John E. Houck, Sr.

John E. Houck Sr.

ALTAMONT — John E. Houck Sr., a patient man with a good sense of humor, died on Monday, Dec. 30, 2013, surrounded by his loving family, after a brief illness.

Mr. Houck was born in Albany, the son of the late John and Elizabeth Houck.

He and his wife, Diane Houck, who died in 2002, raised 12 children together.

“He was a good father, even working two jobs most of the time,” said his son, Dale Houck. “He was honest, fair, and decent.”

He worked for Tobin Packing Company, as a salesman, for 25 years.

Mr. Houck’s son said his father had a great sense of humor, and was “a lot of fun, always joking and fooling around.”

His daughter, Amy Thompson, said he was a very positive man.

“He had a great attitude and always had a smile on his face,” she said.

His daughter-in-law, Deborah Houck, said he had an abundance of patience, something she called “a necessity with 12 children.”

In his spare time, Mr. Houck liked to build bicycles, and he enjoyed a good cigar.

Mr. Houck is survived by 11 of his children; John Houck, and his wife, Carolyn; Robert Houck, and his wife, Emily; Dale Houck, and his wife, Deborah; Katherine Houck; Linda Dunn, and her husband, John; Scott Houck, and his wife, Beth; Mark Houck, and his wife, Christine; Amy Thompson, and her husband, Christopher; and Rebecca VanAlstyne.

He is also survived by 33 grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren; and his sister, Alic Krug, and her husband, Bud.

His wife, Diane Houck, died before him, as did his daughter, Susan Houck, and his sister, Ruth Jackson.

The family would like to thank Linda Lostritto, who lovingly cared for Mr. Houck for the past year and a half.

A Mass of Christian Burial was held at the Church of St. Lucy/St. Bernadette, in Altamont, on Jan. 7. Interment was at Memory Gardens. Arrangements were made by the Newcomer Cannon Funeral Home.

Mourners may leave online condolences at

— Anne Hayden Harwood

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