Ronald Wessel Obituary

 Ronald  W. Wessel
Ronald W. Wessel

May 23, 1942 - July 17, 2019
Born in Buffalo, New York
Resided in Orchard Park, New York
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WESSEL - Ronald W.
July 17, 2019 of Orchard Park, passed away peacefully at age 77. Beloved husband of 52 years to Joyce (nee Arena) Wessel; devoted father of Hon. Lynn (Michael) Keane, Ron (Abbie) Wessel and Tracy (Rich) Gray; adored grandfather of Michael, Jack, Matthew and Grayce Keane; Sam and Mallory Wessel and Richie and Jacob Gray; son of the late Walter and Lorlite Wessel; brother of Lenore (Robert) Ford; also survived by many nieces and nephews. The family will receive friends on Thursday, July 25th, from 4-8 PM at the (Orchard Park Chapel) AMIGONE FUNERAL HOME, INC., 6170 W. Quaker St. (just east of Rt. 219). A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Friday, July 26th, 10:00 AM at Nativity of Our Lord Church, 26 Thorn Ave., Orchard Park. Please assemble at church. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Make-A-Wish WNY, 100 Sylvan Pkwy., Suite 101, Amherst, NY 14228. Share condolences at
Buffalo News Obituary Version
May 23, 1942 — July 17, 2019

As vice president and director of engineering for Hart Hotels, Ronald W. Wessel spent a lot of time in his office.

But when the company was building a hotel, such as the Hotel Indigo on Maple Road in Amherst, Mr. Wessel relished being on the site, looking over blueprints and supervising construction, said his daughter, Tracy Gray.

"My father was really an outdoorsman," she said. "He liked the office setting, but he didn't like to sit all day."

Late in his career with Hart Hotels, Mr. Wessel turned his love for the outdoors into a job, working as a charter boat captain on Lake Erie.

Mr. Wessel died July 17, 2019, in Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center after an illness of two months. The Orchard Park resident was 77.

He was born on May 23, 1942, the son of Walter and Lorlite Wessel of Orchard Park and the older brother of Lenore.

After graduating from Orchard Park High School, Mr. Wessel earned a bachelor's degree in civil engineering from the University of Detroit in 1966. His college years were the only period that he lived outside Orchard Park, his daughter said.

Mr. Wessel and Joyce Arena met at a social gathering in East Aurora and married on May 20, 1967, in St. Aloysius Gonzaga Church in Cheektowaga.

Mr. Wessel worked for Hart Hotels for most of his career, supervising Hampton Inns, Holiday Inns and the Indigo Hotel, among others, she said.

"My dad made sure buildings were built properly, on time and within budget," said Tracy Gray. "And anyone who worked with him would agree with that."

In 1978, when his children were young, Mr. Wessel earned a master's degree in business from Canisius College, where he belonged to Beta Gamma Sigma, a business honor society.

Mr. Wessel served in the Air Force Reserve for about seven years, and he was honorably discharged in 1987 with the rank of captain.

For many years, Mr. Wessel owned and operated R & R Charters, working as a charter boat captain out of the Small Boat Harbor to Lake Erie and Sturgeon Point. Customers on his boat fished for bass, carp, muskie, perch, salmon, trout and walleye. He was a member of the Eastern Lake Erie Charter Boat Association and the National Association of Charterboat Operators.

"He loved to boat and fish," his daughter said, and he also enjoyed hunting and playing golf. He was a member of Brierwood Country Club and the East Aurora Fish and Game Club.

Mr. Wessel was known for his sense of humor, Tracy Gray said. "He had a great life, and his sense of humor remained up until the end. He was a really funny man."

Mr. Wessel "was very passionate about his children's and grandchildren's functions," his daughter said. "Every sporting event, every concert, he was there." He also volunteered to coach hockey and basketball when his children were younger, she said.

"He was a family man; we were very blessed," she said.

He retired from Hart Hotels in September 2010.

Besides his daughter Tracy Gray, Mr. Wessel is survived by his wife of 52 years, Joyce Wessel; another daughter, the Hon. Lynn Keane; a son, Ron Wessel; a sister, Lenore Ford; eight grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Friday in Nativity of Our Lord Church, 26 Thorn Ave., Orchard Park.




Orchard Park Chapel
6170 W. Quaker Street
Orchard Park, NY US 14127
Thursday, July 25, 2019
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Mass of Christian Burial
Nativity of Our Lord Church
South Buffalo St. & Thorn Ave.
Orchard Park, NY US 14127
Friday, July 26, 2019
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Mt. Calvary Cemetery
800 Pine Ridge Heritage
Buffalo, NY US 14225
Friday, July 26, 2019


Make-a-wish Foundation
100 Sylvan Parkway Suite 101
Amherst, NY 14228
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Make-A-Wish Foundation.