George E. Pinto, who operated auto transmission shops and built his own race cars, died Thursday in Weinberg Campus, Getzville, after a brief illness. He was 83.
Born in Angola, he was a graduate of Angola High School and attended General Motors Technical School.
Mr. Pinto worked as a field representative for AAMCO Transmission from 1978 until he retired in 1989. He also ran his own garages, Pinto Transmission, from 1975-80, and Sheridan Transmission, from 1957-69, both in the Town of Tonawanda.
During the mid-1960s, he also operated a family farm in north Amherst. He also reached the million-mile threshold working as a long-haul trucker for 10 years for Motor Express, beginning in 1969. He was a member of the Teamsters.
Mr. Pinto built his own race cars, which were featured in races at Cayuga Speedway, Lancaster Speedway, Civic Stadium Raceway, Ransomville Speedway and Fonda Speedway.
Mr. Pinto was a motor coach buff who converted a Greyhound bus into a family motor home. He was a member of the Family Motor Coach Association.
His wife of 46 years, the former Rita M. Bogart, died in 1995.
Survivors include three daughters, Sherry Hunter of Buffalo, Beth Kirbis of the Town of Tonawanda and Nancy Kacz of Amherst; four sons, Gregory of Marilla, Mark and Scott, both of Amherst, and Douglas of the Town of Tonawanda; two sisters, Lucy Liberatore of the Town of Tonawanda and Grace Matellian of Upton, Mass.; one brother, Anthony of Daytona Beach, Fla.; 23 grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 9 a.m. Monday in St. Amelia's Catholic Church, 2999 Eggert Road, Town of Tonawanda, with prayers at 8:15 in Amigone Funeral Home, 2600 Sheridan Drive, Town of Tonawanda. Burial will be in Mount Olivet Cemetery, Town of Tonawanda.