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Condolences to Governor Hochul

A message from Jay S. Jacobs, Chairman of the New York State Democratic Committee.

"As many of you may have heard, the Governor’s beloved father, John “Jack” Courtney, passed away suddenly [on Wednesday night, October 18, 2023].

Mr. Courtney will be remembered for his many contributions to the Western New York community, his professional achievements and his deep devotion to his large Irish Catholic family.

The Governor often reflects on how her father’s opportunity to access higher education lifted her family up from humble beginnings. She recently noted, “My father and mother lived in a trailer park. Dad worked at a steel plant, but went to school at night with a couple of babies at home. I was one of them. Dad got a college degree. Next thing we knew, our lives were changed forever.” There is no doubt that his legacy will live on through the love and wisdom he passed on to those who were blessed to know him.

If you would like to send condolences, please direct them to a special mailbox at, or cards and notes can be mailed to: NYS Capitol, Albany, New York 12224.

We ask that you to keep the Governor and her family in your prayers."


Jay S. Jacobs


Gov. Kathy Hochul learned of her father John Courtney's death as she was visiting the Western Wall in the Old City of Jerusalem. Hochul, dressed in black, was seen leaving a traditional note in the wall that included a reference to both Israel and her father. | Shlomi Amsalem/Office of Gov. Kathy Hochul

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