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Stuart's Story

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Stuart C. Ainslie, a lifelong resident of Hartwick, who most recently had resided at Hampshire House in Oneonta, passed away Sunday night, Oct. 17, 2010, at A.O. Fox Memorial Hospital in Oneonta. The longtime and faithful caretaker of Hartwick Cemetery, he was 94.
Stuart’s family originally came from Scotland in the 1850s, and settled on Scotch Hill in the Town of Hartwick. It was in the homestead on the family farm on Scotch Hill that Stuart was born on May 1, 1916, a son of William C. and Bertha (Aplin) Ainslie.
Raised in Hartwick, he attended Hartwick schools and assisted his father with his John Deere farm implement business in the Village of Hartwick.
Stuart also worked the family dairy farm until selling the herd in 1979.
For over 30 years, Stuart sold seeds as a Beachley Hardy Farm Seed dealer, a job he truly enjoyed as it afforded him the opportunity to visit with area farmers.
A member of the Hartwick United Methodist Church since 1940, Stuart was a faithful member who served at one time on the Official Board, and up until just recently served as a trustee of the church.
An active and devoted member of the Hartwick community, he served his fellow residents especially well in his role as caretaker of the  Hartwick Cemetery. For manyyears, he diligently mowed the lawn in the spring and summer, collected leaves in the fall, and arranged for the digging of graves. His presence on the cemetery’s John Deere lawn mower - always just out of sight during a graveside committal service but ready to do what needed to be done after all had left the cemetery - will be remembered by many a local funeral director. Stuart retired from this position at the age of 90. He will be missed and fondly remembered.
Stuart is survived by many cousins, including Larry and Barbara Ainslie of Hartwick, Alice and Augie Gardella of Oneonta, John and Linda Tuller of New Berlin, and Gail and Richard Twombly of Amston, Conn.
A funeral service will be offered at 11:30 a.m. Friday, Oct. 22, 2010, in the Hartwick United Methodist Church with the Rev. Richard Stackhouse, pastor, officiating.
The Service of Committal and Burial will follow in Hartwick Cemetery, where Stuart will be laid to rest with generations of his family and fellow Hartwick residents. Friends are invited to call at the church on Friday morning one hour prior to the services.
As an alternative to flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Hartwick United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 576, Mount Vision, NY 13810 or Hartwick Cemetery Association, P.O. Box 177, Hartwick, NY 13348.
Arrangements are under the guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.
Published on  October 21, 2010
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