2005 Annual Meeting

Funeral Consumers Alliance of Western Massachusetts


held Sunday, Oct. 16 at the Rockridge Retirement Community, Northampton

Minutes of the October 16, 2005 Annual Meeting

The meeting was called to order at 2:10 PM by John Fatherley, President, at Rockridge Retirement Community in Northampton. The minutes of the 2004 Annual Meeting were read and accepted. The Treasurer's Report was reviewed and accepted.

Cecelia Lewonchuk reported on the problem of newsletters being returned by the Post Office because forwarding had expired. She requested that members notify us quickly of address changes.

At the request of an audience member, we discussed the possibility of establishing a local green only cemetery - a cemetery that allows no embalming or chemicals, no caskets or vaults or tombstones, and where the land is left in its natural state - not to be developed. The consensus was that we could help through publishing the issue in our newsletter and by presenting the greenburial option as part of our public education effort. The process of establishing a green cemetery may also be a topic for a future meeting.

New Trustees were nominated for vacant positions and unanimously elected, as follows: 

One Year Term: Dick Brown, Chicopee; Carol Coan, Greenfield; Marcia Durell, Holyoke; 

Two Year Term: Doug Barnshaw, Springfield; Linwood Dodge, Stockbridge; Thomas Wilson, Shelburne Falls; 

Three Year Term: John Fatherley, Chicopee; Cecelia Lewonchuk and Eileen Pratt, Springfield.

Officers were nominated from the Trustees, and unanimously elected, as follows: 

President - John Fatherley, 
Vice President - Doug Barnshaw, 
Secretary - Eileen Pratt, 
Treasurer - Cecelia Lewonchuk.

Cecelia Lewonchuk volunteered to take meeting notes if Eileen Pratt was out of town, and Doug Barnshaw volunteered to assist the Treasurer in preparing financial reports.

Carol Coan , past President, introduced our speaker, Mark J. Bemardin, co-author with his brother of the recently published book Choosing Your Path: How Massachusetts Residents Can Take Control of their Medical Care, Estate Plans, and Funeral Arrangements. (This book is available from PoiDog Books, 140 Elm Street, Andover, MA 01810, or by calling 978-685-1177, Mon-Sat 10 AM to 5 PM.)

The meeting was adjourned at 4:00 PM. 

Minutes above submitted by  - Eileen Pratt