Landscapes 09

James C. Breitenstein

April 25, 1939 ~ December 21, 2020 (age 81)


Duanesburg - James C. Breitenstein, DVM, of Duanesburg, died at home after a blessedly brief bout with cancer on December 21, 2020.  He was 81 years young, born in 1939 in Schenectady, where the family lived until they moved to Duanesburg in the early 1950s.  He was predeceased by his parents Adrian and Edna.  He is survived by his wife of 38 years, Judith, his son, Carl of Duanesburg, his brother Adrian of Duanesburg and his sister Mary of Longmont, CO.

Jimmie graduated from Duanesburg Central School, and Cornell University.  During high school he worked for Dr. John Brennan at the Guilderland Animal Hospital as a kennel attendant. Two days after he graduated from Cornell he went to work for Dr. Brennan.  In 1967 he became a partner in GAH and he and Dr. Brennan designed and built a larger, more modern animal hospital. He was a veterinarian for 44 years, many of those serving farms for many miles around the Capital District. He retired from veterinary medicine in 2007, and continued challenging himself working with his son Carl on various real estate projects. But every summer he suspended other commitments as best he could so that he, Cookie, and later Carl, could mow hay on his farm in Duanesburg.  For many years, he and Cookie raised beef cattle.

Jim was an avid skier and a member of the National Ski Patrol, spending 50 years as a Volunteer Patroller at Stratton Mountain in Vermont.  He loved helping people, and he loved skiing, so it was a perfect match. He was a very proud father when Carl joined the Stratton Patrol at his side five years ago.


In his younger years, Jim had his pilot’s license and owned a small plane.  He flew skydivers for a time, and one of the big adventures of his life was flying his plane, accompanied by three ski buddies, out West to ski at a number of ski areas.

Jim contributed to the community in many ways, large and small.  He was Vice President of the Board of Education when Carl graduated and was honored to present the diplomas that year.  He was a member of the Town Zoning Board of Appeals for several years. 

Jimmie was an active member of Christ Church Episcopal in Duanesburg.  He and Carl used his fleet of large equipment to maintain and repair various aspects of the historic church buildings and property.

This man lived his life to fullest. He loved his family, his friends and had no regrets. He had much left to do, but the Lord had other plans for him.  He accepted that with courage and faith and left this earth on his own terms.

Jimmie requested no calling hours and a private funeral. The family requests that those wishing to memorialize Jimmie consider the Christ Church Historic Restoration Project, P.O. Box 92, Duanesburg, NY  12056. Arrangements by the White Van Buren Funeral Home, Delanson, NY.  (

To send flowers to James' family, please visit our floral store.


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