Obituaries – 01-09-2013

Joseph P. Droukas

Joseph P. Droukas, 64, died Dec. 29, 2012. He was born July 22, 1948, in the Bronx of New York City, N.Y., the son of Sam and Anna (Michilli) Droukas.

He graduated from Eastchester High School and spent several years at Belknap College.

Mr. Droukas  spent many years in the music industry, recorded several albums and performed for many years at venues across the country. For the past 20 years, he was employed by Sierra International as a regional sales manager.

He is remembered as a loving and devoted son, brother, father, grandfather and friend to so many.

Visitation was Jan. 4 at the Wilkinson-Beane-Simoneau-Paquette Funeral Home, Laconia, N.H. A Mass of Christian burial was celebrated Jan. 5 at St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church, 300 NH Route 25, Meredith, N.H., by the Very Rev. Dennis J.  Audet, V.F. Memorial donations may be made to the Make-A-Wish Foundation of New Hampshire, 814 Elm Street, Suite 300, Manchester NH 03101.

Wilkinson-Beane-Simoneau-Paquette Funeral Home & Cremation Services of Laconia, N.H. was in charge of arrangements. To provide condolences, go online to

Mr. Droukas is survived by daughter Anarita; mother Anna; his long-time partner and companion, Cynthia Piscopo Howland; brothers George and John of Holmes Beach; stepson Duke Laflamme; nieces Christina, Mary Ann, Jessica, Sara and Mckenzy; nephews John Patrick and John Christopher; grandchildren Maddie, Jackson and Harrison; and cousins who were like siblings to him.


Rock Curtis Payne

Rock Curtis Payne, 83, of Holmes Beach, died Dec. 28. 2012.

Mr. Payne was a lifelong resident of Manatee County. He was born Oct. 26, 1929, in Gillette. He attended Palm View Elementary and graduated from Palmetto High School. He enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in 1950, serving in France and Germany.

He graduated in 1956 from Florida State University, where he met and married the love of his life, wife Joanne. After a short time working as a reporter for the Atlanta Constitution, he returned to Palmetto to become the editor of the new Palmetto News.

He later received a master’s degree in educational administration from the University of Florida and started his second career as an educator, although he never forgot his passion for writing. He completed his autobiography many years later. He spent the rest of his professional life, more than 30 years, as an educator. His first teaching position was in social studies at Walker Junior High School in Bradenton. He later served as principal at Parrish Elementary, Samoset Elementary and Bayshore Middle School. He opened Sugg Middle School in 1975 and served there until his retirement in 1988.

The family noted he was a wonderful husband and father whose love and devotion to his family will never be forgotten.

Graveside services were at Fogartyville Cemetery Jan. 3 with the Rev. Jerry Jeter of RiverLife Church officiating. Arrangements are by Griffith Cline Funeral Home, 720 Manatee Ave. W., Bradenton.

Mr. Payne is survived by his wife of 56 years, Joanne; daughters Jo Nan and Robin and husband Jeffery Spann.


Terry Alan Petesch

Terry Alan Petesch, 62, of Cortez, died Nov. 27, 2012.

Mr. Petesch was the owner of Terry’s Framing and Art Supplies, 5360 Gulf of Mexico Drive, Longboat Key.

Friends of Mr. Petesch held a celebration of his life Jan. 6 at the Longboat Key Center for the Arts on Longboat Key.

Mr. Petesch is survived by his godsons, twins Clay Sidner and Cole Sidner and David Radtke.


Joseph M. Rothberg

Joseph M. Rothberg, Ph.D., 76, of Anna Maria since 1998, formerly of Silver Springs, Md., died Jan. 3. He was born Oct. 27, 1936, in Chicago to David and Toyla Rothberg.

Mr. Rothberg married Jeanette Dean at the University of Chicago’s Rockefeller Chapel Oct. 4, 1969. He had a distinguished academic and professional career, having been recruited at age 16 into the gifted program at the University of Chicago, where he eventually earned his doctorate in mathematical biology. His tenure at Chicago was interrupted by service in the U.S. Army and another degree program at the Illinois Institute of Technology.

In 1970, he was employed until retirement at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research in Maryland. The focus of his career was research on suicides in the military, with dozens of published articles, some connected by defense and military officials, such as Gen. Colin Powell.

In addition to his primary research, Dr. Rothberg trained military psychiatrists and psychiatric residents in the art of designing, writing, publishing and defending their own professional research and findings. In 1979, he served as visiting professor of computer science at Oregon State University, Corvallis. He also continued to serve the U.S. Department of Defense as a consultant, advisor and adjunct professor.

Memorial services will be held at a later date. Brown & Sons Funeral Homes & Crematory 43rd Street Chapel is in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be made at

Dr. Rothberg is survived by wife Jeanette; sons Michael William and Benjamin David; daughter-in-law, Atsuko; and grandchildren Aimee, Logan and Kaleb.

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