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Rev. John A. Blackman Jr., 84;

Edmeston Leader For 52 Years

John A. Blackman Jr.
John A. Blackman Jr.

EDMESTON – The Rev. John A. Blackman, Jr., the award-winning and community-minded pastor emeritus of the Second Baptist Church, Edmeston, passed away Nov. 20, 2016.

He was born Aug. 31, 1932 in Rockland, Maine, to John A. Blackman and Olive Kalloch Blackman. He graduated from Rockland High School, Gordon College in Boston, and Gordon Divinity School, Wenham, Mass.

He married Dorothy Loyte in June 1955.

John served the First Baptist Church of Oswegatchie, in the North Country, from June 1958 to January 1964, where he was ordained into the ministry. He then was called to the Second Baptist Church, and served from February 1964 to September 1994.

He was a member of the Edmeston Volunteer Fire Department, an advanced EMT on the emergency squad and a substitute teacher at Edmeston Central School. He founded the first senior citizens’ group in Edmeston, originally called The Evergreens.

He and New York Central Mutual’s Van Ness Robinson made possible the first of Bassett Healthcare’s off-site clinics. They also established the hamlet’s low-income housing complex, West Hill Terrace.

John was a long-time member of the Edmeston Rotary Club and served one year as president. He was honored to be chosen as a Paul Harris Fellow. The club also proclaimed Oct. 24, 1998 as John Blackman Day for “making a difference”.

He received the Dewitt Clinton Masonic Award for community service and was the Grange’s Citizen of the Year. He was chosen to be Edmeston’s representative at the Otsego County’s Bicentennial celebration.

John was the state American Baptist Convention’s nominee for the Rosa B. Hall Award for the outstanding rural pastor.

He was a director of the Edmeston Free Library Board for 34 years, vice president for several. He was also on the Board of Directors of the Otsego Mutual Insurance Co.

For many years, patients at Bassett Hospital were only ministered to by local clergy, then John and other committee members hired the hospital’s first chaplain. In the summer of 1973 he made a pastoral exchange with the Edenbridge Baptist Church in England. In his later years of ministry the ABCNY asked him to mentor a group of new pastors in several associations.

John is survived by his wife of 61 years, Dorothy, and his children, David Blackman, Edmeston, Deborah DeForest, Norwich, and Karen Blackman, New Berlin. as well as daughter-in-law Ruth Blackman and son-in-law Michael Shuman.

He was predeceased by his daughter Kathy Shuman, of Beaver Meadow. Also left are grandchildren, Christina Staples, Rachel Blackman, Jordan Blackman, Chazzman Felker, Riley DeForest, Mitchell Felker, Michelle Blackman and three great-grandsons Alex Staples, Jackson Staples and Adam Blackman. He also leaves many nephews and nieces in the state of Maine.

There will be a graveside service with no formal calling hours. The family has been blessed to have the love and concern of friends for 52 years and each member knows of that sympathy now. All are grateful for that support.

Arrangements are by the Houk Johnston Terry Funeral Home of Edmeston.


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