May 15, 1928 – Jan. 24, 2015
The Rev. William L. Collen of Orchard Park died Jan. 24 at Autumnview Health Care Center in Hamburg after a short illness. He was 86.
Born in Albany, he grew up on a farm in West Sand Lake and graduated from Averill Park High School in Albany in 1950. He earned a bachelor of arts degree from Albright College in Reading, Pa. He later attended Garrett Evangelical Seminary in Evanston, Ill., where he received a master of divinity degree and ordained as a Methodist minister.
His first church was in the Buffalo area, where he met Lorry Buczak who became his wife of 52 years. He served as a minister at the Curtis Park Presbyterian Church in Tonawanda, First Presbyterian Church of East Aurora in East Aurora and South Wales Presbyterian Church in South Wales. After serving a church in upstate New York and Verona, New Jersey, the couple moved to Loudonville, where he served the West End Presbyterian Church in Albany until his retirement.
After retirement, he and his wife moved back to the Buffalo area where he was active in the Presbytery of Western New York, serving as a supply preacher assigned on a rotating basis to local congregations until one year before his death.
Besides his wife, he is survived by a daughter, Cindy Fradette.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. March 7 at Orchard Park Presbyterian Church, 4369 South Buffalo St., Orchard Park.