2009-09-16 / Obituaries

Edward Paul Greiff

Edward Paul Greiff, a freelance reporter for the PCN&R who covered events primarily in Putnam Valley, died on September 8, 2009. He was 77 years old.

Ed's friend, Andrew J. Powers, of Mahopac, offered these reflections on Ed's life:

I first met Ed circa 1997 at the Olympic Diner in Mahopac. Always the optimist, he saw only the good in people (he always said that he could not afford the luxury of a negative thought) At the time Ed was a Director with the City of New York Department of Environmental Protection Management Information Systems and resided in an apartment in Mahopac. Although Ed was skilled in culinary art, as a widower he preferred not to dine alone and spent much of his free time in the diner, where he would pass the hours chatting with friends. Ed was always eager to give his time to help people and to share his experiences and knowledge. His breadth of experience as both an entrepreneur and project systems analyst for such organizations as Bunker Ramos, the Wallace family (founders of Readers Digest), and Maryknoll Fathers provided a logical series of steps required to provide a solution to a vast range of business and life situations.

Ed was grateful to have lived a full life. He would share how as a boy his family had a summer home near Shark River, NJ, where he loved to swim, spend time on the beach and sail. But life was far from easy for Ed. After he married the girl of his dreams, Catherine LaRussell, whom he met while working as a fitness instructor at the Greenwich YMCA, they were blessed with a daughter, Janis, whom he loved dearly. However his wife was plagued by illness including terminal cancer, leaving him a widower in 1991. During that time Ed was driving home from NYC when he experienced his first heart attack and ultimately underwent open-heart surgery. Most of his money went to pay medical debts, leaving very little for himself, and he lived in a small apartment in Mahopac, which tragically burned down one night, leaving him homeless, with all of his personal effects destroyed. Fortunately, one of his many friends found him a place in Putnam Valley where he dedicated the remaining years of his life to serving the community as a freelance reporter for the PCN&R.

As a photojournalist he would take hundreds of photos at events that he covered and then spend untold hours editing the photos and making collages for his stories. His photos always brought out the best in Putnam Valley, especially its youth, and all of his stories were intended to present the positive side of life.

Surviving Ed are his daughter Janis and son-in-law Gerry Carrick, grandchildren Jessica, Stephanie, and Daniel Edward, residing in Hopewell Junction, as well as his brother Paul and family Lorraine, Gregory, Pam, and Andrea, who reside in Wayland, MA.

A memorial was held on Sunday, September 13, at McHoul Funeral Home on Route 82 in Hopewell Junction.

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