More detail on this person: Jeffrey T. Clark peacefully passed away on May 22, 2014. He and his
wife Laura enjoyed forty-four years of adventure together, including service and life in faraway
places like Germany, the Marshall Islands and Georgia. With three children and three grandchildren,
he will be sorely missed by those he left behind. A warrior all of his life, he served his country
for twenty two years in the United States Army, serving first in the Big Red One in Vietnam, and
then in the First Military Intelligence Battalion in Germany. His daughters will remember polishing
his service boots, water skiing around Kwajalein Island in the Pacific and showing Bagheera the
bunny at the Saratoga County Fair. His wife will remember traveling across country while first
married, visiting art museums in Europe and going on various trail running, snow shoeing and
kayaking expeditions in the Saratoga area. He was exceptionally community service oriented, serving
as a Judge for the Town of Northumberland, helping St. Peter‚«÷s Parish and the Special Olympics
and perhaps his proudest achievement was serving as the President of the Saratoga Springs Downtown
Business Association. While his time was far too short, he leaves behind a rich legacy of family,
friends and colleagues who are enriched by his life. He has left behind his much loved wife, Laura
and three children; Julie Suarez, Jill Woolley and Jacky Gilchrist. He was blessed with three
sons-in-law, Darren Suarez, Robert Woolley and Grady Gilchrist, along with three grandchildren Elena
and Emilia Suarez and Bryce Arlene Woolley. He leaves behind Walter J. Clark, his father from
Cobleskill and brothers John and Robert Clark and his sister Mary Swartz. Relatives and friends may
call from 4 to 7pm Tuesday May 27, 2014 at the Burke Funeral Home, 628 North Broadway 584-5373. A
funeral Mass will be celebrated at 9:30am Wednesday in the Church of St. Peter, 241 Broadway. Burial
with military honors will follow at 11am at the Gerald BH Solomon Saratoga National Cemetery.
Memorials may be made in Jeff‚«÷s name to the Wounded Warrior Project, PO Box 758517, Topeka,
KS 66675 to honor his memory. Online remembrances may be made at burkefuneralhome.com.
Published in The Saratogian on May 24, 2014
SARATOGA SPRINGS >> Well-known businessman and highly decorated Vietnam veteran Jeff Clark passed away Wednesday night at his home, surrounded by loved ones, following a brave battle with cancer.
Clark was Downtown Business Association president and had recently retired as an Ameriprise Financial Services Inc. franchisee in Saratoga Springs.
Calling hours will be from 4 to 7 p.m. Tuesday at Burke Funeral Home. Funeral services will be Wednesday morning at St. Peter's Church, followed by internment at Gerald B.H. Solomon-Saratoga National Cemetery in Stillwater.
"His heart was in Saratoga Springs," said Susan Farnsworth, DBA director of promotions and marketing. "Every letter he wrote he finished by saying what a privilege it was to live and work here. He was so involved; always generous with his time. Most important, he was totally devoted to his wife of 43 years, Laura."
The couple has three daughters _ Julie, Jill and Jackie _ and several grandchildren.
Clark, a Ticonderoga native, enjoyed kayaking and would always accompany his wife for long-distance running events she competed in.
He volunteered for hospice and Special Olympics and was a Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce volunteer ambassador. Clark was also a 2001 Leadership Saratoga graduate, had been a Northumberland town justice and spent six years on the Brookside Museum board in Ballston Spa.
Professionally and personally, Clark was greatly concerned about the well-being of America's veterans, especially those in the army's First Infantry Division _ the legendary "Big Red 1" _ that he served with in Vietnam. Clark's first tour was from 1969-70, flying a Huey helicopter, sometimes quite low to the ground making him vulnerable to enemy fire.
"Our mission was to find trouble and engage," he said in a 2008 interview.
In 1972, after coming home and learning how to fly airplanes, he went back to Vietnam for another full year's duty. Later, he spent four years flying some of the most sophisticated aircraft ever built, such as the OV-1 Mohawk, whose side-looking radar kept track of Soviet tank movements near the border of East Germany.
This brought regular encounters with Soviet MiG fighters.
Clark spent the last four years of his service flying VIPs to all parts of the globe, from ambassadors to four-star generals.
During his military service he was awarded 48 air medals, including one with a "V" for valor, a Distinguished Flying Cross, two Bronze Stars and a Legion of Merit.
Afterward, he flew briefly for Pan American Airlines and then worked for Johnson Controls as an aviation safety manager in the Marshall Islands, where rocket scientists were doing Star Wars missile shield research. However, he and Laura began yearning for a move back to upstate New York and a travel piece they read about Saratoga Springs was all the encouragement they needed.
Clark was extremely proud of his family, his military service and today's young Americans who are following in his footsteps.
"Sometimes we take this country for granted," he once said. "Whether it's providing money for AIDS research in Africa or community service and charities here at home, it's just a marvelous, marvelous country with some of the best people on Earth."
From: http://www.saratogian.com/social-affairs/20140522/jeff-clark-dba-president-decorated-vietnam-veteran -passes-away
This information was last updated 05/18/2016
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