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Rev. Edward Gunther, 93, Baptist minister

March 27, 1924 – Aug. 19, 2017

Rev. Edward Gunther, a Baptist minister and church official, died Aug. 19 in Mercy Hospital in Buffalo. He was 93.

Born in Marjanowka, Poland, he came to Canada with his family at the age of three and lived in Winnipeg and Swan River, Manitoba. He then immigrated to Rochester by himself when he was 16 to prepare for theology school.

After graduating from East High School in Rochester, he earned a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Rochester in 1946. He graduated from Colgate-Rochester Divinity School in 1949.

His first assignment as a pastor was to Bath Baptist Church in Bath. After serving at churches in Fairmount, near Syracuse, and Boston, Mass., he was pastor of the First Baptist Church in Niagara Falls from 1961 to 1966.

Rev. Gunther then was executive secretary of the Buffalo Baptist Association and executive minister of the American Baptist Churches of the Niagara Frontier. In 1974, he became executive minister for the churches of Metropolitan New York.

In 1977, he served for a year at the American Baptist Churches USA headquarters in Valley Forge, Pa., then became pastor of the First Baptist Church of White Plains.

He returned to Western New York in 1988 to become pastor of St. Stephen’s United Church of Christ in Clarence, where he oversaw the rebuilding of the church and social hall after a major fire in 1989.

He retired in 2004.

A former Williamsville resident, in recent years he lived in Orchard Park.

His wife of 65 years, the former Mildred “Mike” Myers, a registered nurse, died in 2013.

He and his wife traveled on various missions, including a two-month tour of Asia and Africa.

Survivors include two sons, Dr. David E. and Stephen M.; a daughter, Barbara M.; and seven grandchildren.

A memorial service was held Sept. 2 in St. Stephen’s United Church of Christ, 8520 Tonawanda Creek Road, Clarence.

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