Norman H. Phelps Jr., an industrial mechanic from the City of Lockport, died Tuesday at Niagara Hospice, after a battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 52.
Born in Batavia and raised on the family farm in Indian Falls, Mr. Phelps was the fourth of sixth children. He attended Pembroke High School and earned his general equivalency diploma in 1978. He went on to Alfred State College, where he received an associate degree in agricultural engineering.
After college, Mr. Phelps volunteered with the Peace Corps and taught agriculture in Costa Rica. He worked as an industrial and agricultural mechanic for his entire career, most recently at Niacet Corp. in Niagara Falls.
He married the former Diane Alessi in March 1991.
He was a member of the Lockport Alliance Church and previously taught Sunday School at the First Baptist Church of Lockport. He volunteered at the Lockport CARES homeless shelter and the Big Brothers Big Sisters program. He was recently certified as a foster parent by the Niagara County Department of Social Services.
Mr. Phelps enjoyed traveling, kayaking, boating and white-water rafting. He could repair just about anything, and was considered an excellent cook.
Besides his wife, Diane, Mr. Phelps is survived by his stepmother, Opal Phelps; a son, Daniel; a daughter, Lydia Phelps; four brothers, Paul, Joel, Eric and Karl; and a sister, Hope Gault.
A memorial service will be held at 3 p.m. Saturday, at Lockport Alliance Church, 555 Davidson Road, Town of Lockport.
His body was donated to the University at Buffalo School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.