Nov. 3, 1919 – Jan. 23, 2014
Carl H. Ericson, a retired construction company president, died last Thursday in Asbury Pointe, Getzville, where he had been a resident since May. He was 94.
Born at home in Buffalo’s Riverside section during a snowstorm, he attended School 65 and graduated in 1936 from Seneca Vocational High School.
He found a job at General Electric and taught electronics at night. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, he volunteered to repair electrical systems on sunken battleships, helping rebuild the USS California and USS West Virginia. He was awarded the Navy “E” pin for his work.
Mr. Ericson gave up his occupational deferment in 1944 and enlisted in the pilot training program in the Army Air Forces, learning to fly the B-25 bomber. When fewer pilots were needed after D-Day, he was transferred to a desk job.
En route home to Buffalo after taking the entrance exam for the engineering school at Yale University in 1946, he was stranded in Syracuse by a snowstorm, applied to Syracuse University and was admitted on the spot. He earned his degree in electrical engineering in 1948 and was a member of the Tau Beta Pi Engineering Honor Society.
In 1954, he went to work for his father-in-law, George Herman, who ran a general contracting firm, Shirley-Herman Co. He spent the rest of his career at the company, serving for many years as president before he sold the business and retired in 1981.
Later renamed George Herman & Associates, the company specialized in commercial and industrial buildings and factory conversions, including many projects in the former Westinghouse plant next to Buffalo Niagara International Airport.
The company built the 20-story addition to the Liberty Bank Building in downtown Buffalo in 1961 and many schools and nursing homes, including Amherst Middle School, which both of his sons attended, and a portion of the Beechwood-Asbury Pointe senior living complex in Getzville.
In retirement, he volunteered for 30 years for the Small Business Administration’s Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE) and served as chairman of the Buffalo Niagara chapter.
A longtime Snyder resident, he was a member of the Rotary Club of Buffalo for nearly 50 years and was a past president of the Central Park Methodist Men’s Club.
He was a former member of the Buffalo Yacht Club, the Buffalo Astronomical Association and the Sitzmarker Ski Club.
An active outdoorsman, he skied for nearly 50 years, sailed until he was in his mid- 80s and golfed until just past his 90th birthday. He also was a self-taught photographer, painter and organist. He and his wife traveled extensively in the U.S. and overseas.
A ham radio operator since his teens and a 75-year member of the American Radio Relay League, he was known by his call letters, K2QV. He chatted with friends on the air most mornings until a few weeks ago.
Survivors include his wife of 64 years, the former Jean E. Herman; two sons, Bruce A. and Paul C.; and three grandchildren.
A memorial service will be held in the spring.