NEW SCOTLAND — The family home where Susie Secor Livingston lived in New Salem for the last half-century has a window that she built with her own hands.
She worked a wide variety of jobs in her long lifetime but her family and friends were always at the center.
“She was a very devoted mother and grandmother and kind to all of her friends,” said her daughter, Donna Gartelman. “She was very giving.”
She died on Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013, at St. Peter’s Hospital in Albany. She had just turned 88 five days before.
Mrs. Livingston was born in Knox, the daughter of the late Millie and Frank Secor. She was raised with her brother and three sisters on her parents’ farm on Saw Mill Road in Berne.
As a child, she went to a one-room schoolhouse on the Altamont Road.
“In the winter, when it was snowy, and they were walking to school, their teacher would meet them at her house, which was half-way, so they didn’t have to go so far,” said her daughter; the children then learned their lessons on those snowy days at their teacher’s house.
Mrs. Livingston then went to classes at Berne-Knox before going to work at the cider mill in Voorheesville. It was there that she met John Livingston, the man who would become her husband. They were married in the Thompson’s Lake Reformed Church and their union lasted 66 1/2 years, ending only with her death.
The couple settled in New Scotland where they raised their children. “I was born in Voorheesville, on Main Street,” said Ms. Gartelman. The Livingstons later moved to the Winne House in New Salem. “It was my great-grandparents’ house; they’ve lived here for 50 years,” said Ms. Gartelman of her parents.
Over the years, Mrs. Livingston worked at a number of jobs. She worked in Albany at BT Babbitts, which made a scouring powder named Bab-O. She worked at Kleins Window and Door in Voorheesville where she helped build windows, unusual for a woman in that era, her daughter said. And she worked in the record center at the Farm Family Insurance Company in Glenmont, retiring in the early 1980s.
Through it all, she was a devoted mother and homemaker. She liked to sew and belonged to the Home Bureau. “She liked quilting bees,” said her daughter. “The ladies came together at Thompson’s Lake to finish them off together,” she said of the quilts they sewed.
Mrs. Livingston also raised beautiful flowers in her backyard garden. “She loved perennials,” said her daughter.
Mrs. Livingston was a long-time member of the Voorheesville United Methodist Church. “We all grew up going to church there,” said Ms. Gartelman. “I got married there and my kids were baptized there.”
Eventually, Ms. Gartelman moved to Florida with her husband and three children. “She’d take them for the summer. They’d take day rides and go on picnics, like to the Schoharie Creek,” said Ms. Gartelman.
Mrs. Livingston enjoyed all of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and was thrilled recently to have her first great-grandson.
“She liked the holidays, when we’d all get together for Christmas or Easter,” said her daughter, concluding, “She was always there for family and friends. She was very kind and generous.”
Susie Secor Livingston is survived by her husband, John Livingston; her children Judy Euler and her husband, Robert, and Donna Gartelman and her husband, Larry; her grandchildren, Christopher Euler and his fiancée, Kathy, Jacqueline Euler and her fiancé, Mark, Steven Euler and his wife, Jennifer, Scott Gartelman, Erika McManus and her husband, Stephen, and Adam Gartelman and his fiancée, Melissa; her great-grandchildren, Abagail Gartelman, Olivia Euler, Emma Euler, and Connor McManus; and several nieces and nephews.
Her son, Edward, died before her as did her brother, Curtis Secor, and her sisters, Evelyn Latham, Ada Lyman, and Elizabeth Murphy.
Funeral services were held Monday morning, March 4, at the Reilly & Son Funeral Home in Voorheesville.
Her family extends many thanks to all the personnel at St. Peter’s Comfort Care Unit on the fifth floor.
Memorial contributions to the Voorheesville First United Methodist Church, 68 Maple Ave., Voorheesville, NY 12186.
— Melissa Hale-Spencer