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Chester P. Wantuck, electrician, WW II veteran May 1, 1917 -- August 3, 2011

Chester P. Wantuck, a World War II Army Air Forces veteran who retired as an electrician, died Wednesday in Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Batavia, after a long illness. He was 94.

Born in Juniata, Pa., Mr. Wantuck grew up in Buffalo and was a graduate of Seneca Vocational High School.

Mr. Wantuck served as a flight engineer and turret gunner on a B-24 Liberator. He was shot down over Germany in 1944 and became a prisoner of war and sent to Stalag Luft 4. He was forced to work in the kitchen and spent more than a year as a POW before being liberated in 1945. He was the recipient of the Air Medal.

After returning home, he began his career as an electrician for Westinghouse Corp. and worked in the copper mill for more than 28 years. He retired in 1976.

Mr. Wantuck spent many years after his retirement volunteering at Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Buffalo.

He and his family traveled to Washington, D.C., to visit the World War II Memorial shortly after it was built.

Survivors include his wife of 65 years, the former Lottie Niejadlik, and a two sons, Gary and Robert.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 10 a.m. Friday in Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary Catholic Church, 7580 Clinton St., Elma.