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Daniel W. Spain

Obituary
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Spain, Daniel W. TROY Daniel W. Spain, 67, whose ability to meet people and make new friends made him well known in his hometown, died on Wednesday, July 16, 2014, at Samaritan Hospital after being stricken while on his daily walk through the neighborhood near his home. A lifelong resident of Troy, he was the son of the late John H. and Josephine McGovern Spain. At the time of his death and for most of his adult life, Dan was a resident under the care of the ARC of Rensselaer County. Most recently, he was living at an ARC unit at the Park Ridge Apartments. Previously, he lived in other group residential facilities operated by the ARC in Brunswick, in Lansingburgh and in his home neighborhood of Beman Park. Earlier this year, Dan retired after years of participating in the ARC's Riverside Enterprises sheltered workshop program and became a daily attendee of the Eddy Daybreak Program on Burdett Avenue. Growing up, he was a member of St. Paul the Apostle Parish. In recent years he belonged to St. Augustine's Parish in Lansingburgh, where he regularly attended the 9:30 a.m. Sunday Mass. All his life, Dan was an incredibly curious individual who would strike up a conversation with almost anyone he encountered. He impressed many with his uncanny memory and his ability to recall, with incredible detail, dates and events of his past. His gentle way always brought out the best in people and, in turn, people gave their best to him. He always spoke well of his neighbors and those who cared for him. He affectionately referred to his colleagues served by ARC as "my people." Dan was respected, loved and cared for by the ARC staff and the faith community of St. Augustine's Church, for which his family is most sincerely grateful. Dan was a past participant in the local Special Olympics competition, enjoyed movies and was an avid bowler. He was also a proud member of the Troy Ancient Order of Hibernians, whose members warmly embraced Dan as one of theirs. Dan was born on February 19, 1947, at a time when many children with developmental disabilities such as his were institutionalized. The fourth of eight children, he remained home where he was schooled by his family. He was a lover of popular music of that time, most especially Elvis Presley, Perry Como, Ricky Nelson and Mitch Miller. During his teen years, he began attending programs available under the newly formed Rensselaer County Association for Retarded Children, an organization his father helped to establish and had once served as president. As the ARC grew, so did Dan's participation in its many programs and services, including its ongoing Self Advocacy Program. Dan was the brother of Joseph H. Spain (Susan) of Darien, Conn.; Edward O. (Kathleen) of Troy; the Rev. John H. Spain, a Maryknoll missioner in El Salvador, Mary S. (Jeffrey) Holt of Valatie; Francis X. (Kristen Kelch) of Brooklyn; Michael V. (Debi) of Schenectady; and Anthony P. (Louise Gregg) of Garden City. Dan was predeceased by his infant sister, Kathleen Anne. In addition to his siblings, Dan is survived by 20 nieces and nephews and 29 grandnieces and grandnephews. Dan also leaves behind many cousins as well as his godmother, Caroline Wales. He also is survived by his extended family at the ARC of Rensselaer County, including his housemates Steve and Ryan, and his friend Sue. Friends may call at the Doran Funeral Home, 9 South Lake Ave., Troy, from 3 to 8 p.m., on Sunday, July 20. A Mass of Christian Burial will held be at St. Augustine's Church, 534 Fourth Ave., Troy, at 1:30 p.m. on Monday, July 21. Burial will be at St. Peter's Cemetery, Troy. The family would like to thank the extended family, friends and neighbors who were there for Dan throughout his life and the emergency personnel who were with Dan at the time of his passing. The family has requested that, in lieu of flowers, contributions be made in Dan's memory to the ARC of Rensselaer County, 79 102nd St., Troy, NY 12180.
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Funeral Home
Doran Funeral Home
9 S Lake Ave Troy, NY 12180
(518) 272-8441
Published in Albany Times Union from July 19 to July 20, 2014
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