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Terry L. Yonker, Great Lakes environmentalist

Jan. 27, 1944 – April 23, 2015

Terry L. Yonker, a lifelong environmentalist with a passion for protecting the Great Lakes, died Thursday at Niagara Hospice in Lockport. He was 71.

Mr. Yonker, a Youngstown resident, was born in Grand Haven, Mich. He earned a degree in meteorology and human ecology/sociology from the University of Wisconsin in 1968. He began his career working for then-Michigan Gov. William G. Milliken as his environmental staff adviser and assisted in drafting the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement in 1972. He also was executive director of the Michigan Audubon Society and Great Lakes United.

Mr. Yonker was founder and president of Marine Services Diversified in Youngstown and co-founded the Great Lakes Wind Collaborative in 2008. He had a special interest in areas of climate change, bird migration and Coast Guard ice breaking on the Great Lakes. Most recently, he consulted on the Peace Bridge expansion proposal and several proposed wind energy projects, performing avian risk assessments and radar studies of bird migration.

Mr. Yonker was a member of the Buffalo Ornithological Society and served as its president for four years. He was a longtime volunteer with the Boy Scouts of America and served as chairman of the Niagara Frontier Council’s conservation committee.

He is survived by his wife, Lynne Landon; and two brothers, Chris and Rick.

A celebration of Mr. Yonker’s life will be scheduled at a later date in Michigan.