Obituary of Albert E. Easton
Albert Eddy Easton, of Slingerlands, passed away on February 2, 2024, at the age of 85 from prostate cancer. Born November 26, 1938 in Providence, Rhode Island, Al grew up in Delmar and attended Elsmere Elementary and Bethlehem Central High School (class of ’56) before Brown University, where he majored in Mathematics. He started his actuarial career in 1960 at the Equitable Insurance Company in New York, NY. Through a colleague who became his brother-in-law, he met and married his loving wife of 59 years, Susan Esther van Keuren, who predeceased him in 2022. After completing his actuarial exams, he became a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries in 1966, and in 1969 accepted a position as actuary at the Berkshire Life Insurance Company in Pittsfield, MA, moving up to Vice President and Actuary in the firm in 1974. While there, he was involved in many community activities. He was a Deacon and choir member at South Congregational Church, where he also helped lead the youth fellowship groups. He was a 50-year member of the Monday Evening Club, and volunteered with the Salvation Army, the Girl Scouts of Western Massachusetts, and Rotary International. He served as President of the United Way of Pittsfield from 1979-1981, and was awarded the Robert K. Agar J. Volunteerism Award. Al sang tenor in the Berkshire Concert Choir, and most memorably played a Forest Ranger in “Little Mary Sunshine” at Holliston Junior College in Lenox, a 1976 production of the Sunshine Company.
In 1986, he had the opportunity to become the Director of Examinations for the Society of Actuaries in Itasca, Illinois and the family embraced the city of Chicago. When the Society reorganized his department, he found a new challenge leading the Albany office of Milliman & Robertson consulting actuaries and moved back to his hometown in 1989, settling in Slingerlands. Again, he was involved in Rotary International (serving a term as President of the Albany chapter), continued his membership in the Salvation Army, and the Monday Evening Club. He sang with The Mendelssohn Club and he and Susan joined the First Presbyterian Church, where he served as Treasurer, Deacon, and choir member until 2022. With Rotary, he traveled to Honduras and helped build houses and wells. He also co-authored (with Timothy Harris) two editions of Actuarial Aspects of Individual Life Insurance and Annuity Contracts, and taught a class on the text to actuaries in Romania.
Al retired from Milliman & Robertson in 2002, and moved to The Beverwyck in 2015, where he was active with the BeeGees (Bible Guys), various singing events, memoir writing, and duplicate bridge. It was playing duplicate bridge in 2023 that led him to meet his second love, Marcia (Hock) Tress, to whom he was very devoted. He is survived by his brother, Nicholas Easton and wife Sally (West Hartford, CT); sister, Alice Geoffrey and husband Ted (Riverside, RI); and children, Nancy Easton and husband Rob Bestow (Chicago, IL); Peter Easton and wife Lynne (East Longmeadow, MA); and Janice Easton-Epner and husband Jonathan (Bronx, NY); and grandson Giles Epner (Savannah, GA). He was predeceased by his brother Stephen Easton (of Delmar, NY) and sister Susan Easton Curria Rodrigues Lescault (of Warren, RI).
While Al was very successful in business, his joys in life were his family, his faith, fellowship, folk songs, and fireworks—somewhere in that order. He was also an amateur expert on the Lizzie Borden case, had a complete collection of Nero Wolfe and Perry Mason paperbacks, and loved to tell his children stories from his youth growing up in Delmar, and spending his summers at his grandparents’ home in Rhode Island, sailing in the Narragansett Bay. He will be sorely missed for his sage and even-handed advice, his inimitable optimism and sense of humor, and the example he set for living a life of giving back to his community.
Funeral services will be held on Saturday, February 17, 2024 at 3:00pm at First Presbyterian Church, 362 State Street, Albany, NY. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to First Presbyterian Church or Rotary International.
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