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James T. Barczak, General Motors engineer

Sept. 3, 1937 – Nov. 29, 2015

James T. Barczak, a retired General Motors engineer, died Nov. 29 in his Williamsville home after a lengthy illness. He was 78.

Born in Buffalo, one of eight children, he was a 1955 graduate of Kenmore High School and served in the Navy as a radarman. He taught radar in the Naval Reserve after he was discharged.

He received an associate’s degree in construction technology from Erie County Technical Institute in 1959 and went on to earn bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education from Buffalo State College.

Mr. Barczak considered a teaching career, but enjoyed engineering more. He was an engineer for General Motors for 22 years, then was environmental engineer at the Tonawanda Forge plant after American Axle took over the operation. He retired in 2000.

He worked on the Saturn from its inception and helped design its connecting rod. He received several achievement awards and was recognized in trade magazines.

Survivors include his wife of 55 years, the former Angela Grieco; two sons, James G. and Paul J.; a brother, Robert, former athletic director at Sweet Home High School; and two grandchildren.

A Mass of Christian Burial was offered Dec. 5 in SS. Peter and Paul Catholic Church, 5480 Main St., Williamsville.