Bruce Edward Finch passed away peacefully February 6, 2016 at the Loretto’s Cunningham Nursing Home in Syracuse. He was born Apr 14, 1926 to Joseph Claude Finch (1903-1955) and Helen Barbara McAleer (1902-1947). He came from a large family whose roots run deep in the history of Maine, NY, and was the oldest of six children. Bruce was predeceased by his brothers. The brothers and their spouses were Joseph C (1927-1999) and Leone MacLaren; and Robert T (1928-1988) and Sarah Burnham. His sisters and their spouses are Mrs. Irene M and Jean Padbury (1929-1998); Mrs. Genevieve and Charles K Colona, (1929-1986), and Franck V. Giordani (1922 – 2011); and Mrs. Carol A and Ed Lawrence, Donald McCowan, and John MacPherson. Bruce is survived by his wife of 44 years, Vera Jean Dolan Shepard, and predeceased by his first wife, Madeline A Kaczynski (1928-2006). Bruce and Madeline had three sons Kenneth (Kathleen Whatman), Lawrence (Celia Mastroleo), and Joseph (Denise Ackley and Debra Cortright). He is also survived by four step-children, Suzanne (Walt) Wightman; Sharon (Pete) Russell, Shelly (Michael) Wood, and Bruce (Tammy) Shepard. He is also survived by nine grandchildren on the Finch side: Paul (Patty) Finch, Heather (Joe) Ott, Scott (Roxanne) Finch, Matthew Finch, Stephanie (Nate) Smith, Michael Finch, and Daniel (Sarah) Burkey. And there are six grandchildren on the Shepard side: Amber (David) Downey, Shawn (Kristen) Wood, Melissa (Matthew) Osbourne, Roxanne (Jason) Gray, Buddy (Lexi Gantt) Wightman, and Jason Osterhout. In addition there are twelve great grandchildren on the Finch side and seventeen on the Shepard side. Bruce proudly served his country aboard the USS Alabama in the Pacific during WW II, from June 9, 1943 to February 11, 1946. After the war he became a truck driver, and lived in Maine, NY and later DeRuyter, NY, where he ran a small excavating business until the mid-1970. He and Vera briefly moved to Albany, GA and then to Florida, where they lived until the mid-1990’s when they returned to Palermo, NY, to be closer to their children.
Calling hours will be held Wednesday at the Allen Memorial Home, 511-513 East Main Street, Endicott, from 4-7 pm. The funeral will be Thursday 11 am at the Most Holy Rosary Catholic Church, Maine, NY. Donations in lieu of flowers may be made to the Maine American Legion Post 1390, Maine, NY, where Bruce was a founding member, or the Mexico VFW Post 369, 5930 Scenic Avenue, Mexico, NY 13114 where he proudly helped construct their new meeting hall.