Clement Finch Hapeman
Clement Finch Hapeman
  • November 7, 1928 - November 19, 2016
  • Rochester, New York

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Clement Finch Hapeman, born November 7th, 1928 in Broadalbin, NY, passed away peacefully in his own home on November 19th. He is preceded in death by his parents, Arnold Hapeman and Grace Finch Hapeman, his sister Bonnie Clocksin and her husband Paul Clocksin, Sr., his wives Louise D. Hapeman and Beatrice Phillips Hapeman and stepson William Phillips. He was 88 years old.

Mr. Hapeman had a long career of activism and social research, teaching Sociology for nearly two decades at Monroe Community College as well as numerous teaching stints in various universities. A philanthropist until the end, he fought for social justice and an end to discrimination due to race, gender, or social standing. He facilitated an outreach program that encouraged gang members to become interested in the library and in reading, integrated choir groups against much opposition, helped develop neighborhood watch groups, and advised the authorities about the real reasons for the race riots that occurred here in the sixties.

He helped to re-raise his stepdaughter Diane Phillips after a long coma resulting in difficult developmental disabilities. She is in her own home in Clem's beloved 19th ward, mostly due to vigorous petitioning by himself and Bea, Diane's mother. They helped legislation pass that allows any disabled person in New York State who needs 24 hour care to stay at home and receive that care, if they can prove it costs less than institutionalization, which it almost always does.
He was passionate about city living, instrumental in fighting to keep the arts funded in the public school system, and was one of the original stockholders of the still fabulous and still free City Newspaper.

He has been a wonderful grandfather to Russell Daniel Bacon and Elizabeth Sage Louise Bacon, inspiring the desire to travel and discover the unknown, to study, to write, and to view life through a tolerant and humane lens. In a similar fashion, he inspired his favorite nephew, Preston Clocksin, to activism. Preston is married to a Hopi woman and lives on the reservation. He worked at the high school as a drug counselor and looked to his uncle Clem, who would integrate neighborhoods by first moving into them, and second, by enacting programs to lift them up, as a role model for social change.

He has been a dedicated father to his youngest child, Zirrus VanDevere, who was able to care for him due to the nursing/hospice care of her fiancé Joshua Kidney, enabling Clem to realize his lifelong desire to be at home in his final years.

His other descendants include son, Dale Douglas Hapeman of West Virginia (wife Sonya, and grown children Jessica and Doug) and daughter, Nancy Fedick of Naples, NY (husband Andrew, grown children Matt, Christine and Julie). He is also survived by a niece and numerous nephews comprising the large Clocksin clan, all originally from Rochester, and all with plentiful offspring of their own.

An end of life ceremony will be held December 17th at 2pm at the Eckankar Center of Rochester, 3300 Monroe Avenue, Pittsford, NY.
In lieu of flowers, please donate to the Southern Poverty Law Center, 400 Washington Avenue, Montgomery, Alabama 36104, or make donations at the ECK center. Or, if you are so inclined, find ways in your own life to move toward tolerance and understanding of those that appear to be most unlike you.

Arrangements under the direction of Alvah Halloran & Son Funeral Home, Rochester, NY.