Wednesday, July 25, 2007

short obit. ($362.50 was too much)

This is the version I'm sending to the Hornell Tribune. The long version would have cost $362.50 to run in that paper. The long one should run in the Alfred Sun this week, and in the September Sabbath Recorder. Now I'm going to bed.

Reverend David Stillman Clarke died in Sayre, PA., on July 11, 2007. David was born to Agnes Kenyon Clarke and Ford Stillman Clarke on March 3, 1919 in Hornell, N.Y. David’s father died from Influenza later that year, so David and his two older siblings were raised by their mother and their grandparents, Alpheus B. and M. Veola Kenyon.
After graduating as class valedictorian from Alfred Union High School in 1937, David attended Kansas State University and studied entomology for one year. In 1938, David transferred to Alfred University, where he earned his Bachelor of Arts from Alfred University in 1941. In Alfred, David met Frances Catherine Polan. He married her on May 31, 1942.
David spent one semester at the Graduate Theological School at Oberlin College before returning to Alfred, earning a Bachelor of Divinity from the Graduate Theological School at Alfred University in 1944. He was Missionary Pastor to the Seventh Day Baptist Church at Jackson Center, OH for the next year and a half. David was ordained a Minister of the Gospel on June 7, 1944, just six months before the Clarkes’ first child was born.
In 1945, David took a position as Assistant Missionary Secretary of the Seventh Day Baptist Missionary Society, necessitating a move to Westerly, R.I. The Clarkes’ first son was born in there in 1946, then a daughter in 1949, and another in 1950. David was promoted to Executive Secretary of the Missionary Society in 1951.
From 1951 to 1955, David served as pastor of the Seventh Day Baptist Church in New Auburn, WI. He was also active in an effort to start a church in the Twin Cities. In 1955 David was called to the Seventh Day Baptist Church in Boulder, CO., where the Clarkes’ second son was born. David was active in programming for a camp operated by the church. David next served as pastor, from 1961 to 1963, of the Seventh Day Baptist Church at North Loup, NE., and was involved in the camping program there. In 1963, David was called to serve the Seventh Day Baptist Church in his hometown, Alfred, N.Y., where his eldest daughter was at college. He continued in this capacity until 1970.
David was Executive Secretary of the Seventh Day Baptist Board of Christian Education from 1970 to 1976. In this capacity, he worked to create and promote resources for Christian camping and church school programs. He edited the denomination’s Bible Study guide, The Helping Hand, in 1974.
From then on, David and Frances cared for his elderly mother and great-aunt, then an aging cousin and several family friends. With all their children grown, the Clarkes took in student boarders from China and Tunisia. David served as caretaker and trustee of Camp Harley Sutton, and continued to be active in church and community affairs. He did volunteer work with the Allegany County Office for the Aging, managed a Food Pantry and helped his youngest son build his house. Cancer ended Fran’s life in 1998, after fifty-six years of marriage.
David married Ethel Davis Dickinson two years later, and had moved to her home in Fort Mill, SC., but returned to Alfred when she moved into assisted living, in 2006. David worked on the manuscripts of two books for several months until his own health began to fail, leaving editing and publication to his children.
David was pre-deceased by his father Ford Clarke, who died on August 23, 1919, his step-father Ahva John Clarence Bond, who died July 26, 1958, and his mother, Agnes Bond, who died on October 7, 1985. He was also pre-deceased by his sister Mary Roberta Clarke who died September 16, 1939, and his brother, Ford Kenyon Clarke, who died April 12, 1999. His wife, Frances died on April 19, 1998 but his second wife, Ethel, survives him. He is survived by all five of his children, Roberta Ellis of Queensbury, N.Y., D. Sherman Clarke of New York, N.Y., Cathy (Bruce) Baumgarten of Syosset, N.Y., Carol (Barbara Crumb) Clarke of Branchport, N.Y., and G. Douglas (Jeanette) Clarke of Alfred Station, N.Y. He is also survived by five grandchildren, Kim (Brian) McKay of Cambridge, N.Y., Michael (Sue) Ellis of Rumney, N.H., Michael Baumgarten and Ilana Baumgarten, both of Syosset, N.Y., and Ian Clarke of Alfred Station, N.Y., and three great-grandchildren, John, Kate, and Lucy McKay of Cambridge, N.Y.
A service of remembrance and celebration will be held at 1:00 on August 4th, 2007, at the 1st Seventh Day Baptist Church of Alfred, N.Y. A reception will follow in the adjoining Parish House. Interment will be at Alfred Rural Cemetery, at a later time. Condolences and other communications may be sent to the family at 33 South Main Street, Alfred, NY 14802 or In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to the 1st Seventh Day Baptist Church of Alfred, New York, the Seventh Day Baptist Board of Christian Education, or the Alfred Rural Cemetery Association.

1 comment:

gdeecee said...

Well, I whittled it down so it will only cost $177.63. Dad deserves it.