(Update) In memoriam: Julius Frankel

Julius Frankel

Julius Frankel, a longtime SRC Rotarian who has been living in the Boston area for several years, died on June 1, according to his daughter, Liza Frankel Guimbard. Here is his official obituary:

Julius Frankel of North Greenbush, NY, passed away Friday, July 1, 2022, in Newton, MA. Julius was born December 10,  1935, in Chernovitz, Romania to the late Leopold and Stefanie (Granirer) Frankel.

Julius and his family immigrated to the United States in 1950 and lived in Brooklyn, New York, where he attended Erasmus Hall High School. He earned a bachelor’s degree in science from Brooklyn College and a master’s degree in physics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy.

Julius was a physicist for 45 year with the United States Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center at Benet Laboratories in Watervliet.  His research, collaborated and published technical reports and patents with a specialized focus on ultrasonic techniques  for nondestructive testing of surfaces.

Julius met his beloved wife, Effrosini “Effie” (Galakatos) in Albany at an international dance in 1966 and were married on July 10, 1970.

Julius most enjoyed his time with family and friends,  grilling and dinner parties, traveling, attending weekly Torah study classes, going to the theatre and  operas,  playing tennis, and spending summers sailing  in Willsboro Bay on Lake Champlain.

Julius loved to travel throughout his life for work and pleasure throughout Europe, in India, the Mediterranean and Middle East. 

Survivors include his daughter  Liza (Frankel) Guimbard of Watertown,  MA, son-in-law Alex Guimbard,  and beloved Papou to grandchildren A.J., Nicholas  & Sophia Guimbard. Surviving cousins. include Mirium Grunstein and family of Brooklyn, NY and Jean-Marie Neiderhoffer of Paris, France.

His family is comforted in knowing he has finally found his eternal peace and reunited  with his beloved Effrosini. To have known Julius,  you were loved.

A private blessing and prayers were held with family upon his passing. Friends and family are  welcome to call or visit Liza and family while they sit Shiva this Thursday & Friday  (3-6 p.m.) and Sunday (2-5 p.m.) Please contact Liza to make arrangements.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks for  donations made in Julius and Effie’s memory to:
Faith and Family Hospice Foundation
420 Lakeside Ave., Suite 203
Marlborough, MA 01752

In memoriam: Effie Frankel

Julius and Effie Frankel

Efrosini “Effie” Galakatos Frankel, wife of former SRC member Julius Frankel, died today in a Boston area hospice after a lengthy battle with brain cancer.

Their daughter, Liza Frankel Guimbard, posted this appreciation on Facebook today:

“Tonight we remember my mother, her life well lived, and celebrate her legacy. She was an accomplished research scientist recognized for her work in muscle tissue diseases; beloved wife of Julius; an incredibly strong and supportive mother and role model; and her most cherished role as Yayah to Sophia and Nicholas.

“We are comforted by the memory of her beautiful, bright smile and love for her family and friends.

“I love you mama. Your smile shines bright in our hearts and memories we were blessed to have together. We are comforted in knowing you are finally at peace.”

Julius and Effie with a group of Rotary friends.

Polio pioneer Dr. Martha Lepow dies at 94

Martha Lepow, displaying her Paul Harris Fellow certificate, poses with Jim Leyhane who interviewed her for a 2017 video.

Dr. Martha Lipson Lepow, 94, a pioneer in polio research who was well known to Rotarians, died peacefully in her Slingerlands home on Sunday,

Martha, who visited SRC on a number of occasions to share her insights into the early days of polio vaccine research as well as provide analysis of current efforts to continue combating the often-fatal disease worldwide, was a pioneering expert in pediatric infectious diseases who was part of the early research that resulted in the Salk polio vaccine.

In 2017, Martha was interviewed by Dr. Jim Leyhane for a 20-minute video titled “Making Polio History: A Pioneer’s Story,” co-produced by SRC, CASDA, District 7190, and others.

According to her obituary, available on the Times Union website, a memorial service will be held in Congregation Beth Emeth, 100 Academy Road, Albany, at 1 p.m. Friday, December 3. In lieu of flowers, please direct gifts to Congregation Beth Emeth, and The Children’s Hospital at Albany Medical Center. To leave a condolence message for the family, please visit levinememorialchapel.com.

In memoriam: Bill Wyld

Bill Wyld

Interment with military honors will be held on Saturday, October 9, in Memory Gardens for Charles W. “Bill” Wyld Jr., 90, a longtime member of the Southern Rensselaer County Rotary Club until moving to Florida in his retirement.

Bill, who until recent years always made a point of visiting SRC when he was in town, died in February 2020 at Tidewell Hospice House in Port Charlotte, FL.

He was a native of Averill Park. He was a chief warrant officer four in the U.S. Navy. He retired to Florida after 38 years of service with the U.S. Navy and Reserves aboard 32 ships, and after 41 years of service at the New York Telephone Co. He was an avid golfer, and held various offices and chairmanships with the Masonic Lodge, Rotary, the Military Officers Association, DESA, and the United Methodist Church. He volunteered with Tidewell Hospice, conducting veterans pinning ceremonies for the veteran patients.

Bill is survived by his wife Nancy; a son, William, and daughters Linda, Deborah, and Sue; eight grandchildren, and 12 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his first wives, Miriam (Mim) and Linda. Interment and military honors will be held at noon on October 9 in Memory Gardens, 983 Watervliet Shaker Road (Route 155), Albany. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to: USS Slater DE 766, the Destroyer Escort Historical Museum, P.O. Box 1926, Albany, NY, 12201.

Former DG Mike Popolizio dies at 68

Past DG Mike Popolizio

Former District 7190 Governor Michael Popolizio, 68, of Halfmoon, died on Thursday. The cause of death was complications of COVID-19, according to current DG Rich Griesch.

Mike, a member of the Shenendehowah club, was the founder of Camelot Print & Copy Center in Albany, and retired from the company after a 20-year career.

His full obituary is available online.

Calling hours will be 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. this Thursday, with a 1 o’clock memorial service, at the Catricala Funeral Home, 1597 Route 9, Clifton Park. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to the Rotary International Foundation. 

Former SRC member Phil Nasca passes at 77

• Former SRC member Phil Nasca died Friday at the age of 77. The following is his obituary as published in today’s Times Union.

Screen Shot 2019-12-11 at 10.45.44 AMALBANY — Philp C. Nasca, 77, born in Buffalo, died suddenly on Friday, December 6, with his wife of 54 years, Bonnie, by his side.

Phil was welcomed into the next life by his parents, Philip L. and Jean Nasca; his son, Jason; his brother Carl; and his sister, Carol. No doubt, there’s a party going on! Phil’s children, Andrea (Damien Schwartz), Christopher (Kimm), and Tony; his grandchildren, Kayla, Michael, Ayana, Abrielle, Nichole, Cassidy, Dylan; and great-grandchild, Izabella will miss his humor and his impromptu history lessons. Phil is also survived by his brother, Patrick, and by many relatives and friends whom he cherished.

Phil’s many interests and hobbies included: astronomy, fishing, travel, history, bird-watching, rocks and minerals, politics, music, old movies, reading, photography, coin-collecting, and exploring new places and making friends around the world.

Phil’s career and commitment to public health was summarized by our good friend, Carol Whittaker: Dr. Nasca returned to the Capital District from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, where he had been a faculty member and administrator, to become Dean of the University at Albany’s School of Public Health in 2007. He was well known and respected for his expertise in cancer epidemiology, especially those cancers affecting women and children. He served on numerous grant review boards for national agencies including the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society. His return to Albany was a homecoming of sorts as he had previously served in the New York State Department of Health as the director of cancer epidemiology before accepting the academic appointment in western Massachusetts. In 2001 a Fulbright Fellowship took him to Vietnam where he worked closely with colleagues at two schools of public health there, collaborations that lasted throughout the remainder of his life. He and his wife, who joined him in Hanoi on the first Fellowship and a subsequent one, formed lasting friendships there which took them back to Vietnam frequently and they hosted visiting Vietnamese friends and colleagues often.

He will be especially remembered for his creation and support of the Center for Global Health at the UAlbany School of Public Health and for the many worldwide partnerships that were established and have thrived since the Center was established early in his tenure as dean. He traveled extensively to partner public health schools and agencies and encouraged students to study and to undertake internships abroad. He will also be remembered for being able to establish new programs and manage effectively even during times of budget restraints. He especially enjoyed interactions with students as a teacher and mentor.

Our family wishes to acknowledge the care given to Phil by Drs. Jonah Marshall, Ami Neghandi, and Padma Sripada. Additionally, the nursing staff of St. Peter’s Hospital provided daily compassionate care. Heartfelt thanks to each of you. Phil’s wish to have a simple exit from this world will be honored and his ashes will be scattered at his favorite beach in Cape Cod. Phil’s colleagues and friends at the SUNYA School of Public Health are planning a tribute, and there will be a similar gathering with our very large family and friends in the Buffalo area to celebrate his life. Both events will take at future dates.

In lieu of flowers, and in honor of Phil’s dedication in the fields of education and public health, donations may be made to one of the following: The Carol A. Whittaker Global Health Travel Award Fund: A check may be made out to “The University at Albany Foundation” and sent to SUNY School of Public Health, 1 University Place, Rensselaer, NY, 12144 and include on the memo line: “In memory of Phil Nasca.” You may also email jjustino@albany.edu at The Center for Global Health to request information on how to make your donation online. Or donations may be made out to: “The Stephen Piorkowski Epilepsy Scholarship” in Phil’s memory and sent to: Stephen Piorkowski Epilepsy Scholarship, 163 Adams Place, Delmar, NY, 12054.


In memoriam: Dr. Rahma Mustapha

Screen Shot 2017-11-28 at 8.55.31 PM
Dr. Rahma Mustapha

Some of us had the pleasure of meeting Rahma Mustapha through Rotary, and knew her as a warm, accomplished woman. This, in capsule form, is some of her public persona.

Our hearts go out to our International RLI Vice Chair Dr. Tamton Mustapha on the loss of his wife, Rahma, who passed away on Sunday, November 19, at the age of 71 after a brief illness.

Rahma spent her final days laughing and sharing  memories, with her family by her bedside.

She worked as an intern in the Northern Westchester Hospital in Mount Kisco. In 1972, she moved with her husband and young daughter to Kinderhook, She developed the Rehabilitation Department in Columbia Memorial Hospital by bringing in full-time occupational and speech therapists.

She was a constant contributor to local and international charities, such as Save The Children, Southern Poverty Law Center, and At The Crossroads, which was co-founded by her daughter Taj. She was a charter member of the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C., and  served on the board of the United Way of Columbia And Greene Counties and on the Advisory Board for the Capital District Center For The Disabled.

Rahma was one of the first female members of Rotary, joining the Hudson Rotary Club in 1987. Along with her husband, she was integral in the founding of the Kinderhook Rotary Club, where she served as secretary as well as treasurer.

The members of the Southern Rensselaer County Rotary Club extend their deepest sympathies to Rahma’s family, and thank them for sharing her with the world of Rotary.