WHITEHALL, N.Y. - Clifford N. Sparks, 76, owner of Skene Valley Country Club, passed away Sunday, September 9, 2012, at home with his family by his side, after a long battle with lung disease.
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Born on October 6, 1935, in Niagara Falls, N.Y., he was the son of the late Gladys and George Sparks. Cliff graduated from Niagara Falls High School and Alfred State University with a degree of Associate in Applied Science.
He married his childhood friend and high school sweetheart, Patricia Ann Thomas, in 1955 in Niagara Falls, N.Y. After their marriage, they moved to Fair Haven, Vt., where Cliff worked as a cattle artificial inseminator. In 1960, Cliff and Pat bought a dairy farm in Whitehall, N.Y. Cliff eventually turned his farm into an 18-hole golf course.
Cliff was a member of the BPOE Elks Lodge #1491. He enjoyed spending the winter months in Lake Suzy, Fla. He was an avid golfer and hunter. Some of his favorite pastimes were playing in the annual Bigfoot Golf Tournament with his grandsons and hosting an annual fishing derby for his grandchildren. Cliff enjoyed sitting and chatting with all the friends he made through the years of owning the course.
He is survived by his loving wife of 57 years, Patricia Sparks; his five children, Deborah Sharrow of Gansvoort, Cheryl (John) St.Clair of Whitehall, Dawn (Greg) Grenier of Whitehall, Jeffrey Sparks (Marcy Deyo) of Whitehall, Lori (Jeffrey) Seidel of Fairport, N.Y.; his 13 grandchildren, Matthew (Rachel) Waters of Granville, Rebecca Sharrow of Queensbury, Grant (Amanda) Sharrow of Granville, Travis (Jenna) St. Clair of Wilton, Lindsey St.Clair (Tyler Frakes) of Plattsburgh, Brittany St.Clair of Whitehall, Jennifer (Michael) Wolfe of South Glens Falls, Heather (Zachary) Owen of Hartsville, N.Y., Brandon Sparks (Matthew Lavin) of Whitehall, Allison Sparks of Whitehall, Jordan, Austen and Camryn Seidel of Fairport, N.Y.; his great-grandchildren, Mia and Ava Waters, Payton and Lucas Sharrow, Jonathon Frakes, Jordan and Bailee Wolfe; step-grandchildren, Justin, Jordan and Jennie Grenier, baby "Owen" Averi Ferguson; his brother, Ken and sister-in-law Suzy Sparks of Springfield, Va.; one nephew, Derrick Sparks, and niece, Stacy Brent.
Special thanks to Washington County Hospice and Dr. Diercksen.
Calling hours will be from 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, September 11, 2012 at Jillson Funeral Home in Whitehall, N.Y.
Funeral service will be Wednesday, September 12, 2012, at 11 a.m. on the 18th hole at Skene Valley Country Club in Whitehall, N.Y.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the
, 1717 Central Ave., Suite 105, Albany, NY 12205; or Washington County Hospice, 415 Lower Main St., Hudson Falls, NY 12839.
Published in Rutland Herald on Sept. 11, 2012