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Wells E. Knibloe, longtime Buffalo attorney

Dec. 16, 1922 - March 11, 2017

Wells E. Knibloe, a prominent Buffalo attorney, died last Saturday in his Buffalo home after a brief illness. He was 94.

Born and raised on his family’s dairy farm in Fillmore, he was a graduate of Fillmore Central High School and was drafted into the Army while attending Houghton College in 1943. He served at Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Md., the Brooklyn Navy Yard and at the Manhattan Project site in Los Alamos, N.M.

After World War II, he was aboard a Navy flotilla at the Bikini Atoll in the Pacific to witness the first post-war atomic bomb tests.

Returning from service, he completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Buffalo and went on to earn  a degree from the UB Law School. He was admitted to the New York State Bar in 1950.

Mr. Knibloe worked in the early 1950s in the legal department at Bell Aircraft, then joined the firm of Saperston, Wiltse, Duke, Day & Wilson, later Saperston & Day, in 1957.

He became a partner in general practice and retired in 1987.

A longtime member of the Erie County Bar Association, he served a term as president. He also was president of the UB General Alumni Board.

Active in Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church, he was a deacon.

A longtime member of the Buffalo Canoe Club, Mr. Knibloe served as treasurer and a director. He and his family spent summers in Point Abino and Bay Beach, Ont.

He and his wife were avid bridge players and organized bridge clubs for ladies, men and couples.

A resident of Florida for many years in retirement, he was a volunteer with Meals on Wheels and Sarasota Memorial Hospital.

Mr. Knibloe had a keen interest in genealogy and published his findings in a pair of books that traced four centuries of the Knibloe family in Scotland and America. He also wrote countless letters to the editor and compiled a memoir for his wife, “Red Cross Service Memories,” which recounted her service in Europe during World War II.

His wife of 62 years, the former Allene Cushing, died in 2013.

Survivors include a son, Wayne E.; three daughters, Gayle K. Nowak, Laurel K. Holmes and Elise A.; two brothers, Keith M. and Paul C.; and a grandson.

A private memorial service will be held at a later date.

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