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David Foster, 78, co-owner of Foster's Lounge, Johnnie's Golden Gloves

April 11, 1939 - April 18, 2017

David Foster, co-owner and operator of Foster's Lounge and Johnnie's Golden Gloves, died Tuesday in his Amherst home after a long illness. He was 78.

One of 12 children, Mr. Foster was born in Birmingham, Ala., where he joined Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church as a young child and continued to support the church his entire life. He  and his wife had planned to return to Birmingham to live after retirement.

Mr. Foster graduated from Western Olin High School, Birmingham, where he was on the track-and-field team and specialized in the high hurdles. During his senior year he met his future wife, the former Leola Moorer, inviting her to the senior prom. He also studied at Alabama A&M University in Huntsville.

In 1957, he joined the  Army and was stationed for four years in Heidelberg, Germany. He represented his unit at track-and-field events in the military, in his specialty, the high hurdles.

After his discharge in 1961, Mr. Foster married his high school sweetheart and moved to Buffalo for employment at Western Electric Corp., where he worked until he and his brother, Otis, established Foster's Lounge on Jefferson Avenue and then, Johnnie's Golden Gloves on Genesee Street. Foster's was popular among City Hall employees because of its specialty, soul food .  The brothers would run the businesses for  40 years, into the early 2000s..

In retirement, he enjoyed walks around Ellicott Creek and Friday night dinner-dates.

Survivors in addition to his wife of 55 years include one daughter, Davina; four sisters, Dr. Bettye Berry, Katie Rodgers, Geraldine Franklin and Shirley; another brother, Eddie; and one granddaughter.

Services will be held at noon Wednesday in  Trinity Baptist Church, 2930 Bailey Ave., with visitation at 11 a.m.

 

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