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Melissa Diane Skyer died peacefully on March 9th, 2022 surrounded by love and family. Melissa formerly resided in Chili (NY), the East Avenue Neighborhood of Rochester (NY), Scottsville (NY), Chicago (IL), and Los Angeles (CA). Melissa had recently celebrated her 40th birthday with family and friends locally and from across the US. Melissa was predeceased by her father (Richard S. Skyer, Jr.), paternal grandfather (Richard S. Skyer, Sr.), paternal grandmother (Agnes Skyer), maternal grandmother (Germaine Sevigny), and grandfather (Oliva Sevigny), several aunts (Mary, Maureen, and Kathy Skyer), and an uncle (Michael A. Skyer). Melissa is survived by her mother (Solange C. Skyer), brother (Michael E. Skyer), sister-in-law (Meredith S. Skyer), paternal half aunt (Tara Martin), maternal uncle (Gerard Sevigny), several other relatives, and literally hundreds of friends across the world. Melissa was a consummate environmentalist, glass mosaic artist, and writer of poetry and creative nonfiction. Melissa graduated from Gates-Chili High School (2000). She earned a Bachelor of Science degree (Biology, Psychology, 2004), and a Master of Environmental Science degree (2006). Both degrees were from the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT). Her graduate thesis documented the lives of river otters from the western Genesee River basin (including wetlands, watersheds, and Black and Oatka Creeks). Melissa was a board member of the Genesee River Watch. She was affiliated with the Association for Late Deafened Adults (ALDA), and was a science faculty member at the National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID), one of the nine colleges of RIT.

In lieu of funeral services and calling hours, Melissa Skyer’s family invites friends, family, loved ones, and colleagues (near and far) to celebrate her life. The memorial service will occur APRIL 2nd, 2022 beginning at 9:30 AM at St. Pius X Church (3010 Chili Ave., Rochester, NY, 14624). You may view a live stream of the service at 9:30 AM on SATURDAY, April 2nd by clicking the View Live Web Streams tab at the top of the webpage, A lunch reception will be hosted by the Skyer Family, on the same day, starting at 11:30 AM, at RIT’s Lobozzo Alumni House. Details can be found at In lieu of flowers, those who wish to do so can donate funds to the following organizations. The first organization is: NF2 BioSolutions. Donations can be made here: You may indicate that the donation is in Melissa Skyer’s name. Donations sent here will fund efforts to identify molecular/genetic cures for Neurofibromatosis, Type 2 (NF2). The second organization is: NTID President’s Office. Checks made out to “NTID/RIT” should be sent to: 52 Lomb Memorial Dr. Rochester, NY 14623. Please include “Melissa Skyer Memorial Fund” on the memo line. These donations will fund an environmental science scholarship for deaf women.

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