Barry Oneil Bodo
Barry Oneil Bodo (July 3, 1940 – Dec. 28, 2023) departed this world surrounded by his loved ones.
Born in Allentown, Pennsylvania to Stephen Bodo and Florence Miller Bodo of Northampton, a German, Polish and Hungarian community, he was raised in the family home in the village of Weaversville and grew up with his German-Hungarian roots and cultures and a long line of patriotic family members. His father served in the U.S. Navy in World War II, and Barry continued the family’s military service in the U.S. Navy Air starting in his teenage years.
In 1957 at age 16, Barry met the love of his life, Betty Jane Hoffman, 15, while visiting her family’s swimming pond. Both Barry and Betty graduated high school in 1958, and Barry left in July to serve in the U.S. Navy Air. During his training, they became engaged, and they married on May 16, 1959 while on leave.
His home base was Brunswick, Maine, but he was stationed in Iceland where he served overseas in communications on a P2V airplane and traveled to numerous countries, including Denmark, Norway, Spain and Italy.
Honorably discharged, he and Betty resided in Pennsylvania, together renovating the family home that his father bought in the 1940s. Barry was an entrepreneur and had numerous businesses, including a successful arts and crafts shop in the 1970s-1980s. They pioneered the arts and crafts niche in the Lehigh Valley region during those years and traveled throughout the region and the east coast attending trade shows. Barry and Betty later embarked again together as a team, where he became manager of the Northampton Community Center, which was originally a cement mill that produced concrete for the Panama Canal. Barry directed all events at the facility, and Betty managed all menus and catering activities. When the facility was originally given to the town, it became the prominent catering and banquet facility for the Lehigh Valley region, and the Bodos hosted as many as 200 guests in the smaller hall and over 900 in the larger hall. Barry additionally managed banquets for a regional fire hall after retiring from the Northampton Community Center.
Barry and Betty both retired in 2005 and moved to Christiansburg, Virginia, where they were heavily involved in the lives of their grandsons, Nolan and Trevor, remaining supportive and active in their early and teenage years.
Barry enjoyed golfing and hunting. In his young adult life, he and his father spent time on a bowling team and traveled to different cities for competitions. Barry, Betty and the family spent time in the Poconos snowmobiling and fishing, and he taught his two daughters how to dance the polka when they were just little ones. He was a proud member of the Northampton Rotary Club for nearly two decades and served as president for several years; he was recognized by the Rotary Foundation of Rotary International as a Paul Harris Fellow in appreciation of his tangible and significant assistance given to the furtherance of better understanding and friendly relations between peoples of the world. He served on the Board for the local YMCA, the Northampton Area Chamber of Commerce, where he also served as director, and on the Northampton Memorial Community Center Board of Directors. The Bodos were additionally passionate about international student experiences and education, and the family hosted four international exchange students in the 1980s.
Barry passed away at home surrounded by the love of his family on Thursday, December 28 after a series of illnesses. He is survived by his loving wife of 64 years, Betty Jane Hoffman Bodo, his daughters, Belinda Bodo Ierardi and Bethany Bodo, PhD, son-in-law, Tom Ierardi, and grandsons, Nolan and Trevor, as well as several cousins and wonderful friends.
Barry loved his country, service to the community, his adoring family and friends. In lieu of flowers, friends are welcome to make a gift in his memory to either of his two favorite charities that are both meaningful to him and have assisted extended family through hardship: the Wounded Warrior Project and the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Philadelphia.
Dorothy M. “Dottie” Brennan
Dorothy M. “Dottie” Brennan, 90, of Plainfield Twp., passed away on Thursday, Jan. 4, 2024 at New Eastwood Healthcare & Rehabilitation Center – Easton. Dottie was born in Plainfield, N.J. on Dec. 20, 1933 to Millard and Myrtle (Backer) Piatt. She worked in quality control for Victoria Vogue – Bethlehem.
Survivors: Son: Michael J. Brennan and his wife Virginia of Howell, N.J.; grandchild: Jennifer Zadown. Dottie is predeceased by sons: James Patrick Brennan and Gary Patterson; brothers: Edward Piatt, Robert Piatt and Donald Piatt.
Service: Private. Online expressions of sympathy can be recorded at www.bensingfuneralhome.net. Arrangements are under the care and direction of the George G. Bensing Funeral Home, LLC.
Contributions: In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be offered to American Legion Post 415 – 158 S. New St., Nazareth, PA 18064.
Louise “Gigi” (Nardella) Kahler
Louise “Gigi” (Nardella) Kahler, 90, a lifelong resident of Bath, Pa., passed away peacefully on Dec. 29, 2023, in River View Nursing and Rehabilitation in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. Gigi was born on May 8, 1933, in Bath, Pa., to the late Luigi and Maria Rachel (Tricarco) Nardella. Her parents migrated from Foggia, Italy and made Bath their lifelong residence for themselves and their family.
Gigi was a 1951 graduate of Nazareth High School. She was active in intramural sports and very proudly held the distinction of being a drum majorette. She was the loving wife of the late Paul A. Kahler Sr., until his passing in 2010. Cooking for “PAK” was a highlight for both of them. They also enjoyed dining out, going to sporting events and traveling to local casinos.
Gigi was a lifelong and very dedicated and faithful member of Sacred Heart of Jesus Church, Bath Pa. Yearly, from the age of 18, Gigi donated the fresh flower crown for the May crowning of the Blessed Mother. This annual tradition lasted more than 65 years. Gigi extended her love for cooking to the church as well, she was instrumental in organizing and cooking for numerous 40-hour Devotions. It was an honor for her to step into the rectory kitchen and cook daily for Father Charles Marciano – truly a labor of love.
Gigi was a homemaker. A very dedicated wife and mother, she stayed home to raise her children. When her children were older, she went to work sewing in the garment industry. Most of her career was spent in the Hospitality Industry as a hostess/waitress. Gigi worked for the former ABE Airport, Howard Johnson, Holiday Inn and Town and Country. She thrived in this industry due to her fashion, personality and spunk.
Gigi will always be remembered for her classy, stylish ways, always carrying herself well and with great confidence.
Food and family were the core of her life. Gigi was also very patriotic, she held great love and was very proud of her country, the USA, in which she was born and raised.
Gigi will be deeply missed by her loving children; daughter Maria Bauman and husband William, of Bloomsburg, Pa. and son Paul Kahler Jr., and wife Lisa, of West Bloomfield, Mich., six loving granddaughters; Tara Siegel and husband Brock; Erica Bailey and husband Eric; Natalie Lynn and partner Connor, Amy Koral and husband Levi; Jordyn Kahler and Alexis Kahler Soos and husband Nick, six loving great-grandchildren; Jude, Benjamin, Brooke, Claire, Charlotte and Iyla, sisters; Florence Liberto and Mary Ronco, along with many nieces and nephews. She loved them all dearly and impacted their lives in wonderful and generous ways.
Gigi was predeceased by a brother, Angelo D. Nardella.
A visitation was held on Thursday, Jan. 5, 2024, from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. at the Joseph F. Reichel Funeral Home Inc., 220 Washington Park, Nazareth, Pa. A Mass of Christian Burial was held at 10 a.m. at Sacred Heart of Jesus Church, 210 E. Northampton St. Bath, Pa. Burial followed in the parish cemetery.
Donations in loving memory of Gigi may be made to: Sacred Heart of Jesus Church in care of the funeral home.
Online condolences may be offered at www.jfreichelfuneralhome.com directly under Gigi’s obituary. The Joseph F. Reichel Funeral Home Inc, Nazareth is honored to have Gigi and her family under our care and direction.
Virginia “Ginny” C. Wiersma
Virginia “Ginny” C. Wiersma, 78, formerly of Phoebe Nursing Home, Allentown and Lutheran Manor – Bethlehem, passed away Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2024 at Lehigh Valley Hospital, Cedar Crest. She is the wife of the late David L. Wiersma, who died in 2009. Ginny was born in Easton on Oct. 21, 1945 to the late William H. Hertzog and Mae L. (Schweitzer) Groller. She was a 1963 graduate of Nazareth High School and attended N.C.C. She worked as a department clerk at the former Laneco – Nazareth. She was a member of Schoeneck Moravian Church – Nazareth. She enjoyed needlework, especially crocheting.
Survivors: Son, Eric S. Weist, and his wife Linda of Bethlehem and sister, Etta C. Segan, and her husband Richard of Nazareth and nephews Scott, Kyle and Todd.
Service: A Memorial Service was held at 11 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 5, 2024 at the George G. Bensing Funeral Home, LLC, 2165 Community Dr., Bath, PA 18014. The interment concluded services at Holy Family Cemetery – Nazareth.
Online expressions of sympathy can be recorded at www.bensingfuneralhome.net.
Contributions: In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be offered to the American Heart Association – 4250 Crums Mill Rd., Harrisburg, PA 17112.
Dolores F. Yelsits
Dolores F. Yelsits, 83, of Moore Twp., passed away on Sunday, Jan. 7, 2024 at Lehigh Valley Hospital, Muhlenberg. She is the wife of Richard E. Yelsits, Sr. She was born in Danielsville on Jan. 22, 1940, to the late Frank and Estelle (Arndt) Traupman. Dolores was the secretary and treasurer of the family business Yelsits Plumbing & Heating, Inc. – Moore Twp. Previously, she worked at Laros Silk Mill – Bethlehem and was a licensed babysitter. She is a member of St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church – Bath. Dolores served as a past president of the Moore Twp. Lioness Club and president of the former Ladies Aide at St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran. She was an avid bingo player. Dolores loved her dogs, Storm and Thunder.
Survivors: In addition to her husband of 59 years; children: Michelle E. Buttner and her companion Michael Csencsits, Richard E. Yelsits, Jr. and Robert P. Yelsits, all of Moore Twp.; brother: Kerry Traupman and his wife Linda of Bethlehem; grandchild: Stephanie Buttner. Dolores is predeceased by brother: Bernard Traupman.
Service: A Funeral Service will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, Jan. 11, 2024 at St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church – 206 E. Main St., Bath, Pa. A calling hour will be held from 10 a.m. until time of services. The interment will conclude services at Cedar Hill Memorial Park. Online expressions of sympathy can be recorded at: www.bensingfuneralhome.net. Arrangements are under the care and direction of the George G. Bensing Funeral Home, LLC.
Contributions: In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be offered to St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church – Bath, 18014.