Arthur Emmet Lauer

arthur lauer

The United States was nearing the end of the Great Depression and the beginning of its involvement in World War II when Anthony Lauer and Bertha Booth welcomed their first child, Arthur Emmet. Born April 5, 1938 at Southside Hospital in Bayshore, New York, Arthur spent the first four years of his life in South Ozone Park and Woodhaven, Queens before he and his parents relocated to 82 Maple Avenue, Smithtown in 1942. The family became complete when Arthur’s sister Charlotte was born in 1946.

Arthur’s first rocking horse and love of the outdoors developed into a passion for his own horse, Smokey Joe. Days spent on Smithtown’s beaches, rivers, and ponds inspired a love of hats, catching frogs, and fishing that stayed with him through his golden years. His passions for racing and vintage cars became life-long interests as well.

During World War II Arthur did his part to contribute to the war effort. He collected recyclable metals and acted as a plane spotter for the local Civil Air Patrol. In his capacity as guardian of Smithtown’s skies, young Arthur would sit atop the roof of Smithtown High School and search the sky for the German Luftwaffe.

School life for Arthur was no different from that of other children in his neighborhood. He attended Smithtown High School one block from his home on Maple Avenue. He was a member of the school’s marching band and started his first career as a bag boy in Blue Jay Market, on the corner of Maple and Main. He spent his spare time “hanging out” at the Sweet Shop on the north side of Elm and Main. Upon graduating high school in 1956, Arthur began what would become a forty-year career working for the then-named New York Telephone Company. In 1958, he met Johanna Morrow and they fell in love.

Tragedy struck Johanna’s family in 1959 when both her parents died within two weeks of each other. Their passing left three minors to be cared for. Arthur and Johanna moved up their planned wedding date, married, settled in Holbrook, and started their family with Joan’s siblings, Bobby and Katie, and Mary. The newlywed couple later had four children of their own, Arthur James, Daniel, Anna, and Robert.

Arthur’s pastimes shifted to watching his children and eventually, his grandchildren participate in sporting events and musical performances. He loved music and deeply enjoyed the company of family and friends in his quiet way. He appreciated smoking a cigar with the guys around a fire on special occasions, a fine scotch, fishing, golf, dogs, old cars, boats, a good crossword puzzle, sauerbraten, and dessert. He and Joan loved to travel and learn about the world, especially Arthur’s adopted homeland, Ireland. He loved the United States and took immense pride in his country. For many years, he served as the family’s mechanic, plumber, painter, spackler, jeweler, driving instructor, and carpenter, among other roles. He cherished time spent with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Though he was a man of few words, he spoke loud volumes in all that he did in life.

During their 64 years as husband and wife, Arthur and Joan lived in Holbrook, Centereach, Jamesport, East Quogue, and Breezy Point before deciding to live the rest of their lives in The Villages, Florida. Sadly, Artie spent his 85th birthday learning that he had esophageal cancer. He approached this challenge with his typical stoicism and quiet strength. Although he and Joan will not share their hoped for future years in Florida, Arthur’s approach to his illnesses stands as an example of how one can face the indignities and challenges of life with grace and fortitude.

Arthur Emmet Lauer was a thoughtful and generous man who never lost focus on his true north. He leaves behind a legacy of benevolent actions and words that impacted innumerable others over 86 years. However, his most important legacy is the influence and imprint he made on his children Arthur James (Christine), Daniel (Jacqueline), Anna (John), Robert (Adrienne); his grandchildren, Jennifer (Anthony), Samantha, Jessica (Justin), Kaitlin, Ryan, Valerie, and Amanda; and his great grandchildren Alexandra, Andreas, and Jaxon.

May he rest in well-deserved peace. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to American Cancer Society In Arthur’s name by clicking on link provided


Visitation: April 19, 2024 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Branch Funeral Home Smithtown
190 E. Main St.

Visitation: April 19, 2024 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Branch Funeral Home Smithtown
190 E. Main St.

Closing Prayer: April 20, 2024 10:00 am

Branch Funeral Home Smithtown
190 E. Main St.

Interment: April 20, 2024 10:45 am

Smithtown Cemetery
64 North Country Rd.

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  1. I’m very sorry to learn of his passing . I met Mr Lauer ( which we changed to Artie, as I grew up ) when I 14 years old….. truly though, It feels like I’ve known him my whole life . Our families grew up together and shared many vacations and holidays.
    He was kind, thoughtful and generous. I noticed he shared his love with others by giving of his time and many talents. Artie was a “quiet helper “…. always ready to give a hand and get involved.
    I have memories of his Sunday breakfasts, which were savored and included jelly donuts. We coined the term “ push aways “ from the table after stuffing ourselves … often on desserts.
    I recall that Datsun honeybee car ( if i have that correct) that he was always tinkering with, and also him being the first ( and probably only one) to taste my homemade pickles .
    He went along with all the nonsense… dressing up as an angel ( with wig and halo) at my parents Christmas party .
    He became quite a square dancer and a contributor to “committee meetings” held to plan the gang’s social activities.
    He was a special man who had an influential presence in the earlier years of my life , but we were happy to see each other at gatherings as time / life marched on.
    God bless you Artie, eternal peace be brought to you .

    With warmest regards,
    Elizabeth Horan Lavery

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