John J. Greenan, teacher, choreographer - The Buffalo News

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John J. Greenan, teacher, choreographer

July 31, 1940 – Jan. 26, 2014

John J. Greenan of Snyder, a career math educator in the Orchard Park School System for 40 years, died Jan. 26 under Hospice care at Sisters Hospital following a long illness. He was 73.

Called “Sir G” by his students, Mr. Greenan was a respected role model who touched the lives of thousands of his students.

A graduate of Buffalo State Teachers College and a member of Delta Kappa Alpha, Mr. Greenan was appointed by the New York State Board of Regents to the committee for creating and evaluating state examinations.

He was also actively involved in curriculum development for the Orchard Park School District where he was honored in 1967 and 1979 as a New York State Teacher of the Year.

Interested in fostering generations of outstanding educators, “Sir G” established and served as advisor to the first Future Teachers Association at Orchard Park High School.

Mr. Greenan began his dance career at age 3, studying with the Parker Sisters and Geraldine Hoffman. Performing in “Stars of Tomorrow,” he became lifelong friends with Michael Bennett, creator of “A Chorus Line.”

Hundreds of students flocked to both the Orchard Park and Cheektowaga locations of the Jack Greenan School of Dance for 20 years. Numerous area schools and community organizations benefitted from his skillful and imaginative choreography. His creative work was seen in more than 100 musicals. In 2002, Mr. Greenan was inducted into the Dancers Hall of Fame.

After retirement, he took great pride in being an active member of Dancers Over 40. His most recent choreographic work for all ages was “That’s Tap” and “That’s Tap, Too”, by the O’Connell Company at Snyder in the Square, bringing both professionals and students to the dance stage.

Survivors include his wife of 46 years, the former Virginia Schmidt; two sons, Patrick and Sean; a daughter, Mary Elizabeth; a brother, James; a sister, Carol Witt; and four grandchildren.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 10 a.m. Feb. 15 in Infant of Prague Catholic Church, 921 Cleveland Drive, Cheektowaga.

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