In Memoriam: Aug. 9 – 14

John Lee Gundry, 92, Vero Beach

John Lee Gundry, 92, of Vero Beach, formally of Lansing, Mich., passed away peacefully on Aug. 8, 2018, with family members by his side. He was born June 28, 1926, to George Lee Gundry and Helen (Chappell) Gundry in Chicago, Ill., and was raised in Grand Blanc, Mich.

He served in WWII in the Pacific theater as an army paratrooper. After the war, he attended Central Michigan University (CMU) where he was the captain of his college track team and President of Chi Phi Beta fraternity.  He obtained a Bachelor of Science degree from CMU and Master’s degree from Michigan State University.

He lived in Lansing, Mich., during his working career as a high school business teacher.  After his retirement from the Lansing School District, he traveled to Florida and discovered the Vero Beach/Sebastian area where he found a 5-acre parcel and built a home among the pine and palm trees.

Boy Scout leader, Order of the Arrow member, airplane pilot, cruiser captain, karate student, scuba diver, and foreign traveler are just a few of the many hats he wore.  He was the owner of the Dusty Lane Stables where he boarded horses for many years.

He loved the game of bridge and enjoyed the competition of his Monday night games. He was a member of the Sebastian Friendly Tennis Club where he developed many friendships.

He was an avid hunter.  He loved deer hunting in Michigan and elk hunting trips out west.  He was particularly proud of the 6 x 6 “Royal” elk he bagged in Colorado in 2006. He also made a once-in-lifetime trip to Alaska where he brought home multiple trophies.

He is survived by his three children, Sally Gundry, of Allen, Texas; Kirt (Deb) Gundry, of Lansing, Mich.; and John R. (Kathy) Gundry, of Green Bay, Wisc.  He is also survived by five grandchildren, John (Kate) Gundry; Kimberlee Gundry; Joseph Gundry; Austin Szymanowicz; and Laura Gundry.  He is also survived by his long-time friend and companion, Maggie Perry.

Family and friends will honor and celebrate John’s life by gathering for a Celebration of Life on Nov. 10, 2018.  Memorial donations may be made to the Hospice House of Vero Beach, 901 37th Street, Vero Beach, FL 32960.

John wanted everyone to know – It’s been quite a party!  Shoot Straight.


Carolyn “Kari” Lee Holin, 77, Vero Beach

Carolyn “Kari” Lee Holin, 77, of Vero Beach, died Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018, at her residence. She was born March 27, 1941, in Portage, Wisc. She was a resident of Vero Beach for 25 years coming from Plantation, Fla.

Kari received her Bachelor Degree from Valparaiso University, was a loving mother of three children, loved exercising and spending time with her grandchildren.

She was a member of the Indian River Club and attended Our Savior Lutheran Church.

Survivors include sons, Matthew (Tanya) Holin, of Neshkoro, Wisc., daughter, Marnie (Jeff) Gaskell of Vero Beach, and Andrew (Denise) Holin of Sun Prairie, Wisc.; and eight grandchildren.

A visitation will be held on Wednesday, Aug. 15, from 10 a.m.-12 p.m. at Our Savior Lutheran Church in Vero Beach. A Funeral Service will take place following the visitation. Please join the family for a celebration of Kari’s life with a luncheon at the church.

In lieu of flowers, the family has requested memorial contributions in Kari’s name to the Church Roof Fund at Our Savior Lutheran Church in Vero Beach, 1850 6th Ave, Vero Beach, Florida 32962.

The family has found peace in knowing that Kari has gone home and joined her soulmate, Herb, in God’s Kingdom of Heaven.


John C. “Smitty” Smith, 65, Vero Beach

John C. “Smitty” Smith, 65, died Aug. 9, 2018, at his residence in Vero Beach. He was born in Vero Beach, graduated from Vero Beach High School and was a lifelong resident.

Smitty worked at S.R. Smith and Sons with his brothers, then later as a self-employed carpenter. He loved the water and enjoyed especially fishing and diving.

Survivors include his son, Adam Smith (Emily), of Vero Beach; brothers, Daniel Smith and Paul Smith, of Vero Beach, Mark Smith, of Sebastian, and Jerry Smith, of New Smyrna; and of many nieces and nephews.

Memorial contributions may be made to American Kidney Fund, 6110 Executive Boulevard, Suite 1010, Rockville, Maryland 20852 in memory of John C. Smith.

Services were held at Strunk Funeral Home & Crematory, Vero Beach.


Charles J. Snyder, 67, Vero Beach

Charles J. Snyder, 67, of Vero Beach, passed away on Aug. 9, 2018. Charles was born in Philadelphia, Pa., on April 11, 1951.

He had moved from Austintown, Ohio, to Houston, Texas, prior to Vero Beach.

Charles served in the United States Navy during the Vietnam War.

He attended Fitch High School.

Charles is survived by his mother, Mary; brothers, Mike, Kenton, and Jeff; and his sister, Tamra.


Phyllis M. Sopkin, Vero Beach

Phyllis M. Sopkin (nee Vera), died Aug. 9, 2018, at VNA Hospice House in Vero Beach.

Born in New York, Phyllis was a graduate of Hunter College.  A long-time resident of Vero Beach, Mrs. Sopkin had her own catering and dessert business.

She is survived by her husband of 40 years, Greg; her daughter, Deborah Ivory (Duane); her son, Anthony Maestri (Jennifer); and four grandsons. She is also survived by her brothers, Dan Vera and Tom Vera; and sister, Susan Moran, all of New York.


Charles E. Sylvester, 88, Vero Beach

Charles E. Sylvester, 88, of Vero Beach, passed away on Aug. 12, 2018. He was born in Spring Lake Heights, N.J., and moved to Vero Beach in July of 2017.

Sylvester was a veteran of the United States Air Force. He retired from working with the U.S. Government in Ft. Monmouth, N.J.

He was a member of St. Catharine’s, Spring Lake, N.J. He volunteered at Spring Lake Fire Company #1 and could often be found on the tennis courts.

Charles is survived by his wife of 61 years, Mary Jane Sylvester; daughter, Grace Samis; son, C. Frederic (Lisa) Sylvester; daughter, Lynda (Sean) Clark; and son, Francis (Nejie) Sylvester; and three grandchildren, Shanna Sylvester, Anne Gadson, and Isaac Samis.

He was predeceased by his parents, Margaret and William Sylvester; and eight siblings.

A Memorial Service was held Tuesday, Aug. 14, at St. Helen Catholic Church, Vero Beach.

Contributions may be made in honor of Charles to Spring Lake Fire Co. #1, 1007 5th Ave., Spring Lake, NJ 07762.

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