Obituary of Clara Marie Montague
Clara Marie Montague was born on November 28, 1965 in Chicago, Illinois. She is the youngest of six children of the late Thomas Valey and Clara Marie Montague. Clara transitioned on Sunday, December 15, 2019 surrounded by her loving family.
Clara was raised in Chicago, Illinois. As a child she attended James McCosh Primary School and Percy L. Julian High School. She went on to obtain a degree in Finance, Accounting and Economics from Valparaiso University. Later she moved to New York and attended St. John's University School of Law where she received her Juris Doctorate in June 1992. Soon after graduating from St John's, Clara passed The Bar Exam for the State of New York. She then secured a position within NASDAQ as the Head Investigator (Finra) working with them for many years.
In July of 1998, after dating for several years, Clara married the love of her life, Westley Artope. Clara & West built a life in Westchester County, New York where they raised their two sons, Jordan & Chanse. Together the two bonded over music and sports, activities that Clara absolutely loved. When it came to sports, Clara knew basketball, football and boxing better than most. She was truly one of a kind.
Clara's dedication to education, mentorship and her community was unparalleled. Her list of engagements included participating as part of the Chicago Board of Education, working with the school board in Westchester County and helping to start the Nonprofit Organization, Be First Boxing, where together, Clara and Westley provided a place for children to facilitate life skills through physical fitness and training. Over the years, Clara served on various community boards, including the Peekskill Youth Bureau. Clara also worked diligently with the elderly community at her beloved church, Mount Olivet. Additionally, Clara consistently opened her home to children who needed a loving nurturing environment.
Although Clara's dedication to her community was noteworthy, her number one priority was always to her boys, Jordan and Chanse. Her love for them was and will always be immeasurable. Clara had a beautiful relationship with both of them and was the biggest cheerleader at all of their games. When Jordan went away to college, if she didn't attend a game in person, she made sure to watch the game on live feed. Following a game, she never missed checking in to let Jordan know that she saw every minute of his game time. Likewise, with Chanse, Clara was always there to witness his excellence on the field and to let him know how proud of him she was. She never missed a moment to brag about her children's accomplishments and their record-breaking stats.
Clara is predeceased by her father, Thomas Valey and brothers Brian Thomas Montague, Thomas Valey Montague Jr. and Marcel Gary Montague. She leaves to cherish her legacy and memory to an enormous loving family:
Her devoted husband, Westley Artope, her beloved children, Jordan Tyler Artope, Chanse Montague Artope, & adopted daughter, Clara Rivera, her beloved mother, Clara Marie Montague, her siblings, Keith Gerrod Montague and Pamela Lynn McClinton (Best Sister EVER), her mother-in-law, Patricia Artope, her grandmother-in-law, Jean Goldsmith (Her Tag buddies), father-in-law, Bill Artope (Linda), sisters-in-law, Wendy & Tamara Artope, brothers-in-law, George & William Artope, God-Parents, Lillie Mae Armstrong and William & Karen Harris, God-Daughters, Ashley Janée Davis and Saidah Heyward and a multitude of nieces & nephews. However, Clara shared a very special bond with niece Nneeka McClinton and nephews Victor ''Poppa'' McClinton, Thomas ''Rowdy'' Montague and Timmy Montague, and her forever Sister/Best Friend, Renée Hill. Although they are first cousins, Clara treated Anthony (Pop) and Chris Montague like little brothers and wouldn't hesitate to check them, telling them that she was the Big Sister! Clara also leaves to cherish in her memory her uncle Harold (Rebecca) Montague and aunt Marie Montague. A special thanks to her big sister/cousin Claire Matthews ''Claireee'' for hanging in there to the very end. A very special thanks to Marjorie Lynne Padilla (her Pale Mom) who always showed up with her love and sweet treats. Clara was blessed with so many cousins who were more like siblings and friends who became extended family.
Visitation will be held at the Mount Olivet Baptist Church on Saturday, December 21, 2019 from 8:00am to 10:00am.
Going Home Funeral Service to take place at the Mount Olivet Baptist Church on Saturday, December 21, 2019 from 10:00am to 11:00am.
Interment to follow at Rose Hill Memorial Park Cemetery, Putnam Valley, NY.
Going Home Service
We understand that it is not always possible to attend a service or visitation in person, so we encourage you to use our beautifully designed interactive online tributes to pay your respects.
Many people plan for life events such as weddings and vacations well in advance, but many people do not plan for something that is certain to happen, their funeral. While most people do not want to think about their own morality, the time to pre-plan your funeral is now.
Our local florists are committed to offering only the finest floral arrangements backed by their professionalism and prompt service. Allow us to take care of your expression of sympathy by connecting with our local florists through our website.