Claude L. Sturtevant, 93, of Erie, died on Wednesday, January 8, 2020, at Elmwood Gardens. He was born on January 16, 1926, in Hazelhurst, PA, son of the late Claude M. and Edna Mae Fredenberg Sturtevant.
When only three years old, Claude felt heat on his face from the fire that destroyed the last of the glass factories in Hazelhurst, McKean County. In a village marooned with limited opportunity, Claude nevertheless enjoyed youthful pursuits and learned life skills from his parents and fiddle tunes from a neighbor.
Claude graduated in 1943 from Hamlin Twp. High School. He was a U.S. Navy veteran of WW II and as part of his training attended Dartmouth College, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and US Navy Electronics School. Claude joined his father and older brother as electricians in Erie's IBEW Local 56. Claude served as estimator, project superintendent, and retired in 1983 as Vice President of Northwest Electric Company. The boy whose town lost its glass industry led the team doing electrical construction for the PPG plate glass plants in Meadville and Mount Holly Springs, Pennsylvania.
Claude married his sweetheart, Elaine Huff, and they raised a family of four in the Summit Township home that he built. The couple celebrated their 73rd wedding anniversary on November 2 in Elmwood Gardens. Sadly, Elaine passed away not quite six weeks later.
Claude served in the choir, bell choir, church council, and several committees of St. John's Lutheran Church. He was 19 years a school director for Fort LeBoeuf School District. He was a former member and past president of the Summit Lions Club; he was a member of the Perry-Keystone Lodge No. 392 F. & A.M., Scottish Rite, Valley of Erie, Zem Zem Shrine, Erepa Grotto Glee Club, Siebenbuerger Club, and Zukor Club. In retirement, Claude sang and fiddled with the Generic Trio, entertaining at nursing homes and senior centers. He also enjoyed gardening, hunting, fishing, birding, travel, carpentry, dancing with Elaine, and life.
The family thanks the staff of Elmwood Gardens, St. Vincent Hospital AHN, AseraCare Hospice, Associated Clinical Laboratories, LECOM VNA, and Perry Hi-way Hose Company for their compassionate care.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife of 73 years, Elaine Huff Sturtevant, an infant daughter Baby Ann Sturtevant, three sisters, Ethel Welsh, Mildred Kness, and Alice Greene; and two brothers, Robert Sturtevant and Richard Sturtevant.
Survivors include two sons, Thomas Sturtevant (Kathleen) of Girard and David P. Sturtevant (Pamela Ashnault) of Hiram, Maine; two daughters, Carolyn R. Sturtevant of Erie and Patricia A. Farneth (Patrick) of Penfield, NY; six grandchildren, Jessica Decker (Kirk) of Titusville, PA, Ben Sturtevant (Christine) of Salem, WV, Rebecca Gerken (Gunnar) of Columbia, MD and Nick Sturtevant (Michelle) of Lake City, PA, Bailey Farneth of Port Townsend, WA and Ian Farneth (Harumo) of Mountain View, CA; eight great-grandchildren, Alexis Desormier (Brandon), Benny, Reed and McKenna Sturtevant, Olivia and Milo Decker, and Margaret and Elizabeth Gerken; brother-in-law Robert Greene of Whitney Point, NY; and many nieces, nephews and cousins.
Visitation will be held at the Scott Funeral Home, 2104 Myrtle Street, Sunday from 2 until 6 p.m. with Masonic Services at 5:30 p.m. conducted by Perry Keystone Lodge No. 392 F & A M Additional visitation will be held at St. John's Lutheran Church Chapel, 2216 Peach Street, Monday from 10 a.m. until the time of the service in the church sanctuary at 11 a.m. The Rev. Erik Young and the Rev. Roy P. Washill will co-officiate. Burial will be at Laurel Hill Cemetery with full military honors conducted by Erie Crawford County Burial Detail. Memorials may be made to Perry Hi-Way Hose Co., 8281 Oliver Road, Erie, PA 16509.
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