Jack M. Staly, 95, formerly of Fairport and Macedon, NY and Hereford, AZ quietly passed away Tuesday, June 9, 2020 at St. Andre Health Care, Biddeford, ME. Jack was just one day shy of his 96th birthday on June 10th.
He was born in Fairport, NY, the 2nd son of the late Jay P. and Virginia (Reed) Staly. He grew up on the family farm on Ayrault Rd., Fairport, which is now the current location of Fairport High School. Military service took him off the farm in 1944 when he was inducted into the US Navy. He was stationed as an aircraft mechanic, Seaman 2nd Cl, at the Naval Air Station in Corpus Christi, TX. During this time, his brother, Jay R. “Reed” Staly was also serving in the US Navy in the Pacific theater. In late 1945, Jack was honorably discharged to return to the farm to help his family continue its operation.
In 1949, Jack married the love of his life, Betty J Schmaltz of Rochester and had 2 children, Patricia and Steven. The family farm in Fairport was sold in the early 1950’s and Jack and Betty, their family and Jack’s parents moved first to Rochester and then settled in Macedon. Jack held several manufacturing jobs, including at Xerox, and also several trucking jobs, most notably driving a gasoline delivery truck for Flying A. In the early 70’s, he purchased his first semi-tractor and started his second career as an independent, over-the-road driver, with his wife, Betty, by his side in the cab. They made deliveries in all the lower 48 states and Jack loved to tell stories of their adventures on the road. Jack never lost his love of farming and no matter where he lived; he always had a large garden filled with good produce, especially his favorite tomatoes. He often spoke of his early years on the farm and how much he missed those days. After his retirement in 1988, he was able to once again practice his passion by helping on the farm of his late close friend, Richard “Dick” Padgham of Farmington, NY.
In 2001, after visiting their son, Steve, in Arizona, Jack and Betty announced they were moving to Arizona to spend time with Steve and his family, soak in the warm weather and not have to shovel snow anymore! They lived in Hereford, AZ for 14 years, making many new friends and spending hours exploring and learning the “cowboy ways.” In 2015, as health issues started to compromise maintaining a house and yard, they agreed to move back East and closer to their retired daughter, Pat, with the understanding that they remain as independent as possible. Jack and Betty moved into Biddeford Estates, an assisted living community, where Betty still lives today.
Jack was a man of many talents. If it was broken, he likely could fix it. He loved to invent things, most notably his snake catchers which he made for friends and family. He loved to fly, ride Harleys and listen to old-time country music. For his 75th birthday, he fulfilled a longtime wish to go skydiving and made his jump along with his Grandson, Jason. He will be greatly missed by all those who knew and loved him.
Jack is predeceased by his parents, Jay and Virginia and brother Reed. He is survived by his wife of 71 years, Betty; daughter Patricia (Donald) Foote of Biddeford, ME; son Steven (Cindy) Staly of Tombstone, AZ, grandson Jason (partner Katrina) Staly of Groton, MA and granddaughter, Makenna Staly of Albion, NY. He is also survived by 5 great-grandchildren, Avry, Noah, Jonathan, Betsey and Jack; as well as many Nieces and Nephews; Great Nieces and Nephews; and Great-Great Nieces and Nephews.
The Family would like to recognize and thank Biddeford Estates, Biddeford, ME for providing a caring and nurturing home environment these past 5 years; St. Andre Health Care, Biddeford, ME for their empathy and exceptional skilled nursing care; and Compassus Hospice, Scarborough, ME for their compassion and guidance through Jack’s final days.
Arrangements are in care of the Hope Memorial Chapel, Biddeford, ME, www.hopememorial.com. A private burial will be at White Haven Memorial Park in Pittsford, NY at the discretion of the family. In lieu of flowers and to honor his military service, donations can be made in Jack’s memory to: American Legion Post 24, PO Box 247, Tombstone, AZ 85638.
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