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John R. Waterhouse, insurance agency owner and restaurateur

April 25, 1924 - May 17, 2015

John R. Waterhouse, a World War II veteran who ran an insurance company and owned and operated Old Orchard Inn in East Aurora, died May 17 in his East Aurora home following a short illness. He was 91.

Born in St. Paul, Minn., Mr. Waterhouse moved to Buffalo with his family as a child and had homes in East Aurora and Fort Myers, Fla. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Hobart College in 1947.

Mr. Waterhouse served in the Army Air Forces during World War II in the Pacific Theater and rose to the rank of master sergeant.

He retired as president of Miller & Waterhouse Insurance Agency. In 1952, he purchased the Stewart Agency and operated three offices in the Southern Tier. It later became known as Miller & Waterhouse.

In 1974, Mr. Waterhouse purchased the Old Orchard Inn, a restaurant that was founded in 1931, and ran it before selling it in 1997, when he retired.

He also served as board chairman of R.W. Publications from 2000 to 2011.

Mr. Waterhouse served as president of the Western New York Restaurant Association and also was a president of East Aurora Kiwanis Club and Greater East Aurora Chamber of Commerce.

He was active in Masonic Blue Lodge, Silver Creek, Ismalia Temple in Orchard Park and Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 362, East Aurora.

Survivors include his wife, the former Joyce Roll; a daughter, Robin Roof; two sons, Stephen and the Rev. Ralph; two sisters, Elizabeth MacArthur and Sally Waterhouse; six grandchildren; and nine great-grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday in Baker Memorial United Methodist Church, Main and Center streets, East Aurora.

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