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Obituaries in Hamburg, North Collins and Eden for the week of Aug. 23, 2012

William R. Gehen Sr.

Funeral services were held on Friday (Aug. 17) from the Lakeside Memorial Funeral Home for William R. Gehen Sr. of Hamburg, who died on Sunday, August 12, 2012.

He is survived by his children, Denise (Donald) Guay and William (Darcy) Gehen Jr.; sister, Marlene Burger; grandchildren, Colin, Connor, Bryce and Brett Guay and Trevor, Taylor and William Gehen III; and mother-in-law, Ruth Bedard.

He was predeceased by his wife, Linda B. Gehen; parents, Mathias and Delores Gehen; and brother, Mathias Gehen.

Memorials may be made to the Boys and Girls Club of Orchard Park.

Emma Wawro

A private Mass of Christian Burial and interment service was held at the convenience of the family for Emma (Santioni) Wawro of Blasdell, who died on Sunday, August 12, 2012.

She is survived by her grandchildren, Lynn (Deacon Michael) Dulak and Karen (Greg) Corral; five great-grandchildren, two great-great-grandchildren and nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by her husband, John Wawro; and son, Joseph (Suzanne) Fortini.

Arrangements were made through the John J. Kaczor Funeral Home.

Joyce Landahl

A private memorial service will be held for Joyce (Dille) Landahl, 64, of North Collins, who died on Sunday, August 12, 2012.

She is survived by her children, Richard (Tracey), William (Kimberly) and Kenneth (Sarah) Landahl; and six grandchildren.

She was predeceased by her husband, Edward Landahl.

Memorials may be made to the American Diabetes Association.

Arrangements were made through the Wentland Funeral Home.

Tim Butler

A private family service will be held for Tim D. Butler, of Eden, who died on Friday, August 17, 2012.

He is survived by his son, Steve Lardo; siblings, Sandy (Rick) Skura and William Butler; nieces, Dawn Skura and Stacy (Paul) Kane; nephews, Jeff (Krista) and David Harms; and great-niece, Jillian Krygier.

He was predeceased by his sister, Judy (Dave) Harms and his parents.

Arrangements were made through the Laing Funeral Home.

Elisabeth Helman

A memorial service was held on Wednesday (Aug. 22) from the Donald M. Demmerley Funeral Home for Elisabeth Helman, 92, of Hamburg, who died on Sunday, August 19, 2012.

She is survived by her niece and nephews, Christine (David) Young, and Michael (Janet) and Jason Gahr; and great-nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by her parents, Reamer S. and Marion Helman; and brother, Reamer E. (late Janis Gahr) Helman.

Ms. Helman was a retired librarian from Union Pleasant Elementary School.

She was past district director of District 8 Business and Professional Women’s Clubs of NYS.

Burial was in Prospect Lawn Cemetery.

Memorials may be made to the Hamburg Public Library.

Monsignor Gerard Green

A Mass of Christian Burial offered by Bishop Richard J. Malone was held on Friday (Aug. 17) from SS. Peter and Paul Church for Monsignor Gerard L. Green, 84, who died on Tuesday, August 14, 2012.

He is survived by his siblings, John Green and Nancy Stratton.

Msgr. Green was a high school science teacher and pastor of Catholic churches in Depew and Hamburg for 20 years.

Born in Le Roy, he attended St. Peter’s School, was a graduate of Le Roy High School and earned the rank of Eagle Scout in Boy Scouts.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Mount St. Mary’s College in Emmittsburg, Md. and his master’s degree in theology and canon law at St. Bonaventure University. He also completed graduate work at Canisius College, University at Buffalo and the University of Notre Dame.

He was ordained on May 26, 1956 by Bishop Joseph A. Burke at St. Joseph’s New Cathedral. His first assignments were as missionary apostolate at Sacred Heart Church in Angelica and as a Boy Scout camp chaplain.

After serving as assistant pastor for two years at St. Aloysius Church in Cheektowaga, he was assigned to teach at Bishop Turner High School while also serving as weekend assistant at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in Buffalo.

In 1964 he was named head of the Faculty House at Bishop Turner and became weekend assistant at St. Martin of Tours Church in Buffalo.

In 1968, he was named administrator of Our Lady of the Rosary Church in Wilson and became administrator at St. Barnabas Church in Depew in 1973.

He was pastor of St. Barnabas from 1976 until he was assigned as pastor of SS. Peter and Paul Church in Hamburg in 1990. He retired in 1999.

During his retirement he served as temporary administrator of St. Joseph’s Cathedral in Buffalo in 2001.

He served as chairman of the Priests Retirement Board in 2005.

He was a fourth-degree member of the Knights of Columbus and served on various diocesan high school committees. He was also a member of the Diocesan Pastoral Council for the Handicapped, the Diocesan Finance Council, the Diocesan Parish Computer Committee and the Diocesan Cemetery Board. He was a board member of Daybreak TV Productions and St. Francis High School.

He received many awards and honors, including named a Prelate of Honor in 1984 and the Cure of Ars Award from Christ the King Seminary in 1999. He was the first recipient of the Charity and Justice Award from the Catholic Charities Outreach Program in 1999. He was nominated for the Manufacturing Chemist Association’s High School Chemistry Teacher of the Year Award in 1973.

Designated as a Leader in American Science from 1963 to 1969, he was included in “Who’s Who in the East” from 1969 to 1997.

Arrangements were made through the Donald M. Demmerley Funeral Home.

Rita Horner

A Mass of Christian Burial was held on Monday (Aug. 20) from Immaculate Conception Church for Rita (Strong) Horner, 92, of Eden, formerly of South Buffalo, who died on Thursday, August 16, 2012.

She is survived by her children, Betty Jo (Frank) Sturm and John (Irene), Rich (Terry) and Robert (Janine) Horner; siblings, Ellen Denecke and Daniel Strong; nine grandchildren and many great-grandchildren.

She was predeceased by her husband, Chester Horner; and siblings, Catherine Sheehan, Marg Kelly and William Strong.

Arrangements were made through the Wentland Funeral Home.

Edwin F. Ovitt Jr.

A memorial service was held on Sunday (Aug. 19) from the family residence for Edwin Frederick Ovitt Jr. of Eddyville, formerly of Eden, who died on Tuesday, July 31, 2012.

He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Betty Ovitt; children, Patricia Symans and Daniel and Wade Ovitt; siblings, Jackie, Larry, Joseph, Gary and Billy Ovitt and Susan Whipple; eight grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Mr. Ovitt was raised in Orchard Park and resided for most of his adult life in Eden.

He was an operating engineer and member of the International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 17, for 40 years.

He owned Ed’s Shoe Repair for eight years and the Red Bandana Restaurant in Eden for 18 years.

He loved construction, hunting, fishing, playing his guitar and singing country music with his band “Country Memories,” as well as spending time with his wife, family and many friends.

He will be remembered as a devoted husband, father, grandfather and brother.

The memory of his quick sense of humor, beautiful singing voice, pickin’ guitar, yodeling and joyful whistling will forever live on in his family’s hearts.

He donated his body to the University at Buffalo Medical Center.

Memorial donations may be made to Cattaraugus County Hospice in his name.

Barbara Santa

A prayer service will be held on Friday, Aug. 24 at 10 a.m. from Lakeside Memorial Park Cemetery for Barbara A. (Schleich) Santa, of Lake View, who died on Monday, August 20, 2012.

She is survived by her children, Eve (Dan) Santa and Sylvia (David) Pierson; and grandson, Brandon Santa.

She was predeceased by her husband, Frank F. Santa.

Arrangements were made through the John J. Kaczor Funeral Home.

Recardo Creache

Funeral services will be held on Thursday, Aug. 23 at 10 a.m. from the Wentland Funeral Home for Recardo “Rick” Creache, 50, of the Cattaraugus Indian Reservation, who died on Sunday, August 19, 2012.

He is survived by his children, Eric (Wendy Dickerson), Emma Lyn and Sophia Rae Creache; mother, Phyllis Williams; grandchildren, Chyann and Mia Creache; and Marti Schramm.



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