Barbar "Joan" Uhrik
NEW SCOTLAND — Barbara “Joan” Uhrik, a community involved public servant with a love of horses and the racetrack, died peacefully at her home on Friday, Oct. 4, 2013, with her daughter by her side. She was 82.
Mrs. Uhrik was born on Sept. 22, 1931, the daughter of Cecil and Olivia Buckler.
She married Edward A. Uhrik in 1953 and the couple had one child. Their union ended only with his death, in 1991.
Growing up on the Widener Estate in Flourtown, Pa., Mrs. Uhrik developed a love of thoroughbred horses and horseracing at a young age. Her father raised horses on the family farm and was responsible for transporting some of them to compete at racetracks throughout the 1930s, ’40s, and ’50s, said her daughter, Anne Faulkner.
Mrs. Uhrik was a big fan of the races at Saratoga’s track, and frequently attended competitions at several others in the Northeast.
“She loved the races and never missed a Triple Crown,” said Ms. Faulkner.
During the 1970s, Mrs. Uhrik was the summer chairwoman of the Heldeberg Workshop when it was held in Voorheesville’s high school. She was on the workshop’s board when it acquired land at the base of the Helderberg escarpment, where it continues to offer outdoor and artisan classes to children.
An active member of the Girl Scouts, Mrs. Uhrik served as the local organization’s neighborhood chairwoman and an assistant leader. Ms. Faulkner recalled traveling with the troop and her mother, taking camping trips to several locations in New York, New Jersey, and Massachusetts.
Mrs. Uhrik was politically involved and worked with members of the New York State Legislature. She also worked the polls for many elections and ran for Bethlehem town clerk.
One of her first jobs was at AT&T, where she performed duties for the business’s Yellow Pages. Mrs. Uhrik also worked as a legal secretary in Albany. She worked for several firms including Walworth, Harding, Welt & Stockton in Delmar, and retired from the New York State Assembly Education Committee.
She and her husband lived in Tucson, Ariz., Los Angeles, Calif., Chicago, Ill., and New Jersey before moving to Delmar in 1968.
Mrs. Uhrik spent much of her retirement in Floral City, Fla. with friends and relatives from Massachusetts and Nova Scotia.
Ms. Faulkner said friends would remember her mother’s sharp wit, sarcastic sense of humor, and explosive laughs.
Mrs. Uhrik is survived by her daughter, Anne U. Faulkner, and her husband, Gary. She was also the adored grandmother of Maxwell and Emma Faulkner.
Her husband, Edward A. Uhrik, died before her, as did two older brothers, James and Craig Buckler.
Memorial contributions may be made to any charity. Private funeral services will be held.
Arrangements are by the New Comer Cannon Funeral Home in Colonie; mourners may leave messages online at www.NewcomerAlbany.com.
— Tyler Murphy