Rose Mae Clark, 73

Oct. 1, 1944 - Oct. 06, 2017
Rose Mae Clark, Oct. 1, 1944 - Oct. 06, 2017

Rose Mae Clark, an 11th-generation resident of East Hampton and Amagansett who was known for helping the needy, died at home of cancer on Oct. 6 at the age of 73.

Ms. Clark was described as a one-woman charity drive, and, in the 1990s, acted as the precursor of the area’s food pantries. Perfectly fine vegetables with cosmetic blemishes from Vicki’s Veggies in Amagansett might go to a 90-year-old neighbor. She clipped coupons for food bargains for those in need, and kept her eyes peeled for furniture that she could give away. A bunk bed she found at the town dump went to a family with children. 

In a 1996 interview in The East Hampton Star, Ms. Clark spoke of how friends would drop off bags of clothing at her house, knowing she would be sure they got to the right people, and she made weekly clothing deliveries to Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary Catholic Church in Southampton.

While many of her donations were distributed locally; other items made their way to a coal-mining region in Pennsylvania, others to Alabama, Puerto Rico, or the Dominican Republic. 

“This is the richest country in the world, and yet there are people in need everywhere,” she said in the interview.

Ms. Clark was born on Oct. 1, 1944, at Southampton Hospital to Howard Hodgdon and the former Alice Morgan. She traced her roots in East Hampton to members of the Bennett and Miller families.

She grew up near Three Mile Harbor, then lived in a house at the corner of Grove Street and Windmill Lane in Amagansett for a decade starting in 1965, and ultimately had a house on Abraham’s Path in East Hampton. She attended the Amagansett and East Hampton schools and worked as a housekeeper, home health aide, and as a caregiver for elderly people. 

Her son David Clark of Garnerville, N.Y., said that she had a strong desire to help whoever needed it. “She was a beautiful, giving person,” he said. She was a former deacon of the Amagansett Presbyterian Church, and “was well loved in the community,” he said.

In addition to Mr. Clark, she is survived by two other children, Lynn Clark III of East Hampton and Donald Clark of Virginia Beach, Va., her siblings, Ruth Anderson and Howard Hodgdon, both of Hampton Bays, and seven grandchildren. Her sisters Doris Thompson and Ethel Hodgdon died before her.

A service was held at the Yardley and Pino Funeral Home in East Hampton on Oct. 8. A celebration of her life and burial of her ashes at Green River Cemetery in Springs will take place at a date to be announced shortly.

Her family suggested memorial donations to East End Hospice, P.O. Box 1048, Westhampton Beach, 11978-7048.