Claudia F. Sullivan, age 89, of Dundee, N.Y. died on Tuesday (September 12, 2017) at her home of fifty years overlooking her beloved Seneca Lake.
Honoring her wishes there are no prior calling hours. A celebration of a life well lived will be held on Saturday (September 23) at 11:30 a.m. at the Dundee United Methodist Church 35 Water St. Dundee, with Rev. Marilyn Wood officiating. Inurnment will be private in Hillside Cemetery, Dundee. Donations in Claudia’s memory may be made to the Yates County Humane Society P.O. Box 12, Penn Yan, NY 14527, Ontario – Yates Hospice 756 Pre-Emption Rd., Geneva, NY 14456, or, Dundee Volunteer Fire Department 12 Union St., Dundee, NY 14837.
Claudia was born on February 5, 1928 to David A. and Laura (Pierce) Symonds. She graduated from Dundee Central School as a member of the class of 1946. She continued her education at RIT where she earned an Associate’s Degree in Commercial Art. She furthered her education at Buffalo State Teachers College, earning her Bachelor’s degree in Art Education in 1959. Her art career began as a commercial artist at Artistic Greeting Cards in Elmira, N.Y. as a card designer. Later she was a staff artist at advertising agencies in Binghamton, and Rochester.
Claudia’s teaching career began in Clifton Springs and continued in the Geneva City School District where she taught for more than 20 years, retiring in 1987. As a dedicated teacher she taught a variety of art classes including classes in commercial art. She nurtured and inspired her students by encouraging and supporting them to be successful not only in art but in life. Claudia assisted with many student art shows along with set design for high school theatre productions. Art ran like a thread through Claudia’s life. It was her passion. She taught it, she utilized her talents to serve and bring great joy to others. The art that she created illustrated the things that were important to her. The subjects that she captured in paint, pen and ink, or collage ranged from local landmarks, scenes of the family farm, to nature, and animals. She exhibited and volunteered at the Glenora Festival of Music and Art for many years. Her works decorate her home and the homes of her family and friends.
A lifelong member of the Dundee United Methodist Church; she actively participated in the church community from singing in the choir and teaching Sunday school to sitting on or chairing various committees. In 1999 she was honored by the Dundee United Methodist Church as woman of the year for her dedicated service. In addition to church she was active in a number of organizations. These include the Town of Starkey Planning Board, Dundee Volunteer Fire Department Auxiliary, Board member of the Dundee Area Historical Society, Penn Yan Art Guild, and the Ontario County Retired Teachers Association.
Claudia is survived by her best friend and constant companion, Dora; her German Short Hair Pointer; six nieces Nancy (Michael) Tracy, Mary (Jeff) Lawton and Patricia Sullivan, Maureen (Ralph) Ebert, Colleen Sullivan, and Karen (John) Griffin; nephew, David (Jane) Symonds; and several dear cousins and friends.
In addition to her parents, and her husband Patrick she was predeceased by her brother, Howard Symonds, twin sister, Clarissa Hinkleman; sister, Dorothy Symonds; sister in law, Gladys Symonds; brothers in law Jack (Janice) Sullivan, Bob (Helen) Sullivan; a niece, Kathleen; and nephew, Michael Sullivan; along with several friends, family and beloved dogs.
Arrangements are by the Baird Funeral Home, 36 Water Street, Dundee.