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Maurice J. Hannon

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Maurice J. Hannon Obituary
Maurice J. Hannon, 75, of Angelica, N.Y., passed away at Olean General Hospital on Friday (July 18, 2014) as a result of complications from pneumonia. He was born in Glenwood, N.Y., the son of John and Loretta (Rogers) Hannon. He married the former Elizabeth (Betty) Murphy in Springville N.Y., in 1965.

After attending St. Aloysius grade school and Griffith Institute and Central High School, both in Springville, he entered the U.S. Army and was stationed at Ft. Richardson, Alaska. He thoroughly enjoyed his time there, skiing and exploring the beautiful Alaskan landscape. One of his favorite stories was to relate his unique experience of marching in the celebration parade when Alaska became a state in 1959.

After his enlistment ended, Maurice returned to Springville to work a few years on the family farm. He then attended Alfred Agriculture and Technical Institute and continued on to West Virginia University in Morgantown W.Va., where he received his Bachelors Degree in Agriculture Education. From there, he and wife Betty returned to Western New York, buying a home in Angelica where they have resided for 45 years. Maurice was hired to teach at the new BOCES Career and Technical Center in Belmont, N.Y., in its inaugural year. As the Conservation and Heavy Equipment Operation teacher, he always felt fortunate that he had the "original hand" in the development of the 300-acre site at the school. Later, he facilitated the construction of the first operating sawmill at the Center.

However, the professional accomplishment for which he was most known was the development of the maple syrup production operation there. Many evenings, weekends, and spring breaks were spent in the woods collecting and boiling sap. His students were very eager to also give of their time and participate in the experience, and many of them went on to establish sugar-making operations at regional farms. During several summers, Maurice directed the Youth Conservation Corps (YCC), a federally funded program for the implementation of pavilions and nature trails in various local state forests. As a teacher he touched the lives of so many students throughout Allegany County that the Hannons could never attend a public event or be at a restaurant or out shopping without some former student enthusiastically greeting Maurice with a "Hello, Mr. Hannon, remember me?" He thoroughly enjoyed all of these conversations.

Maurice served in various public capacities in his lifetime. He was a member of the Angelica Village Board, the Conservation Department Soils and Natural Resources Committee, the Angelica Conservation Club and the Angelica Boosters Committee, helping with many Heritage Days Weekends in the town park. His biggest contribution to public service occurred after he retired from teaching when he gave much time and effort to the merger committee for the former Angelica and Belmont Central Schools. After the establishment of the new Genesee Valley Central School in 1996, he served as its first School Board President.

Mr. Hannon contributed his energies over the years as an usher, Parish Council President and the annual Catholic Charities Chairman for the former Sacred Heart Church in Angelica. Whenever a new priest was assigned to the parish, he would spend considerable time with Maurice getting acclimated to the parish operations.

In retirement, Mr. Hannon was able to pursue two of his favorite activities. One was travel and he enjoyed revisiting the places of his Army deployment in Alaska. His interest in Genealogy allowed him time to do in depth research on his Hannon family line and also his wife's Murphy family line. In connection with this interest, the Hannons were able to make several trips to Ireland to visit the exact sites/homesteads of their ancestors. Maurice was one of the true descendants who could regale all with that famous Irish story telling ability!

He is survived by his wife, Betty, and three children: John is Associate Dean of Students at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pa.; Bart is an Allegany County Deputy Sheriff; and Colleen follows in her father's footsteps working in education. He is survived by one brother, Michael Hannon, and two sisters, Margaret Keeney-Fink and Kathleen Lunders, and he was predeceased by one brother, James Hannon. Maurice's recent pride and joy has been his only grandchild, Molly Rose Hannon, daughter of Bart and wife Kim. He was her first babysitter and had continued daily to enjoy her gifts of general joy and enthusiasm for life. She definitely inherited her grandfather's humor and storytelling ability.

To send a remembrance to the family or to light a candle in Maurice's name please visit www.brownandpowersfuneralhomes.com.

Visitation will occur at Brown and Powers Funeral Home in Angelica on Tuesday (July 22, 2014) between 2 and 4 p.m. and between 7 and 9 p.m. The funeral Mass will be celebrated at Holy Family Church in Belmont on Wednesday (July 23, 2014) at 11 a.m. Co-Celebrants for the Mass will be Rev. Dennis J.J. Mancuso and Rev. William Bigelow, a cousin of Maurice. Burial will follow at Until the Day Dawn Cemetery in Angelica.
Published in Hornell Evening Tribune on July 21, 2014
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