Peter E. Van de Water, 77, of Canton

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Peter E. Van de Water of Canton died peacefully at home Wednesday April 30, 2014 after three years of living bravely with amyloidosis, a fatal blood disease.

He was born January 11, 1937 the son of John W. Van de Water and Sarah L. Van de Water.  He graduated from Hartford, NY Central School where he excelled academically and athletically.  At St. Lawrence University he was a student leader and baseball captain graduating in 1958.  A year later he married his college sweetheart Elizabeth “Becky” Blaisdell.

He received a Masters degree from Cornell, worked as Assistant Dean of Students at SUNY Cortland and returned to Canton in 1962 for a long career at St. Lawrence University as Director of Student Activities, Financial Aid, Admissions and Vice President of Student Affairs.  He also earned a Ph.D from the University of Michigan.  In 1984 Peter served as Headmaster of Vermont Academy, taught history and coached soccer, basketball and tennis.

Returning to Canton in 1988, Peter and Becky sold Christmas trees, raised sheep, apples and blueberries and started a bed and breakfast.  With their friends Roger and Helen Hutchinson they produced maple syrup at their Pierrepont sugarbush.  In “retirement” Peter continued to be active in his church and at St. Lawrence University in the Education Department as a supervising teacher and in starting the Outdoor Program at the college.  He ran for the NY State Assembly in 1990, wrote articles about the North Country and fought to preserve the environment as chair of Citizens to Save the Adirondack Park and the Coalition on Low Altitude Flights.

Peter loved the outdoors as a gardener, woodsman, canoeist, runner and hiker.  He was a founder of the popular summer and winter Stillman Foote running races, an Adirondack 46'r and at home around Cranberry Lake for over 50 years.  In recent years he led the Canton Community Action Plan and founded, with friend Varick Chittenden, Grasse River Heritage.  He was active in the Canton Rotary Club for over 20 years and initiated the Canton Community Fund and represented St. Lawrence County on the Northern New York Community Foundation.  He was on the board of both the St. Lawrence County Historical Association and the Canton-Potsdam Hospital Foundation which he chaired.

Above all, Peter Van de Water had a great love of his family and friends.  He is survived by his wife Becky of Canton; children, Thomas B. (and Betsy Kepes) of Pierrepont, Katherine L. (and Bill Brown) of Canton and Beth Van de Water (and Rich Clements) of Saratoga; his mother Sarah L. Van de Water of Canton; sister Jean V. Williams of Cicero; brother John G. Van de Water of Corvallis, Oregon and brother Gordon B. Van de Water of Denver and his six grandchildren.

A celebration of Peter's life will be held on May 10th at 2PM at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Canton.  Memorial contributions may be made to the Unitarian Universalist Church of Canton or Hospice of the St. Lawrence Valley.

The Lawrence Funeral Home, Canton, is in charge of arrangements.
 

Tuesday, July 29, 2014
, Watertown, NY
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Funeral Homes Listings

Jefferson County:

Bossuot-Lundy Funeral Home, Carthage
315-493-3710

Calarco, D.L. Funeral Home, Watertown
315-782-4910

Costello Funeral Service, Alexandria Bay
315-482-5840

Cummings Funeral Service
Watertown - 315-782-0830
Clayton - 315-686-5101

Frederick Bros Funeral Home, Theresa
315-628-4451

Hart & Bruce Funeral Home, Watertown
315-788-3351

Johnson Funeral Home, Dexter
315-639-6257

Reed & Benoit Funeral Home, Watertown
315-782-6580

Cleveland Funeral Home, Watertown
315-788-6180

Cleveland Funeral Home,,Cape Vincent
315-654-2681

Becker-Cleveland Funeral Home, Chaumont
315-649-2912

Bezanilla-McGraw Funeral Home, Carthage
315-493-2621

Carpenter-Stoodley, Belleville
315-846-5211

T.R. Jetty Funeral Home, Clayton
315-686-2414

Piddock Funeral Home, Adams
315-232-4000

Lewis County

Adirondack Funeral Home, Croghan
315-346-6511

Iseneker Funeral Home, Lowville
315-376-8009

Scanlon Funeral Home, Croghan
315-346-6311

Sundquist Funeral Home, Lowville
315-376-2665

St. Lawrence County

IslandView Funeral Services, Morristown
315-375-8258

Hammill Funeral Home, Winthrop

Buck Funeral Home, Norwood
315-353-2112

Fox-McLellan Funeral Home, Ogdensburg
315-393-4870

French Funeral Home, Gouverneur
315-287-2810

Green Funeral Home, Gouverneur
315-287-1330

Phillips Memorial Home, Massena
315-769-3549

Allen-Nichols Funeral Home, Ogdensburg
315-393-2220

Frary Funeral Home, Ogdensburg
315-393-1414

Lawrence Funeral Home, Canton
315-386-8513

O'Leary Funeral Home, Canton

Allen-Denesha Funeral Home, De Kalb Junction
(315) 347-2122

French Funeral Home Inc., Gouverneur

French Funeral Home Inc., Edwards

French Funeral Home Inc., Star Lake

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