Edward Gleason Obituary

Edward J. Gleason

July 22, 1943 - December 21, 2009
Resided in Kingston, NY
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Obituary

EULOGY for EDWARD J. GLEASON offered by his cousin at the Funeral Mass:

GOOD NIGHT, ED. I LOVE YOU. AND I LOVE YOU, JENS. THAT IS HOW WE ENDED EACH OF OUR CONVERSATIONS, INCLUDING OUR LAST.

IT IS DIFFICULT TO OFFER AN ADEQUATE DESCRIPTION OF MY BELOVED COUSIN, EDWARD. HE WAS EVERY MAN'S MAN – DOWN TO EARTH, EASY TO TALK TO, THE QUINTESSENTIAL "REGULAR GUY". NONETHELESS, THAT DEVIL-MAY-CARE FAÇADE BELIED THE HIGHLY INTELLIGENT AND DEEPLY SENSITIVE MAN BENEATH. HE WAS, IN ALL RESPECTS, A TRUE DICHOTOMY. HE COULD BE BORED BY A HIGHLY ACCLAIMED ACTION FILM, YET SIT FOR HOURS WATCHING THE STOCK TICKER SCROLL ALONG THE BOTTOM OF HIS TV SCREEN. HE HELD BOB DYLAN IN THE SAME REGARD AS FRANCIS SCOTT KEY. HE LOVED THE ADVENTURE OF BIG CITIES, BUT FOUND HAPPINESS IN LIVING A QUIETER LIFE HERE IN KINGSTON.

DURING HIS EARLY YEARS, GROWING UP IN BROOKLYN, ED COULD BEST BE DESCRIBED AS A SCAMP. I VIVIDLY REMEMBER MY MOTHER HANGING UP THE PHONE AFTER A CONVERSATION WITH HER SISTER, JOAN, EDDIE'S MOM. SHE SHOOK HER HEAD AND DECLARED THAT THE BOY "WOULD BE THE DEATH OF HER SISTER". ON RAINY DAYS, WHEN HE WASN'T ABLE TO GET OUTSIDE TO ENGAGE IN HIS USUAL MISCHIEF, HE WOULD RUN CIRCLES AROUND THE DINING ROOM TABLE – NON-STOP AND FOR HOURS – WITH THE SOLE PURPOSE OF DRIVING HIS MOTHER TO HER WITS' END.

AS HE GREW UP, THE MISCHIEF BECAME MORE INTENSE – HE KIDNAPPED LOCAL MERCHANTS' PETS AND HELD THEM FOR RANSOM. HE GOADED HIS FRIENDS INTO BETS THEY COULDN'T POSSIBLY WIN – WITH THE PAYOFF BEING THEIR PERFORMANCE OF HIS HOUSEHOLD CHORES. WHILE POSSESSING THE ABILITY TO ACE EVERY SUBJECT EFFORTLESSLY, HE CONTINUALLY EMBARASSED HIS SIBLINGS WITH CONSTANT MISBEHAVIOR IN PAROCHIAL SCHOOL. I HAVE TO INTERJECT HERE, THAT HIS FATHER, MY UNCLE ED, A QUIET UNASSUMING MAN, WAS SECRETLY AMUSED BY THE ACCOUNTS OF EDDIE'S MISDEEDS.

AND, MY AUNT JOAN, A USUALLY NO-NONSENSE WOMAN, WOULD FEIGN INDIGNANCE OVER HIS PRANKS. IF THE TRUTH BE TOLD, ON MORE THAN ONE OCCASION, I WITNESSED HER BERATING HIM WITH A STRING OF EXPLETIVES, ONLY TO TURN AWAY FROM ALL OF US AND GIVE A CHUCKLE AT THESE LATEST ANTICS.

ED WAS A FIERCELY PROUD AMERICAN, HAVING SERVED HIS COUNTRY BOTH WILLINGLY AND COMPETENTLY IN THE UNITED STATES NAVY. YET, AT THE SAME TIME, HE BECAME ALL PUFFED UP WHEN BRAGGING ABOUT HIS IRISH LINEAGE. I THINK WE CAN ALL RECALL WHEN, WITH A TWINKLE IN HIS EYE, HE WOULD SPARK THE LATEST ROUND OF DEBATES CONCERNING WHETHER THE IRISH OR ITALIANS REIGNED SUPREME. AND NOT ONE OF US IS A STRANGER TO BEING LURED INTO MEANINGFUL DISCUSSION ON HIS CURRENT TOPIC OF CHOICE. HE COULD CHARM THE BIRDS OUT OF THE TREES. BUT UTTER A WORD WITH WHICH HE DISAGREED, AND YOU WERE PROMPTLY AND SUMMARILY DISMISSED.

THE TRUE TESTAMENT TO HIS GENIUS WAS THE YEARS HE SPENT WITH IBM. THE ATMOSPHERE OF UNBRIDLED CREATIVITY WHICH MARKED THE EARLIER YEARS IN TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENT WAS A PERFECT MILIEU FOR THIS RENEGADE. ANOTHER NOD TO THE CONTRADICITION WHICH PERSONIFIED OUR EDWARD, HE ADAPTED WELL TO THE BUTTONED-DOWN CORPORATE IMAGE, AS LONG AS HE HAD FREE REIGN TO EXPLORE HIS OWN INNOVATIONS.

FROM CHILDHOOD, THE VERY CORE OF ED'S BEING WAS HIS CONNECTION TO FAMILY. HE LOVED HIS PARENTS, HIS SIBLINGS –BROTHER, JIM, WHO PREDECEASED HIM IN 2007; HIS SISTER, SUGAR; AND, OF COURSE, HIS FRIEND AND CONFIDANTE, YOUNGER SISTER, KATHLEEN. BUT HIS CAPACITY TO LOVE DID NOT STOP THERE. WHEN EDDIE AND PATRICIA (NOTE: I DID NOT SAY PAT. WHILE MOST OF US KNOW HER AS THAT, TO ED, SHE WAS ALWAYS HIS PATRICIA) BEGAN THEIR LIFE TOGETHER, ED EMBRACED HIS NEW BROTHERS AND SISTERS-IN-LAW IN A BOND THAT LASTED UNTIL HIS FINAL BREATH. HIS DEAR FRIENDS, JOE AND JERRY, AND HIS BELOVED BETTY AND EMELIA WERE INTEGRAL PARTS OF HIS ADULT LIFE. SISTER KATHLEEN'S MARRIAGE IN 1972 PRESENTED HIM WITH YET ANOTHER ITALIAN TO DISPARAGE AND LOVE, HIS BROTHER-IN-LAW AND FRIEND, RALPH.

IT IS NO SECRET THAT THE SOURCE OF HIS PRIDE, HIS FULL MEASURE OF DEVOTION WAS VESTED IN HIS LOVING SONS -- EDWARD, THE CENTER OF HIS FATHER'S UNIVERSE, WHO MIRRORS HIS DAD'S YOUTHFUL GOOD LOOKS AND TEMPERMENT, AND, SEAN, WHO WAS TAKEN SUDDENLY IN 1987, AND WHO POSSESSED HIS FATHER'S UNCANNY LOGIC AND INTELLIGENCE, AS WELL AS HIS LOVE OF MISCHIEF. I SHOULD NOTE, HOWEVER, THAT ED NEVER MET A BABY HE DIDN'T LOVE – AND HIS FONDNESS FOR HIS NIECES – JOAN, KATHLEEN, ERIN, NICOLE AND MEGAN, ALSO KNOWN AS HIS "SWEETHEARTS", AND HIS BUTTON-BUSTING PRIDE FOR HIS NEPHEWS, MICHAEL, SHANE AND MICHAEL WAS APPARENT TO ANY OF US WHO WERE SUBJECTED TO HIS ENDLESS BOASTING. IN RECENT YEARS, HAVING BEEN PRESENTED WITH A NEW GENERATION OF BABIES -- GRANDNEPHEWS AND GRANDNIECES -- HIS JOY MULTIPLIED.

PERHAPS THE MOST ENIGMATIC OF ED'S RELATIONSHIPS OCCURRED DURING THE FINAL CHAPTER OF HIS LIFE. THE ALLIANCE WHICH DEVELOPED BETWEEN ED AND HIS DEVOTED CAREGIVER AND COMPANION, ARTURO, DEFIES EXPLANATION. TAKEN AT FACE VALUE, ONE WOULD THINK THAT THERE WAS LITTLE BEYOND THE VERBAL SPARRING THEY SHARED. BUT THESE TWO MEN CARED DEEPLY ABOUT EACH OTHER. EDDIE WOULD CONSTANTLY EXPRESS CONCERN FOR THE HEALTH AND WELL-BEING OF HIS FRIEND. HE WAS PROUD OF ARTURO'S SON, MOSES, WHEN HE ENTERED THE ARMED FORCES AND FELT A FATHER'S CONCERN WHEN HE WAS DEPLOYED, AND HE REVELED IN THE ACCOMPLISHMENTS OF ARTURO'S DAUGHTERS. AND ARTURO, IN FACT HIS ENTIRE WONDERFUL FAMILY, WERE UNFAILINGLY ATTENTIVE TO SEEING THAT ED'S NEEDS WERE MET.

I KNOW I SPEAK FOR EDWARD IN ASKING THAT YOU KEEP HIM IN YOUR MEMORY, BUT DO NOT MOURN HIS PASSING. HE HAS GONE ON TO A BETTER PLACE – FREED FROM THE FOUR WALLS AND WHEELCHAIR THAT CONFINED HIM SINCE SUFFERING AN ANEURYSM. HE IS WITH HIS BELOVED SEAN, HIS MOTHER, FATHER AND BROTHER AND ALL HIS LOVED ONES WHO HAVE GONE BEFORE – AND HE IS ALWAYS WITH US WHOM HE LOVED SO DEARLY.

GOOD NIGHT, ED. I LOVE YOU.

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Edward J. Gleason, Jr. of Linderman Ave., Kingston died Monday, December 21, 2009 at The Thompson House, Rhinebeck. He was 66.

He was born in Brooklyn, a son of the late Edward and Joan Sullivan Gleason. Mr. Gleason served in the US Navy from 1962 - 1964 on the USS Randolph during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Mr. Gleason was a graduate of both Orange County Community College and Ulster Community College. He began a 30 year career at I.B.M., Kingston in 1966. In 1996 he retired as a Systems Engineer. He belonged to the Quarter Century Club.

His son Sean Gleason died October 31, 1987; one brother James F. Gleason died previously.

Surviving are his son Edward J. Gleason III of Los Angeles, CA, his wife Patricia Amendola Gleason of California; two sisters Kathleen Vanacore and her husband Ralph of Pelham Manor and Elizabeth Loughlin and her husband Patrick of Orlando, FL; brother in laws and sister in laws Emelia and Shannings "Jerry" Moore, Betty and Joseph Amendola; cousin Kathleen Graham; nieces and nephews and other cousins.

A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at St. Joseph's Church, 242 Wall St., Kingston on Wednesday at 1:00 p.m. Interment will follow in St. Mary's Cemetery. There will be no calling hours.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the "Sean Gleason Memorial Scholarship", Kingston City Schools, 61 Crown St., Kingston, NY 12401.
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Services

Funeral Home
Simpson - Gaus Funeral Home
411 Albany Avenue
Kingston, NY US 12401
Funeral Mass
St. Joseph's Church
242 Wall St.
Kingston, NY US 12401
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
1:00 PM
Cemetery
St. Mary's Cemetery
322 Foxhall Avenue
Kingston, NY US 12401
Wednesday, December 23, 2009

 

 

 

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