Colonie – Ernest O. Lail, son of the late Ernest O. Lael and Texa Bumgarner Lael, was born January 31, 1933 and died peacefully following surgery on September 24, 2019.
Upon graduation from high school in Hickory, North Carolina, Mr. Lail enlisted in the US Air Force where he served ten years active duty in New York, Texas, California and Hawaii before retiring from the US Army Reserves with rank of Master Sargent. He retired from The New York State Department of Labor after 30+ years of service in the employment and employment counseling programs throughout the Capital District including offices in Albany, Schenectady, and Troy. Mr. Lail was a graduate of The College of Saint Rose.
Ernie Lail was an active community member, serving as Commander of American Legion Post 1091 and as past Commander of Schenectady Post 1092 as well as past Schenectady County Commander. He was also a member and Past Exalted Ruler of the Esperance Elks Lodge 2507.
In past years Mr. Lail served as a scout leader and Little League manager. Ernie loved baseball, finding as much pleasure in watching a Little League game as a major league event and attended Tri-City Valley Cat minor league games annually. Possessed of a deep and abiding sense of fairness, Mr Lail, while still a youth in the then-segregated South, played on integrated pick-up baseball teams. Decades later, as a coach, he warmly welcomed to his team the first girl to enter Colonie Little League. Ernie enjoyed Westerns, a good joke, and an absurd slapstick comedy routine. He reveled in time spent with family and friends and was known to tell a story to the amusement of all.
In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by his sisters, Nihla Truett Bumgarner and Betty Sue Nanney. He is survived by his wife Evelyn, daughter Jeanne Diaz (Jose Diaz d.), son Thomas Lail, and daughter-in-law Tara Fracalossi. He is the cherished grandfather of Joia Seagraves (Jamie Seagraves d.) and Coltrane Fracalossi-Lail and beloved uncle of many nieces and nephews.
Relatives and friends are invited to visit with Mr. Lail’s family on Sunday from 3:00 to 6:00 pm at Cannon Funeral Home, 2020 Central Ave. Colonie. Funeral services will be Monday morning at 11:00 am at Cannon Funeral Home. Interment will follow in the Saratoga National Cemetery. Donations in memory of Ernest Lail may be made to Woodland Hill Montessori School, Rensselaer, NY in support of Grandparents Day (www.woodlandhill.org) For directions or to leave a message of condolence for the family, visit www.CannonFuneral.com