Obituary of Myron Clayton
Myron “Mynie” Clayton of Frankfort, N.Y. and Safety Harbor, Florida, passed away on February 14, 2019 at the ManorCare nursing home in Palm Harbor, Florida, where he had been a resident for the past year. He was 97 years old.
Mynie was born on June 6, 1921 in Frankfort, N.Y., son of Jesse and Helen Clayton. He grew up in Frankfort, graduated from Frankfort High School in 1940, and married his classmate and high school sweetheart, Jean Stark, on July 11, 1942. Mynie was inducted into the U.S. Army in November 1942 and served as a field wireman and machine gunner in the 358th Field Artillery Battalion of the 95th Infantry Division, the famous “Iron Men of Metz”. The 95th was attached to General Patton’s Third Army and fought in some of WWII’s biggest battles in France, Belgium, and Germany.
Honorably discharged in November 1945, Mynie spent his entire career as a custom gun repairman for Remington Arms in Ilion, N.Y. and for Lefever Arms in Frankfort. He was a “professor” in Remington’s “Shotgun U”, a training program for FBI and Secret Service Agents on the use of Remington firearms. Upon his retirement, Mynie was inducted into Remington’s prestigious Order of the Golden Trigger for exceptional service to the company.
He also continued a music career, which began when he was 16 years old and included a stint in the Army as Bugler of the Guard for the 358th while stateside. For several years after the war, Mynie Clayton appeared as a featured vocalist and trumpet player with local bands and orchestras throughout central upstate New York. He was proud of the fact that he was a member of the New York Musicians’ Union. Mynie also played for many years with the Frankfort Kiwanis Band under its director William Schachel, his beloved mentor. He remembered often and fondly the renowned band’s appearances at the New York World’s Fair and in the grand parade celebrating the opening of the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown in 1939.
In 1996, Mynie and Jean relocated permanently to Safety Harbor, Florida, where they lived a happy life in their new home right across the yard from daughter Pam and son-in-law Steve’s house, surrounded by their Florida grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Mynie was a life-long member of the Frankfort United Methodist Church, where he took great pleasure singing in the church choir, the Olive Branch of the NY State Masons, the Ilion Elks, and the Frankfort Baldwin-Branck American Legion Post 845.
Brothers Oliver and Maynard and sister Martha predeceased younger sibling Mynie. And his wife of almost 70 years, his beautiful “Jeannie”, passed away on March 30, 2012. Mynie is survived by daughter Pam Kautz (Steve), son Daniel Clayton, and a family of grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and close family friends who loved him dearly.
The burial service for both Mynie and Jean Clayton will take place on June 13 at 11:00am in Oak View Cemetery, Frankfort, NY.
The Whiter Funeral Company was started in 1893 by H.A. Whiter and was originally located in Forestport, NY. Following a fire in Forestport, the family relocated in Ilion, and reopened the funeral home in the early 1900's.
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Ilion, NY 13357
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