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Margaret Cencarik, hospital purchasing director

March 12, 1918 – Aug. 23, 2014

Margaret Cencarik of Cheektowaga died Saturday in Elderwood at Amherst Nursing Home after a return of non-Hodgkins lymphoma cancer after six years in remission. She was 96.

Born Margaret Kovach in North Braddock, Pa., she and her family moved to Corry, Pa., where she worked as a secretary at Aero Supply, a company which made warplane and warship parts. She married Valentine M. Cencarik on May 2, 1940, in Corry. The couple moved to Buffalo in 1952.

Mrs. Cencarik worked as a secretary for M. Wile Co. from 1952 to 1954. She later became secretary to director of purchasing, Millard Browne, at Sisters of Charity Hospital in 1954. Within a few years, Mr. Browne died and Mrs. Cencarik was promoted to his position, serving as director of purchasing until her retirement in 1990 at the age of 72 with 36 years of service.

Affectionately known as “Peggy from Purchasing” throughout the hospital, she was in charge of ordering all medical and office supplies, furniture, bedding, uniforms and medical instruments. She was instrumental in coordinating the expansion of the hospital throughout various building phases and the School of Nursing.

Active well into her 90s, Mrs. Cencarik continued to mow her own grass and enjoyed gardening and traveling. She was a talented seamstress who made her own clothes as well as draperies, slipcovers and clothes for family and friends.

Her husband of 35 years died in May 1975.

She is survived by her daughter, Valerie Leuthe; two grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday in the chapel at Mount Calvary Cemetery, Cheektowaga.

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