MARIGRACE RYDER BLANKS
Marigrace Ryder Blanks passed away on June 29, 2012. She was 90 years old. Mrs. Blanks was born in Carmel, New York, on February 8, 1922, to Leland and Antoinette Ryder. She was a life-long resident of Carmel and the seventh generation of her family to live in Carmel. She married Arthur Blanks of Missouri in 1943. They had two sons, Dean Ryder (Paula) of Stormville, NY, and Wayne Ryder (Mary Ellen) of Carmel, NY. She was the proud grandmother to six grandchildren and was known as Grandma to: Casey, Cody and Carly and Chris, Jen and Kelly Ryder.
In her youth she was an accomplished vocalist and appeared in many local plays and musicals. She graduated from Carmel High School in 1939 and maintained close, lifelong friendships with her classmates. She graduated from Syracuse University in 1943 with a degree in Fine Arts and was a member of the Delta, Delta, Delta Sorority. While at Syracuse she earned the lead part in her university musical productions for each year she was there. She was offered two movie screen tests in Hollywood, California, but declined those opportunities.
After a brief time teaching music in the Carmel school system, she joined the family business, the Putnam County National Bank. She was the fourth generation of her family to do so. Her career at the Bank spanned seventy years and she worked in all departments of the bank. From the early 1960s to the 1990s, Mrs. Blanks ran the operations of the bank and led and oversaw many innovations in the Bank during that time.
She became President of the Bank in 1995 and under her leadership the Bank was rated first in the nation in its peer group for earnings and became rated in the top one percent of all American banks for capital. At that time she was President of the largest woman-run bank in New York State. She served on the Board of Directors for a fifty year period from the late 1950s to 2009. She is noted in “Who’s Who in American Banking” and served as the first woman Director of the NYS Independent Bankers Association and was the only founding woman member of that organization.
Her personal interests were her family and grandchildren in whom she took great pride, her friends and the CHS Class of 1939 Reunions, which she hosted for twenty years.
She is predeceased by her brother, Merritt Ryder, and her life-long companion, George Daros of Croton Falls.
Visitation will be held at the Cargain Funeral Home, on Thursday, July 5, from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. with a service at Drew Methodist Church at 11 a.m. on Friday.