Cover photo for John William Foley's Obituary
John William Foley Profile Photo

John William Foley

d. March 18, 2017

Altamont- John W. Foley, 79, passed away on March 17, 2017 with his family by his side. He was a legend and icon of Altamont, NY for 60 years, fixing cars making them run better or faster. Born in his Altamont home, John quit school on his sixteenth birthday and worked for two years at Westfall Garage before opening his own garage at his parents' home. His parents put their home up as collateral and with help from his many friends, John Foley's Garage was born. Most people thought it wouldn't make it but due to word of mouth and his mechanical skills the business grew. Customers came from all over the Albany area. He worked non-stop for 60 years until his son, Sean took over the business when John was stricken with Alzheimer's disease. John had a quest for speed all his life. After many, many races on the roads in the area, he went into drag racing with his great friend Ron Abbott. There may never have been a Foley's Garage if he had beat Don Garlits in the early 60's. The speed of cars wasn't enough for John, he went on to fix and race speed boats. Even though John never mastered the art of swimming, he would hang over engines in the water to make them go faster. After that phase, John got into flying his own planes. His employees were his friends and these great guys worked tirelessly with him. In many cases, he used the barter system to show his customers his appreciation. He'll miss his vacation this year with his good buddy Sal Branciforte and his wife Lucy while he's on his journey to eternal life. John was predeceased by his parents, Joseph and Gertrude (nee Wormer) Foley; brother to the late Walter and Irene Foley. He is survived by his loving wife Diane Marie Foley (nee Frank), his children Lisa Marie Foley and Sean Michael Foley; grandson Tyler Maxwell; his brothers-in-law Joe Paraso and his wife Patti and Kevin Daigle and his wife Marilyn as well as four nieces and nine great nieces and nephews; Traci Bidwell and her son Adam and John's nurse Alex Childs were his guardian angels in keeping him safe and comfortable in his home while fighting the debilitating Alzheimer's disease. A funeral mass will be celebrated on Wednesday, March 22, 2017 at 10AM at St Matthew's Church, 25 Mountainview St. Voorheesville, NY 12186 ; interment to follow at Prospect Hill Cemetery. A celebration of his life will follow the interment at Smith's Tavern, 112 Maple Ave, Voorheesville. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in John's memory to Fisher Center for Alzheimer's, Research Foundation, 199 Water St. Floor 23, New York, NY 12073-0211 or The Community Hospice of Albany County, 455 New Karner Rd., Albany, NY 12205-3809
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Service Schedule

Past Services

Mass of Christian Burial

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Starts at 10:00 am (Eastern time)

Service Time: 10:00 AM

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