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Grace S. Risley

Obituary Condolences

Grace S.
Risley
CAMPBELL, NY
Grace S. Risley, age 92, of Campbell, NY, passed away on Friday, March 21, 2014, at Corning Center. Born on August 8, 1921, in Utica, NY, she was the daughter of the late Gilbert and Elizabeth (Bennett) Pierce. Grace was a graduate of Bridgewater Central School and received a Master of Science Degree in Physical Education from Ithaca College. She married Ernest L. Risley on August 17, 1943. She was predeceased by him on November 14, 2003. Grace was the ultimate people person, always being upbeat, good-humored and optimistic, whether she was teaching, coaching and advising young people or cooperating with friends and colleagues on an untold number of boards and committees. Grace often served as surrogate parent for her nieces and nephews. She was a role model who left an indelible imprint upon their lives. To have known Grace was to have liked her, to have known her well was to have loved her. Grace was in a class all her own. Grace taught at Campbell and Addison before going to Corning in 1954. She was in charge of all girls sports activities at Corning Free Academy Junior and Senior High Schools from 1954 until 1963 and at East High School from 1963 until 1971. She started bowling programs at both schools and served as cheerleader advisor. At East, she formed the Trojettes, a marching and dancing group which performed in conjunction with the band. Grace was active in local and state teacher's organizations and was a member of the committees working toward reinstatement of girls' interscholastic sports in New York State. As a retired member of the NYSHPER department, she received its Golden Years Award for service in 1983. She is survived by her sister, Ruth (Zippy) Moyer, Cohoes, NY; niece, Betty Ann Hughes (Warren Sheldon), Scotia, NY; nephew, Ron Risley, Campbell, NY; niece, Judy (Dave) Woythal, Lindley, NY; niece, Kim Koutnik, Tallahassee, FL; and nephew, Bill (Terry) Risley, Liverpool, NY. Grace was predeceased by her niece, Carol Hughes. Grace was inducted into the Corning-Painted Post Sports Hall of Fame in 1986. She was presented the Dewitt Clinton Masonic Award for Community Service by the Savona Masonic Lodge. She was a member of the NYS Retired Teachers' Associations, Inc., Campbell United Methodist Church, member of the Campbell Savona School Board for 24 years and involved in the Campbell Lions Club Variety Show for many years. Grace was OES Past Matron, Past District Deputy Grand Matron and member of Tuscarora Woodhull Chapter 273. A Memorial Celebration will be held on May 4, 2014, at 2 PM at Fagan's Funeral Home, Bath, NY, with Pastor Veronica Seeley officiating. Memorial donations in Grace's name may be made to Senior Awards Account, Campbell Savona School, 8455 County Route 125, Campbell, NY 14821.
Published in The Observer-Dispatch on Apr. 27, 2014
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