John Cunniffe, 46, Of South Salem, Veteran Lacrosse Coach

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SOUTH SALEM, N.Y. – John Charles Cunniffe of South Salem died Dec. 2 after a battle with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). He was 46.

Cunniffe graduated from John Jay High School in Cross River, where he earned All-American honors in lacrosse. He still has the record for single-season points and assists. After graduating, he earned a degree from West Point Military Academy.

He was stationed in Bamberg, Germany and spent every weekend driving down the Autobahn to ski in Kitzbuhel, Austria. He traveled extensively throughout Europe, running with the bulls in Pamplona, Spain four times.

Cunniffe served in Operation Desert Storm and was awarded a Bronze Star. He was a member of the executive board of directors for John Jay Youth Lacrosse and volunteered as a coach. 

He enjoyed spending time with his wife and children and was a fixture on his front lawn or the high school turf playing with his son and daughter, his family said. When he was diagnosed with ALS, Cunniffe became actively involved in advocating for his health and the health of others.

He is survived by his wife, Melissa; and two children Eliza and Charlie.

Visitation is from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. Thursday at Clark Associates Funeral Home in Katonah. A memorial Mass will be celebrated at 10:15 a.m. Friday at St. Mary’s Church in Ridgefield, Conn.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to ALS-related organizations, the South Salem Fire Department and Lewisboro Volunteer Ambulance Corps.

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