RICHFIELD SPRINGS – Dustin Norman Groat, 19, of Richfield Springs, who passed away Tuesday, June 19, 2018, when his kayak capsized on Canadarago Lake during a storm.
He was born on Feb. 2, 1999, in Cooperstown, the son of Eric Groat and Evelyn Seward, and graduated from Richfield Springs Central School, Class of 2017.
Dustin and his dad had a special connection and he loved spending time on the farm with him. His favorite place to be, and where he was happiest, was outside. Whether he was working on the farm, mowing lawns, or just hanging out with family. He enjoyed operating heavy farm equipment in the fields.
He had a strong work ethic, and his generosity and pure heart made him extremely loved by everyone. His enormous smile and willingness to help touched the hearts of many people.
Dustin worked on the family farm as well as many local farms, including Bee Line Farms (the Guzick family), Gary and Sue Culbertson, Martin Branigan, Mayper Farms (the Treen and Mower family), AJ’s Lawn Care and Property Services, LLC, which he really enjoyed, as well as Bobnick Enterprises (Kevin and Stan Bobnick).
Dustin is survived by his father, Eric Groat, Richfield Springs; his mother, Evelyn Seward, Otego; brother Derrick Groat, Richfield Springs; sister Alexis Seward, Oneonta; and brother Aaron Seward, Oneonta; maternal grandmother, Lynda Crawford, Wells Bridge; paternal grandparents, Norman and Doris Groat Jr., Walton; paternal great-grandmother, Vivian Groat, Franklin; three maternal uncles, John, Charles and Cecil Wyckoff; paternal uncle Lincoln (Melinda) Groat; nephew, Logan Seward; as well as several cousins. He also leaves behind his beloved dog, Jenna.
He was predeceased by his maternal grandfather, Cecil Wyckoff and paternal great-grandfather, Norman Groat Sr.
Calling hours will be noon-2 p.m., Friday, June 22, at the Kenneth L. Bennett Funeral Home, 425 Main St., Franklin. Graveside services in the Ouleout Valley Cemetery, Franklin, will immediately follow at 2 p.m.
Dustin’s family will be hosting a Celebration of Life in Richfield Springs at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, expressions of gratitude may be made to Hartwick, Exeter, West Exeter, Richfield Springs and Schuyler Lake Fire Departments for all of their life saving efforts.
Condolences may be shared online by visiting www.bennettfh.com.
Arrangements are by the Ke