WHITESVILLE, NY - Daniel L. Dempsey, 69, departed this life with family by his side on Friday, November 9, 2018 at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, NY. Born on October 24, 1949 in Buffalo, he was the son of John Robert (Rip) and Ethelmarie Lambrix Dempsey and grew up in Bennington, NY. On March 17, 1990 he married the former Susan Hillman in Whitesville where they made their home. Dan was a graduate of Attica High School and SUNY at Fredonia and earned a master’s degree from Alfred University.
As a young man, he enjoyed living in several different places in the United States and worked on residential carpentry crews, bridge construction crews, in retail positions and as a self employed firewood provider. After moving to Shongo in 1986, he established himself as a chainsaw artist who worked on commission and exhibited both wood and stone sculptures at juried art shows in western New York with his favorite being the Allentown Art Festival. He also worked as a substitute teacher in area schools, was an adjunct instructor of English at Alfred State for seven years and taught math and science at Immaculate Conception School for a year. He retired in 2011.
Dan greatly enjoyed family gatherings and was happiest when sharing time with his son Ryan. He enjoyed taking long walks, swimming, skiing, reading about and discussing current events, yakking with his siblings and working on house and yard projects. With hundreds of plantings of trees, bushes and flowers and basic homeowner carpentry and masonry skills, he turned a former pasture into a comfortable home for his family.
Left to greatly miss his constant jokes, improvised songs and goofy sayings (“I hardly ever eat sweets”) are his wife Sue and their son Ryan Dempsey of Rolla, Missouri. Also surviving are siblings Jim Dempsey of San Diego, CA, Terry (Pam) Dempsey of Manassas, VA, Tim Dempsey of Coldwater, MI, John (Zhi) Dempsey of Pittsford, NY, Sheila (Mike Buja) Dempsey of Atlanta, GA, Moira (Jerry) Lichen of Boca Raton, FL and Dan’s twin sister Kathy (John) Maryak of Columbia, MD. He will also be missed by his in-laws Patricia Miller of Angelica and Mike and Eva Hillman of Belfast and several nieces, nephews and cousins. He was predeceased by his parents and siblings Tom Dempsey and Mary Ellen Spurgeon.
Friends are invited to join the family for a casual remembrance luncheon to be held from noon to 2 PM on Saturday, November 17th at the Whitesville Fire Hall.
Memorials made to the Golisano Hope Lodge, 1120 S. Goodman Street, Rochester, NY 14620 or Home Care & Hospice would be greatly appreciated by the family. To leave online condolences, please visit www.embserfuneralhome.com.