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H. Clark's Story

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H. Clark Dexter Jr. passed away peacefully at home on May 22, 2017. He was the husband of Jeraldine (Kyrouz) to whom he would have been married 56 years on June 3rd. He was born on March 27, 1940 to the late Eleanor (Perkins) and H. Clark Dexter Sr. He was one of ten children and grew up on Wheeler St. in Gloucester, “the best neighborhood in the world.” It was there that Clark spent many wonderful years on the Annisquam River, swimming with his siblings and learning how to be an excellent boater. As a child, he loved hikes and camping in Dogtown, playing hockey on Dexter’s Pond, and fishing with his brothers and friends.
He was a graduate of Gloucester High School, class of 1958 and of the Culinary Institute of America, graduating 3rd in his class, in 1962. He was Head Chef at the famous “Surf" restaurant in Magnolia for 11 years before he and Jeri opened “Dexter’s Hearthside” in Essex in 1973. Clark’s father, Harold Sr., was a master builder and constructed the barn addition, which personalized it and set it apart from the other restaurants in the area. They had a wildly successful run and sold their business in 1989 to travel and spend time with family.
Clark and Jeri spent the first few years of “retirement” taking an RV across the U.S. They also had many wonderful years vacationing in the Cayman Islands, making lifelong friends and many fond memories in the process.
In 1992, Clark received his broker’s license and had his own real estate company before joining Cain & Polley, Exclusive Buyers Brokers, of Essex. They partnered together as Cain, Polley and Dexter from 1993-2015. Clark attained personal satisfaction guiding his clients to find the home of their dreams. He truly enjoyed helping people.
Clark also was involved in anything that would help to improve the lives of others. He was a founding member of the Cape Ann Advisory Board for cable television in the 1980’s, appointed by then mayor Leo Alper. He held this position for 20 years and helped to regulate better cable rates for the people of Gloucester.
He was a former member of the Business Network International (BNI) and founding member of the Cape Ann Business Alliance (CABA).
Clark was also a former member of the Bass Rocks Golf Club where he sat on the Board of Directors for 25 years and spent 20 years as Chairman of the House Committee.
He enjoyed sports and was an avid supporter of his granddaughter Samantha’s hockey and softball teams. Many times he would slice up oranges for the girls to have in the locker room post game or bake brownies for the school bake sales. If there was a game, “Papa” was there.
One of Clark’s most favorite activities was being part of the “Saco River Boys” for which he was a member for 40 years. Every May, over fifty of the same men would meet for a camping weekend in Maine. The “boys” ranged in age from 35-90 years old. He especially enjoyed it when his son Clark the 3rd became a member of this special group. They would canoe, cook up great food (Clark was naturally in charge of the menu!) and generally have three days of “guy time.”
He made many lifelong friends in the SRB group, especially best buddies, Paul Geoffrion of Reading, Mass., and Billy Marr of Ipswich. Clark had a great sense of humor, always quick with a funny story or joke, getting everyone to laugh. His email chains of jokes were legendary. He also enjoyed learning new things, reading historical biographies and stories of anyone who had overcome adversity. He was a loving and supportive husband, father, grandfather, uncle, brother and friend. He cherished his large extended family and will be greatly missed.
In addition to his wife, Jeri, Clark is survived by his three children, Stacey Dexter of Gloucester, Harold Clark Dexter 3rd (Nichole) of Fairhaven, Vt., and Maureen Dexter of Gloucester. He is also survived by five adored grandchildren, Samantha Dexter and her wife, Kim (Stillmock) of Milford, Mass., Aimee Dexter of Rutland, Vt., Yvonne “Jerry” Dexter of Wilmington, N.C., and grandsons, Harold and Nicholas Dexter of Fairhaven, Vt.
He is survived by his brother, Steve Dexter and his wife, Dawn (Steele) of Hamilton; his sisters, Rebecca Aliberte (Fran) of Gloucester and California, Kathy Hurlbert, Christy Rhodes (Dick), Susan Sullivan (Harry), and Robbie Dexter, all of Gloucester, and Judith Dexter of Walnut Creek, Calif.
He is also survived by his brother-in-law, William Kyrouz and his wife, Cathy (Parisi) of Gloucester, Alice Dexter of Topsham, Maine, and by 26 loving nieces and nephews and over 30 great-nieces and nephews.
Besides his parents, he was predeceased by his sister, Norma Dexter; his brother, Paul Dexter; his sister-in-law, Margaret (Peggy) Kyrouz; his brother-in-law, Artie Hurlbert; and his in-laws, William and Gertrude (White) Kyrouz.
He was also predeceased by his beloved dog, Beau, with whom he walked twice a day on Good Harbor Beach in Gloucester for 10 years. He had dogs in his life from a very young age and he had a special affection for Beau, holding dear their many years together.
Scattering of Clark’s ashes will be at a later date. A remembrance gathering will be held soon. Please omit flowers and instead consider a donation in his name to the Cape Ann Animal Aid (aka the Christopher Cutler Rich Animal Shelter), 4 Paws Lane, Gloucester, MA; or Care Dimensions/Hospice Care, 75 Sylvan Street, Danvers, MA 01923.
Arrangements are by the Greely Funeral Home, 212 Washington Street, Gloucester. For online condolences, please visit www.greelyfuneralhome.com.
Published on  May 24, 2017
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