Robert Edward Morton of Delmar, N.Y., died on Friday, March 15. He was the devoted husband of Eleanor Huetter Morton. They married on June 15, 1949, in Buffalo, N.Y., after their graduation from St. Lawrence University. They had celebrated 59 years of marriage before Eleanor’s death in March 2009, and they raised four children: Bob Jr., Kathy, Tom and Jim.
Bob was born in Syracuse, N.Y., on June 7, 1924, to Fred T. Morton and E. Mildred H. Morton. He was very fond of his older sister Margaret M. Stewart of Buffalo with whom he had many happy childhood memories. He will also be missed by his nephews Alan Stewart and his wife Lea, and Keith Stewart and his wife Leigh, as well as Margaret’s brother in law Lyall Stewart (a fellow Boy Scout) and his wife Marilyn. Bob was predeceased by his brother in law J. Douglas Stewart. Other close family members include Herb Loesch from Barker, N.Y., and his children Tracy and Terry who will miss doing puzzles with Bob, especially at Lake George.
Bob graduated from Kenmore High School in 1942 and after serving in the U.S. Army, he finished his studies and graduated from St. Lawrence University in 1949. While at college he played on the Saints hockey team, was a KSLU disc jockey and often sold snacks at the football games with the booster club. He loved to tell the story of how they gave out free bags of popcorn with lots of salt on it so that they could make more money selling soft drinks. Bob was also a member of A.T.O. fraternity, and he enjoyed returning for the SLU reunions over the years.
In January of 1987, Bob retired from his job of 40 years with the New York Telephone Company and began a new career as a realtor at Roberts Real Estate. He had a close group of friends with whom he played bridge and poker in what they called the Culture Club. His Saturday morning golf games at Normanside County Club were something he looked forward to, as well as long afternoons fishing with his daughter at Lake George.
While his sons played on little league teams in Orchard Park and Bethlehem, he coached them as well as being involved in several leadership roles with both Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts. He was an avid stamp and coin collector and dealer for many years.
The Bethlehem Lions Club was an important part of Bob’s life. He had held every office and had more than 55 years of perfect attendance. His children grew up helping with the annual pancake breakfast on Palm Sunday. Bob was the last living charter member and he was honored by Lions Club International as a life member and a Melvin Jones fellow.
Being involved in activities at the First Methodist Church of Delmar was a highlight for Bob. He was vice president of the Second Milers, a church trustee and a longtime member of the finance committee. Bob loved meeting and conversing with all kinds of people, particularly if they were Red Sox fans like he was.
Over the years, Bob enjoyed his visits to the Vineyard to spend time with his daughter Kathy, his son in law Kenny and his granddaughters Kristina and Kelsey Ivory. He had fond memories of going clamming at Lake Tashmoo.
In October 1998, he was predeceased by his eldest son Bob Jr. who died of cancer. He is survived by Kathy and her family of Edgartown, Tom and his family of Delmar, and Jim and his family of Hudson.
A funeral service was held on March 19 at the First United Methodist Church of Delmar, and Bob was interred in the Bethlehem Cemetery alongside his wife.
Donations may be made to the Bethlehem Lions Club, the First Methodist Church of Delmar, or you may share an act of kindness in his memory.