The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

January 8, 2013

William J. Kearney

The Daily Star

---- — William J. Kearney

COBLESKILL — William J. Kearney, 83, a longtime active resident of Cobleskill, passed away Thursday, Jan. 3, 2013, at the JFK Medical Center in Atlantis, Fla., following a brief illness.

Mr. Kearney was born Nov. 24, 1929, in New York City, a son of Thomas and Jeanette (Christ) Kearney, and graduated valedictorian of his class in NYC public school.

He enlisted in the U.S. Army serving from 1951 to 1953, as a radio operator stationed in Germany, and received an honorable discharge as a Corporal.

Bill moved to the Cobleskill area immediately following his discharge and began his career with the former New York Telephone Company. He began as a lineman and quickly worked his way up to Switchman serving 35 years before his retirement in 1991. He never missed one single day of work due to illness.

He was a communicant of St. Vincent de Paul R.C. Church.

He was a member of the Telephone Pioneers, BPO Elks Lodge No. 2040 Cobleskill, the Cobleskill VFW and American Legion, and served as Scoutmaster for the Boy Scout Troop No. 93 in Cobleskill.

Bill enjoyed square dancing and was a member of the Schoharie Valley Hayshakers. He loved going to listen and dance to the Big Band and Swing music. He was active in the Schoharie County Irish Heritage Association and entertained in area nursing homes for many years.

He enjoyed woodworking. He was very handy at home maintenance, doing all of his own carpentry, plumbing and electrical work.

He married Jean Beverly (Kennedy) Kearney in 1952, until her death in 1974. He was also predeceased by a sister, Margaret; and brothers, Thomas and Robert.

Survivors include his wife, Ursula (Schappert) Kearney, whom he married in 1986; four sons, William Michael (Geraldine) Kearney of Rotterdam, John Kenneth (Susan) Kearney of Napolean, Ohio, James Matthew (Paula) Kearney of Bryson City, N.C., and Steven Joseph (Jaclyn) Kearney of Rotterdam; 21 grandchildren; five stepchildren; five great-grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.

Calling hours will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013, at the Robert A. Guffin Funeral Home, 108 Chapel St., Cobleskill.

A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Friday, Jan. 11, 2013, at St. Vincent de Paul R.C. Church, Washington Avenue, Cobleskill.

Burial will be later in the Cobleskill Rural Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made in memory of Mr. Kearney to the Boy Scouts of America, (

Further information is available at