Maynard J. Lonis, 97

PHOENIX, NY – Maynard  J. Lonis, 97, of Phoenix, passed away Wednesday January 11, 2017, surrounded by family.

Maynard  J. Lonis
Maynard J. Lonis

He was born in 1919 to New York State Assemblyman Ernest  J. Lonis and wife Gertrude (Countryman) Lonis.

Maynard grew up during the Great Depression working on his father’s farm in Hannibal, NY.

He graduated from Hannibal High School in 1936 and continued on with his education, a value he instilled in his family, with both his Bachelor’s Degree in (1940) and Master’s Degree (1951) from Oswego State.

He served in World War II with the U. S. Maritime Service as the ship’s Chief Radio Officer, where he earned the nickname “Sparks” during three theaters, in the Atlantic, Pacific and Mediterranean.

Maynard had a passion for HAM Radio (W2MXE) and after the war, reveled in his time spent circumnavigating the world on sea-going voyages.

Following his career on the seas, he began teaching Industrial Arts at the Fulton School District.

His love for electronics then lead him to a career working for General Electric and Black Clawson.

He was predeceased by his loving wife of 54 years, Betty G. (Neilson); and his sister, Bernadette Lonis.

Surviving are two sons, William E. of Phoenix and Robert M. (Karen) of Murfreesburo, Tenn.; a daughter, Mary E. Alton of Pennellville; grandsons, Gregory Alton (Elizabeth), Ryan, Preston and Blake Lonis; granddaughter, Catherine Alton; great-grandchildren, Maggie and Jackson Alton.

Services: calling hours on Sunday, January 15, from 4 to 8 p.m., and a funeral on Monday at 10 a.m. at the Allanson-Glanville-Tappan Funeral Home in Phoenix.

Spring burial will be in Phoenix Rural Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that contributions be made to: Phoenix Central Schools Dollars for Scholars.


  1. You don’t know me, but I caught the name, and wondered if it was for LONIS HALL on the SUNY Campus. And even though he’s not, after I read his obit, I see this man was an amazing human being who lived a full and very, very rich life. THIS is what we all hope for: A great education that we share with others/travels throughout the world/a rewarding career/loving family and LONG LONG LIFE. I’m certain he’ll be missed, but now he’s going on another adventure (for those of us who believe there is more than just this life). I suspect that this adventurer will not be resting in peace but flying high in eternity and exploring the afterlife with his loved ones!

  2. Maynard was a long time member of the Half-Shire Historical Society, and we enjoyed seeing him when he came up to the Sandy Creek Fair each year, for many years. He was a great genealogist, and worked many years on his family line, and others. Our heartfelt sympathy goes out to his family, he will be missed!
    Shawn Doyle
    Half-Shire President

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