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Michael C. Rende Jr., retired Niagara Mohawk dispatcher

June 7, 1931 – Sept. 24, 2016

Michael C. Rende Jr., a retired chief dispatcher for Niagara Mohawk Power Corp., died last Saturday in his Town of Tonawanda home. He was 85.

Born in Buffalo, he attended School 6. As a teenager, he worked in Chef’s Restaurant. He served in the Marine Corps as a helicopter mechanic in the Korean War.

Returning from service, Mr. Rende began working for Niagara Mohawk Power Corp., shoveling coal at the Huntley Station power plant. He then transferred to the Service Department and the “Trouble Office,” where he became manager and chief dispatcher. During the Blizzard of 1977, he was on duty in the Trouble Office around the clock for a week. A member of the Niagara Mohawk 25 Year Club, he retired in 1990.

In retirement, he worked as a driver for Empire Limousine Service and Amherst Limousine Service and chauffeured Perry Como, Diana Ross and other stars.

He also was a driver and assisted at funerals for Lombardo Funeral Home in the 1980s and for Pacer Funeral Home in the 2000s.

An accomplished pool player as a young man, he was known to his friends as “Q-Ball.” His favorite piece of advice was “Be careful.”

Survivors include his wife of 61 years, the former Joanne K. “Ang” Bauch; four sons, Gary, David, Mark and Robert; nine grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

A Mass of Christian Burial was offered Tuesday in St. Amelia’s Catholic Church, 2999 Eggert Road, Town of Tonawanda.

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