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Charles P. Varecka, 56, of Bloomington, Minn., a Buffalo native, died Thursday (June 14, 2001) in the Mayo Clinic after a long battle with cancer.

Varecka was born in Buffalo and attended city schools, including St. Teresa's School and Bishop Timon High School.

He graduated with a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from the University at Buffalo and earned his master's degree in engineering from Northeastern University in Boston, Mass.

Varecka spent his career working in defense engineering in Minnesota, at Honeywell and at the company's defense subsidiary, Alliant Techsystems. He was an award-winning engineer at the two companies and was one of the lead developers of the pioneering engineering work used in creating the Patriot missile defense system.

Varecka was married to the former Diana Cain, who survives him.

Survivors also include two sons, Timothy of Eden Prairie, Minn., and Andrew of Tucson, Ariz.; his mother, Rosemary Varecka of West Seneca; and two brothers, Thomas F. of Plymouth, Minn., and Michael C. of Maple Grove, Minn.

A Mass of Christian Burial was offered today in Nativity of Mary Church in Bloomington. Burial was in Bloomington. A memorial service will be held in Buffalo at a later date.

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