OTEGO – Frederick I. Underwood, 92, a life-long independent businessman who developed Underwood Heights in Otego, passed away June 8, 2017.
He was predeceased by his wife of 63 years, Joyce Burnside Underwood, on Nov. 17, 2011.
Fred was born in Sidney Center on Dec. 10, 1924, to Henry and Fannie (Sheldon) Underwood, who along with siblings, Mildred, Seymour, Ken, Lucy and George predeceased him.
He was self-employed most of his adult life, as a farmer, plumber, electrician and residential house builder and remodeler. What had once been his farm became the Underwood Heights housing development with many homes crafted by Fred at the helm, with estimating assistance from Joyce and labor in the early years from sons and several area artisans.
Later in his profession until age 89, Fred with the help of devoted friend, Terry, refurbished and sold hundreds of wood stoves. Fred and Joyce for 26 consecutive years sold wood stoves, antiques and Joyce’s quilts at the Delaware County Fair and were recognized by the fair for that longevity.
Fred was known for his love of a joke and was always ready for a party.
Surviving are sons, Ralph (Joanne) of Otego, Ross (Rosa) of Fairfax, Va., Jerry (Cindy) of Hamlin, Scott (Sherry) of Otego and daughter-in-law, Anne Underwood of Maryville, Tenn. In addition to his parents and Joyce, he was predeceased by son, Lynn, and daughter, Dale Joyce; brothers-in-law, John and Frank Burnside, Robert Goebeler and Jack Howey. Fred leaves behind many loving grandchildren, great grandchildren, numerous nieces, nephews and sisters-in-law, Marie Burnside, Shirley Goebeler and Audrey Howey.
The family wishes to extend heartfelt thanks and gratitude to the caring, professional staff of Chestnut Park Nursing Home, Oneonta, Fred’s home away from home for the past three years.
Calling hours will be 5-7 p.m. Friday, June 23, at the Bookhout Funeral Home, Oneonta. Graveside services will be held privately for the immediate family.
The family respectively request that because of Fred’s love for his many devoted dogs, any condolences be made to Lost Dog & Cat Rescue Foundation, (a rescue founded in 2001 by Fred and Joyce’s son, Ross and family friend, Pam) PO Box 50037, Arlington, VA 22205.
To light a candle or send an online condolence please visit www.bookhoutfuneralhome.com
Funeral arrangements are by the Bookhout Funeral Home of Oneonta.