May 1, 1935 – Feb. 4, 2018
Ronald H. Tills, a former Assemblyman and acting State Supreme Court Justice, died unexpectedly Feb. 4 in his home in West Falls. He was 82.
Judge Tills, a Republican, was elected to Albany in 1968 from the 147th Assembly District, representing southern Erie County, and served five terms. He was a member of the Codes and Judiciary committee…
November 1, 1930 – April 8, 2018
Edward M. Recoon, a podiatrist for many years in the Buffalo area, died April 8 at Canterbury Woods in Williamsville. He was 87.
Dr. Recoon was born and raised in Buffalo, the elder son of Harry and Leah Recoon, who emigrated from the Ukraine in the early 1920s. His parents operated a live poultry market, selling both kosher and non-k…
Jan. 7, 1937 – April 17, 2018
Norm Mrkall transformed the Grand Island Highway Department.
Before he became highway superintendent, the plows didn’t go out to clear town roads until the snow was knee high.
When he announced his retirement after 25 years at the helm, in February 1999, then-Supervisor Peter A. McMahon paid tribute to the way his department handled a…
March 27, 1954 - April 4, 2018
Buffalo-born geologist Paul M. Basinski has been called "one of the pioneers of fracking" or "one of the fathers of fracking" in news articles and energy industry publications.
One article called him the "mastermind" of the biggest fracking project in Texas history, the discovery of the Eagle Ford oil basin, which was one of the richest…
Nov. 11, 1976 — April 18, 2018
Randy C. Rider spent just a short time at Erie Community College after graduating from Kenmore West High School.
"He got into the working world right away," said his brother, Brett Rider.
But Randy Rider went on to spend thousands of hours in classrooms and training grounds across the country, honing his skills so he could share them…
Aug. 13, 1926 – April 10, 2018
Catherine P. DiMino, of Niagara Falls, wife of a founder of Tops Friendly Markets and active in community affairs, died April 10 in Mount St. Mary’s Hospital, Lewiston. She was 91.
Born in Washington, Pa., the former Catherine Colosi came to Niagara Falls with her father in 1943. Working for Nabisco’s Shredded Wheat plant, she was noted…
July 25, 1937 – March 9, 2018
Growing up in Niles, Ohio, Dick Grainger developed his first passion, for boating.
He began sailing with his parents and, by the time he was in high school, he was racing a home-built hydroplane and a succession of sailboats.
He discovered his second passion in college. On winter excursions to Vermont, he fell in love with skiing. Not…
Dec. 28, 1936 – April 14, 2018
When Carol J. Brandon became the first Democratic Lewiston town clerk in 1998, she rejected suggestions that she replace the Republican deputy clerks with people from her party.
“She always made the point that it was not a political job," her son, Bob Pokrzyk, said. "As town clerk, she was a record keeper. Her deputies were both from th…
March 14, 1995 - April 11, 2018
It would surprise no one who had ever met William V. Peters III that the guy who had worked as a butler and had a degree in hospitality offered drinks and snacks on a table, complete with tablecloth, in his hospital room to the staff at Roswell Park Cancer Institute.
"Everybody was overwhelmed by him," said his mother, Barbara L. Peter…
Jan. 2, 1936 – April 13, 2018
Robert S. Byrne Sr., a Buffalo firefighter, died April 13 in Mercy Hospital. He was 82.
Mr. Byrne, of West Seneca, was born in Buffalo and graduated from Bishop Timon High School. He served in the Army in the late 1950s and early 1960s.
He worked as a firefighter for the City of Buffalo for 26 years, retiring in 1991 from the Ladder 1…
Frank A. Wukovits, a champion marksman, was under care at Hospice Buffalo when he died Thursday at age 89.
Six hours later, his oldest son, Martin Wukovits, suffered a fatal heart attack, dying the same day. He was 65.
A joint Mass of Christian Burial will be held for both men at 10 a.m. Monday, April 16, in Infant of Prague Catholic Church, 921 Cleveland Drive, Chee…
Sept. 20, 1937 - April 7, 2018
Reginald B. Newman II, 80, passed away peacefully at his winter home in Vero Beach, Fla. on April 7, 2018. Reg was born September 20, 1937, to Reginald B. and Ethel L. Newman in Buffalo, New York. He attended Kenmore and Tonawanda schools. He was a three-sport athlete (football, basketball and track) and president of the Kenmore Varsity Cl…
Nov. 22, 1961 – April 9, 2018
Doug Henry was still in high school when he started his first enterprise, D&H Builders.
His early projects involved making improvements to add-on rooms in mobile homes in Leisurewood Campground in Newstead, where his parents had a trailer.
“He put insulation in them,” said his brother, Robert, who worked with him for many years. “…
Aug. 29, 1916 – April 9, 2018
Nellie A. Eliah, a working owner of Taffy’s, a popular hot dog stand in Orchard Park, for 68 years, died Monday in her Orchard Park home after a brief illness. She was 101.
Born in Buffalo, the former Nellie Dewan was the oldest of seven children of Lebanese immigrants. She graduated from Mount St. Joseph Academy, then was a clerk in a f…
April 7, 1939 - March 12, 2018
A memorial service with military honors will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday in Kaiser Funeral Home, 1050 Whitehaven Road, Grand Island for Howard "Howie" Benns, a Buffalo native who became a world champion hydroplane racer.
Mr. Benns died March 12 in his winter home in Fort Myers, Fla., following a long illness. He was 78.
A graduate of…