Aug. 1, 1944 – Dec. 7, 2013
Kendrick J. Stoddart Sr., a retired Buffalo police detective, veteran of the Vietnam War and owner of a landscaping business, died Saturday in Hamburg after a short illness. He was 69.
The Kenmore native served in the Army in Vietnam before joining the Buffalo Police Department in 1968. He retired in 1988. He began as a patrolman and in dispatch before moving on to the K-9 unit. The last eight years were spent working undercover on the vice squad and as a detective on the robbery squad.
He also owned and operated Wanakah Landscaping for more than 40 years, selling the business in 2001. The same year, he purchased land in North Collins and launched North Collins Tree Farm, which grew Christmas trees.
“That’s what’s remarkable about him,” said his son, Kendrick Stoddart Jr. “Simultaneously [to his police career] he did own and operate a very successful landscaping business for 35 years. Pretty much everybody in the Southtowns here was familiar with Wanakah Landscaping.”
Mr. Stoddart grew up in Kenmore. His family moved to Hamburg during his junior year in high school and he graduated from Frontier Central High School. He was drafted into the Army and served as an infantryman in Vietnam from 1965 to 1967. After returning from the war, he entered the Police Academy and joined the force in 1968.
Mr. Stoddart was on the board of directors and an officer of Wanakah Country Club and served as president of the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce and the Western New York Nurserymen’s Association.
He also was a member of Hamburg Township Post 1419 Veterans of Foreign Wars.
Mr. Stoddart was honored by the nursery organization as Man of the Year in 1994, and also received the chamber’s Business of the Year award in 1998. He was key in resurrecting the Hamburg Holidays program.
Survivors in addition to his son include his wife, the former Melissa Hummel; a daughter, Sarah; and three sisters, Diane Adams, Suzanne Whelan and Sandra McCleary.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday in St. Mary of the Lake Catholic Church, 4737 Lake Shore Road, Hamburg.