April 8, 1922 – June 13, 2018
T. Paul Weiksnar, founder and former owner of Westny Building Products Corp., died last Wednesday under hospice care at Canterbury Woods, Amherst. He was 96.
Born in Buffalo, Mr. Weiksnar was a 1940 graduate of Canisius High School. He served in the Army in World War II with the 71st Infantry Division in Europe under Gen. George Patton, liberating prisoners of war in Austria, France and Germany. He attained the rank of staff sergeant.
Returning from the war, he had a brief assignment with the Air Force in Utah. He attended the University at Buffalo on the GI Bill, earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting and graduated from UB Law School in 1953.
Mr. Weiksnar chose to go into business instead of practicing law, founding Westny Building Products in 1956. Representing the Rolscreen Co., Westny introduced Pella products to Western New York, providing local assembly, warehousing and service. The company expanded into a regional chain of distributorships serving 13 counties.
He designed the black and yellow bull’s-eye logo for Pella, and developed a number of engineering and design innovations for its windows and doors. He sold the company and retired in 1990.
Known to many as Ted, he loved languages, studying Russian, Japanese and Spanish later in life. He was a voracious reader and an avid Scrabble player into his mid-90s.
He also played the violin, performing with the Ken-Ton, Jamestown, Hamilton and Burlington symphonies.
At St. Benedict’s Catholic Church, he was a member of the Knights of Columbus and the Holy Name Society and served as an usher for more than 30 years.
Survivors include his wife of 66 years, Helen J.; two sons, the Rev. William J. “Jud” and John P.; two daughters, Melissa M. and Greta L. Pinto; two sisters, Esther Curtin and Wanda Sullivan; and five grandchildren.
A Mass of Christian Burial was performed by his son on Saturday in SS. Columba and Brigid Catholic Church, 75 Hickory St.