CHERRYFIELD, MAINE — Anthony "Andy" Jones, whom most of you knew as "Tony," died in Jonesport, Maine, on April 2, 2013, after a long battle with Parkinson's Disease. He made his April 15th deadline for the last time.
Tony was born in 1935 in Washington D.C., the fourth child and third son of Major Edward C. Jones and Anna Vadnais Jones, and grew up with his eight siblings in Maryland. He was very active with the Boy Scouts, but also worked part-time in local grocery stores until he graduated from the University of Maryland in 1958 with a bachelor of science degree.
Rather than work for the U.S. Government as his father and brothers did, Tony chose private industry; working first as a comptroller in co-operative housing in Greenbelt, Md., and in Baltimore, during which time, all of his six children were born. Later he moved up to the position of General Manager and Comptroller in Hatboro, Pa., where he took night courses for his master's degree at Temple University, after which he returned to his first love, accounting, in the Philadelphia CPA firm of Main Lafrentz. It was a struggle studying for his CPA license with two and sometimes three jobs and a houseful of children.
The family dream of an affordable rural farm brought them to the North Country in 1971, where he worked in the offices of Telling and Kelting in Plattsburgh and taught accounting part-time at Clinton Community College. When he opened his own CPA office on Oak Street in 1976, he and his family had made many dear and lasting friends. He later merged with Dragon Benware of Malone and remained the managing partner in the Margaret Street office.
Once when his wife sighed that she'd like to be a "Beloved Childrens' Book Author", he said that he'd always wanted to be "a beloved accountant." So his children gave him a bumper sticker that read, "Plattsburgh's Most Beloved Accountant." He wouldn't put it on his car, naturally, but was pleased with the thought.
While Tony had grown up in a D.C. suburb, his children got to enjoy the healthy life of the country, and he took his weekly turn with the chores that included more farm animals than he actually wanted - horses, chickens, ducks, geese, dogs and a small herd of cats - but he did manage to successfully resist cows and pigs. He was without question the head of the family, and gave his sense of integrity and strong work ethic to his children, as well as his love of hiking and camping.
With his brother-in-law, retired Air Force Colonel Gerald B. Edwards of Keeseville, Tony worked hard with the many early ARC programs and served for a time as chairman of the Essex County Industrial Development Agency. He also enthusiastically joined the Rotary Club in Au Sable Forks, and was twice its president. He threw himself into its many fine works; the AVCS scholarship awards being his special project. He was awarded the Paul Harris Fellowship medal for his zealous service. He visited with Rotarians all over the world as he traveled with his wife after his retirement in 1997. Whenever his family was asked his religion, they'd reply: "He's a Rotarian."
Retiring from a job he enjoyed so much was very difficult for Tony, but he was already feeling the effects of Parkinson's, although it wasn't diagnosed for another eight years - after he had already pulled out the roots he had so firmly planted in the Adirondacks, to be with children and grandchildren in Maine. He enjoyed remodeling his house, painting, building brick walks and patios, daily walks and world travel with his wife (when he couldn't talk her out of it). His disease finally brought him to a standstill in 2011. He needed the round the clock nursing care that he could only receive in a nearby nursing home, but he still read and kept up with the news, played Bingo, watched video movies, talked on the phone to his brothers and faithful old friends and clients who knew where he was, and celebrated two more wedding anniversaries there before the end came. He got great comfort from the many lovely cards and letters from the North Country when it became known here that he was so ill - and so far away. His brothers and sisters came from N.Y. and Maryland to visit him, thankfully when he could still talk to them.
"Andy," "Daddy-O," "Honey," and "Granddad" will be greatly missed by Alice, his wife of 56 years (he was still introducing her as his "first wife."); his five living children, Susan Paradis, Shirley Baillargeon, Sandra Baroody, Robert and Patrick Jones; his five grandchildren, Anthony, Caitlin, Alexander, Caroline, and Hannah; and his two brothers, Dr. Edward Jones, William Jones; and four sisters, Elizabeth Miranda, Julie Edwards, Geraldine Jones, and Ursula Jones-Morlock; and many nieces and nephews. He was pre-deceased by his parents, two brothers, two sisters and one son.
His eldest grandchild, Anthony, presently serving as a field artillery officer in Afghanistan, wrote that "we should not be sad that he died, but happy that he lived."
Memorial services and a reception in remembrance of his life will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday, May 5, at the West Side Ballroom, 253 New York Rd., just south of the old air base in Plattsburgh. We hope all of you who knew and worked with him will join us there to say goodbye to this dear man.