spirit of an ancient fertility goddess. More than Graversen's previous books, it incorporated a large dose of offbeat sexuality, as the innocent young girl takes on the personality of the female demon.
The author stated that she got the idea from a dream. "I saw a small woman made of stone, with greenish skin. I stayed scared by that all one summer."
She based BLACK ICE on the true story of a child who drowned in a lake near her home. Many readers told her that book was their favorite, because it was a "good, old-fashioned ghost story."
Pat also authored a large volume of published poetry, and three romance novels. One of her romance novels, HEART ON TRIAL (NAL Rapture Romance, 1982) sold to several foreign markets.
Graversen founded the Garden State Horror Writers in 1989 to encourage others in New Jersey who aspire to work in her genre. She also belonged to the Authors' Guild, the Authors League and the Horror Writers Association.
Because she appeared to be such a typical middle-class wife and mother, people assumed she wrote something more conventional, such as romance. She also sensed a condescending attitude from some men in her profession, but said, "I don't believe in being held back because I'm a woman."
"I've liked the women horror writers I've read. They've been ignored in the past, but they're catching up. Ten years ago, there were hardly any. Now you can at least name a half-dozen. Women are getting good contracts now, too," she pointed out, using her own five-book deal as an example. "Publishers are beginning to realize what women writers can give them."
The Garden State Horror Writers had just marked its Eleventh Anniversary when Pat Graversen passed away on May 17, 2000. She was 65. In her memory, the highest honor any author can receive in the Annual Garden State Horror Writers Short Story Contest is called The Graversen Award.
Rachel R. Cosgrove Payes, also known asE.L. ArchandJoanne Kaye(11 December 1922, Westernport, Maryland- 10 October 1998, Brick Township, New Jersey) was an American genre novelist, and author of books on the Land of Oz.A research biologist by training, she married Norman Morris Payes in 1954.
Her first book, The Hidden Valley of Oz, was published by Reilly & Leein 1951. Her second, The Wicked Witch of Oz(1954) was denied publication on the grounds that the Oz bookswere not selling. The book was published by The International Wizard of Oz Clubin 1993. She had a tendency to dismiss adult Oz fans and insist that Oz books are "for kids!", a view she expressed in the documentary, Oz: The American Fairyland.
The bulk of Cosgrove's work consisted of historical romance novels, many published by Playboy Press, one under the name Joanne Kaye. She also wrote science fiction novels for Avalon Booksunder the name "E.L. Arch", an anagramof Rachel, as well as shorter sf and fantasy under her own name. Payes also wrote gothics, such asThe Black Swan.
Helen C. Hanninen Cavanagh died Monday, February 1, 2016 at home. She was 76. Born in Quincy, MA, to the late Albert and Blanche Magnant Hanninen, she resided in Spotswood before moving to Flemington several years ago.
Prior to her retirement, she was an author and artist for many years, and had written several books. In addition, for many years she was a reporter with Greater Media Newspapers in East Brunswick. She attended Bay Path Junior College. She was predeceased by her husband, Lawrence J. Cavanagh in 1993, and a son, Christopher G. Cavanagh in 1982. Surviving are three sons, Patrick and his wife Joan Cavanagh of Flemington, Lawrence and his wife Maryanne Cavanagh of Naples, FL, and Reuven Koret of Israel; a daughter, Carin and her husband Robert J. Bruce of Sayreville; a sister, Marrie and her husband Robert Lane of Southbury, CT; and five grandchildren, Christopher, Caitlin, Lauren, Eylon, and Lironne.
Helen's last two books were young adult novels published by Simon and Schuster. Panther Glade was published in 1993. The Last Piper was published in 1996. Helen promoted both titles vigorously, especially Panther Glade. She appeared at schools and libraries and kids' gatherings in the purple pith helmet she'd acquired specifically for those occasions. Because of her endless wit and charm she was always a big hit with young and old alike. Helen and Panther Glade were recognized by the American Library Association for her excellent storytelling.