2009-12-09 / Obituaries

Stephen L. Andersen

Stephen L. Andersen, of Putnam Valley, passed away Thursday, November 19, 2009, at St. Luke's Hospital, Newburgh after a long illness. He was 65.

Born in Mount Kisco, the son of the late Clarence E. and Margarethe L. Andersen, He lived most of his life in Putnam Valley and Garrison. He graduated from Peekskill High School in 1961 and briefly attended Danbury State College.

Mr. Andersen was well known in the community. His passions were music and history. He studied under eminently talented musicians, including the late Paul Prince from the NBC Symphony Orchestra. After high school, Mr. Andersen worked for the Odell Organ Company in Yonkers. Ultimately he became an expert in both building and playing this instrument. Along the way he became an expert in the tuning and repairing of pianos. Mr. Andersen played string bass, piano, guitar, and pipe organ in a wide variety of venues, some of which he organized. He also taught string bass, piano, and guitar privately and taught music at Saint Basil's Academy in Garrison.

As the Putnam Valley Town Historian, Mr. Andersen's enthusiasm for preserving town historical treasures from documents to buildings knew no bounds. In the process, he became a repository of historical knowledge which he never hesitated to share. In 2007, he was honored for his efforts by the Putnam Valley Historical Society as "a gentle giant of historical and musical intellect who shares all that is in his domain with all who seek him out."

Survivors include two brothers, Victor A. of Dartmouth MA, and Richard A. of Putnam Valley, and a sister, Karen L of Somerville, GA, and several nieces and nephews.

A Celebration of Life and Remembrance will be held for Mr. Andersen at the Tompkins Corners Methodist Church, Peekskill Hollow Road, Putnam Valley, on Saturday, December 12, at 10am. Friends are invited to the Putnam Valley Fire Department on Oscawana Lake Road in Putnam Valley for refreshments and fellowship after the service. In lieu of flowers, remembrances may be sent to the Tompkins Corners Methodist Church c/o Gwen Cope, 162 Pudding Street, Putnam Valley, NY 10579, or The Putnam Valley Historical Society, P.O. Box 297, Putnam Valley, NY 10579. Funeral arrangements were under the direction of Heritage Funeral Home, Morrissey Drive, Putnam Valley.

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