Obituary for Donald Goodenough
Donald J. Goodenough 1956-2017
Donald J. Goodenough, 61, passed away on December 30, 2017 at St. Elizabeth Medical Center.
He was born on February 16, 1956 in Utica, a son of the late James F. and Dorothy Chapin Goodenough and was a 1974 graduate of Sauquoit Valley Central School.
On August 17, 1974 he was united in marriage to his high school sweetheart Joyce Lewis at St. Bernard’s Church in Waterville, a beautiful union of over 43 years.
For 21 years, Don was employed as a mechanic at the Oneida County Water Pollution Control Plant in Utica where he made many lifelong friends.
He was a community minded individual and gave countless hours of his time to many functions in the area. He was both Cub Master and Scout Master of Boy Scout Troop 50, where he guided many boys, including his son, to attain their Eagle Scout rank. He was an usher, lector and maintenance man for Father Baker at St. Patrick’s Church, maintaining the grounds and working the annual Strawberry Festival. He could also be found working security at many events at Sauquoit Valley schools, directing traffic with a friendly smile and a wave, or making the rounds at all of the sporting events. Perhaps, though, he was most well known for his mastery at the chicken bar-b-que pits. You could find him many summers standing around the pit, perfecting the marinating and flipping of racks of chicken for parties, graduations, and fundraisers, requesting only an ice cold beer and a laugh. One of his greatest joys was serving the community he loved, as often as possible and in any capacity.
He was also a 4 time participant in the Utica Boilermaker Roadrace, where he ran his final race just three years after his open heart surgery.
His greatest pride, though, came through his association with local volunteer fire departments. Most of his years were spent with the Cassville Volunteer Fire Department, many of them as President. Currently he was Safety Officer at the Clayville Volunteer Fire Department where he returned in 2014 after beginning his 45 years of service there when he was a teenager. He was also a past Chief Officer of the Paris Hill Volunteer Fire Department and was involved with the Sauquoit and Bridgewater Volunteer Fire Departments.
Don was inducted in September of 2016 as the President of the Oneida County Volunteer Firemen’s Association, having been elected in July, just one month after his stroke. As a devoted and respected fireman, he was elected to complete his two year term in August even though he was unable to fulfill his duties, speaking volumes to his character.
He is survived by his devoted wife Joyce; his three daughters; Jennifer Goodenough and Frank Touart, Linsey and Alexander Buchlis, Daphne Goodenough and Joshua Jones, his son: Trevor and Amanda Goodenough, his cherished granddaughter; Elsie Goodenough, his brothers; Thomas and Tammy Goodenough, James and Pauline Goodenough and John and Marianne Goodenough and many nieces and nephews.
Don’s Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Friday, January 5 at 10:00 at St. Patrick’s- St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Chadwicks. Interment will be in St. Mary’s Cemetery, Clayville.
Calling hours will be Thursday from 4-7 at the Smith Funeral Home, 3022 Oneida St. Sauquoit.
Please consider donations in Don’s memory to Believe 271 at Believe 271 Foundation, Inc., PO Box 480, Barneveld, NY 13304 or go to www.believe271.com/donate.
Don’s family would like to thank Dr. Fred Talarico, his Nurse Practitioner Pat Rosati and entire staff for the exceptional care Don received from them all.
To view Don’s online memorial, please go to: www.smith-funeralhome.com