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Obituraries Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, November 9, 2006

Robert G. Hanna, Sr.

GUILDERLAND — Robert G. Hanna Sr., kept a growing suburban town, a town he loved, "up to code" as Guilderland’s building inspector. He died last Sunday, Nov. 5, 2006, at St. Peter’s Hospital in Albany following a brief illness. He was 90.

Graduating from Indian Lake Central High School in Hamilton County, he later moved to Guilderland in 1954. Mr. Hanna retired as Guilderland’s building inspector in 1980.

"He loved the town. He was around when they first built the 20 Mall and Heritage Park," said his daughter, Nancy Lamb. "He was always there, making sure everything was up to code."

He was also very active in the church, said both his daughter, Mrs. Lamb, and his son Robert Hanna Jr. He was a charter member of Lynnwood Reformed Church, which was founded 50 years ago.

"He was extremely active," said Mrs. Lamb. "You name it, he was a part of it."

"He has a lot of people whose lives he’s touched. I didn’t even realize it until recently," said Mr. Hanna. "Since he retired, the church really played a big role in his life."

Recalling his father, Mr. Hanna said his father loved photography and he loved the Adirondack mountains, especially when it came to boating.

"He liked to do a lot of photography. I have 1,000 slides from him that I’m going through," said Mr. Hanna. "I’m going to take the top 200 and make a DVD for people, although some at the church want all 1,000 of them," he said with a chuckle.

Mr. Hanna Sr. did not suffer before his death, which was a relief for the family, said his son.

"He did not have to spend anytime at the nursing home, and he didn’t suffer," Hanna said about his father’s short illness before he died. "That’s about as close as dying with your boots on as you can get.

"People really liked him a lot," said Hanna, and added that, in particular, the staff at Mike’s Diner in Guilderland will miss him. "He just had one of those personalities," Mr. Hanna said.

He is survived by his wife of 69 years, Bertha Hanna; his son, Robert G. Hanna Jr., and his wife, Eleanor, of Hummelstown, Pa.; his daughter, Nancy Lamb, and her husband, James, of Collegeville, Pa.; four grandchildren, Lieutenant Commander Robert G. Hanna III, and his wife, Maria, of Groton, Conn., Drew B. Hanna of Exton, Pa., Mary Roelofs of Laurel, Md., and Janet Ottey, and her husband, Daniel, of Limerick, Pa.; and one great-grandson, Zachary Hanna.

A funeral service will be held today (Thursday) at 10:30 a.m. at the Lynwood Reformed Church in Guilderland. Calling hours at the church were yesterday (Wednesday). The burial ceremony will be in Schenectady Memorial Park.

Memorial contributions may be made to Lynnwood Reformed Church, 3700 Carman Rd., Schenectady, NY 12303.

— Jarrett Carroll

Jean R. Harlan

ALTAMONT — Jean R. Harlan, an engineering technician and mother of two, died on Friday, Oct. 27, 2006, at St. Peter’s Hospice Inn in Albany, following a brief illness. She was 84.

A graveside service will be held on Saturday, Nov. 11, 2006, at 11 a.m. at Evergreen Memorial Park in Schenectady.

Memorial contributions may be made in her memory to a charity of choice.

Ashley Sammons

EAST BERNE — Ashley Sammons was a happy girl who loved music and basketball. Most of all, though, she loved her family and going to school.

She died on Thursday, Nov. 2, 2006, at Albany Medical Center Hospital. She was 16.

"Ashley wasn’t a normal kid; she was in a special ed class," said her father, Carl Sammons, of Schenectady. She attended the class at Guilderland High School.

"School was her stomping ground," he went on. "When she was at school, everybody would like her. When she got to school, it was her world," he said, and grade-level norms didn’t matter. "She was like any other kid," he said.

"She loved school," agreed her mother, Tina Delligan, of East Berne. "She loved her classmates and her teachers. If they had a day off from school, she’d be miserable all day long."

"School was her place to be her," said her father. "She called the people she was with there her crew," he said, explaining many of the students had been together for years.

Ashley also liked playing basketball, and idolized Michael Jordan, said her mother, adding, "She has her own basketball hoop."

"She loved to sing and dance," her mother went on. Ashley was particularly fond of the movie Grease and would watch the musical over and over. "She knew the songs by heart," said her mother.

Her father said that Ashley liked to visit the music store, FYE, in the Rotterdam Square Mall, near where he lives. "That was her mall," he said. This past year, he let her explore the music store on her own.

"I would leave her at FYE and sit outside where I could see her. She loved being there on her own," he said. "She felt like a 16-year-old....She would strut in like, ‘Yeah, here I come.’ It was independence, to do it alone."

When Mr. Sammons came in to get his daughter, he said, "I would find her singing with the headphones on. She’d say, ‘I’m not singing loud’ but you sure could hear her."

Mrs. Delligan said Ashley was "really, really close" to her 18-year-old sister, Desiree. "She wouldn’t go to bed without making sure her sister was in bed first," said Mrs. Delligan. The girls didn’t share a room, so Ashley "would get up in the middle of the night to go and check on her sister," said her mother.

"She was very loving and very bubbly," said her father. "She was happy. She could make you happy."

Ashley always spoke her mind, he said. "She could say, ‘I don’t like you’ one minute and then turn around and say, ‘I love you,’" said Mr. Sammons.

"She’d let you know how it is," said her mother. "She was very outgoing. She loved talking to people. She loved arguing with people."

Her father said of Ashley’s death, "Everybody’s pretty much devastated. Her friends in school have been together for years...She didn’t want anybody to grieve over her. She wouldn’t want anyone to worry over her or to blame themselves for the things she couldn’t get to do.

"She knew she was going to heaven," said her father. "She used to talk about Mama and Pa," he said, referring to relatives she loved who had died. "She’d say, ‘I can’t wait to see them.’"

Her father concluded, "I know she’s up there now."

Ashley Sammons was the daughter of Tina Delligan of East Berne and Carl Sammons of Schenectady. She was the stepdaughter of Wallace Koons of East Berne and Monique Sammons of Schenectady.

She is also survived by her sister, Desiree Sammons, of East Berne; her maternal grandmother, Mary Delligan of East Berne; her paternal grandparents, Joyce and Bill Sammons, of Albany; and several aunts, uncles, and cousins.

Her grandfather, Anthony Delligan, died in 1995.

A funeral service was held on Tuesday, Nov. 7, at the Fredendall Funeral Home in Altamont, with burial in the Lutheran Cemetery in Schoharie.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Epilepsy Foundation, 8301 Professional Place, Landover, MD 20785.

— Melissa Hale-Spencer

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