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Lee S. Wishing Jr., insurance agent Feb. 10, 1937 -- June 14, 2007

Lee S. Wishing Jr., 70, a prominent insurance agency owner in the Southtowns, died June 14 of a rare form of pancreatic cancer, six weeks after moving to his new home in Murfreesboro, Tenn.

He was born in Lackawanna, grew up in Colden and graduated from Springville-Griffith Institute where he was class president and a four-year varsity letterman in football, basketball and baseball.

Mr. Wishing graduated from St. Lawrence University with a degree in English and a New York State teacher's certificate.

He married Zeline M. Schwartz in Colden in 1959 and they moved to Fort Sill, Okla., where he began his military service as an artillery officer in the Army.

After his military duty, the Wishings moved back to Colden. Mr. Wishing worked for the William J. Keller printing company, and during this time he served as a justice of the peace for four years and continued service in the Army Reserves for six years.

In 1962, Wishing began his life's work in the insurance industry as an outside marketing representative with Travelers Insurance Co. in Buffalo. In 1968, he became an independent insurance broker and purchased Arcade Agency Inc. of Arcade. At various times he owned, or had ownership interests in, the Hitchcock Agency of Delevan, the Ken Jones Agency of West Seneca, and the Java Agency. He also was a founding member of the Alpha Group Association, a director of the Professional Insurance Agents Board of New York and the Western New York American Automobile Association, and a community director of the Citizens Central Bank of Arcade.

The Wishings lived in Arcade from 1968 until 2002, at which time Mr. Wishing was a member, trustee and Sunday school teacher of Arcade United Church of Christ, Congregational. He coached several successful seasons of Babe Ruth Little League baseball in the mid-1970s.

The Wishings retired to Sarasota, Fla., in 2000.

Mr. Wishing is survived by his wife of 48 years; three children, Lee III, Anselm and Tamra Donovan.

A memorial service will be held at 2:30 p.m. next Saturday at Redeemer Lutheran Church in Colden, followed by a celebration of Mr. Wishing's life at Colden Lakes Resort.


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