Adirondack Daily Enterprise
In life there are two kinds of people. Some come and go in our lives unnoticed. And then there are the very precious few who touch our lives, and we are forever blessed. Ross Tallman Dailey, our kind, compassionate gentle husband, father and devoted grandfather, blessed our lives forever. He passed quietly in his sleep on Jan. 4, 2016, in Ocala, Florida.
He is survived by his wife Karen Dailey, son Ryan Tallman Dailey (wife Melissa) and his oh-so-special three grandchildren: Tallman, Adalyn and Eli. He also is survived by his two sisters: Pamela Hillebrand (husband Robert) of Ocala, Florida, and Diane Dailey of Los Angeles, California.
Ross was born June 18, 1936, in Pearl River. He graduated from Albany State Teachers' College with Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees. He received his Ph.D. from Michigan State University in 1972. He was the Business Department chairman at West Babylon High School on Long Island for more than 20 years.
He moved with his family to Saranac Lake and began a 15-year employment with North Country Community College. His positions were associate professor, acting dean of students and chair of the Business, Recreation and Human Services Division. He was a respected colleague, sensitive leader and model educator.
In 1993, Ross was granted a sabbatical to be a visiting professor in the Graduate School of Education at his alma mater, Michigan State University in East Lansing, Michigan. He was joined by his son Ryan for a unique experience both of them shared, creating great memories and growing closer together as father and son. Karen and the family pet, Chelsey, remained in Saranac Lake as Karen was employed at the Tupper Lake Central School District as a math educator.
Ross retired from NCCC in 1996. He continued a 15-year career as a U.S. soccer official throughout the North Country. His love of officiating brought him great joy. Many times parents could be heard saying, "Ross is the gentlest official on the field. When my daughter commits a foul, Ross always made it a teachable moment." Imagine if all youth could experience such kindness and learning.
Ross was the director of the FHA at Kiwassa Road. When he left there, residents knew they were losing a uniquely compassionate leader for all.
Ross was a 36-year member of the Saranac Lake United Methodist Church. He was the resident photographer for the church's annual Turkey Supper, capturing many memories of our church community effort. He so dearly appreciated all of the friends he made in the Tri-Lakes. If you are reading this and were fortunate enough to spend time with him, please know he enjoyed every conversation with you. He found much joy in his life by being able to touch others lives through his compassion and gentleness. He was as humble a man as they come, and we are grateful to be touched by his kindness. His 12-year-old, ever-loyal border collie, Buddy, survives.
Two celebrations of Ross' life will be held. The first will be in Ocala, Florida, at Ocala West United Methodist Church on Friday, Jan. 8 at 4 p.m., followed by a small meal. The second celebration and meal will be held in Saranac Lake at the United Methodist Church sometime in May or June, followed by the spreading of his ashes.
Those wishing to remember Ross may do any of the following: Make a donation in his name to the Tri-Lakes Humane Society in Saranac Lake, send flowers for the service on Friday to Ocala West United Methodist Church in Ocala, Florida, or post a story or memory on his memorial site at Beautiful Tribute.