Albert M. Shkane, D.O. 1927 - 2016
NEW HARTFORD - Albert M. Shkane, D.O., age 89, passed away peacefully on October 31, 2016 in the comfort of his home with his beloved wife, Joan, and darling dog, Della by his side.
He was born on April 9, 1927 in Utica, the son of the late Louis and Klelia Shkane, immigrants from Syria. He grew up in East Utica and was educated in the Utica Public School System which he held in high esteem. He graduated from T.R. Proctor High School in January 1945 and was the President of his class. When he was a boy, he delivered the Utica Observer-Dispatch on Elizabeth Street and Albany Street to 109 customers. He made five cents per week from each customer. Very shortly after graduation from Proctor, he entered the U.S. Navy and was trained as a Hospital Corpsman. He served most of his enlistment at the Long Beach Naval Hospital in Long Beach, California. He helped render care to sailors and marines who were wounded in the various battles of the Pacific Theater of Operations. He was honorably discharged as a Pharmacist Mate Third Class. Following his naval service, he entered Utica College of Syracuse University when it was located in and around Oneida Square. He graduated from Utica College in its first four-year class in 1950 majoring in Chemistry. For two years, he was employed at Griffiss Air Force Base as a technical writer. In 1952, he became a Pharmaceutical Representative for the Schering Corporation, later known as Schering-Plough. In 1952, he married the former Mary Rindenello of New Hartford, a happy, successful marriage of thirty-five years. In 1954, Albert entered the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine. Mary accompanied him to Philadelphia and supported him by working as a representative of the Pennsylvania Bell Company. After graduation, they moved to Saginaw, Michigan where he served an internship at the Saginaw Osteopathic Hospital. In 1960, he established a private practice in Long Hill Township, New Jersey, where for six years, he was the only physician in that town of 6,500 people. There were no physician-staffed Emergency Departments in hospitals at that time. His office served an an E.R. on many occasions. He practiced general and osteopathic medicine, obstetrics, pediatrics, otolaryngology, dermatology, performed a lot of minor traumatic surgeries, and anything else that was within his ability. And, of course, he made house calls, sometimes in the middle of the night, if necessary. He was on the medical staffs of the West Essex General Hospital in Livingston and the All Souls Hospital in Morristown, New Jersey. In 1968, he left his practice with his associate and became an Emergency Physician with the St. Elizabeth Hospital in Elizabeth, NJ, and later with the Memorial Hospital in Union, NJ. In 1972, he returned to his beloved Mohawk Valley when he accepted a position with the Rome Hospital as its first ever Emergency Department Physician.
In 1974, he had the urge to return to private practice, so he opened an office in Utica. At that time, he was the only practicing osteopathic physician in the entire Utica and Mohawk Valley area. Patients came from as far away as Inlet, Norwich, and Oneida to be treated by him. His wife, Mary was the receptionist and his nurses, Dorothy Tallini and Mary Rumbutis, made the patients feel special, which they were. In 1977, he was offered a position with the New York State Workers' Compensation Board as an Examining Physician. He had developed some health issues, so he accepted a part-time position with the WCB and continued his practice at a reduced level. Ultimately, he became a full time physician with the WCB and retired from practice in 1988. He retired from the WCB in 1994 after serving for seventeen years.
His wife, Mary died in 1988. To that marriage came the blessing of three children, Andrea, Louis, and Robert. In September of 1992, he married prominent attorney, Joan Teuchert. With his support, Joan subsequently was elected to a judgeship with the Family Court System of Oneida County.
Albert was of the Roman Catholic faith and was a parishioner of St. John The Evangelist Church in New Hartford and the Newman Center at Utica College. He was a member of the American Osteopathic Medical Association, the New Jersey Osteopathic Medical Association, The Central New York Academy of Medicine, and The American College of Emergency Physicians (Charter Member). He was an ardent golfer and a member of the Yahnundasis Golf Club for 37 years where he developed many wonderful, lasting relationships. One of his best lifelong friends was the late Judge George Betro whose daughter married Albert's son, Louis. On several occasions, Albert told Judge George that both had lived the equivalent of at least five lifetimes.
Dr. Albert was pleased and proud to have lived contemporaneously with so many outstanding people and to have seen the development of so many outstanding discoveries and accomplishments. He lived at the same time as FDR and Harry S. Truman as well as other great statesmen such as Winston Churchill, George Marshall, and many others. He lived at the same time as Generals Eisenhower, Mac Arthur, Bradley, and Patton. In sports, there was Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Mel Ott, Stan Musial, Ted Williams (his favorite), Joe D., Mickey Mantle, Jackie Robinson, and a host of others. In movies, there was Spencer Tracy (his favorite), Clark Gable, Henry Fonda, Bette Davis, Kate Hepburn, and Joan Crawford; in the music field, there was Frank Sinatra, (his favorite) in addition to Mel Torme, Mario Lanza, Ella Fitzgerald, Peggy Lee, and Barbara Streisand. He experienced the birth of television, jet aircraft, nuclear energy, wonderful vaccines, automatic transmissions, power steering, seat belts, coronary artery surgery, and MRI's, to name a few. He loved to read, especially Modern History. He read The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich more than twice, in addition to Churchill's six volumes of "The Second World War" and Churchill's "A History of the English-Speaking Peoples". He loved jazz and often played his guitar.
Albert is survived by his wife of 25 years, Joan; his daughter, Andrea Shkane and her husband Yuan Zee; his sons and daughter-in-law, Louis Shkane and Dr. Julie Betro-Shkane, and Robert Shkane; his grandchildren, Caroline Zee, and Charlotte Zee; Albert M. Shkane, and Kloe Shkane; his step-daughter Jill and her husband Mitch Blair and their children, Beau Blair, Alyssa Blair, and Jake Blair. He also leaves his nieces, Sharon Engle, and Sylvia and Wayne Gentile, and their families; nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews; his sole surviving cousin, Gloria Abounador; and in-laws, Al and Michele Barnes, Kate Cabrera, and their families. He was predeceased by his four beloved siblings and their spouses, Jeanette and Tully McKelvey, Antoinette Griffith, Anthony and Thelma Skane, and Edward and Margaret Shkane; and his nephew, Raymond Griffith; and his in-laws, Fred and Iris Barnes.
The family extends their gratitude to longtime friend and physician, Dr. Sudershan Dang; the New Hartford Volunteer Fire Department, EMT's, and staff of Edward Ambulance, for their timely and professional response; and Fr. Paul Drobin for his spiritual guidance.
The family honored and commemorated Albert's life at a private time.
In lieu of flowers, expressions of sympathy in the form of donations in Albert's honor may be made to the Stevens-Swan Humane Society, 5664 Horatio St., Utica, NY 13502, St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church, 66 Oxford Rd., New Hartford, NY 13413, or the New Hartford Fire Department, 4 Oxford Road, New Hartford, NY 13413.
Funeral services and Interment will take place privately and at the convenience of the family.
Albert loved his family, his country, his city, his alma maters, his profession, his patients, and his many loyal friends. He wished to be remembered as one of the members of Tom Brokaw's "Greatest Generation".
Online tributes at www.EannaceFuneralHome.com