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Brandon C. Tallau, co-owned Offbeat Emporium furniture stores

Jan. 7, 1985 — Feb. 24, 2016

Brandon C. Tallau of Cheektowaga and his longtime fiancée, Samantha Tagliarino, had a successful business restoring and redesigning old furnishings into fresh and unique pieces, while his other career as a professional camera operator with the Buffalo Sabres was just taking off.

Mr. Tallau, who co-owned Offbeat Emporium in the Elmwood Village area of Buffalo, died Wednesday in Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital, Amherst, following a fatal reaction to an allergy shot. He was 31.

“He was a sunshine kid, a bright star,” said his mother, Linda.

A northern New Jersey native, Mr. Tallau moved to the Getzville area of Amherst with his family in December 1998. He was a graduate of Williamsville North High School and earned a bachelor of science degree in media studies and communications from the University at Buffalo. The business he ran with his fiancée started, almost accidentally, after she purchased a very inexpensive piece of furniture from Goodwill.

“It was structurally good, but it was really a mess,” Mr. Tallau’s mother said of the old dresser. “So (Tagliarino) turned it into something beautiful, and Brandon posted it (for sale) on Craigslist. He was overwhelmed by the amount of reception they got in selling this piece.”

Realizing that there were other potential customers for Tagliarino’s restylings, the couple opened a shop at 507 Elmwood Ave.

“Their business started on Elmwood Avenue and it just blossomed,” said Mr. Tallau’s mother.

Shortly thereafter, he and Tagliarino opened a store in the Eastern Hills Mall, which they closed in January.

Mr. Tallau, who was trained in operating a professional line of EVS camera equipment, after graduating college began working for the Buffalo Bisons, videographing their games and events. Very recently, the Sabres offered him a union job with the organization.

“He was just launching another part of his career,” Linda Tallau said. “Actually, there was a job coming up in March, where he was going out to (Penn State University) to run the equipment for a gymnastics competition. So being a member of the union really was opening up new doors for anywhere.”

Mr. Tallau and his fiancée planned to marry Aug. 13.

In addition to his mother and fiancée, he is survived by his father, Stephen E.; stepfather, Dennis Krupski; two sisters, Jackie Roback and Jillian Jones; three brothers, Jeremy Krupski and Michael Krupski and Steve; and a grandfather, William Matarazzo.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 9 a.m. Saturday in Queen of Martyrs Catholic Church, 180 George Urban Blvd., Cheektowaga.