Aug. 3, 1934 – April 4, 2020
Norman R. Gaca, who worked in circulation and distribution at The Buffalo News for 45 years, died April 4 in his Lancaster home after a lengthy illness. He was 85.
Born in Buffalo, Mr. Gaca began working for The News as a hopper in 1951 while he was still attending Burgard Vocational High School, hopping from trucks to deliver bundles of newspapers to stores.
He was drafted and served as a military policeman in the Army, assigned to a special police unit in Germany from 1957 to 1959.
Returning to The News, he became a wholesale distributor on city routes in Buffalo, then was appointed a district manager in the Circulation Department in 1979. When he retired in 1996, he was the oldest person working in the Transportation and Circulation departments.
One day while visiting accounts in his Lackawanna district, he smothered a mattress fire and led two women and their small children out of their house safely.
In retirement, he enjoyed fishing with family and friends, hunting from his cabin in a converted schoolhouse in Zoar Valley, and taking family and friends on all-day mystery trips.
A parishioner at Holy Mother of the Rosary Cathedral in Lancaster, he enjoyed traveling, reading, and playing the harmonica and accordion.
His wife of 64 years, the former Marie “Peanuts” Kruk, died in 2019.
Survivors include a daughter, Cheryl Kobza; a son, Ronald; five grandchildren and two great-grandsons.
A Memorial Mass will be scheduled for family later this month.
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