Joseph M. Callahan, a retired Buffalo police officer who worked several careers, died Saturday in his Derby home after a 12-year battle with cancer. He was 68.
Born in Buffalo, Mr. Callahan graduated from Father Baker High School, where he was captain of the football, basketball and baseball teams during his sophomore, junior and senior years. He earned 10 varsity letters and was elected to the Baker-Victory Sports Hall of Fame in 1973.
A Derby resident since 1970, Mr. Callahan worked as a grain scooper for 35 years on the Buffalo waterfront, a spotter on the Nickel Plate Railroad for 20 years, a project manager for W.W. Kimmins & Sons for 25 years, and also worked for Demco Inc., a West Seneca demolition company, for 10 years. He was named Demco's Employee of the Year in 2002.
Mr. Callahan served with the Buffalo Police Department for 20 years, first as a motorcycle officer then as a patrol officer, primarily in South Buffalo. He retired from the police force in 1982.
Described by family members as a hard worker, Mr. Callahan was proud of the fact that he had accumulated 110 years of employment through his many jobs, several of which he worked simultaneously.
He enjoyed his summer residence in Crystal Beach, Ont., and also a home in Romont South, Fla., a Miami subdivision, where he was shuffleboard champ in 2004. He collected antiques.
A Buffalo sports and Duke University basketball fan, Mr. Callahan enjoyed attending his grandchildren's sporting events and was pit chief for the Atomic Motocross Race Team, sponsored by Demco.
Surviving are his wife of 49 years, Madonna Weimer Callahan; three daughters, Bridget Callahan-Giarrano of the Town of Hamburg, Gayle Callahan-Kreuzer of Orchard Park and Brenda Callahan-Moll, a Buffalo police detective and Buffalo resident; two sons, Patrick J. of Orchard Park and Kevin S. of the Town of Hamburg; his mother, Eleanor "Sis" Callahan of Buffalo; a sister, Ann Marie "Nancy" Conway of Deerfield, Mich.; and six grandchildren.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday in Our Lady of Victory Basilica, Ridge Road and South Park Avenue, Lackawanna, after prayers at 10 in the Sieck & Mast Funeral Home, 250 Orchard Park Road, West Seneca. Burial will be in Holy Cross Cemetery, Lackawanna.