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MATTHEW G. SENEFELDER, WHO REGALED NEIGHBORHOOD YOUNGSTERS, DIES AT 65

Friends in his Town of Tonawanda neighborhood called Matthew G. Senefelder "the grandpa of Bathurst Drive."

A 65-year-old retiree with a great wit and talent for spinning stories, he provided friendship to many youngsters in his neighborhood.

The young people lost their friend Thursday (Aug. 20, 1998) when Senefelder died, after a brief illness, in Kenmore Mercy Hospital.

A Memorial Masswill be offered at 11 a.m. Sept. 5 in Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church, 2052 Lakeview Road, Lake View.

When the weather was warm, Senefelder spent hours on the front porch of his home, sitting and talking with young people of all ages, watching them play football or street hockey, listening to their problems and telling them of his own life experiences.

"Sometimes I wondered, 'Why would all these kids just be stopping to sit and talk with this man?' " said Susan Tomsic, a neighbor. "The answer was: He really liked kids and knew how to talk to them."

An Army veteran, Senefelder worked as a sales and credit manager for companies in Western New York and Cleveland before retiring in 1992. After retiring, he became a world traveler, visiting Ireland, Australia, England, Russia, Norway, China and other countries with his wife, Judy Frank.

Senefelder loved theater, music and taking bicycle rides, sometimes accompanied by his longtime friend, sportscaster Van Miller.

"Everywhere we went, Matt would talk to people," Ms. Frank recalled. "When he'd go out for his bike rides, he would stop every two houses to talk with someone."

Ms. Frank said her husband would rather sit and watch neighborhood youngsters play football or street hockey than go to a Buffalo Bills game.

Born in Buffalo, Senefelder was a graduate of Bennett High School and the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla., where he received a degree in business education. From 1953 to 1955, he served in Austria as a military policeman.

He began his career in sales and credit work in 1956. Over the next 36 years, he worked for General Electric Credit Corp. in Buffalo; Sperry Rand Corp. in Marietta, Ohio; Westinghouse Credit Corp. and Borg-Warner Acceptance Corp. in Cleveland; and American Credit Indemnity Corp. in Amherst. He was a state-licensed broker and insurance agent.

Surviving in addition to his wife are a son, David, of McConnells, S.C.; three daughters, Elmajean Justice of Hudson, Fla., and Michele Lewis and Susan, both of Avon Lake, Ohio; two brothers, James of Rochester and Henry; a sister, Jeanne S. Andreana; and five grandchildren.

Senefelder donated his body to the University at Buffalo School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Ms. Frank said.

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