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Fort Edward, NY 12828
Phone: 518-747-9266
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Obituary for Byron Jerome Lapham Jr.

Byron Jerome  Lapham Jr.
GREENWICH, NY –Byron “ By” Lapham passed away peacefully on Wednesday, October 31, 2018 at Fort Hudson Nursing Center.

He was born in Albany, NY on May 26, 1930, the son of Mary Eliza Pruyn Hoopes Lapham (later Polly Beeman) and Byron Lapham, Sr., and attended Glens Falls public schools, graduating in 1948. He maintained contact with his classmates throughout his life.

Graduating from Guilford College in Greensboro, NC in 1952, he was drafted into the US Army, where he served during the Korean War on the Japanese island of Hokkaido. In 1954, he enrolled at Syracuse University and earned his Master of Education degree. He went on to teach in the Fonda Fultonville School District starting in 1955.

In July 1956, he married Joan Peckham Bosworth, also from Glens Falls, whose years at Syracuse had overlapped with his. He and Joan started their married life in Colorado, where By taught at Littleton High School in 1957 and 1958. Returning to New York State in the summer of 1958 reignited his desire to live (and play baseball!) in the Glens Falls area. By played semi-pro baseball for the Schaeffer Beer Barons for several summers. He started teaching middle school Social Studies in the North Colonie School District and later taught in Guilderland when his growing family moved to Altamont in 1961. By and Joan’s fourth son was born in 1962.

In 1966, the family journeyed to Kenya and spent two years living in the town of Meru on the slopes of Mt. Kenya, where By trained teachers for the newly independent nation.

Returning to the US in 1968, By took a position as coordinator of the West Irondequoit Urban-Suburban Program, where children from inner-city Rochester could enroll at the kindergarten level and complete their school years in the suburban district. The first students graduated in 1977. It remains the longest running program of its kind in the nation.

All four sons graduated from West Irondequoit High School, where By worked for a time (sporting killer sideburns!) as the school’s health/drug counselor after earning a Master’s Degree in Counseling from SUNY Brockport. At the end of his career, By taught high school equivalency to inner-city adults earning their GEDs, where By’s dry humor and personal attention were greatly appreciated by his students.

By loved Glens Falls. After returning to the area in 1988, he organized a reunion of local semi-pro baseball players, established The Legacy Fund to honor teachers from the Glens Falls public schools, and created an annual festival of local high school choruses.

As a lasting gift to the Glens Falls community, By enlisted alumni of GFHS and St. Mary’s Academy in gathering over 200 stories of Glens Falls life from the 1920s to 1960s, which he compiled into two books, titled Hometown Memories I and II.

By and Joan have lived happily in Greenwich for the last 30 years, where By was known for walking and biking his errands around town, befriending dogs, cats and humans along his route. For ten years, By faithfully volunteered in Sharon Kruger’s 6th grade classroom.

By was predeceased by his brother Thomas Hoopes Lapham and by his son Daniel Bosworth Lapham (at age 30), and is survived by his wife Joan; son Tom and partner Karen Amirault, Tom’s daughters Sarah Paisley (husband Erik and daughter Maren) and Maya Valentin (husband Manny and son Remy); his son John and partner Annie Hoffman, and their son Adrian (partner Evan); and his son Mike and wife Amanda Lapham, and their children Becca, Jake and Oscar. He also leaves numerous Lapham, Hoopes, Whitney, Renz, Beeman, Goff and Varney family members. By was loved by many and will be greatly missed.

Arrangements are in the care of the M.B. Kilmer Funeral Home, 82 Broadway, Fort Edward, NY 12828.

All are invited to a celebration of By’s life at United Church of Greenwich, 37 Salem St., Greenwich, NY at 10:30am on Saturday, November 10, 2018.

Gifts in lieu of flowers can be made to the Glens Falls Area Youth Center, 60 Montcalm St., Glens Falls, NY 12801 (www.gfyouthcenter.org).

To leave online condolences please visit www.kilmerfuneralhome.com.

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