Martin P. Whalen, 72, cheese company executive, Marine veteran

Martin P. Whalen, longtime resident of Ridgefield, died on January 15, 2013 at Danbury Hospital.  He was 72 years old and was preceded by his wife, Kathryn A. Whalen, to whom he was married for 32 years.

Mr. Whalen was born in White Plains, NY to Thomas and Anne Molloy Whalen on March 17, 1939, St. Patrick's Day, special because of his Irish heritage.

He attended Archbishop Stepanac High School, then served in the United States Marine Corps.  He attended NYU and graduated with a degree in finance.  He was a top Executive at Nestle for several years and went on to become president of Gerber Cheese international.

He was an avid skier and was an instructor on weekends in his younger years.  He also had a love of golf, traveling many times to Ireland to play.  He also enjoyed traveling around the world with his wife, including the last QE2 sailing for two months.

He is survived by his son, Alan E. Smart, wife, Beverly, and grandson, Samuel, of Leesburg, VA; his daughter, Pamela Smart and Steven Chimblo of Greenwich; and son, Robert L. Smart of Mexico and grandson, Matthew Smart of Ossining, NY.; a brother, James Whalen, and his wife, Cathy, of Peekskill, NY,; two sisters, Barbara Hansen and her husband, Richard, of Rye, NY; and Cathy Gendron and her husband, Joseph, of Princeton, NJ.; and several nieces and nephews.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Monday, January 21, 2013 at 10:15 a.m. at St. Mary's Church, Ridgefield with Fr. Russell Augustine, parochial vicar, officiating.  Entombment will follow at the family mausoleum at St. Mary's Cemetery, Ridgefield.  The family will receive friends in the Kane Funeral Home, 25 Catoonah St., Ridgefield, on Sunday, January 20, 2013 from 2 to 5 p.m.

Contributions in his memory may be made to The American Lung Association, 45 Ash Street, East Hartford, Ct. 06108.