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Raymond N. Battista, 87, concrete construction contractor

March 2, 1930 – Dec. 16, 2017

Raymond N. Battista, a retired concrete construction contractor, died Saturday in his Orchard Park home after a battle with lymphoma. He was 87.

Born in Buffalo, the fourth of seven children, he was a graduate of Lafayette High School, where he was a running back on the football team, and served in the Navy, attending submarine school in New London, Conn.

Returning from the Navy, he worked in maintenance for O-Cel-O Corp. and began doing construction work on the side with his brother-in-law, Nicholas Prezioso. They went on to start their own business, R&N Construction.

Mr. Battista founded his own concrete construction company, Battista Construction, in 1962. His sons have branched out with their own companies, J. Battista Construction and Battista Concrete.

After he retired in 1998, he and his wife wintered in Fort Myers, Fla., where he was a member of the Men’s 18-Hole Golf Association at Kelly Greens Golf and Country Club.

A longtime member of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Orchard Park, he was active in the Knights of Columbus at St. Columbkille Catholic Church in Fort Myers and was a Fourth Degree Sir Knight of John Paul II.

He enjoyed gardening, growing 8-foot tall tomato plants, and winemaking. He named his wines for his great-grandchildren.

Survivors include his wife of 65 years, the former M. Donata “Dinny” Cascia, who assisted him in his business; two daughters, Michele Hodge and Bernadette McLaughlin; two sons, Raymond Jr. and John; two sisters, Angeline Knapton and Dolores Celano, a brother, Salvatore; seven grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 10 a.m. Wednesday in Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Church, 3144 Abbott Road, Orchard Park.

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