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Elias W. Backus, Bethlehem Steel foreman Oct. 9, 1931 -- Feb. 15, 2006

A Mass of Christian Burial for Elias W. Backus, a former Bethlehem Steel foreman from West Seneca who retired to Fort Myers, Fla., will be offered at 9:30 a.m. Monday in Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Church, 3148 Abbott Road, Orchard Park.

Mr. Backus, an avid golfer who held membership at half a dozen courses, died of a heart attack Wednesday on the sixth hole at his home course in Fort Myers, according to his daughter, Beth. He was 74.

Born in Fredonia, he was raised in Lackawanna and served as a corporal in the Army during the Korean War, where he earned two Bronze Stars in combat.

He spent 30 years at Bethlehem Steel, retiring in 1985 as a foreman. Mr. Backus moved to Florida in 1989 with his wife, the former Lorraine Rogers, who died in 1994.

The country clubs he belonged to were Tri County, Bethlehem Management, South Shore, Gowanda, Lochmore and Fort Myers.

He is survived by his daughter Beth of Hamburg; three sons, Joel of Jamestown, N.C., Michael of Wadsworth, Ohio, and Gregg of Clifton Springs; a brother, Wayne J. of Fort Myers; and five grandchildren.


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