Jack W. Ovitt was born to Walter and Alberta Ovitt in Rutland on June 3, 1932 and died in Utica, N.Y on Nov. 23, 2010.
He is survived by his sisters, Harmony Bolstridge of South Windsor, Conn., Eileen Gould of Enfield, Conn., a brother-in-law, Melvin Abell of St. Albans; and his siblings’ children; and his cousins. He also befriended a young man that he considered his family, Scott Pelow and his wife, Judy.
He was predeceased by his parents; and twin sister, June Abell; and two brothers-in-law, Russell Bolstridge and Robert Gould.
Jack grew up in various towns in Vermont, graduating in 1950 at Bellows Free Academy in Fairfax, and then later that year enlisted in the Navy and served as a coxswain and chaplains assistant for four years.
Jack was born with the gift of music and became accomplished at the piano and organ. Early in his adult life, it was a thrill for Jack to find a new organ to play. Jack traveled to find these in churches and befriended many a church organist. He graduated from the University of Vermont in 1960, having majored in music. While at the university, he joined the fraternity Sigma Alpha Epsilon, and served as their Chaplain. Also he became assistant organist at Burlington’s St. Paul Episcopal Cathedral in 1958.
Jack naturally taught music in the schools at Altmar-Parish-Williamstown in Oswego County in New York.
He served as The Grand Organist for the Grand Lodge for the state of N.Y. and had the same responsibility for the Grand Bodies of Royal Arch Masons, Cryptic Masons and Knights Templar. At the Wood gate, N.Y. Camp Turk, he served as Vice Chairman for the committee on Youth and as a counselor. He became a Mason in 1954 in Fairfax, and then in 1980 transferred to the one in Parish, N.Y., serving as a Master in 1985 and 1986. He was a member of all the major Masonic organizations.
Jack played the organ right through his first amputation of his left leg, but had to stop when years later they had to take his other leg. He stayed very positive during these stressful times and continued to be his friendly self.
He was very fortunate to have good friends like Larry and Rose Joseph; and loyal aides, Theresa Thureto and Gary De Stephano to watch after him and he will be greatly missed.
Arrangement for the burial of his ashes at Lakeview Cemetery in Burlington will be made in the spring.