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Gerald J. McKenna, 79, retired bank executive and real estate agent

Gerald J. McKenna, 79, retired bank executive and real estate agent

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Oct. 24, 1941 – April 30, 2021

Gerald J. McKenna, a retired bank executive and real estate agent, died April 30 in Beechwood Continuing Care, Getzville, after a period of declining health. He was 79.

Born in Buffalo, the older of two children, he was a 1959 graduate of Canisius High School, where he was a member of the tennis team.

While attending Canisius College, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in 1964, he met Sandra M. Howard, a nursing student at Sisters Hospital who had prerequisite courses at the college.

After he began working at Marine Midland Bank, they were married in 1965.

Mr. McKenna advanced through management positions at Marine Midland and was a member of the second master’s of business administration class to graduate from Canisius College in 1972. He later served as president for the MBA Alumni Association.

As a vice president for operations at Marine Midland until 1991, his responsibilities included making all the bank's automatic teller machines handicapped-accessible.

Mr. McKenna went on to a career as a residential realtor with Hunt Real Estate in its Town of Tonawanda office, retiring about 10 years ago.

A longtime Town of Tonawanda resident, he was a parishioner at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church and served on numerous committees for St. John the Baptist School while his children were attending. He also was active with the Tonawanda Titans Swim Club.

He was an avid Bills, Sabres and Yankees fan and had season tickets for the Bills in the 1970s.

He enjoyed playing pinochle, euchre and poker with friends and family.

He became a resident of Bristol Village in 2018.

In addition to his former wife, Sandra, a retired registered nurse at Kenmore Mercy Hospital; survivors include two daughters, Melissa M. Negrate and Michele M. Toole; two sons, Joseph J. and Matthew; a sister, Eileen M. McKenna; and seven grandchildren.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 10 a.m. Friday in St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 6919 Transit Road, Swormville.

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Dale Anderson has been a Buffalo News staff reporter since 1968. He was the chief rock and pop writer for 20 years and helped establish the weekend entertainment magazine Gusto.

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