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Harry D. Atkinson, carpenter, minister
July 3, 1919 -- Feb. 1, 2006

Services for Harry D. Atkinson, a carpenter and longtime friend to those in need, will be held at 10 a.m. today in Alden Mennonite Church, Two Rod Road, Alden. Burial will be in Alden Union Cemetery.

Mr. Atkinson died Wednesday in his Alden home of congestive heart failure. He was 86.

Born in Philadelphia, he moved to the Buffalo area in 1975 and worked as a self-employed carpenter, specializing in custom carpentry and trim. He retired in 1999.

Mr. Atkinson earned a bachelor's degree in liberal arts from Stetson University in DeLand, Fla., in the early 1940s and studied three years at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. He also studied accounting.

An ordained minister, Mr. Atkinson was a guest preacher and a frequent presence at the Erie County Home and Infirmary, Buffalo City Mission and Erie County Correctional Facility, where he conducted Bible study and reached out to the needy.

He was a member of Alden Mennonite Church.

Family members said Mr. Atkinson was generous, a lifelong learner, an avid reader and enjoyed travel, especially to Israel and the Holy Lands. He also enjoyed gardening.

Survivors include his wife of 59 years, the former Allene Griffin; four daughters, Marilyn Mailhot of Harrisonburg, Va., Leanna Magee of Elka Park, Fan Marie Kipfer of Darien Center and Joyce of Alden; a son, Thomas of East Aurora; 15 grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.


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