John F. Dearstyne Jr.

John F. Dearstyne Jr.

John F. Dearstyne Jr.

John F. Dearstyne Jr.

John F. Dearstyne Jr.

NEW SCOTLAND — John F. Dearstyne Jr., who was devoted to his wife, children, and grandchildren, was a steward of country life and worked to protect the rural character of his town.
He died peacefully at home on Monday, Jan.17, 2022, surrounded by the family he deeply loved. He was 83.

Born an only child in Albany to the late John F. Dearstyne and Dorothy Birchenough Dearstyne, his steadfast friend throughout the years has been his cousin, Ed Dearstyne of Rexford.

Mr. Dearstyne’s early years were spent traveling the United States. “His father was a World War II flight instructor,” his family wrote in a tribute, “and it was during this time that his family embraced the beauty of rural life.

“Summers spent on Lake George resulted in a lifetime of memories and stories, including when the Albany newspaper reported John and his father saved a man’s life after a boat capsized on the lake.

“Moving to the town of New Scotland as a teenager, John with his parents established life on a unique property, a four-generation homestead that welcomed family and friends to the beauty of nature. John became a steward of country life due to his belief in the preservation and protection of rural character.

“His meticulously maintained 1955 International Harvester tractor nicknamed Big Red continues to be enjoyed.

Mr. Dearstyne graduated from The Albany Academy in 1957 and from Clarkson University in 1962.

“In Potsdam, he met Jean Urbas who would become his lifelong companion and wife of 59 years,” his family wrote. “Together they raised their three daughters to be strong, confident and caring women ….

“His business career began with Mobil Oil Company followed by the New York State Division of the Budget and several other public benefit agencies. Upon retirement, he became involved in the town of New Scotland government, advocating for preservation of the area. His insightfulness continues to be a positive influence.

“John and Jean enjoyed traveling abroad, especially time spent with daughter Lynne in France. He believed that people are more alike than different and encouraged his family and grandchildren to explore life in other countries. Ogunquit, Maine was a favorite destination in all seasons.

“Always a true gentleman, those who knew him had profound respect for his honesty, integrity, and loyalty.

“John will be greatly missed for his kindness, sage advice, and as the voice of reason.”


John F. Dearstyne Jr. is survived by his wife, Jean Dearstyne; by their three daughters, Pamela Dearstyne and Ronald Eidshaug, Susan Dearstyne Abbuhl and Dr. Frederick Abbuhl, and Lynne Dearstyne. He was the “proud Papa” of grandchildren Lauren and Justin Abbuhl and Evan Eidshaug.

The family wishes to thank the doctors, nurses, and health-care professionals for their compassionate care.

At this time, there will be no service. A celebration of life for family and friends will be announced at a later date.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Mohawk Land Conservancy, 425 Kenwood Ave., Delmar, NY 12054 or to The Pine Hollow Arboretum, 34 Pine Hollow Road, Slingerlands, NY 12159.

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