Nov. 30, 1955 – Feb. 27, 2018
Frederic W. Gioia grew up as a member of one of Buffalo's most prominent and well-connected families.
While his brothers rubbed elbows with governors and presidents, the man known to friends as "Freddie" enjoyed simpler pursuits, outside the limelight. He delighted in coaching his children's sports teams, playing golf with old buddies an…
Jan. 2, 1943 – Feb. 25, 2018
When Richard A. Neil married Marilyn Smith after he graduated from Canisius College in 1964, his father, Matthew Niedbalski, had a piece of advice for him.
“Papa Neil said before you have any children, change your name because that’s a long name for someone in business,” his wife said. “He wouldn’t have done it without his father’s blessi…
Aug. 28, 1934 – Feb. 16, 2018
Daniel L. Newcomb achieved one of his goals when he accepted an executive position at Buffalo General Hospital in 1981.
“It was his dream job,” his son, Bob, said. “He always wanted to come back here. He always wanted to get back to his roots.”
A leader in philanthropic fundraising, Mr. Newcomb went on to serve as executive vice presi…
Aug. 31, 1956 – Feb. 20, 2018
Cheryl Ann Hurd had two families, one at home and the children she came to love in her classrooms over the last 16 years.
And when Mrs. Hurd, who went back to school at age 40 to pursue a lifelong dream of teaching, was nearing the end of an eight-year battle with cancer, she wanted to save her most treasured inspirational sayings. In th…
Oct. 8, 1917 – Feb. 13, 2018
Janis O. Ruhlman may have discovered the fountain of youth in the hundreds of quilts she stitched by hand for sick children.
"She would make a quilt a week for infants who were sick and donate them to the Shriners," said Gay Maria Norgren, a friend of the family. "People would always bring her scraps of material."
Mrs. Ruhlman, a longt…
Sept. 9, 1946 – Feb. 20, 2018
Mike Bartlett became instant friends with those he met, loved reading and history -- and in the 24 years he led the Hamburg Industrial Development Agency, he helped spark a renaissance in the Village of Hamburg.
But his favorite place to be was Key West, Fla.
"He said Key West isn't a place, it's a state of mind," said Mr. Bartlet…
April 18, 1930 – Feb. 10, 2018
Nick DeLuca and his wife, Loretta, collaborated for 35 years to make the Cavalier Motel on Niagara Falls Boulevard a success.
She greeted customers at the front desk and answered phones. He also worked the desk and served as general contractor for the motel’s expansion. When they added a restaurant and banquet facility, she was the host…
May 13, 1929 – Feb. 21, 2018
Bennett L. Leader was a man on the go after he was drafted into the Army in the mid-1950s.
Stationed in Washington, D.C., assigned as a clerk-typist in the U.S. Naval Gun Factory, now called the Washington Navy Yard, he and his wife lived in an apartment in the southeast section of the city.
Their first son was born in Walter Reed Army…
Aug. 5, 1940 – Feb. 16, 2018
Joe Valvo grew up on roller skates.
His parents, Russ and Carm Valvo, owned the Angola Rollercade and, while he was growing up, the roller skating rink was the center of teen life in the southern Erie County village.
“That’s where I first met him,” his wife of 54 years, the former Frances Andalino, said. “He used to work for his father…
Sept. 15, 1941 – Feb. 19, 2018
Marcia M. Gerace, of East Amherst, co-owner and officer of Glidden Machine & Tool Co., died Monday in Beechwood Health Care Center, Getzville, after a short illness. She was 76.
Born in Buffalo, the former Marcia Gullo was a graduate of Holy Angels Academy and earned a bachelor’s degree in education from Rosary Hill College, now Dae…
By Laurie Goodstein
The Rev. Billy Graham, a North Carolina farmer’s son who preached to millions in stadium events he called crusades, becoming a pastor to presidents and the nation’s best-known Christian evangelist for more than 60 years, died on Wednesday at his home. He was 99.
Mr. Graham had dealt with a number of illnesses in his last years, …
Feb. 10, 1919 – Feb. 11, 2018
When her youngest child left for college, Jane Jacobs, at age 50, began what would become a long career as a realtor at a time when the field was dominated by men.
“My daughter used to tell me, ‘Mom, you’re always on the phone, you should do something with that,’” she told Buffalo Business First in 2001.
That prompted her to accept a …
June 6, 1925 – Feb. 18, 2018
Few people work for one company as long as Norbert A. Ratajczyk. His career with locally owned Chudy Paper Co. spanned 65 years.
“I more or less became a member of the family,” he told a trade journal, Sanitary Maintenance, in 2006.
Stepping down after 45 years as purchasing agent, Mr. Ratajczyk stayed on as a salesman. Working just th…
Sept. 15, 1926 – Jan. 17, 2018
George Hochfield had been at the University of Buffalo for only a year when he became embroiled in a landmark battle over academic freedom.
In 1964, he was one of five UB faculty members who refused to sign a loyalty oath mandated under the state’s Feinberg Law, which required them to declare that they had never been members of the Comm…
May 3, 1948 – Feb. 15, 2018
Mary Ann Corbett, a veteran Buffalo Public Schools teacher and church volunteer, died Thursday after a long illness. She was 69.
The oldest of 10 children, the former Mary Ann Bohen was a lifelong South Buffalo resident who was graduated from Mount Mercy Academy. She also earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from D’Youville College.