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May 6, 2014

Irene Howard Church

Irene Howard Church

ONEONTA — Irene Howard Church, 89, formerly of Edmeston, ended her earthly journey May 3, 2014, at Chase Nursing Home in New Berlin.

She was born on July 27, 1924, in Brooklyn. She was predeceased by her first husband, Robert T. Howard. She married Edward Lynn Church in 1984, a union that brought joy and harmony to both of them. Edward predeceased Irene on Dec. 11, 2011.

Irene graduated from Edmeston Central School at 16 and started her secretarial career with NYCM. She also married, began her family as a farmer’s wife and mother. After her children began school, she worked at many other endeavors during her lifetime.

These included being employed as a family court clerk for Judge Frederick Loomis. She retired as the chief clerk for the Otsego County Surrogates Court. Irene had also been employed by attorney Johnson’s Law office, New York State Assemblyman Paul Talbot, secretary for FHA of Oneonta and served several years as Edmeston Town Clerk.

Irene has been a member of the Second Baptist Church Edmeston for more than 50 years.

Her lifetime hobbies included her love of sewing where she progressed into a talented quilter. Today her quilts grace the homes of her devoted family and are enjoyed by all. Irene was an avid gardener, with a large flower and vegetable garden where she would putter endlessly.

Irene is survived by her family, Linda Jean and Fred Emhof of Burlington Flats; her daughter-in-law, Elizabeth Howard of Chunchula, Ala.; her grandchildren, Jeffrey and Denise Arnold of Edmeston, Mark and Cynthia Arnold of Burlington Flats, Kevin Howard and Keith Howard of Oneonta; four great-grandchildren, James Arnold, Susan Arnold (John) Hawes, Kathryn, and Emily Arnold; a special niece, Ann Slocum of Laurens; and very special cousins from Long Island and their families.

She was predeceased by her parents, Edward and Margaret Johnsen; her sons, David Karl Howard (1993), and Thomas Howard (1944); her brother, Robert Johnsen; and sister, Joan Thorsland.

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