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Howard W. Adams

December 15, 1924 — August 22, 2022

Howard Walter Adams died on Monday, August 22, 2022, at the Veterans’ Home in Oxford, NY, at the age of 97. He was born in Binghamton, NY on December 15, 1924, the third child of Rev. Charles Wesley and Mabel (Porter) Adams. He grew up in various towns in New York State and northern Pennsylvania, where his father served as a Methodist minister.

After graduating from Otego High School, Howard enlisted in the U.S. Army. He served in WWII as a lead tank driver in Patton’s army in Europe, landing at Normandy during the D-Day invasion and later fighting in the Battle of the Bulge, and liberating a German concentration camp. These were experiences he rarely talked about, but which certainly shaped his subsequent life.

After the war ended, he came to Sherburne, NY, where his father was serving as the Methodist minister, and it was there that he met Martha Miner, who he married the following year. Theirs was an extremely happy marriage and partnership that lasted almost sixty years, until Martha’s death in 2006.

Howard went into the real estate business with his father-in-law, Floyd “Bucky” Miner, and Leo D. Craine: a firm known as Craine-Miner-Adams, and then as Adams-Miner-Adams after Mr. Craine’s retirement. They had as many as twenty salespeople throughout Chenango and Madison counties, handling the sales of farms and residential properties, organizing auctions, and doing property development. The main office was in the center of Sherburne. It was not only a business office but a warm and friendly social place where people often stopped for a visit; Howard was well known for his warmth, his friendliness, and ready sense of humor.

He was a gifted musician, having been raised in a musical family, and had a beautiful tenor voice. He sang at weddings and funerals in his younger years, led a barbershop quartet, sang in the church choir, strongly supported the Sherburne band and local musical productions, and could sometimes be convinced to take part in a play or musical event. He was also a talented cabinet-maker and craftsman who built his own home; in later years he became an expert in the repair and restoration of antique phonographs and clocks.

He was a Charter Member of the Sherburne Rotary Club, working actively on many projects from building the Sherburne swimming pool to the annual Rotary Auctions, and the founding of the Rogers Environmental Education Center.

Howard was also a dedicated amateur athlete who was one of the first people in the village to take up jogging in the early 1960s. He kept in shape for many years by running, and he did the Royal Canadian Air Force Exercises every morning well into his 90s. He was a great supporter of Sherburne’s wrestling team, and loved to play golf, but his main competitive sport was table tennis. He competed regionally, and at the state level, attaining a high ranking, and was invited to participate in the National Senior Games where he won first place in 2015. He continued competing in the 90-and-over age group until only a few years before his death.

Howard is survived by his daughter, Beth Adams and son-in-law, Jonathan Sa’adah, of Montreal; his nieces and nephews, Floyd Blanchard, Barbara Blanchard Marso, Paul Adams, Nancy Adams, David Havsky, and Karen Adams; his sister-in-law, Doris (Mrs. F. Porter) Adams; and several great-nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his two brothers, Rev. F. Porter Adams and Wesley Adams; his sister, Audrey Adams Havsky; and by his beloved companion of the past four-teen years, Barbara Higley, of Norwich, NY.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, September 10, 2022 at 10:30 AM at Emmanuel Episcopal Church in Norwich, NY. Private internment with military honors will take place at the family plot at the Christ Episcopal Church Cemetery in Sherburne, NY. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Howard and Martha Adams Scholarship Fund, c/o Beth Adams, P.O. Box 724, Sherburne, NY 13460.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Howard W. Adams, please visit our flower store.

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Saturday, September 10, 2022

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