ONEONTA – Allan Rich Beach, 91, a former fire chief and founding member of the West Oneonta Fire Department passed away October 1, 2016 at Manor Care in Lebanon, Penn.
He was born March 3, 1925 in Hobart, the son of Ethel Eliza Rich and Almeron Allan Beach. He graduated from South Kortright Central School. In 1947, Allan and Elfreda moved to West Oneonta. In 1952, they built a home on Route 23 where they lived for 50 years. Subsequently, they lived in Mill Creek Estates in Otego, Juno Beach, FL, and most recently in New Holland, PA.
In 1947, Allan operated a poultry farm in West Oneonta and Emmons and later operated a AAA towing service for many years while owning local gas stations. He was a tractor trailer driving instructor and national placement director for a tractor trailer driving school.
He was a founding member of the West Oneonta Fire Department and Chief for nine years, Otsego County Fire Coordinator and Firematics Instructor, and Town of Oneonta Tax Assessor and Supervisor in the late 1960s. He also served as Lay Leader and Lay Speaker for 25 years at Elm Park United Methodist Church, and was a 68-year member of the Oneonta Masonic lodge as an honored Master Mason and 32nd-degree, member of Elks Lodge 1312, member of American Legion in Tequesta, FL, an Eagle Scout, Scoutmaster, and volunteer at Jupiter Medical Thrift Shop.
He is survived by his wife of 71 years, Elfreda Watts Coss Beach, who he met in Glasgow, Scotland while he was stationed with the U. S. Navy Medical Corps during WWII. Allan is also survived by his children Moira Beach, Oneonta; Scott Beach (and wife, Joyce), Meredith; Eleanor Savage (and husband, Greg), Cleveland, OH; and Susan Hawley, Oneonta; two sisters Ruth (and husband, Arnold) Dibble and Margaret Grant, Hobart. He had seven grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren.
A service in Celebration of Allan’s life will be 2 p.m. Sunday, November 6, at the Elm Park United Methodist Church, 401 Chestnut Street, Oneonta. A Masonic ceremony will be part of the service and an afternoon tea reception will follow.
Interment, with military honors, will take place at a later date in Locust Hill Cemetery, Hobart.
In lieu of flowers, contributions in Allan Beach’s name may be made to the Elm Park United Methodist Church, 401 Chestnut Street, Oneonta, NY 13820.