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Reagan Agency of celebrates 80 years of service

The year was 1929. Wall Street was crashing. America's economy was heading into a depression. Despite a bleak fiscal forecast, one man had the vision to start a company that would help protect his neighbors from further financial ruin. That man was James F. Reagan of Marcellus.

"He went door-to-door educating his neighbors about how taking out insurance policies would help protect what they had left--their families, their houses, their farms, their crops, their livestock," said James P. Reagan, 83, the son of Reagan Agency founder, James F. Reagan.

The James P. Reagan Agency of Marcellus is celebrating 80 years of dedicated service. The agency has grown over the years by adding a financial services division, a commercial insurance department and a bond department. Even though their client list spreads over 15 states in the Northeast, their home base has remained exactly where James F. Reagan opened the business decades ago on Main Street in the small village of Marcellus, 10 miles west of the City of Syracuse.

"We've expanded our building four times, but we never even gave a thought to ever moving," said James P. Reagan. "{Q}Marcellus is where our roots are.{Q} Although it probably seemed a little unusual to some that we were located outside of a city, we are comfortable here. Our employees are comfortable here."

Reagan says modern technologies have helped bridge the gap of distance between the office and their clients, but he remembers a day when doing business wasn't so easy. Just 10 years after starting the business, his father died unexpectedly in an accident. His mother, Mary B. Reagan, a former teacher in Marcellus' one-room schoolhouse on East Hill, didn't let a single ball drop. She did what she had to do for her young family and took over the business, running it exactly as her husband had.

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