Departed Friends

Remembering those who remain in our memories — and our hearts— because of their care and concern for the camps.

James L. “Robin” Ledwith

2020: While a Freshman at College in 1955, Robin Ledwith was looking for a summer job. Leonard Ferguson advertised for summer staff and Robin followed up. Robin was a counselor for two years during his Freshman and Sophomore summers in College. He was a member of the Navy ROTC at Princeton at that time and was facing his first active duty with summer exercises in his junior year (1957) and full active service upon graduation in June 1958.

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After he came out of the Service and graduated from Law School, he visited Leonard as he had on a regular basis, to discuss all matter of affairs, including the Camp. At that point, Leonard suggested Robin cross over the line and join the Board; this probably would have been in the mid 1960s. The rest is history!

He was President of the Board for about fifteen years, before turning the job over to Noel Turner a few years after Leonard retired in 1982. Although he relinquished his job as President, he continued for many years to serve as a board member and past President.

He is an honorary member of College Settlement’s Board of Trustees, as is his wife Katherine. Our hearts go out to Kathy.

Dave DeRosa

2018: Dave DeRosa was a treasured friend of College Settlement and The Outdoor School for almost two decades. Educator, mentor, inspirer of students—and recipient of The Outdoor School Award at our 2017 annual Gala—Dave’s impact on College Settlement’s Outdoor School is simply incalculable. No one was a greater proponent, and he helped shape the traditions and culture of the program for nearly twenty years.

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In 2017, we chose to recognize Dave for his impact on the Outdoor School Program presenting him with our Outdoor School Award at the Acorns to Oaks Gala. Anyone who was there will not forget the enthusiasm displayed in that short film of him and his students, nor will they forget that his award was stolen by a T-Rex! Dave’s antics and sense of humor were legendary and he could bring a smile to almost anyone. Dave taught 5th Grade Math at Upper Merion Middle School where he was inducted into the Upper Merion Wall of Fame for his outstanding service.

He also devoted much of his time outside the classroom to College Settlement as well as the North Penn Boys & Girls Club. Dave led an extraordinary life, inspiring countless people every day. He brought math to life for his students with his creative lessons, including his custom-made hippopotamus tie and his 20-foot inflatable whale. He was also known for impersonating a pirate, and for surprise visits dressed as a T-Rex or Troll. Dave was passionate about running and competed in a half-marathon, mud-run, 10K or 5K nearly every weekend. He was also active in several local running clubs.

He passed away unexpectedly on July 4th. He was 46 years old. The number of lives Dave touched was extraordinary. He leaves his loving wife, Wendy, his three children.

Henceforth, the Outdoor School Award will be known as the Dave DeRosa Outdoor School Award.

Charlotte Jane Perry

2017: Charlotte Perry, a longtime College Settlement corporation member, passed away on March 16th, 2017. There are many wonderful stories about Charlotte’s love of this camp and how her knowledge of birds—as well as her passion for the card game bridge—ended up being an asset to our programming, our campers, and our summer staff.

Howard Bazar

2012: Howard Bazar started his association with The College Settlement Camp in 1964 when he was hired as a cabin counselor. At the time he was attending West Chester State College pursuing a BS in Education. During his tenure as a Camp Summer Employee he was also Mansion House Unit Leader, Assistant Pool Director and in his last summer in 1972 he was the Assistant Director. At that time the Assistant Director was a seasonal position with the responsibility of running the entire Camp. Soon after leaving the employ of the Camp he was elected to the Board of Trustees. He served on the Board for 39 years from 1973 to 2012. He was our longest serving Board Member.
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Over the years Howard served on the Personnel, Program and Friends Committees. In his 48 year association with the Camps, he brought invaluable knowledge and expertise. His quiet, contemplative presence at Board and Committee Meetings was very much appreciated by all. He was infamous for keeping in touch with former staff and camp friends through his luncheon events. He was truly connected to the Camps. Howard was dedicated to the work of the Camp and he will be sincerely missed by Board and Staff.

Marion W. Martin

2012: Marion W. Martin, a longtime former Board Member and most recently an Honorary Board Member, passed away on June 7, 2008, and through her generosity bequeathed $50,000.00 to College Settlement Camp.
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Marion was born in the Roxborough section of Philadelphia on November 7, 1909. Her family moved to Fort Washington when she was 7. She first became involved with The College Settlement in the early 1950s through her friend Dorothy Hallowell, a longtime Board Member. She was an active Corporation and Board member for nearly five decades. Marion’s fondest memories were working with all the ladies preparing the June Supper. In the early 90s, Marion donated the funds to build the fireplace and the porch in Davies Hall, both of which have been greatly enjoyed by campers and staff alike. She was honored in 2000 for her longtime support and dedication to the mission of The College Settlement Camp and was one of the first two people to receive the Anna Freeman Davies Founders Award.

Evelyn S. Bissig

2009: Evelyn S. Bissig passed away on April 16, 2009, at the Abington Hospice in Warminster PA at the age of 83. She is survived by her son, Gary, daughter-in-law Natalie, three grandchildren David, Lauren and Michael, her brother William Schweriner and family, as well as her dear friend Cass Smitka.
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Evelyn was a 1943 graduate of Germantown High School and a member of the National Honor Society. She was a member of Theta Omega Theta Sorority and served as President from 1948-49. She married Henry Bissig in September of 1949 and they were together until his death in 1988. Evelyn was an avid golfer and past member of Oak Terrace Country Club and Old York Road Country Club. She retired after a long career with the State of PA serving as Chief of Staff of the Legislative offices of State Senator Stewart Greenleaf. After retiring, Evelyn was appointed Secretary of the Horsham Neighbors Association and was a founding member of the Horsham Police Chief’s Advisory Teams. She also sat on the Corporation of The College Settlement of Philadelphia and Henry J. & Willemina B. Kuhn Day Camp, and served as Vice Chairman of the Horham Republican Party.

Jeanne R. Bruno

2009: Jeanne R. Bruno of Horsham died at home on Wednesday, May 13, 2009, surrounded by her loving family. She was 65.
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Jeanne was born on December 18, 1943, in Jamaica, NY, daughter of the late Bartholomew and Rose (Riley) Cosgrove. She was the beloved wife for 42 years of Stuart Russell “Russ” Bruno. She is also survived by sons James Bruno and Michael Bruno and his wife Sharon; grandsons Bobby Bruno, Ryan Bruno and Anthony Bruno. Jeanne was sister to Bart Koon-Cosgrove and partner Thom Koon-Cosgrove; Vincent Cosgrove; Mayanne Coopersmith and her husband, Stan; and was aunt to Rose, Kaitlin and Michelle. She is also survived by many cousins in Long Island, NY.

Christine Y. Swanson

2009: Christine Y. Swanson of Maple Glen passed away on Tuesday, June 23, 2009, after a courageous 10-year battle with ovarian cancer. She was 67.
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Chris was the beloved wife of Ralph A. Swanson. She was born in Philadelphia, a daughter of the late Donald and Edith (Buerckle) Yarnall. A resident of Maple Glen since 1987, she grew up in Springfield, Delaware County, and Long Island, NY, before moving to the area. She has served for years on our corporation, in particular on the Program Committee.