ARKPORT-R. Murray Mahany, 81, of 9696 Oak Hill Rd., Arkport, died unexpectedly early Friday morning (September 5, 2014) at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester.
Born in Easton, ME on July 2, 1933, he was the son of Eldon & Delia (Long) Mahany.
Murray grew up in Easton, ME and was a graduate of Easton High School (class of 1950). He later attended (2 years) the University of Maine, majoring in Agriculture. He has resided in Arkport since 1952.
He has been involved in farming his entire adult life, and in a “Joint Venture” with his three sons & a son-in-law, operated Poverty Knob Farms in Arkport, raising 600 acres of potato (for potato chips); 55 acres of oats; 400 acres of wheat; 1250 acres of corn; 180 acres of green beans; 150 acres of alfalfa; which totaled 2635 total acres of crop land. He “retired” (as much as he could) in 1996.
Murray was always working for the betterment of the community. He served for about 20 years on the Dansville Town Board and served on numerous local, county & state boards. Some of these included 27 years as a member and 6 years as chairman of the Steuben County Soil & Water Conservation Dept.; 4 year director of the NYS SWCD Division IV; 1 year as president of the NYS Soil & Water Conservation Association; 1 year member of the NACD Water Resources Committee; 3 year member of the NYS Fish & Wildlife Board (Region 8); 25 year member of the Steuben County Farm Bureau; 11 year member of the Empire State Potato Growers; 3 year member of the Cornell University Foundation Seed Board; 4 year member of the ASCS; 15 year member of the WNY Potato Growers; 35 year member of the Cornell University IPM Program and 1 year member of the Susquehanna River Basin Commission.
For many years, Murray had been a member of Our Lady of the Valley Parish and a communicant of St. Ann’s Church. For the past 20 years, he was a member of St. Mary’s Church in Canaseraga. For 18 years, he was a member of the Dansville Moose Lodge and for four years he was a member of the Arkport American Legion.
Throughout the years, Murray received and/or won numerous awards, including the Goodyear Merit Award (1978 & 1988), the Steuben County C & S Leadership Award (1989), the Soil & Water Conservation Society Merit Award (1990) and in 1993 received the State of New York Governor’s Outstanding Farm Family Award presented by Gov. Mario Cuomo. Earlier this year, Murray was presented with the 2014 Empire State Potato Growers Industry Leadership Award.
He was preceded in death by his 3 brothers, Vincent Mahany, Joseph Mahany and Patrick Mahany; nieces & nephews.
Murray was married on October 23, 1954 to the former Reba Norton who survives. Also surviving are 3 sons, Robert (Debora) Mahany of Dansville, Gary (Patricia) Mahany of Arkport and Gregory (Karen Meade) Mahany of Arkport; 3 daughters, Brenda (Dennis) Acomb of Dansville, Linda (Mark) Mahoney of Hornell and Susan (Rick Wilcox) Cotter of Wayland; his son-in-law, Daniel Cotter; 2 sisters, Gertrude Thompson of Seattle, WA and Sr. Joyce Mahany of Standish, ME; 18 grandchildren, 5 great-grandchildren, several nieces & nephews.
The family of R. Murray Mahany will receive friends on Tuesday from 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM and from 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM at the Dagon Funeral Home, 38 Church St., Hornell, NY. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Wednesday at 11:00 AM at St. Mary’s Church in Canaseraga. Burial will be in Heritage Hill Cemetery, Arkport, NY.
Murray’s family request that memorial contributions in his name be made to the charity of the donor’s choice.