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Neil J. Lazar

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Lazar, Neil J.

Owego: Neil J. Lazar, 91, passed away quietly at Cayuga Ridge in Ithaca, NY, under hospice care on Saturday, February 4, 2012. Neil was born in New York City on March 31, 1920. He was predeceased by his first wife of 50 years, Ellen Saltonstall; also his two sisters; and stepson, Jan Pierson. He is survived by his wife, Annette Haulenbeek Pierson-Lazar; his stepson, David Pierson; and Jan's wife, Carol Pierson. He graduated from New York City College with a Bachelor's degree in Biology. He taught biology, was an equestrian, owned two high end fabric stores, and always had a passion for fencing. Neil was involved in fencing since 1937. He was well-known in the sport of fencing and was a fencing master. Neil had a tremendous influence on fencing in New York, both in the city, where he was years ahead of everyone else in the colored uniform trend, and later upstate in the Binghamton and Owego area. He participated in the Empire State Games. He was nationally ranked in the top six in foil, épée and saber. Neil was inducted into the National Fencing Hall of Fame in 2001. Up until about two years ago, he was still giving fencing lessons from a wheelchair, as well as giving impromptu lessons at Binghamton University tournaments. He touched the lives of many young fencers over the years, and will be missed terribly. As Neil's friends are scattered worldwide, a universal memorial remembrance will be held on February 18, 2011 at 5:00 p.m. We suggest that friends take that time to toast Neil's life and have a moment of remembrance. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the Candlewood Fencing Foundation, c/o Tom Ciccarone, 272 White Street, Danbury, CT 06810. Please share your memories at

Published in Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin on Feb. 6, 2012
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