January 20, 1931 - May 20, 2022
Roger Wilcox Yeomans died at his home on Thursday, May 26, 2022, surrounded by his family. Roger was born on January 20, 1931, in Utica, the fourth and youngest son of Jackson Earl Yeomans and Ana Williams Yeomans. Upon his mother's untimely death in 1938, Roger moved to the home of his paternal aunt, Viola Yeomans Durfee, in Waterville, N.Y. Roger spent the remainder of his school years with his "Aunt Til" and her stepson, Alan Rowell Durfee, who took Roger under his wing and spent a great deal of time with him. Roger always looked forward to weekend visits from his father and older brothers. His brother, Philip, was known to have biked from Utica to Waterville and back again to spend time with his little brother. This loving gesture was something Roger never forgot. Roger graduated from Waterville High School in 1949 and made his way to Albany to attend the New York State College for Teachers, majoring in history and secondary education. In December 1951, Roger attended a holiday party sponsored by his brother Philip's workplace, the Ford Motor Company, at the Ten Eyck Hotel in Albany. It was there that he was introduced to June Gallagher and the rest was history. Roger loved to share the story of first seeing June with her dark hair and in her long fur coat and knowing immediately that he had just met the girl he would marry. They were married one year later on December 27, 1952, and were together for 68 years, until June's passing in January 2021. Following his graduation in 1953, Roger was hired as a teacher by the Troy City School District and assigned to School 10 in South Troy. There he taught seventh and eighth grade social studies and science until 1965, when he assumed an administrative position supervising the district's libraries, technology, and audio-visual programs. Roger retired in 1993, after serving the Troy City School District for 40 years. Of all of his years working in education, Roger always remembered the years he spent in the classroom at School 10 as his most satisfying. He frequently said that the School 10 community truly represented America and what public education was all about. His students were from all ethnic, racial, religious, and cultural backgrounds. He was proud to teach them and he fondly remembered many of his students' names to this day. Roger was the perfect dad for his four daughters. A man ahead of the times, he consistently told his girls that they could do whatever they dreamed and be whatever they wanted. He and June raised them to think for themselves, to value education, and to be true to themselves regardless of typical expectations for girls in the 1950s and 1960s. Outside of work, Roger's free time was devoted to his family. He was a father who was consistently engaged with his daughters, from taking us sledding and building snow forts in the yard; to dragging out his trains to play with, crafting marble raceways through the house, and chairing marathon Monopoly tournaments; to teaching us how to model with clay, play tennis and archery, and fish and hike in the Adirondacks. Above all, he invested in us an appreciation and care for wildlife, the natural environment, and global citizenship. In both good times and difficult moments, our father quietly supported us. He shared numerous stories about the Yeomans family history and genealogy and believed it was important for his daughters and grandchildren to appreciate their family's roots. He was a proud member of the Roger Williams Family Association, as a direct descendant of the Rhode Island Colony founder, and was also a direct descendant of William Brewster, religious leader of the Mayflower Colony, in addition to nine patriot ancestors who fought in the American Revolutionary War. Family meant everything to Roger, perhaps as his own family had been so fractured following the loss of his beloved mother at such a young age. In 1965, he and June purchased a camp in the Adirondacks in very close proximity to camps owned by his brothers, Jack and Phil. This move provided the opportunity for Roger and his brothers to spend all their summers together once again and for their collective eight daughters to know their uncles, aunts, and cousins well. It was a delight as young girls to lay in our cots at night in the woods and listen to our dads, the three Yeomans boys, laughing heartily through endless games of horseshoes. We can still hear them when we are at camp all these years later. The Yeomans camp is still flourishing and being enjoyed by yet another generation of the family. Roger and June loved to cruise in the winter months and enjoyed many trips to the Caribbean and to Central and South America. They also traveled to Ireland on a memorable trip with their granddaughter, Sara. Roger was also a skilled woodworker, builder, and clockmaker. There was nothing that he could not repair or build. As a dog lover, through the years, Roger had a number of faithful canine companions, the most recent of whom, Moody, will miss their afternoon naps together. Roger was predeceased by his wife, Frances June Gallagher Yeomans. In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by his beloved brothers, George Richard Yeomans, Jackson Earl Yeomans Jr., and Philip Charles Yeomans; as well as his aunt and her stepson, Viola Yeomans Durfee and Alan Rowell Durfee. Surviving and mourning his passing are his devoted daughters and their husbands, Ana (Richard Bouchey) of Waterford, Elizabeth (Terry Bass) of Mission Viejo, Calif., Ruth (Gary Kardys) of North Greenbush, and Martha (Theodore Geleta) of Niskayuna. Roger was the best Poppy ever to his grandchildren and he delighted in the uniqueness of each of them. He loved their visits and phone calls and hearing all about what they were up to out in the world. He recently said that the greatest blessing in his life was living long enough to see all six of his grandchildren become wonderful adults. Admiring him and missing him deeply are Dr. Sara Murphy of Kingston, R.I., Christopher Murphy (Lori Dowling) of Green Island, Abbey Kardys of Palm Springs, Calif., Roger Yeomans Kardys of North Greenbush, and Philip Geleta and George Geleta of Niskayuna. Roger is also survived by his sister-in-law, Frances Yeomans of Dunnellon, Fla., and several nieces and nephews. Roger's family is extremely grateful to Dr. Donna Heffernan and Robin Connolly, F.N.P. for their excellent medical care over the past several years. Sincere thanks to Virginia and Allison who assisted us in the care of our father so that he could remain in his home until his passing. Roger was a communicant of Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish in Watervliet. Friends and family are welcome to join us for the Mass of Christian Burial on Tuesday, May 31, at 10 a.m. in the Immaculate Heart of Mary Church. Interment will be in St. Agnes Cemetery in Cohoes beside his wife.
Roger Wilcox Yeomans died at his home on Thursday, May 26, 2022, surrounded by his family. Roger was born on January 20, 1931, in Utica, the fourth and youngest son of Jackson Earl Yeomans and Ana Williams Yeomans. Upon his mother's untimely... View Obituary & Service Information
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