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Kevin Ray Darrington, executive at Tops Markets

Oct. 29, 1967 – Sept. 17, 2016

Kevin Ray Darrington, a leading executive at Tops Markets who helped return the supermarket chain to local ownership, died unexpectedly Saturday in his East Amherst home. He was 48.

He joined Tops in 2008 as senior vice president and chief financial officer. In 2010, he became chief operating officer and last October was named executive vice president for supply chain and information technology. Part of the management buyout group that acquired Tops from Morgan Stanley Private Equity three years ago, he had been a director of the company since 2013.

Before coming to Tops, Mr. Darrington was vice president and corporate controller for Foot Locker Inc. from 1998 to 2005. After a year as chief financial officer for Pharmaca Integrative Pharmacy, he was senior vice president and chief accounting officer for Pathmark Stores from 2006 to 2008.

Born in Washington, D.C., the son of an Army officer, as a child he lived in California, South Korea and finally Indianapolis.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Indiana University in 1990 and was a member of the Dean’s Council at Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business. He became a certified public accountant in 1994 and earned a master’s degree in finance from Temple University in 1998.

He was commissioned as a second lieutenant with the Air Force Reserves in 1989 and received an award for leadership excellence. He concluded his military career with the National Guard, attaining the rank of first lieutenant.

Mr. Darrington was a member of the board of directors of the Food Bank of Western New York, where he served as treasurer and as a member of the executive committee. He also was a member of the Buffalo Sabres Foundation and the Elite Advisory Board at Indiana University.

A long-distance runner, he received marathon medals from the 2000 Chicago Marathon and the 2005 New York City Marathon.

He coached softball, baseball and soccer at St. Gregory the Great School, where his children attended. He also coached travel softball teams in the Town of Clarence.

Survivors include his wife, the former Cheryl Zahn; two daughters, Hope and Ciera; three sons, Ryan, Kevin “K.J.” and Jason; two brothers, Dan and Rick; and four sisters, Dixie Post, Tammy Hill, Kelly Prince and Kris Webster.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 8:45 a.m. Friday in St. Gregory the Great Catholic Church, 200 St. Gregory Court at Maple Road, Amherst.

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