Nicholas Baffaro

Obituary of Nicholas Daniel Baffaro

Nicholas Daniel "Nick" Baffaro, 92, of 77 State Street, Canton, died Sunday, February 2, 2014 at home. He was under the loving care of his wife, Carlene and daughter, Jan.

A memorial service will be held at 11:00 AM Saturday, March 29, 2014, at the First Presbyterian Church of Canton with Rev. Michael P. Catanzaro officiating. A luncheon reception will immediately follow the service and the Baffaro Family invites everyone to join in.

Nick was born September 18, 1921, the son of the late Joseph and Rose Baffaro of Rye, New York. He graduated Ithaca College, where he met and married his wife of 69 years, Carlene Brewster Baffaro. He briefly taught music at Waterloo, New York, then moved to Long Island. A short three years later found him moving North to Canton School District where he taught and directed music from 1947 until his retirement in the late 1980's. He moved his young family to the State Street house in 1953.

Nick's dream and purpose for Canton was to promote instrumental music as an expectation and privilege for all students. He initiated and provided a musical program where individualized instruction was given to all students – elementary through high school. His efforts created a culture of music appreciation unrivaled by current standards. Tiny Canton bands were as diverse as its population and as large as those from schools twice its size.

Nick believed in providing opportunities for his students to perform – be it official school competitions and concerts, or the less formalized Saturday football games (with spontaneous victory march down State Street) pep rallies, Memorial Day parades, 4th of July parades or the iconic "band in the park". On a lazy summer Wednesday evening, the strains of in the good old summertime would lure town folk to the park where they would be treated to a concert given by Canton students. The park would buzz with parents and the community enjoying music, fellowship and the occasional ice cream cone.

Nick is survived by his wife of 69 years Carlene Brewster Baffaro; son Timothy (Joan) Baffaro; daughter Jan Baffaro (Dennis) Moore; daughter Andrea Baffaro Bird; and daughter-in-law, Beverly Baffaro. His son, Jeffery Baffaro died in 2002. He had 9 grandchildren – Tim's three, Michael, David & Stephanie; Jeff's two, Nicholas & Daniel; Jan's two, Sadie & Kane Moore and Andrea's two, Dylan Bird and Jessy Bird. Nick found great delight and comfort watching his 5 great-grandchildren grow – Lia and Josie Baffaro, Brooks Baffaro and twins, Emily and James Roberts.

The Baffaro family thanks everyone for the wonderful support they've received – the cards, the food and the company. Please join them Saturday, March 29, 2014 at 11 AM at the First Presbyterian Church of Canton to celebrate Nick's life.

Donations can be made in Nick's name to Hospice and Palliative Care of St. Lawrence Valley or the First Presbyterian Church of Canton.