Clayton J. Bantham Jr., 90; Korean Era Vet, State Farm Manager

IN MEMORIAM: Clayton H. Bantham Jr.,

90; Korean Era Vet, State Farm Manager

COOPERSTOWN – Clayton Harvey Bantham Jr., whose father managed Iroquois Farm, passed away Friday morning, Feb. 5, 2021, at Saratoga Hospital. He was 90 and lived in Wilton, Saratoga County.

Born Oct. 30, 1930, in Utica, Harvey was the son of Clayton Harvey Bantham, Sr. and Ruth Lucille Kline Bantham. In 1936, he moved to Cooperstown with his family when his father became Iroquois Farm manager.

Upon graduating from Cooperstown High School, Class of 1948, he attended Rider University, earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism.

In 1951 Harvey entered the Army and served his country during the Korean War. In May 1954, Sergeant Bantham received his honorable discharge from the military and returned home to Cooperstown.

There he met the love of his life, Annie Welsh, and they were married on April 9, 1955.  They resided in West Milford, N.J., for many years, and later moved to Wilton, Saratoga County, although they always called Cooperstown home. They wintered in Naples, Fla.

Harvey spent his career with State Farm Insurance, where he was an automobile insurance operations superintendent, earning the Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriters (CPCU) distinction.  He started with State Farm in Springfield, Pa., in 1960 and retired 33 years later in Ballston Spa. One of Harvey’s proudest achievements was working with many new recruits and State Farm agents that he mentored over the years, especially as State Farm expanded into the Northeast.

Harvey was an avid golfer, as well as an amateur photographer.  He had his thousands of photographs converted to a digital form and loved sharing them with his family members.

A longtime member of the West Milford (N.J.) Presbyterian Church, he served on the Session, was a lifelong elder, and sang in the church choir for many years.

Harvey is survived by his beloved wife of 65 years, Annie; his daughter, Shelley Fredericks and husband Mark of West Milford, N.J.; two sons and daughters-in-law, Daniel Bantham and wife Kimberly of Bedford, N.H., and Timothy Bantham and wife Martina of Ballston Spa,; grandchildren Leanne Fredericks, William Fredericks (Olivia), Douglas Fredericks and Emily Caudill (Cameron), Amanda Ibanez (Zachary) and Chase Bantham, Ashe Sager and Kevin Bantham and a niece and two nephews.

In addition to his mother and father,who died in 1980 and 1982 respectively, he was predeceased by his sister June Schrader (1998), and stepmother Isabelle Baldinger Bantham (1989).

Harvey will be laid to rest in the Ecumenical Columbarium in Christ Church yard, Cooperstown. A memorial service is planned for a later time once COVID-19 restrictions are lifted.

Memorial donations may be made to Christ Episcopal Church, 69 Fair St., Cooperstown NY 13326.

Arrangements are under the care and guidance of the Connell, Dow & Deysenroth Funeral Home in Cooperstown.

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