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John W. McKinney, Bell Aerospace vice president

Jan. 4, 1921 – April 7, 2014

John W. McKinney, a World War II veteran and retired vice president at Bell Aerospace, died April 7 in Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital, Amherst. He was 93.

A longtime Grand Island resident, he had been living in Canterbury Woods in Amherst for the past two years.

Born in Saratoga Springs, he attended grammar school and early high school in Albany. He graduated from Kenmore High School in 1938 and earned a degree from Bryant & Stratton Business Institute in 1940.

From 1940 to 1941, he worked for Chas. P. Cochran Co. and American Floor Surfacing Machine Co. He joined the Army in September 1942 at Fort Niagara and transferred into the Signal Corps at Drew Field in Tampa, Fla. He served as a sergeant in the Army Air Forces during World War II. He became an Air Forces operations chief in Naples, Italy, on Jan. 2, 1945.

“Jack,” as he was known, started as a stock room clerk for Bell Aircraft in September 1941. He became an accounts receivable supervisor in August 1956 and, later, a general supervisor in the cost department in 1959, then a director of accounting and controller in March 1969. His long career with Bell continued with the promotion to vice president of finance in August 1978.

He retired as vice president of special products in December 1985.

Mr. McKinney had built his own home in Myrtle Beach, S.C., and resided there for 10 years. He was also a summer resident in Long Beach and Silver Bay, Ont. An avid golfer, he was a member of Port Colborne and Cherry Hill Club. He was past president of the Buffalo Chapter of the Financial Executive Trust in 1978 and a member of the American Legion and Aero Club of Buffalo.

Survivors include his wife of 70 years, the former Harriet J. Mallory; a son, Barrie; a daughter, Bonnie Gaynor; five grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

A memorial service will be at 1 p.m. Sunday at Canterbury Woods, 705 Renaissance Drive, Amherst.

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