Gerald's Story

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HARTWICK - Gerald Donald "Jerry" Starks, 72, was born on Jan. 29, 1945, in Endicott to Donald A. and Vivian M. (Williamson) Starks.
Jerry grew up in Ilion and described his childhood as idyllic, complete with a paper route. He had numerous stories about friends, neighbors, and the locales of Russell Park, the marina, and airport, as well as listening to the trains that passed through in the night. He walked to school, church, and later work from the family home on Otsego Street.
Jerry graduated from Ilion High School in 1963, spent time at Syracuse University, and then went on to a career at Dupont Remington Arms where he trained as a toolmaker. Better known as "Sparky" to coworkers, he retired in 2007 after 42 years.
Jerry was an active volunteer firefighter for more than 50 years and for much of that time was certified as an EMT. Serving first in Ilion and later in Richfield Springs and Schuyler Lake, he spent the last 10 years with Hartwick Co. 2 in Hartwick Seminary.
Jerry had many interests, but his association with his brother and sister volunteers was central to his life. He was proud to serve, proud of them, and grateful to be a part of their service to their community.
Jerry died at home with family by his side on Dec. 19, 2017.
He is survived by his wife, Janet (Smith) and their children, son, Emery J. Kane (Stephanie), granddaughters, Sarai and Emily of Milford, son, Clayton B. Kane (Miriam), grandson, Charles of Bath, Maine, and daughter, Carrie L. Kane of West Winfield.
He was predeceased by his brother, Charles (Dick) Bostwick (Shirley) and his sister, Hazel Bostwick Gollegly. He is also survived by several nieces and nephews.
Calling hours will be held from 1 to 3 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 6, at Tillapaugh Funeral Home, 28 Pioneer St., Cooperstown. Visitation will be immediately followed by a service officiated by the Rev. Sylvia Barrett, pastor of the Milford United Methodist Church, including a Fireman's Service by members of the Hartwick Fire Company.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Hartwick Fire Company No. 2, 4877 State Highway 28, Cooperstown, NY 13326 or Hartwick Emergency Squad, P.O. Box 208, Hartwick, NY 13348.
Arrangements are under the care of Tillapaugh Funeral Service, Cooperstown.
Published on December 29, 2017
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