John Clark Francett ’73, a career field engineer and consultant in the municipal water industry, was born on Feb. 8, 1951, in Easton, PA. The eldest son of John W., an airways flight controller, and Betty Porter Francett, a school cafeteria manager, he grew up in Glens Falls, NY, where he was graduated in 1969 from Queensbury High School. He enrolled at Hamilton that fall and joined Theta Delta Chi. Co-captain of his high school tennis team, he played junior varsity tennis as well as varsity squash while on the Hill. He became president of the Theta Delt house and, having majored in English literature, left the Hill with his diploma in 1973.
John Francett returned to Glens Falls and later went to work for Heath Consultants, Inc., headquartered in Stoughton, MA. As area consultant for New York and New England, he traveled extensively as a water and gas pipeline troubleshooter in detecting leakage in municipal systems. One of his trips took him to Clinton, NY, where he succeeded in solving the village’s water leakage problem. Promoted to technical services specialist by Heath, he was transferred in 1994 to one of its affiliates, LeakTek, as applications engineer, managing operations and sales to the water industry in New York and New England.
Since 2000, John Francett served as president of Jbf Inc., an engineering and consulting company engaged in experimenting with digital sound technology and helping water utilities increase their revenues. While continuing to travel frequently and extensively throughout the United States, including Hawaii, he later took a full-time position with Itron-Flow Metrex, Inc. As senior field engineer, he managed acoustic water monitoring systems for that technological company.
When not traveling on business, John Francett enjoyed vacationing with his wife, Bonnie, to various destinations in the United States, but especially to the Southwest, where he made good use of his talent for photography. As a father and an Eagle Scout in his youth, he passed along his enthusiasm for scouting to his sons, both of whom became Eagle Scouts as well. He also shared with them his devotion to education and love of music.
John C. Francett, an ever faithful alumnus, long a resident of Queensbury, NY, died while hospitalized in nearby Glens Falls on Feb. 5, 2013, after a brief, valiant battle with lung cancer. In addition to his mother, he is survived by his wife of 34 years, the former Bonnie Ann Elder. Also surviving are two sons, Neil E. ’04 and Harrison W. Francett, and four brothers.
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Robert Weeden Applegate ’75, a lawyer and community leader, was born on April 3, 1953, in Rochester, NY. The younger son of Arthur H. ’41, a physician, and Betty Weeden Applegate, sister of G. Roger, Jr. ’39 and Willis F. Weeden ’41, he was a great-grandson of Willis L. Weeden, Class of 1882. “Bob” Applegate grew up in Ilion, NY, where his father practiced medicine for 30 years. In 1971, he followed his brother, Stephen, to College Hill with high recommendations from Ilion High School. On the Hill he sang in the Choir, ran track and took an active role in student government while serving in the Student Senate. A member of Alpha Delta Phi and popular with his classmates, he took pride in his having been one of the founders and leaders of “The Aaron Burr Lucky Shot Marching Kazoo Band.” An English major who found time to do volunteer work at Marcy State Hospital, he was graduated in 1975.
Bob Applegate took a year off before enrolling in Albany Law School. After obtaining his J.D. degree in 1979, he entered private practice with the firm of Cosentino & Snyder (later Cosentino, Snyder & Applegate) in West Winfield, NY. On Oct. 9, 1982, he and Kathleen Conway were married in the College Chapel. In 1990, after a decade of law practice in West Winfield, Bob Applegate became a partner in the firm of Getman, Franchi & Applegate in his hometown of Ilion. There, as a self-described “small town general practitioner–house clearings, wills, etc.,” he acquired a well-earned reputation for his caring concern for his clients.
Bob Applegate, who continued to reside in West Winfield with his wife and their daughter and twin sons, became actively involved in community affairs, serving as president of the West Winfield Rotary Club as well as a volunteer firefighter with the West Winfield Fire Department. In addition, he was a past president of the Ilion Conversation Club and a member of the board of the Mid York Library System. Professionally, he served as an attorney for the villages of West Winfield and Ilion as well as the towns of Schuyler and Frankfort. In addition, he was an attorney for the Mount Markham School District and the Herkimer Housing Authorities.
Bob Applegate, who once remarked that he “enjoyed the simple pleasures of rural Upstate New York,” was particularly devoted to his family, taking time away from his law practice to attend his children’s activities when they were young. He continued to enjoy running (“albeit much more slowly”), and he participated in local 5k races as well as several Boilermakers in nearby Utica. He also enjoyed the beach and swimming, and his enthusiasms encompassed the New York Yankees and Broadway theater as well as neckties, of which he was reputed to have a superb collection. Intellectually curious, with wide-ranging interests, he was known for his sense of humor and “an unshakable ability to see every situation in a positive light.”
Robert W. Applegate, an ever devoted Hamiltonian, was still residing in West Winfield when he died unexpectedly of a heart attack on April 20, 2013. In addition to his wife Kathleen, he is survived by his sons and a daughter, William, Thomas and Margaret Applegate. Also surviving are his brother, the Rev. Stephen H. Applegate ’74, and a sister, Mary Boyd. A memorial service was held on April 27 in the College Chapel, with his brother officiating.
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