Feb. 29, 1932 — June 8, 2018
Charles A. "Bob" Sharp Jr. and his wife, Kay B. (Leitten) Sharp, had three daughters. But those three daughters each had sons, for a total of seven grandsons.
On Thursday, June 14, Mr. Sharp's seven grandsons will each select and wear one of their grandfather's ties to his funeral.
"Over 86 years, he'd collected a few ties," said his youngest daughter, Karen Sharp-Price. "So we brought them out, and his grandsons are each going to pick out one to wear."
Mr. Sharp, who cherished and maintained lifelong friendships with everyone from grade school buddies to farmers who lived near his idyllic West Falls home, died Friday in Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital, Amherst, after a brief illness. He had retired in the mid-1990s as vice president of Viking Tool and Steel Co. in Buffalo.
He was a leap year baby, born in South Buffalo to Charles A. and Mabel (Walt) Sharp. He got the nickname "Bob" as a child because his sister, two years older, called him "Bop" when he was a baby. Over the years, that was changed to Bob, a nickname used by his closest friends for his whole life, Sharp-Price said.
He attended School 67 in South Buffalo and graduated from Canisius High School in 1949 and Canisius College in 1953 with a degree in economics.
Mr. Sharp served with the U.S. Army during the Korean War era. He earned five medals, among them the Bronze Star.
He married Kay B. Leitten on Jan. 10, 1959, in St. Thomas Aquinas Church in South Buffalo. He was hired by the American Brass Company in Cleveland, Ohio, where he worked as a salesman. Their three daughters were born in Cleveland, and the family moved back to Western New York in early 1969.
The family lived on Treehaven Road in West Seneca for 25 years. In the mid-1990s, after Mr. Sharp retired from work at the Viking Tool and Steel Co., he and his wife moved into their final home in West Falls. He enjoyed working on the wooded country property.
About a year later, in December of 1996, Mrs. Sharp died.
Mr. Sharp was active in St. George Roman Catholic Church in West Falls, serving on several committees. For almost a decade, he hosted reunions at his home for his classmates from School 67, with as many as 25 people attending. "That was one of his circles of friends," said Sharp-Price.
"He had a huge number of friends in different pockets," said his daughter. "He had golf buddies that he hung out with, he had church people, he had Canisius people, he had farmers from West Falls that he would go to have breakfast with."
A lifelong golfer and talented and generous woodworker, Mr. Sharp enjoyed reading and conversation and was known for his quick wit and amusing stories. As his oldest grandsons graduated from college, he presented each with a plaque made from a plank from his own woodlot, set with a clock and a personalized nameplate.
Besides Sharp-Price, he is survived by two other daughters, Teresa Sharp Donaldson and Maureen Sharp Bittner; a sister, Jane Comerford; and seven grandsons.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 10 a.m. Thursday, June 14, in St. George Roman Catholic Church, 74 Old Glenwood Road, West Falls.