John A. ‘Jack’ McCullen

John A. ‘Jack’ McCullen

John A. ‘Jack’ McCullen

ALTAMONT — “John ‘Jack’ Anthony McCullen of Altamont joined his devoted wife Edna in everlasting peace and love on Wednesday, Sept. 15, 2021,” his family wrote in a tribute. He was 90.

“So much made Jack special: his love of family; faith in God — taking over Edna’s prayer chair once she passed; mastery of archery; technical and engineering abilities — he could imagine, build and fix anything,” his family wrote.

Born on Feb. 6, 1931, he was the only child of Joseph Anthony and Alice McEneny McCullen and grew up in Albany on Partridge Street. He attended Vincentian Institute Glass School where he first met his future wife in kindergarten, and graduated from Vincentian Institute High School.

His studies at Siena College were put on hold when he joined the Navy for four years of service, where he gained his electronic background as Intercommunication Technician, First Class.

“He also worked the movie projector for the crew and then again for the kitchen staff, for which he was rewarded with good food,” his family wrote. “Mocked for his excellent vocabulary and intelligence, he learned to swear and helped a few fellow sailors write letters home and sign their checks. Once discharged, he returned to Siena and secured his job at AT&T.

“On June 16, 1956, he married the love of his life, Edna Murtaugh, and spent the rest of his life devoted to her. Together they raised their seven children with lots of love and laughter.

“Jack was a highly regarded archer. He remains in the New York State Senior Games record books in the Top Ten in Men’s Recurve for three different age categories.

“And though he was inducted into the New York State Archery Hall of Fame in 1986, his proudest archery moments were winning a double American shoot in 1946, the 1947 New York State Outdoor Championship as an Intermediate Boy, Atlantic City Classic, and the 1985 Empire State Games.

“In addition to being the Empire State Games coordinator for 16 years, Jack also passed on his passion for archery by coaching and teaching in several organizations. He won more awards than can be mentioned, but he would be the last one to tell you about them.

“Jack retired from AT&T in 1989 after 35 years of loyal service, with the highlight of his career being responsible for international communications for the Lake Placid 1980 Olympics.

“His retirement allowed him to become a master chef, more involved in his beloved archery, a competitor in Empire State Games (as both Open and Senior), an avid Gunsmoke and Oak Island watcher, and sage advice-giver to those who asked.

“Fiercely independent and stubborn, Jack suffered from cancer silently until his body betrayed him. He was well-cared for by the staff at St. Peter’s Hospital and by his children.

“Jack will be welcomed to heaven by his parents; his wife; and his daughter Helen.

“He is proud of his surviving children, MaryAlice (Jeff), Ann, Cathy (Doug), John, Joe (Lori) and Ed.

“Twelve grandchildren were deeply loved by Pop-Pop: Katie (David) and Jacqui; AnnMarie (Dan) and Ryan; Jackson; Sean and Stefanie (Chris); Brooke (Jean), Kyle and Jared, Ryan and Courtney; and Joshua (Gil) and Gabby.

“Jack’s eight great-grandchildren will get to know Pops by the many lovely stories told and retold.”

Funeral services were held on Tuesday, Sept. 21, at St. Lucy/St. Bernadette Church in Altamont where his Funeral Mass was celebrated.

The Rite of Committal was held at St. Agnes Cemetery in Menands immediately following the Funeral Mass.

Memorial contributions may be made to Albany Hospice (communityhospice.org) or to Shriners Hospitals for Children.

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  • ALTAMONT — D. Frances Ripley was a master needle crafter whose work was sought by museums. She freely shared her love and knowledge of spinning and knitting each summer at the Altamont Fair’s Wool Nook.

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