James R. McHugh, owner of Personal Touch Food Service, a food service management company catering to local schools and businesses, died Wednesday in his Buffalo home. He was 52.
Born in the Town of Tonawanda, Mr. McHugh was a graduate of both Canisius High School and Canisius College. He and his late wife of 23 years, the former Maureen T. McMahon, founded Personal Touch Food Service in 1985. Their clients included Canisius High School, Mount Mercy Academy and Holy Angels Academy. Over the years, the couple built a formidable management team that continues to service companies at more than 85 locations throughout the Western New York area. Maureen T. McHugh died in 2009. The business, which employs 600, will continue to be run by other family members.
Mr. McHugh also was a community leader who was dedicated to Catholic education and the Diocese of Buffalo. He was a generous benefactor to several nonprofit institutions and private schools in the area, including Nardin Academy, Canisius High School, Gilda's Club and Cradle Beach. In 2008, the couple served as honorary chairmen of Nardin Academy's 18th annual Fortune dinner-dance and auction. Mr. McHugh served on the Bishop's Council of the Laity and on the board of Gilda's Club. He and his wife also were longtime supporters of St. Andrew's Country Day School and Parish in Kenmore.
He is survived by three daughters, Caitlin E., Morgan T. and Maura R.; a son, Conor F.; his mother, Florence; two sisters, Marilyn Rochester and Janis Hartman; and three brothers, Joseph, William and Michael.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 10 a.m. next Saturday in St. Andrew Catholic Church, 1525 Sheridan Drive, Town of Tonawanda.