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Death notices and obituaries for the week of July 24

Sebastian Jacobi
Sebastian “Buster” Jacobi, 94, died July 4. Jacobi is survived by his family and friends, including his companion, Kathleen McAuley; children, Mary Munro and John Jacobi; and grandchildren, Sarah (Lucas) and Brian Munro.

Jacobi was born Feb. 4, 1920, to Italian immigrant parents and was one of 13 children. He grew up on Myrtle Avenue in Buffalo and his first job was shining shoes in the downtown area. He was an ironworker as a young man, and worked on many of the structures in the Bethlehem Steel area. He served in the United States Army Air Corps, during World War II.

He cofounded seven Jacobi’s restaurants in the suburbs of Buffalo and worked his Hamburg location on Camp Road for close to 40 years, seven days a week, until February 2013, when he retired at the age of 93. He taught many young people the “tricks of the trade” in pizza-making and Italian cooking. When a family with children came into his restaurant, he always sent over complimentary ice cream for dessert and provided coloring books and crayons for the little ones.

He traveled in his RV, visiting the casinos in Las Vegas, Atlantic City, the islands and family get togethers. He was a Buffalo Bills and Sabres fan and attended the Erie County Fair.

Richard Sroda
Richard Sroda, 74, died July 9. Sroda was the husband of Lynn (nee Vogl) Sroda; father of Michele Margarucci and Denise Atwood; step-father of Nicole (Philip) Jurgielewicz, Joseph (Chandel) Sundquist, Andrea (Steven) Paris and Scott Sundquist; grandfather to 10 grandchildren; predeceased by one granddaughter; son of the late John and Wanda (nee Sikora) Sroda; brother of John (Mary) Sroda, Honore Balon and the late Mary (Richard) Zaklikowski; also survived by other family members and friends.

Rick was a retired letter carrier after 32 years of service.

Visitation was held at the Hamburg Chapel of the John J. Kaczor Funeral Home Inc. followed by a Mass of Christian burial held at Saints Peter & Paul Church. in Hamburg.

Interment was held at Lakeside Memorial Cemetery.

Online condolences may be made at

Donald Mitscher

Donald Mitscher
Donald P. Mitscher, 74, of Boston, died July 9.Mitscher was the father of Leanne (David) Staufenberger and Lynette Mitscher; brother of Robert (Barbara) and James (Betty Jane) Mitscher; and former husband of Martha Mitscher.

He was a salesman for former R.W. Mitscher Co. in Clarence and was a United States Army veteran in Vietnam.

Memorials may be made to the Hospice Foundation. Arrangements made by the Donald M. Demmerley Funeral Home.

Melvin Rathbun

Melvin Rathbun
Melvin Richard Rathbun died July 10. Rathbun was the husband of the late Roberta (nee Doubrough); stepfather of Derek (Joann) and Deborah (Tim) Tully; grandfatherof Heather and Sarah; brother of Robert Rathbun and the late George Rathbun, Paul Rathbun and Joy Westcott; also survived by nieces and nephews.

Funeral services were held July 15 at the Kenneth Howe Funeral Home, located in East Aurora.

Online condolences may be made at

Winfield King

Winfield King
Winfield C. King, 90, of Rockledge, Fla., died July 10 at the Wuesthoff Brevard Hospice House. King is survived by his wife, Ethel, of 68 years; his children, David, Marjorie (Bradley), Janet and William (Susan); grandchildren Sarah, Abigail, Thomas, Brendan and Stephen.

Born in Buffalo, Winfield moved to Brevard County in 2004 from Hamburg. He owned his own business as a wood refinisher and was a World War II Army veteran, having fought in the Battle of the Bulge.

Interment was in Forest Lawn Cemetery in Buffalo.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that charitable donations be made in memory of King to either Wuesthoff Brevard Hospice; 8060 Spyglass Hill Road, Viera, Fla. 32940 or the Christian Church Palm Shores, 4580 North United States Highway 1, Palm Shores, Fla. 32935.

Helen Empric
Helen M. (nee Kosecki) Empric, of Hamburg, formerly of Lackawanna, died July 11. Empric was the wife of the late Robert Empric; mother of Joseph, Diane (Michael) Sauer and Robert (Becky) Empric; grandmother of Zachary, Grace, Faith, William and Julie Empric.

A Mass of Christian burial was held on July 14 at Our Lady of Bistreca Church in Lackawanna. Interment followed in Lakeside Memorial Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Wings Flight of Hope, P.O. Box 872, Orchard Park, N.Y. 14127.

Arrangements were made by John J. Kaczor Funeral Home Inc.

Online condolences may be made at

Donald Long
Donald J. Long Jr. died July 6. Long was the son of the late Lois (nee Phalen) Long and Donald J. Long Sr.; brother of Mary Carol (Don); uncle of Destiny Ann; also survived by many aunts, uncles and cousins.

He served in the United States Army, was a world traveler and Buffalo Bills Sabres fan.

Arrangements were made by Lombardo Funeral Home.

April Archer
April Archer, 23, of the Cattaraugus Indian Reservation died suddenly July 11. Archer was the fiancee of Cheyenne White; daughter of Curtis Archer and the late Mona (nee Henhawk) Archer; sister of Jessica Silverheels, Mathew Pagels, Sarah Archer and the late Rick Silverheels; also survived by many aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews and friends.

She was a softball player and a member of the Bear clan. A funeral was held at the family residence on July 14. Arrangements were made by Wentland Funeral Home of North Collins.

Mary Martin
Mary M. Martin, of Hamburg, died July 2. Martin was the wife of the late John Martin; mother of Barbara (Martin) Mosgeller, Robert Martin and Bernadette (Daniel) Henderson; sister of Lorraine Fierle and Anna Lyons; also survived by eight grandchildren, 15 great-grandchildren, two great-great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

A Mass of Christian burial was held on July 4 at Saints Peter & Paul Church in Hamburg. Arrangements were made by Loomis, Offers & Loomis Inc. Flowers were declined. Memorial contributions may be made to Hospice Buffalo, Inc.

Joseph Miller
Joseph R. Miller Sr. died July 4, of esophageal cancer. Miller is survived by his father Richard (late Dorothy) Miller; brother Richard Miller Jr.; sons Joseph Miller Jr. and Gregory Miller; daughter Jessica Morgan and several grandchildren.

He worked at Chenango Foundry and Sorrento cheese factory, before moving to Syracuse, where he worked for Fayetteville-Manlius school district, Manlius Nice & Easy and delivered Syracuse Post Standard newspapers.

There will be a graveside service July 21 at 10 a.m. in Immaculate Conception cemetery in Eden, where his remains will be laid beside his mother’s.

As he was an outdoorsman, there will be a celebration of his life at Green Lakes State Park site No. 12, July 21-July 25. All are invited to attend.

Arrangements were made by Laing Funeral Home Inc. located at 2724 W. Church St. in Eden.

Online condolences may be made at


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