Vernon's Story

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Vernon H. Gokey, 82, of Bradenton, Fla., passed away June 8, 2017, at his home.
Vernon was born on April 19, 1935, in Altona, N.Y., to the late Edward and Leta (Guerin) Gokey. He graduated from Altona Central High School in 1953 and Plattsburgh State Teacher's College in 1957, and received his administrator's degree from Hofstra University. He served his country faithfully in the U.S. Army by serving in Germany for 2 years. After his military service, Vernon worked as a teacher and administrator in the Long Island, N.Y., school system for over 35 years before his retirement in 1991. He moved to Bradenton, Fla., in 1992 and was a member of the Our Lady Queen of Martyrs Catholic Church in Sarsaota, Fla.
Vernon was a very loving husband, father and friend, and was known for his eternal optimism and outgoing personality. His childhood, where he grew up to appreciate a simple rural life, was inspiration for many of the fabulous stories he loved to tell. Anyone who knew Vernon also knew that he had a passion and a talent for woodworking. His biggest project was building a vacation home on a small lake in Naples, Maine, although he also built cradles for his grandchildren, and was constantly trying to "build a better mousetrap."
He was predeceased by his loving wife Marianne (Neely) Gokey, and is survived by two daughters: Suzanne (Paul) Giroux of Windham, N.H., Dianne (Peter) Lidiak of Silver Spring, Md.; two sisters: Jean Duquette of Plattsburgh, N.Y., Carolyn (Chris) Belair of Altona, N.Y.; six grandchildren and many extended family members and friends.
A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated at 10:30 a.m. on June 29 at at the Church of the Holy Angels, 522 Devils Den Road, Altona, N.Y.
The family request that in lieu of flowers that memorials be made to Cancer Research Institute in his memory.
Arrangements are entrusted to Brown Funeral Home, 3123 Miner Farm Road, Altona, NY 12910. (518) 236-5983. Online condolences may be offered at www.brownfuneralhomeinc.com.
Published on June 26, 2017
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