Carlton J. Naegele
Fire Chief Emeritus
GENEVA: Carlton J. “Chief” Naegele, 94 of Geneva, passed away peacefully on Saturday (August 10, 2019) at Penn Yan Manor surrounded by loving family.
Family and friends may call Tuesday (Aug.13) from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the McGuigan & Bero Funeral Home 45 High St. Geneva. Members of the American Legion will meet at 6:00 p.m. members of the Knights of Columbus at 6:30 p.m. and members of the Geneva Fire Department will meet at 7:00 p.m. at the funeral home. Funeral services will be held on Wednesday (Aug. 14) with prayers at the funeral home at 11:30 a.m. and a Mass of Christian Burial at 12:00 p.m. at St. Stephen’s Roman Catholic Church. Burial will be in Glenwood Cemetery.
Carlton was born in Rochester, NY but moved to Geneva at a young age with his parents, Carl and Alice Naegele. He was a proud graduate of DeSales High School and a member of Our Lady of Peace Parish.
During WW II he served in the 84th infantry and earned a Purple Heart for receiving wounds in Belgium during the Battle of the Bulge. Upon discharge, he joined the 391st Active Reserve Infantry where he advanced to Sergeant.
Carlton joined the Nester Hose volunteer fire company in 1945 and eventually served as Lieutenant, Captain and Assistant Chief. After working as a Fire Captain at the Sampson Air Force Base for 6 years he was appointed Fire Chief of Geneva in 1958, retiring 29 years later. Better known as “Chief” or “GVI”, he loved his close association with all three volunteer companies and enjoyed mentoring the young men and women.
He served on various boards of Directors involving the Fire Chiefs Association, the American Legion and Disabled American Veterans. He was also a member of the VFW and the Knights of Columbus. Since he highly respected the American flag and what it stood for, he helped coordinate the installation of flag poles in Pulteney Park and at the old Chamber of Commerce. The yearly firemen’s and Memorial Day parades were spearheaded by the Chief.
Chief and Betty, his wife of 70 years, enjoyed many summers and sunsets at their cottage on Seneca Lake. He was very proud of his family and especially of his five grandchildren. Carlton loved the outdoors and was an avid turkey and deer hunter. He was often seen driving in his “red” convertible, dancing on the dance floor or socializing with friends. His favorite motto was: “You only go this way once, don’t worry, don’t hurry and smell the flowers along the way.”
He is survived by his son Bernard (Lorrie) Naegele of Geneva; his two daughters Sherry (Dick) Birdsall of the Villages, Fl.; and Lynda (Gregg) Comstock of Bedford, NH; five grandchildren Brent (Amy) Naegele, Corey Naegele, Ryan (Rachael) Comstock, Jeff Comstock and Heather Comstock; his great-grandchildren Corrina Comstock and Ryder Naegele along with several nieces and nephews.
He was predeceased by his wife Betty, and siblings Charles Naegele, Donald Naegele and Gerald Naegele.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Committee on Firematic Activities, Geneva Volunteer Fire Department, P.O. Box 911, Geneva NY 14456 or to the Nester Hose Co. of the Geneva Fire Department, 207 Genesee St., Geneva, NY 14456.