Sept. 14, 1962 - Dec. 3, 2015
Anthony E. Eichhorn, who beat Wayne Gretzky once in a match of bubble hockey, died Thursday in his Amherst home after battling brain cancer for seven years. He was 53.
A Buffalo native, Mr. Eichhorn – known as Tony – graduated from Williamsville North High School and earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering in 1984 from the University at Buffalo.
He worked for the U.S. Navy in Maryland in the mid-1980s as a civilian engineer testing missiles at an ordnance station.
Mr. Eichhorn worked for Fisher-Price in East Aurora for more than 25 years in a variety of engineering roles, including as an engineering manager. Most recently, he was a director of engineering.
Adept at bubble hockey, Mr. Eichhorn won a national title in 2003 during the Bud Light Bubble Hockey National Championship.
“He and his buddies at Fisher-Price were heavy into bubble hockey,” said Mr. Eichhorn’s brother, William.
After winning the title, he bested hockey legend Wayne Gretzky at the game in June 2003 in Anaheim, Calif., during a promotion tied to the Stanley Cup finals.
Mr. Eichhorn also enjoyed carpentry, and made furniture for his home. He also was a fan of Formula One auto racing.
For more than 10 years, Mr. Eichhorn served as coach of his children’s sports teams, including Amherst youth hockey and youth soccer teams.
In addition to his brother, he is survived by a son, Calvin M.; a daughter, Sarah M.; his parents, William and Elizabeth; two brothers, Christopher and Eric; three sisters, Marjorie Trosterud, Teresa Schiavone and Juliann Fair; and his former wife, Camille.
A memorial service will be held at 9:30 a.m. Friday in the Newman Center at the University at Buffalo, 495 Skinnersville Road, Amherst.