SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

December 28, 2012

Ansel Berton "Rip" Clark


Plaistow, NH — Ansel Berton “Rip” Clark, age 89, of Plaistow, NH, formerly of Ipswich, MA, beloved husband of Janet L. Workman Clark, died suddenly on Friday morning, December 21, 2012, at Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital in Boston.

Born in Millinocket, ME, June 28, 1923, he was one of thirteen children of the late Arthur Ray and Annie E. (Taylor) Clark. He was raised in Merrimacport, MA, and graduated from Essex Agricultural School November 3, 1948, majoring in floraculture.

He served in WWII with the US Navy from October 25, 1942, until his honorable discharge on January 16, 1946, with the rank of Carpenter’s Mate First Class. He spent more than two years in the SW Admiralty Islands repairing ships and earned the American Area medal, the Asiatic-Pacific Medal, the Good Conduct Medal, and the WWII Victory medal.

In civilian life he managed several estates in the Ipswich and Walpole areas, raising three children. In retirement he continued to work for over ten years as a Meals-on-Wheels driver in Ipswich until he relocated to Plaistow.

Rip was a member of John T. Heard Lodge, A.F. & A.M. of Ipswich, and served as a member of the advisory council of the Ipswich Chapter of the Order of Demolay. He was a fifty-five year member and Past Master of Ipswich (Topsfield) Grange and Pomona Grange, and Past Lecturer. In 1966 he was honored to have been appointed by Governor Volpe to the Heifer project which took him to Guatemala. He was also elected to the Essex County Community Agricultural Stabilization & Conservation Service Committee of the US Department of Agriculture. He was a member for over fifty years and Past Commander of the VFW Post 1093 in Ipswich. He served as Worthy Patron six times for Friendship Chapter No. 58 Order of the Eastern Star of Newburyport, MA, was a member of Corinthian-Queen Esther Chapter No. 23 OES of Kingston, NH, and was honored as OES Grand Representative of Connecticut in Massachusetts.

Rip was known for his terrific singing voice, his guitar playing, and yodeling. He was an avid country-western fan. For many years he performed with his three children at Grange and church events. He loved the outdoors, the sunshine, vegetable gardening, and zinnias. He deeply loved his family and had a lifetime love of animals. He was a humble man, a generous man, a hard worker, and a good man. He was well known and loved in return by everyone he met for his sunny disposition and ready wit. In his later years he enjoyed sitting in the sun next to his garden and directing the efforts of his wife and two adult children.

In addition to his wife Janet Workman Clark he is survived by a son, Dr. Wayne B. Clark of Cumberland, ME, and his wife Lisa Jacob; his daughter, Sandra R. Noe and husband Kenneth Blades of Ipswich; his grandson, CDR S. Scott Noe, USN; his granddaughters, Amy Clark and her husband Scott Thomson of Jamaica Plain, MA, and Margaret Clark of Portland, ME, along with many nieces and nephews. Rip is also survived by his brother-in-law, Dr. Richard A. Workman and wife Mary Ellen Giacobbe of Atkinson, NH, and sister-in-law, Lois J. Masters of Glen Rock, PA. He was predeceased by all twelve of his siblings, his first wife of over forty years Arlene (Bunker) Clark and his daughter Jaye Darlene Clark.

ARRANGEMENTS: Visiting hours at the Paul C. Rogers Funeral Home at 2 Hillside Avenue in Amesbury, MA, will be Wednesday, January 2, 2013, from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. There will be services from the Masons, the VFW and The Eastern Star beginning at 6:30. Funeral services will be held Thursday at 11:00 a.m. at the funeral home, followed by interment in Locust Grove Cemetery, Merrimac. In lieu of flowers, donations are requested to Friendship Chapter No. 58, OES, c/o Secretary, 2 Kelley Road, Plaistow, NH 03865-2103.