Ralph Persons Jr.
Ralph H. Persons Jr., 89, of Pine Hill died Sunday evening, November 24, 2013 at Kingston Hospital surrounded by his loving family.
He was born in Schenectady on March 9, 1924, a son of the late Ralph and Clarida Hebert Persons Sr. Ralph served in the U.S. Army where he was an amphibious engineer with the First Engineers, Special Brigade, who landed at Utah Beach in Normandy France for the D-Day June 6 invasion. It was their job to get tanks, trucks, artillery, ammunition; all the equipment ashore. He was awarded the Croix de Guerre by French President Charles de Gaulle, as well as the European African Middle Eastern Service Medal, Good Conduct Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal. Ralph loved animals, as evidenced by the fact, that he smuggled home from Europe and adopted a dog named ETO, named for the European Theater of Operations!
He was a member of the Margaretville American Legion Post 216, and the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
A former resident of Schenectady, he was a salesman, and subsequently owner and operator of Do-Mor Office Furniture having been employed for almost 35 years. He was a parishioner and long-time usher at the St. Francis de Sales Church in Phoenicia, as well as being a 4th Degree Knights of Columbus. Ralph and his wife Sylvia were weekend residents at the home of his grandparents, Charles and Adele Sanford Persons, and permanently moved to Pine Hill in 1986.
He had many hobbies including fly fishing, flower and vegetable gardening, model railroading with the Margaretville RR Club, and appreciating the beauty of nature. He passed that on to his children, often quizzing them about the various hardwoods and pines that they would see in the forest. Ralph was also a noted watercolor artist who studied under such well-known names as John Pike, and W.B. Romeling. Many local charities and fundraisers were aided by the generous donations of watercolor pieces from his collection. He generally enjoyed working on rural landscapes and seascapes.
Surviving are his wife, who he married October 9, 1948, Sylvia Peters Persons; three sons, Michael of Sagandaga Lake, Matthew and Jacqueline Persons of Pine Hill, and Mark and Cynthia Persons of Pine Hill and four daughters, Margaret Dee and Jack of Buffalo, Mary Persons-Arthur and Jacob of NC, Marcia and Nick Mariani of Schenectady, and Michele and John Wooton of Pine Hill. Six grandchildren, Nicholas (and Katie) Persons, Jared Persons, Sarah (and Gavin) Bellows, Michael Hopkins, Solomon ( and Chevonne) Arthur, and Nathanial Arthur, nine great grand children and two extended grandchildren also survive.
Friends were received at the E. B. Gormley Funeral Home in Phoenicia on Tuesday, Nov. 26 from 2 to 4 p.m. Military honors were conducted Tuesday afternoon at the Gormley Funeral Home. Friends will be received at the E.B. Gormley Funeral Home, Phoenicia on Wednesday, Nov. 27 from 10 a.m. until mass.
His funeral procession will form on Wednesday, Nov. 27 at 11:30 a.m. at the E. B. Gormley Funeral Home, 87 Main Street, Phoenicia, thence to the St. Francis de Sales Church where at noon a Mass of Christian Burial will be offered by Fr. Raphael Ianone.
Burial will be in the family plot at St. Joseph’s Cemetery in Schenectady. You may share a condolence or light a memorial candle at Ralph’s Memorial Page www.gormleyfuneralhome.com
Funeral arrangements are under the guidance of the E. B. Gormley Funeral Home.