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Richard M. Lavalley
May 10, 1934 ~ October 31, 2023 (age 89) 89 Years Old
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Richard M. Lavalley, the son of Melvin and Helen Lavalley and born in Tupper Lake, NY, on May 10, 1934, passed away peacefully on October 31st, with family by his side.
“Dick” was educated in Tupper Lake schools, leaving high school to enter the United States Navy during the Korean War, at which time he received his GED and an Honorable Discharge,
In 1954, returning to reside in Tupper Lake, he was employed in several auto agencies, the Tupper Lake National Bank, Sunmount VA Hospital, and Sunmount State School, from which he resigned to Attend SUNY Potsdam as a Psychology major. He met his wife, Ethel, during his time at the VA Hospital, and they married in Hermon, NY, on May 22, 1965. There, he attained the academic honor of being on the President’s List, and as a senior, was selected to teach Introduction to Psychology to Freshman students.
Following graduation in 1977, he accepted employment with St. Lawrence County as a Youth Employment Counselor, and he eventually became the Summer Program Coordinator. He moved on to work at the St. Lawrence Psychiatric Center. During that time, he continued graduate school, which was completed in 1982 at St. Lawrence University in Canton, NY. Dick retired from State Service and accepted final employment at the Program Director for Seaway House before retiring altogether in 1997. His final years of service to the community saw him acting as a volunteer on the Board of Visitors at the St. Lawrence Psychiatric Center, as a strong advocate for the mentally ill.
His interest in community youth resulted in him coaching girls’ basketball at the elementary, high school, and A.A.U. levels. Additionally, over a number of years, he and his wife were to sponsor numerous basketball scholarships for young female athletes.
Dick was most proud of his family and their successes. He is survived by his wife Ethel (Bill) Lavalley, and his three beloved daughters: Aimee Martini (Wayne Smith), Alicia Wentworth (Mark), Denise Sero (Reuben Jr.), and his fur babies, Jake and Dash. He was predeceased by his infant daughter Beth Ann, forever known as “Notre Petite Fleur.” He treasured his incredible grandchildren: Hannah and Morgan Martini; Nicholas, Emily, and Luke Wentworth; and Lowen and Olivia Sero. Additionally, he had many nieces and nephews who were special to him.
No formal calling hours will be conducted; however, burial will be held at the Hermon Cemetery at 10:00 am on Saturday, November 4th. A Celebration of Life will be held at the Lavalley family home, immediately following, from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm, at 3130 County Route 21 (Canton-Pyrites Road) in Canton.
In Lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Canton Athletics Boosters Club, 99 State Street; Canton, NY 13617.
Memories and condolences may be shared online at www.olearyfuneralservice.com. Arrangements for Richard M. Lavalley are under the care of the O’Leary Funeral Service of Canton.