Harold Sylvester Bartholomew Hager
Harold, a long time resident of Painted Post passed away peacefully on December 8, 2019 at the Keuka Comfort Care Home in Penn Yan at the age of 102 with his son John at his side. He was born on May 17, 1917 (12 days before President John F. Kennedy) in Renovo, Pennsylvania the youngest of 7 children born to Susan Bartholomew Hager and Henry Hager. His dad was a blacksmith for the railroad and lived in many locations along the west branch of the Susquehanna River finally moving to Mill Hall, Pennsylvania in 1935. He graduated from Lock Haven High School in 1936.
Work was scarce in Centre County Pennsylvania after high school so Harold hopped a freight train to Corning where he worked as a cook in several restaurants and diners for a couple of years until 1939 when two very important life changing events happened: The first was he met and married Anna Hamman his partner of 71 years until she passed away in 2010. The second was a job at Corning Glass Works (now Corning, Incorporated) from which earlier this year he received his latest service lapel pin for 80 years of active and retired service. His active years with CGW were spent in various production jobs, then as a melting technician. He left the company as a melting foreman and then returned to that job as a contract employee for several years.
Harold never really retired. He loved his country. During World War II, he served in the United States Navy as a gunner on the USS Taconic. He loved living in Painted Post where he had the best neighbors in the world: Andrea and Ray Naylor with their son Ryan and grandson Matthew and Diane and Steve McGannon. He loved his service to the Village and the people of the Painted Post Fire Department. He retired from active firefighting as a deputy chief in 1984 when he seriously injured his left knee at the Painted Post Car Mart fire. But these great people never forgot him and honored his continued membership by inviting him to all of their social events as the years passed. He lost count of the number of fruit baskets and get well wishes they sent him over the years.
He loved his brother master masons. Where in the various lodges he served as master of his blue lodge twice, was a secretary for a number of years, was Assistant Grand Lecturer of the Steuben District, and he served a term as District Deputy Grand Lecturer of the State of New York.
Harold took up golf later in life and morphed that into a maintenance/groundskeeper position at Indian Hills Golf Club.
His final commitment was to Habitat for Humanity Restore through the Steuben County Retired Senior Volunteer Program where he gave thousands of hours rehabbing donations for sale.
Harold loved God and his friends at the United Church of Painted Post and was active for 48 years.
He is survived by his son and caretaker, John, by his granddaughter Colleen of Mountain View, California, and by nephew Carl Jack and nieces Kay Whitney and Linda Bennett of Texas.
A memorial service will be held in his honor at The United Church of Painted Post on Saturday December 21st @ 2PM.
The family asks that donations be made in Harold’s name to the Keuka Comfort Care Home, 35 State Route 54, Penn Yan, NY 14527.
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