James E. Hoyt Sr.
James E. Hoyt Sr., 80, of Saranac Lake, died of natural causes Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018, while on Ski Patrol performing the last sweep of the day at Whiteface Mountain in Wilmington.
Born in Saranac Lake on May 9, 1937, he was the son of Aaron and Pearl (Warner) Hoyt. James married his 1st wife Barbara Jette in 1955 and they had four sons. She predeceased him in 1993. He later remarried Anna Kucharska on Dec. 31, 1996 at St. Bernard’s Church in Saranac Lake.
Jimmy grew up in Saranac Lake where he attended and graduated from Saranac Lake High School. He worked as a young boy on the family farm Hemlock Hill Potato Farm and was very active in the Rodeo circuit as a teenager. Jimmy was well known for his stock car racing and started the Saranac Lake Speedway with his father, brother Allen and his brother-in-law Ronnie Hesseltine.
Jimmy developed a deep lifetime love of horses and traveled all across the country showing his quarter horses. He was involved in many business ventures throughout his life and owned and operated the Lakeside Garage in Saranac Lake. He drove for the 1980 United States Men’s Olympic Hockey team the year before the 1980 Olympics. He also drove for the Ice Follies and was a member of the million mile driver’s license club. Jimmy was an avid golfer and passed on his love of golf to his grandson who is now a PGA pro.
Jimmy was an avid skier. He was an original member of the Whiteface Mountain Ski Patrol which he joined Jan. 12, 1958 and was a member of for the past 60 years. He was one of the oldest ski patrollers in the United States and has a trail named after him at Whiteface Mountain called Hoyt’s High.
He is survived by his wife Anna of Saranac Lake; four sons: Allen (Mary Beth) Hoyt of Saranac Lake, Robert Hoyt of Mammoth, California, Michael (Mary) Hoyt of Lake Placid and James Hoyt of Jay; one sister Carol Hesseltine of Saranac Lake; seven grandchildren: Erica Hoyt (Pete Casselman), Greg Hoyt, Megan Bagg, Robert Bagg, Andrea Farrell, Hanna Bodkin and Brittney Perrott; six great-grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by one brother, Allen Hoyt.
Funeral arrangements are in care of the Fortune-Keough Funeral Home in Saranac Lake. A Mass of Christian burial will take place at 2:30 p.m. Monday, March 5 at St. Bernard’s Church, with the Rev. Patrick Ratigan officiating. A reception will follow at Whiteface Mountain Base Lodge at 5 p.m.
In lieu of flowers friends wishing to remember James E. Hoyt Sr. may make memorial contributions to Tri-Lakes Humane Society or St. Bernard’s School in care of the funeral home.
Family and friends can also share their memories and sign the online guestbook atfortunekeoughfuneralhome.com.