Patricia M. Favreau

Patricia M. Favreau

Patricia M. Favreau

BERNE — Patricia M. Favreau, who served as Berne’s town clerk for more than three decades, was “a true people person,” her family said. She died peacefully and surrounded by family on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, at Albany Medical Center Hospital. She was 84. 

Mrs. Favreau was born in 1936 in Cambridge, New York, to Margaret E. Morey, her family wrote in a tribute, and was the sister of the late V. Robert Morey. The family moved to Berne in 1943, and lived in what’s now the town hall but used to be a hotel and tavern.

Mrs. Favreau attended school at Berne-Knox, where her mother worked as a nurse.

“As a student at Berne-Knox,” Mrs. Favreau’s family wrote, “she caught the eye of a young teacher by the name of John G. Favreau. They married in 1955 and together raised their family in Berne.”

Mrs. Favreau first became involved with the town government in 1980, when she was elected town clerk, then a part-time position. She also worked at Zwicklbauer’s Hofbrau restaurant, now Maple-on-the-Lake.

Mrs. Favreau was elected alongside Rudy Stempel, who had run for supervisor. “We didn’t know what we were doing then,” Mrs. Favreau told The Enterprise in December of 2013, her final month in office before her retirement.  

She would work under four different supervisors during her 34-year tenure — Stempel, Alan Zuk, George Gebe, and Kevin Crosier — and establish herself as an institution, not just in the town but in the state, as a result of her fastidious work.

The New York State Town Clerks Association elected Mrs. Favreau president of the organization in 2005, and she served in that role until 2007. She had been secretary and treasurer before that. In 2010, the association named her Clerk of the Year.

Mr. Zuk told The Enterprise in 2013 about an instance when, after a town-wide revaluation, the town hall was so packed with people that “you couldn’t fit another person in the building, and I didn’t see her lose her cool once.”

“She was considered to be the dean of town clerks,” Mr. Zuk said. 

Mrs. Favreau had attended the teachers’ college in Albany, now University at Albany, after graduating from high school because she harbored dreams of being a social studies teacher. She partially fulfilled that dream as town clerk, when she went into Berne-Knox-Westerlo schools to teach second-graders and high school juniors about elections, which she oversaw in Berne as the town’s elections officer.

“I used to get up at 5 o’clock at every election to distribute the suitcases,” Mrs. Favreau told The Enterprise in 2013, “and I’d stay until 11 o’clock to receive the results and report them to the county. It felt like my duty as a town clerk. I was kind of proud to have been a part of it.”

Mrs. Favreau’s impact on the area stretched beyond her clerkship, with her family writing that she was “instrumental in the creation of the Town of Berne Youth Council and served on various Albany County committees,” and was a charter member of the Hilltowns Players, as well as a member of the Hilltown Community Resource Center advisory council. 

Mrs. Favreau was also an active communicant of St. Bernadette’s Church, in Berne, her family wrote, and spent many years as a volunteer for the Girl Scouts, the American Red Cross Learn-to-Swim Program, and the Berne-Knox-Westerlo Parent-Teacher Association.

“A true people person,” her family wrote, “Pat was sincerely interested in getting to know people of all ages and from all walks of life.”

On her own time, her family wrote, “Her passions were many — gardening, swimming, cooking, baking, knitting, quilting, travel, and summer days on the coast of Maine. She loved to throw dinner parties and was a lively and no-nonsense opponent in games ranging from Scrabble and duplicate bridge to seven-card stud poker.”

“Pat relished and looked forward to family celebrations and gatherings of all kinds,” her family wrote, “including windjammer cruises with her granddaughters; yearly trips to Maine with as many kids, grandkids, and great-grandkids as possible; numerous extended family Christmas and poker parties; and anything that involved a glass of wine by the pool.”

****

Patricia M. Favreau is survived by her four children, Julie Schwartz, and her husband, Ari, of Astoria, New York; Joanne Reynolds, and her husband, Richard, of Burnt Hills, New York; Laurel DuBois, and her husband, John, of West Glenville, New York;­­ and John L. Favreau, and his wife, Elizabeth, of Altamont, New York. 

Mrs. Favreau adored her 10 grandchildren, Jeffrey, and his wife, Erica; Lindsay, and her husband, Johnny; Lauren, and her husband, Josh; Megan, and her husband, Alex; Abby; Greg; Corinne; Ethan, and his wife, Ann; Zac; and Ben; as well as her six great-grandchildren, Mason, Greyson, Leo, Charlotte, Nora, and Emma. 

Mrs. Favreau is also survived by several nieces, nephews, great-nieces, and great-nephews.

Mrs. Favreau’s husband, John G. Favreau, died before her as did her mother, Margaret Morey; her brother, Robert Morey; her niece, Johnnie Marie Cardelle; and her nephews, Andrew Cardelle and Michael Morey.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. Matthew’s Church in Voorheesville on Saturday, Dec. 5, at 11:30 a.m.

In keeping with safety protocols due to the pandemic, seating capacity at St. Matthew’s is reduced. A video livestream and recording of the service will be available. Request the link here: https://tinyurl.com/pat-favreau

Memorial messages may be left at www.altamontenterprise.com/milestones.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York (regionalfoodbank.net), Community Caregivers (communitycaregivers.org) or the Helderberg Ambulance Squad at 729 Helderberg Trail, East Berne, NY 12059.

— Noah Zweifel

More Obituaries

  • EAST BERNE — Philip K. Willsie skillfully moved earth for a living, and moved heaven and earth for his family. He died on Monday, Dec. 28, 2020. He was 84.

  • GUILDERLAND — Ernest “Ernie” Rau — who was proud of his children and taught them the value of hard work — died peacefully on Monday, Jan. 11, 2021. He was 71.

    “Ernie had farming in his blood and loved working with animals and being in nature,” his family wrote in a tribute.

  • James Alexander Snider

    ALTAMONT —  James “Jim” Alexander Snider Jr., a loving husband and father of two children, died on the evening of Friday, Jan. 15, 2021, in Albany after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease. He was 84.

The Altamont Enterprise is focused on hyper-local, high-quality journalism. We produce free election guides, curate readers' opinion pieces, and engage with important local issues. Subscriptions open full access to our work and make it possible.