Willie Maude Kopff, 96, of Hamden, received her angel wings on Thursday, May 3, 2012, at Connecticut Hospice in Branford, with her daughter Helen Schaefer by her bedside. Willie was the cherished mother of E.Christian Kopff (Carmen) of Louisville CO; Peter C. Kopff (Dianne) of Garden City, NY and Helen L. Schaefer (Robert) of Hamden. Willie was a loving and supportive grandmother to Haley and Molly Schaefer and Kimberly, Barrett and Theodore Kopff. Willie was the widow of Lt. Col. Frederick L. Kopff Jr. and Richard G. Kopff. She leaves many adoring nieces, nephews, cousins and friends behind. Willie was born on August 10, 1915, on a farm in Mineral, Virginia, to the late Fitzhugh Lee and Caroline Ratcliff Compton. Among many accomplishments, Willie was awarded first place in the Miss Louisa County 1934 beauty pageant. She left the farm to follow her dream of becoming a nurse and graduated from Flushing Hospital School of Nursing in New York. In 1945 Willie married Frederick, they lived and raised their family on Long Island. After living in New York for over fifty years and the death of her two husbands, Willie moved to Hamden in 1996. She loved being involved in the lives of her children and grandchildren. In addition she found a second family at the Spring Glen Church .There she contributed to activities such as the Merry Mailers, Meals to Heal, and Krafty Ladies. Willie lived her life with wisdom, humor, practicality, and a positive attitude, always putting others ahead of her self. As she advanced in years, Willie continued to be a consummate role model as she possessed a sharp and open mind and a compassionate heart. The family wishes to thank her wonderful home care takers and the staffs of Atria Larson Place, Whitney Manor and CT Hospice in Branford. Friends are invited to visit with her family at BEECHER & BENNETT, 2300 Whitney Ave., Hamden on Monday, May 7th, from 4 to 7:00 pm. A Memorial Service Celebrating her life will be held on Tuesday May 8th, at 9:00am at the Spring Glen Church followed by a burial in Pine Lawn Cemetery on Long Island. In lieu of flowers donations in Willie's memory may be sent to, Spring Glen Church, UCC 1825 Whitney Ave., Hamden, CT 06517

View current weather.

Memories Timeline

View the Timeline


  1. I am so sorry for the loss of your dear Mother and Grandmother. I will always remember Aunt Willie with fond memories.

  2. My family sends our deepest sympathy to the Willie Maude’s family. Today has been one of reflection. I thought about the trips Aunt Willie would make to Mineral to see Grandma (Caroline), Cecil, Burnie, Cecilia and Calvert. Also, she would visit Myrtle, Earl, Robin and Julie. We had southern food and talked. I recall flying to New York to spend several days with Aunt Willie after Earl passed away in 1972. When I left for college, I wrote notes to her about what I was studying. Our notes became emails as the years progressed. Many years later, I married a yankee who grew up in Queens but left for the south to attend Duke University. Ironically, I was at University of North Carolina-Greensboro but we did not meet until we moved to Atlanta. During one trip to New York, we drove to Hamden so Aunt Willie could meet my husband, Frank Pellizzi and our son, Chris Compton Pellizzi. Chris bonded with Willie. She was vibrant and beautiful. I will miss you, Aunt Willie.

  3. My memories of Mrs. Kopff go back to Helen & my very early years at Waldorf School. I will always remember her warm & welcoming ways, & how she always made me feel right at home. We spoke on the phone several times, even after I had graduated from college & was working in NYC. My love & prayers go out to all the family. Paula Valentine Gonthier

  4. Helen, Chris and Peter, Hearing of your mother’s passing has brought back a flood of memories; living across the street from the Kopff family for more than 30 years our families shared both happy and sad times; graduations, confirmations, weddings and , yes, funerals. Your mother was a dear, dear friend to all the Hagermans and I will miss her cheery phone calls and notes. As Dr. Topkins (who worked with your mother at Franklin General Hospital) once said to me: .After God created Willie, he threw away the mold.. She was a very special person and I will miss her dearly. She’ll be a part of me forever.

  5. Helen, My condolences to you and your family. I am glad to hear you were with mom when she went to be with God. Love, Alice

  6. Helen: My thoughts and prayers are with you at this most difficult time. I know you were such an important support for your Mom during her last days. Hope to see you at our Thursday group. Vivian Orie

  7. Helen Thinking of you and your family during this difficult time and sending warm thoughts, wishes, hugs and a little yellow lab hair. Take good care.

  8. So sorry to hear of the loss of your Mom. No matter at what age, its not easy to accept.

  9. Helen, Peter and Chris, I have just read of your wonderful mothers passing and wish to extend my family’s deepest condolences to you all. I had just spoken to my mom a few days prior to her passing and she had mentioned that she wished that Willie would be coming to Hudson Grove this summer, how she longed to see her old friend. I find it comforting that they left us so close to each other and know that they share a place in heaven together, as old friends with renewed strength. I have such fond memories of your mom, she was one of the kindest people I have ever known. I am pleased that my wife had the opportunity to meet your mom, she was warm and inviting as always and we sat on the back porch of the camp and spoke at length of our memories of summers in the Grove. I hope this wish finds you all well and comforted in the memories of a truly wonderful mom. Bruce Werley

Sign the Guestbook, Light a Candle

Sign the Guestbook