The Winchendon Courier
Serving the community since 1878 ~ A By Light Unseen Media publication
Week of September 16 to September 23, 2021


February 28, 1937 ~ September 8, 2021 (Age 84)

HANNAWA FALLS, New York (WWNY) - Steve M. Smutz, 84, of State Highway 56, passed away Wednesday morning, September 8, 2021 at Canton-Potsdam Hospital.

Steve was born on February 28, 1937 in Massena, the son of the late George and Theresa (Peck) Smutz. He grew up in Potsdam and graduated from Potsdam High School. He proudly served his country in the US Army during the Korean Conflict, being honorably discharged in 1965.

Steve worked in the Ingot Department at Alcoa for many years. He took great pride in maintaining his home and property and enjoyed gardening, hunting and fishing.

Steve is survived by his son, Steve of Winchendon, MA; his grandchildren, Michael, Travis, and Saige; and several nieces and nephews.

In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by his wife, Leona (Green) on November 4, 2018; his brothers, Walter Sr., John, and George Smutz; and his sister, Lillian Tranchitella.

Friends may call Monday 10-11:00 AM at the Donaldson-Seymour Funeral Home, Potsdam, where funeral services will be held at 11:00 AM with Rev. Patrick A. Ratigan, officiating. Burial with military honors will follow in St. Patrick's Cemetery, Colton.

Memorial contributions in his memory may be made to the Potsdam Church of the Nazarene.

Friends are encouraged to share memories and offer online condolences at

August 11, 1958 ~ September 8, 2021 (Age 63)

LEOMINSTER - Jacqueline Ann (Ray) Kudzma, 63 of Leominster, died Wednesday, September 8, 2021 in Heywood Hospital, Gardner.

She was born in Leominster on August 11, 1958, the daughter of the late William A. Ray and the late Yvette J. (Doyon) Ray.

She grew up in Leominster and graduated from Holy Family High School in Fitchburg. She received her Associates Degree from Mount Wachusett Community College.

Jacqueline worked at various nursing homes in the area as a Certified Nursing Assistant, she also did homecare working for Home Staff for several years. She enjoyed ceramics.

She leaves her husband of 35 years, Stanley C. Kudzma, Jr.; her sister, Dr. Ellen Ray and her husband Brian Mack of Winchendon; a sister in-law, Martha Kudzma of Somerville; nephew, John Mack of Ashburnham and niece, Erin Mack of Fitchburg.

She was predeceased by her father in-law, Stanley C. Kudzma and mother in-law, Helen Kudzma.

A graveside service will be held on Thursday, September 16, 2021 at 11 a.m. in Groton Cemetery, 242 Hollis St., Groton, MA. There are no calling hours.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that memorial contributions be made in her memory to Heywood Hospital, 242 Green St., Gardner, MA 01440.

To send an online condolence please visit

Simard Funeral Home 14 Walker Street, Leominster is directing arrangements.

July 1, 1954 ~ September 10, 2021 (Age 67)

GARDNER - Michael E. Nolette, 67, of 267 Parker Street, died Friday, September 10, 2021 in Wachusetts Manor Nursing Home.

He was born in Winchendon on July 1, 1954, son of Robert and Dorothy (Patria) Nolette and lived in the Gardner and Winchendon area his entire life.

Michael owned and operated his own roofing and siding company at one time. He enjoyed spending time with his family.

He leaves his wife, Elizabeth (Vaillancourt) Nolette; children, Patrick Nolette of Winchendon and Cody Nolette of Gardner; two stepchildren, Rozalyn Pierce and Carissa Perez; a sister, Carol Night of Winchendon; a cousin Fred Nalette and wife Joane as well as nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by a brother Bobby Nolette and a sister, Linda Bond.

Funeral services will be private.

Stone-Ladeau Funeral Home, 343 Central Street, Winchendon is directing arrangements.

MaryLou Montuori

September 10, 1931 ~ September 9, 2021 (Age 89)

Leominster - Mary Louise "Marilou" (Dorrien) Montuori, 89, of Leominster passed away suddenly on September 9, 2021, a day short of her 90th birthday.

Born in Lynn MA on Sept 10, 1931 to Charles J. Dorrien and Margaret M. Dorrien, Marilou grew up with her only sibling and favorite person in the world, Nancy Dorrien, on the north shore of Boston, in Worcester MA, and Fitchburg MA. Her father owned and operated Dorrien Pharmacy in the Cleghorn neighborhood of Fitchburg, which would later become her husband's drugstore. She attended elementary school in Worcester, at St. Bernard's in Fitchburg, and Cushing Academy for high school, where she made dear, lifelong friendships. After meeting at a ski chalet in North Conway, she married the love of her life, Alfred A. Montuori in 1957 and lived first in Reading MA and then Leominster MA where they raised three daughters.

Marilou attended the College of Pharmacy in Boston and Clark University in Worcester where she finally settled into the perfect career as a Children's Librarian, being a book lover first and a voracious reader all of her life. She worked at Fitchburg Library, Harvard Library and Leominster Library with volunteer positions at Notre Dame High School and St. Anna's Elementary School.

She was a devout Catholic and an active volunteer, serving in the Junior League, as President of the Leominster Hospital Guild, 40 years as a leader in the Girl Scouts, and at the Madonna of the Holy Rosary fish fry to name a few. A cancer survivor, she was thankful to all the wonderful people who helped her through that time at the Simonds-Sinon Regional Cancer Center in Fitchburg, MA.

Though she had a petite frame, she was larger than life. She was the center of her family and everything she did. Anyone who met Marilou was blessed by her kindness, warmth, and open heart. She will be missed dearly.

Marilou is survived by her husband, Alfred A. Montuori; her daughters and their husbands, Mariellen Perla and Barry Perla, Elizabeth Montuori Rowles and David Rowles of South Burlington VT, Melissa Montuori Brady and Philip Brady of Winchendon MA; and her grandchildren Alana Perla of Portland ME, Bianca Perla of Nashua NH, and Tucker Smith of Winchendon MA. She is also survived by her sister Nancy E. Dorrien and her husband Dennis Ward of Sonora CA as well as many other beloved relatives, friends, and neighbors.

A Funeral Mass will be celebrated on Monday, September 13 at 11:00am in St. Anna's Church, 199 Lancaster St., Leominster. Burial will be at a later date. There are no calling hours. In lieu of flowers donations in Marilou's memory can be sent to the Simonds-Sinon Regional Cancer Center Fund,; St Anna's Catholic School Tuition Assistance at; or Leominster Library Children's Programs

Vera Whitmore

November 1, 1932 ~ September 9, 2021 (Age 88)

GARDNER, MA - Vera E. (Parsons)(Woods) Whitmore, 88, of 50 Pine Street and formerly of Winchendon, Orange and Leverett, died early Friday morning, September 10, 2021 at Life Care Center of Leominster.

Born in Leverett on November 1, 1932, she was the daughter of the late Francis and Lena (Gardner) Parsons and grew up in Leverett, moving to Orange at the age of 12. She attended Orange schools.

She was married to William K. Whitmore Jr. and previously to Roland J. Woods Sr.

Vera had worked as bus monitor for many years for Fred's School Bus and retired in 2012.

A member of the former Athol-Orange Elks Lodge #1837, Vera enjoyed spending time with family, playing bingo and watching game shows.

Vera is survived by her children Francis Woods (Brenda) of Rindge, NH and Nellie Woods (William) of Baldwinsville; grandchildren, Chelsea Woods, Dylan Woods, Amy Porter, Sally Wiley, Anthony Wiley, Ronald Tremblay, Shannon Whitmore, Ashley Parker, Matthew Seymour, and Joseph Seymour (Kelsie); great grandchildren, Justin, Levi and Landon.

Besides her parents and husbands, Vera was predeceased by a grandson, Joseph Porter in November, 2006 and son Roland J. Woods Jr. in March, 2020.

A calling hour will be held on Friday, September 17, 2021 from 10-11 a.m. at Witty's Funeral Home, 158 South Main Street, Orange.

A funeral service will follow at 11 a.m. in the funeral home, with Rev. Dr. Megan Leary of the Orange Central Congregational Church officiating.

Interment will follow in Erving Center Cemetery.

Witty's Funeral Home, 158 South Main Street, Orange, is assisting the family.

Guest book and directions online at WWW.WITTYFUNERALHOME.COM.

Charles D. Coon Jr.

July 18, 1971 ~ September 15, 2021 (Age 50)

GARDNER - Charles D. Coon Jr., 50, of Gardner, died peacefully Wednesday morning, September 15, 2021 in Baystate Medical Center, Springfield.

He was born in Fitchburg on July 18, 1971, son of Kathy (Skehan) Lingo of Winchendon and the late Charles D. Coon. Charlie was a graduate of Ayer High School.

Charlie was very creative and crafty individual, who enjoyed art, working on models and clay.

In addition to his mother, he leaves a sister, Kelly Coon of Athol; a brother, Anthony Lingo of Winchendon; a niece, Keyanna Lingo of Winchendon; an aunt, Carol Skehan MPV of Rutland and a close friend George Allen of Winchendon.

Funeral services will be private and at the convenience of the family.

Stone-Ladeau Funeral Home, 343 Central Street, Winchendon is directing arrangements.