Local Obits

Obituary of John F. McGrath


The world dimmed when John F. McGrath, 54, of Cortlandville, NY, lost his battle with lung cancer on February 26, 2022. He was born October 21, 1967 in Newburgh, NY to Marianne and the late Michael McGrath. He attended Newburgh schools before receiving his professional licenses for Water and Wastewater Plant Operation.

On September 25, 1993 he married his soul mate Rose(mary) Jannotti and raised four wonderful children. John and his family relocated to the Cortland area in 2001, where he became an active member of the community and made many lifelong friends. He was the Chief Operations Manager of Yaws Environmental, where he worked as a Water and Wastewater Plant Operator since 2001.

Deeply loving and fiercely loyal, John’s sense of humor, ability to fix and build almost anything, and generosity with his time and talents are the hallmarks of his legacy. In addition to his woodworking and building projects, John loved to go camping and fishing, and enjoyed spending time with his family and friends.

A lifelong Buffalo Bills fan, John loved football. He coached youth football for many years, including 8 years as the offensive line coach for the Homer Central School district at the Modified (Junior High) level.

Filled with charm, John could easily disarm an angry wife, upset child, or disgruntled client. He could coax a laugh from a stone and loved to say that he “wasn’t afraid to spend money on a joke.” John’s ability to drop a movie quote, song lyric, or irreverent comment was unsurpassed.

John was predeceased by his father Michael McGrath, his sister Susan, his aunts Mary McGrath Witherwax and Johanna Polhamus, and uncle John Fitzpatrick.

John is survived by his loving wife Rose; his children Medb, Kasey, Shaun (Kylene), and Meghan; mother Marianne; siblings Diane (Bill) Way, Donna (Terry) Pelletier, Michael (Claudia) McGrath Theresa (Nat) Mitchell, Walter (Deborah) McGrath, Richard (Shellie) McGrath, Carol (James) Bertero, Stephanie (Robert) Brindley, Colleen (Lonnie) Steinhiliber, and Loreen (Scott) Lavery; aunts Patricia (Dennis) Marselle and Edith Fitzpatrick; many cousins, nieces, and nephews.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. Margaret’s Church in Homer, NY on March 4, 2022 at 1 PM. Burial will be private and there are no calling hours. Family and friends are welcome to gather to share stories and memories following the Mass.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the American Cancer Society or to Homer Football Backers, ? Juli Quinn, 575 Cutler Road, Homer, NY 13077 with “John McGrath” in the check memo.

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