SARANAC LAKE - Robert Francis Carey of West Babylon died unexpectedly in his home on Nov. 12, 2011, at the age of 60.
Bob was born in Rockville Center on May 8, 1951, to Francis Carey and Margaret M. (Graham) Carey. He grew up on Long Island, spending summers in Forestburgh with his beloved Grandmother Mae Graham. Bob attended Island Park Grammar School and Power Memorial Academy in New York City, graduating from Wantagh High School in 1969.
At the age of 18, Bob joined the United States Marine Corps where he served with the 4th Marine Division. He completed two tours of duty in Vietnam as a gunnery sergeant.
Upon returning from Vietnam, Bob bought a Harley Davidson and enjoyed riding with friends in a motorcycle club. He worked at Newsday alongside several family members. After starting his own family, Bob became a marine mechanic on Shelter Island, and also learned the trade of carpenter.
In 1986, Bob moved with his family and settled in Long Lake. There, Bob continued to work as a carpenter and craftsman. He truly enjoyed restoring historic Adirondack camps along the lake and was particularly proud of his work on the reconstruction of the school house and other buildings at the Adirondack Museum in Blue Mountain Lake, as well as of his restoration of the fire tower atop Goodnow Mountain.
Bob had a deep love of music. He played the harmonica and relished listening to oldies rock and roll, traditional Irish music and the blues. He was passionate about classic cars and motorcycles. He had a deep affection for animals, spending many years breeding and raising English bulldogs and later owning exotic birds. He loved spending time outdoors, camping and boating on the lake.
Bob's loved ones will remember him as a true individual, genuine and loyal. He was a highly intelligent man with a quick humor who never missed seeing the irony in any situation. He was sensitive and a man of deep love and generosity. He was a proud Marine, father and grandfather.
Bob is survived by his children: Katie Hechmer (David), Sarah Gallagher (Chris) and Cliff Carey; his father, Frank Carey; his siblings: Coleen Carey and Patrick Carey; and his grandchildren: Marissa Bickford, Ryan and Madeline Gallagher, and Josephine Hechmer.
A Mass will be said in Bob's name at 9 a.m. Saturday, July 14, at St. Bernard's Catholic Church in Saranac Lake, followed by a graveside service at Harrietstown Cemetery.
Local funeral arrangements are in care of the Fortune-Keough Funeral Home. Family and friends can share their memories and sign the online guestbook at www.fortunekeoughfuneralhome.com.
Our combat veterans have sacrificed body and spirit to keep us safe. In honor of Bob, thank a veteran today.