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Shelter Island Reporter obituaries: Bolakas, Dominik, Franklin, McAlonen, Southwick

William “Bill” Bolakas

William “Bill” Bolakas of Kingston, N.Y. passed away in his 84th year on Wednesday, July 14, 2021. 

Born in the Bronx and raised in Brooklyn, he is survived by his loving wife Claudette, brother John, sons Paul and Vance and grandchildren Brant, Lana, and Wade.

A proud veteran, Bill served in the Army Reserve during the Korean War.  He had a stellar career as an engineer for UPS. A lover of classical music, baseball, and authentic NYC bagels, Bill was a kind-hearted, hardworking family man who will be sorely missed and treasured in our hearts forever, his family said.

Bill loved being on Shelter Island, which he discovered in 1996. He thoroughly enjoyed his cozy home with its serene flora and fauna, particularly the various songbirds that frequented the Island. He was laid to rest with military honors.

Contributions can be sent to: The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Three International Drive, Suite 200, Rye Brook, NY 10573.

Cynthia Barker Dominik

Cynthia Barker Dominik passed away on June 28, 2021 at the age of 89, after a long siege with Alzheimer’s Disease.

Born in Mattituck to Bertha and Clarence Barker, she grew up in Shelter Island Heights. Cynthia graduated from Shelter Island High School with her nine classmates in 1949. She was married to the late Walter “Duke” Dominik for 44 years, and they lived in Milltown, N.J., where Cynthia worked as a bookkeeper.

Her brother, Clarence Jr., predeceased her in 2005. She is survived by her sister, Patricia Barker, and by numerous nieces and nephews, with whom she shared many hours of fun and laughter over the years.

Those who knew Cynthia will remember her as the life of the party, always keeping things spirited and upbeat and her family said, “We miss her.”

Lynn Celia Franklin

Lynn Celia Franklin of New York, N.Y., and Shelter Island passed away on July 19, 2021, at her home in New York City at the age of 74 from advanced metastatic breast cancer, diagnosed in 2011.

Born in Chicago on August 18, 1946, she was the daughter of career Army officer Col. Joseph B. Franklin and British-born mother Teresa Franklin. They moved frequently, and Lynn attended eight different elementary schools, before graduating from Fairfax High School in Virginia. She graduated with a B.A. in French from American University in 1968.

Fluent in French, she worked at the European Book Company before moving back to Washington, D.C., where she worked at the original Sidney Kramer Books, prior to taking a job in New York in 1969 with French publisher Hachette, Inc.

In 1976, Lynn began her independent career in publishing. She became a literary scout in 1978, representing international publishers, advising about forthcoming books in North America and helping them acquire rights to publish in their respective languages and territories. In 1992, she partnered with Todd R. Siegal to form Franklin & Siegal Associates, Inc. (FSA) that today, now under Siegal’s sole ownership, represents over 20 major publishers around the world, and also scouts books for Hollywood film and TV.

Lynn also headed the Lynn C. Franklin Associates literary agency, that specialized in non-fiction and represented authors who she believed had a vital voice and message. Her greatest joy was representing Archbishop Desmond Tutu worldwide for more than 20 years and developing a close and treasured bond with him and his family. Other notable clients included Deepak Chopra (for his book Perfect Health), Rafer Johnson, Nobel Laureate Jody Williams, Mary Robinson (former President of Ireland), Terry Wahls, and Lee Cockerell. In 1990, then Indian Member of Parliament P.V. Narasimha Rao asked her to represent him as the author of the novel Insider, which was published after his subsequent tenure as Prime Minister of India.

Lynn loved traveling and immersing herself in different cultures, particularly India and South Africa, as well as Europe. During an early visit to Russia in 1989, Lynn, a longtime practitioner of Transcendental Meditation (TM), arranged an invitation for Deepak Chopra, then a key figure in the TM organization, to present the benefits of meditation to doctors and academics. While there, the first students were initiated in the practice, and Lynn received the Maharishi Award for her contribution.

In 1983, Lynn purchased a house on Shelter Island and relished time enjoying her home and the community. After a peripatetic life as an “army brat,” and after all her travels, she most looked forward to coming back to Shelter Island, often with new treasures acquired along the way. Nothing pleased her more than gathering fresh flowers and vegetables from her garden and inviting visitors and local friends for dinner, especially for summer evenings on the deck.

In 1993 Lynn was joyfully reunited with her birth son, Hardie Stevens, whom she had relinquished for adoption in 1966. She was always grateful for this merciful grace in her life as she was welcomed into his wonderful, loving family. Subsequently, she served for many years on the boards of Spence Chapin Services for Families and the Donaldson Adoption Institute. She was a strong advocate for reforms that promoted best policies and practices in adoption.

Lynn will be remembered for her love of family and friends worldwide, adventurous spirit, leadership and integrity, generosity and ultimately her commitment to live each day fully for the 10 years she lived with metastatic breast cancer. 

She is survived by Hardie, his wife Heidi and grandchildren Lindsay and James, and her sister Laurie Franklin Callahan and husband Steve Webb, and her niece Erin Ingham and husband Mark Ingham, and their children Gabriel, Arthur, Petra and William.

A memorial service will be held at the Shelter Island Presbyterian Church on Sunday, September 19, at 3 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to:

Shelter Island Presbyterian Church – PO Box 612, Shelter Island, NY 11964, or METAvivor.org. METAvivor remains the sole US organization dedicated to awarding annual stage 4 breast cancer research grants. Unless otherwise specified by the donor, 100% of every donation and 100% of proceeds from every fundraiser (after event expenses) goes to research grants.

Ruth Ann McAlonen

Ruth Ann McAlonen of Shelter Island passed away on July 20, 2021.

Survived by siblings Francis Vincent Joseph, and Joan McVeigh. She was proud of her Irish / Polish heritage, adored being a resident of Shelter Island, and loved her dog Daisy.

The Liturgy of Christian Burial was celebrated on Thursday morning, July 29th at 10:30 A.M. at Our Lady of the Isle Roman Catholic Church, officiated by Father Peter DeSanctis. Interment took place at Calvary Cemetery in Woodside, NY on Friday, July 30th at 11:30 A.M. where Ruth was laid to rest with her parents Thomas and Bronislawa.

Donations in Ruth’s memory benefitting animal welfare would be appreciated.

The Shelter Island Funeral Home is serving the family.

Bill Southwick

On January 21, 2021, the obituary of Bill Southwick was shared in these pages.

Meg Southwick, along with her sons, Rick and Bill, and their families, are hosting a reception in Bill’s honor and invite you to join them on Friday, Aug. 13 at Shelter Island Country Club from 4 to 6 p.m.

Feel free to stop by and share any memories of Bill, or just to say hello.