LILAC - Blaine I., Jr.
Age 82 of the city of Tonawanda, February 17, 2020. Husband of 62 years to his school sweetheart Nina R. (nee Ferris) Lilac; father of Debra (Bill) Holahan and Blaine (Kay) Lilac, III; grandfather of Molly (Daniel Matthews) McEnvoy, Bradley and Joshua Lilac, Erin (Jesse) Snyder and Emma (Cody) Berdine; great-grandfather of Lauren and Henry Snyder; son of the late Blaine, Sr. and Ruth (nee Sholtz) Lilac, brother of Dean (Blair) Lilac and uncle of Dean Lilac, Jr. and Taylor (Amanda) Lilac. A lifelong resident of the city of Tonawanda, Blaine graduated from Tonawanda High school as the Vice President of the Class of 1955. He studied mechanical engineering at the University of Buffalo and went on to become a successful outside salesman for several steel companies. Blaine was a well known sax player who considered himself as a musician with a day job. He began his career as a professional musician while still a teenager and went on to perform in many local bands. He played for countless weddings, parties and in many Western New York’s most popular nightclubs. He was locally know for his group “The Lilac Branch” entertaining as the house band for Bedell’s Candlelight Lounge during the 1970’s and 80’s. He was a member of the American Federation of Musicians unions Local 106-209 of Greater Niagara and 92 of Buffalo. He was called to perform in the pit bands and orchestras of many nationally known entertainers at Melody Fair and Niagara Falls Convention Center. Blaine was a proud member of the American Legion Band post 264, marching and performing for over 37 years. He also spent many years participating in the “Tonawanda Clown Band”. As a devoted community member of Tonawanda, Blaine was involved in many social and civic organizations. He was a member of the Eldredge Club, Elks Club and Exchange Club of the Tonawandas, for which he served as a past president. He was a member of the Free and Accepted Masons Ken-Ton Lodge 1186 and an Ismailia Schriner. He was an avid boater and outdoors man enjoying memberships in two sports-men’s clubs-Tonawanda and Gastown; he and Nina spent many of their boating years involved with the LaSalle Yacht Club. The Family would like to thank the second floor staff at DeGraff Skilled Nursing Facility for their care and kindness to Blaine and to everyone in his family. Calling hours will be held Friday, February 21, from 2 - 4 and 6 - 8, at JOHN O. ROTH FUNERAL HOME, INC., 25 William St., (between Morgan & Broad Sts.) in Tonawanda. A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, February 22, at 11 AM, in Grove Street Christian Church, 85 Grove St., in Tonawanda. Everyone welcome. A Private Burial will be in Acacia Park Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Alzheimer’s Assn. of WNY. Condolences may be shared online at www.rothfuneral.com
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