David T. Ferguson Funeral Home

20 North Street, Washingtonville, NY


Janet M. Steeves

January 17, 1922September 4, 2019

Janet M. Steeves of Washingtonville died Wednesday September 4, 2019 after 97 years of a life well lived.

Janet was the daughter of Louis and Ruby Milner in Massachusetts. She played Baritone horn in high school and graduated first in her class in 8th and 12th grade. She graduated from Massachusetts State College, now the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. She married Earle Raymond Steeves Jr. in 1944 and began a lifelong career in dairy farming and education. Family, faith, education and community were her passions.

She is survived by her son Earle R. Steeves III and wife Lois, her son James Steeves and wife Janice, her son William, her daughter Sharen Casazza M.D. and husband James, and her sister Mary Deming. She cherished her grandchildren James Casazza, Margaret Sidor, David Casazza, Dan Steeves, Matthew Steeves, Caitlin Steeves, Elizabeth Steeves and Nally Steeves. Nine great grandchildren filled her later years with joy and laughter and were recipients of her love and wisdom, Edylene and Everett Goodglass, Brayden, Dylan and Avery Steeves, Elizabeth Steeves, and Myles, Henry and Theodore Casazza. She is predeceased by her husband of 74 years Earle R. Steeves Jr. and her eldest son David Steeves and her brothers Gordon Milner, Raymond Milner and Louis Milner Jr.

Janet’s life was full of service to her family, church and community. She acted upon the belief that a single person with strength and determination can make a difference. She fed children ill with TB at summer camp as a college student, was a nanny to professor’s children for tuition money and cooked for a college sorority. Janet partnered with her husband on the family farm. She furthered her education with a Master’s Degree and taught school at SUNY New Paltz Campus School and the Washingtonville School District. She was instrumental in bringing environmental education to the Washingtonville schools in the Lake Tiorati program, and supervised her class with the Clearwater Ship, and trips to Ashokan Reservoir. She held campouts on the farm and taught her students about dairy production, campfire cooking, and star gazing and so much more. She was a leader in the PTA, Boy and Girl Scouts, 4-H Club, and Sunday School all while raising five children and teaching school. She acted as a Deacon, Trustee, Women’s group, and leader of Stewardship for her church. She worked tirelessly for Church World Service and NY Help Honduras, Pennies for People, and The Heifer Project. She was honored as Lay Leader of the year for the State of New York for her work with NY Women. Caps for Kids was a program she created to raise money for children in Africa orphaned by AIDS and gathered a team of people in 30 states to knit and sell caps and encouraged all her grandchildren to sell hats on their college campuses. She raised over $40,000. The Country Store Thrift Shop benefited from her volunteer work for over 60 years. She delivered Meals on Wheels and was always available to lend a helping hand. Lasting friendships were created as a founding member of the Orange County Classic Choral Society where she sang for 62 years and in her Wednesday Bridge group.

Visitation will be Friday September 20, 2019 from 4pm to 8pm at Ferguson Funeral Home, 20 North Street, Washingtonville, N.Y. A Memorial service will be held Saturday September 21, 2019 11 am at the Blooming Grove United Church of Christ, 2 Old Dominion Road, Blooming Grove, NY.

Memorial contributions in Janet’s name may be sent to the Nora Cronin Presentation Academy, 69 Bay View Terrace, Newburgh, N.Y. 12550.


20 September

Memorial Visitation

4:00 pm - 8:00 pm

David T. Ferguson Funeral Home

20 North Street
Washingtonville, New York 10992

21 September

Memorial Service

11:00 am - 12:00 pm

Blooming Grove United Church of Christ

2 Old Dominion Rd.
Blooming Grove, NY 10914


  • Private Committal Service


Janet M. Steeves

have a memory or condolence to add?

Thomas Höpfner

September 15, 2019

My heartfelt sympathy for Janet's family. I got to know Janet in the 90s when she was visiting Germany / Berlin. We have been good friends since.
Janet was a very special woman. She was interested in everything and always there for others. My visits to America were a special experience. Thank you for a warm friendship.
Janet will always have a place in the heart.
Thomas Höpfner, Berlin, Germany

Beth Quinn

September 8, 2019

Dear Sharen and the Steeves boys.

Your mom was the quintessential mother and teacher, not only to her kids and students but to those of us who only occasionally crossed paths with her. She taught me about baking bread, about newts in lakes and ponds, about gaining independence and taking pride in knowledge.

I haven’t lived in Washingtonville in more than 50 years, but in my memory, Janet Steeves IS Washingtonville. Happily, that is where she will live on.

Beth (Werkman) Quinn

marilyn stoker

September 7, 2019

Dear Sharon,
So thankful the girls and I came to visit the fall of 2017.
So wonderful to spend time and tea with your Mom and Dad-
you, too, Sharon.
Janet was such a special friend. I enjoyed every moment with
her at Watson Homestead; she was really the person I went to see
with the NYS Women.
I enjoyed reading her obit and learning all about what she had done.
Your family vacation was what she talked about the most to me.
Love & Prayers to all of you. Marilyn Stoker, Homer N.Y.

Elsa Cameron

September 7, 2019

DEAR Steeves Family, We have lost a treasure in our lives but OH! how we have benefitted by the gifts of this special woman who was your Mom, Grandmother and Great Grandmother, and my '2nd Mom'! I can truly say we will always love her, will always miss her and will always be thankful for her! My sadness is your sadness. You have Phil's and my deepest condolences. Love, Elsa and Phil Cameron

Maria Belofski

September 6, 2019

Janet was a beautiful woman with a heart of gold. I’m so very sorry for your loss.