Norman Cleveland Oliver, 75, of Lewiston, NY, passed away, unexpectedly, on Wednesday, February 8, 2012. Born on June 14, 1936 in Warren, MI, he was the son of the late Galen Franklin and Audrey Emma (Bricker) Oliver, Sr.
Mr. Oliver was raised and attended schools in Warren, MI. Norman's mother died at a young age and he began working to help the family by making his own ice cream cart to pull with his bicycle and sell ice cream. He worked for Squirt Bottling Company in Detroit, MI and L&L Manufacturing Company in VanDyke, MI, where he met his wife, Barbara, through mutual friends and family. On June 19, 1954, Mr. Oliver married the former Barbara Ann Bayer in Detroit, MI. Norman was employed for Ocean Chemicals, in VanDyke, MI, as a Plant Manager and was transferred to Niagara Falls, NY in 1961 to facilitate and manage the opening of a new plant for Ocean Chemicals. In 1968, he graduated and received a degree in Chemistry from Erie County Technical Institute. Mr. Oliver was transferred to Savannah, GA, with Ocean Chemicals, in 1974. In January of 1975, Norman and his wife, Barbara, started their own business, Flame Control Coatings, Inc. and then moved their business from Savannah, GA to Niagara Falls, NY in 1976. He was President and founder of Flame Control Coatings, Inc. located on Hyde Park Boulevard in Niagara Falls, NY. The business became a Fortune 500 Company, manufacturing under the Flame Control label and private labeled fire retardant paints and coatings for Sherwin-Williams, Glidden Coatings and Pratt & Lambert, among others. In 2005, Mr. Oliver sold the company and retired.
Mr. Oliver was the owner and founder of Oliver's Classic and Vintage Cars. Norman was an avid car collector and enthusiast. He was a member of Niagara Falls Freewheelers, Auburn Cord Dusenberg Club, Inc., The Rolls-Royce Owners' Club, Inc., Classic Car Club of America, The Edsel Club, Niagara Packard, Kaiser-Frazer Owners Club International, Porsche Club of America, Stutz Automobile Club, Mustang Club of Florida and the National Rifle Association. Norman was a devoted member of the Church of Christ and served as former Elder at the St. Catharines Church of Christ in St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada. He was a loving and devoted husband. A deeply loving father and grandfather. A man of deep faith who loved God. He was a humble and unpretentious man. Norman liked to give to others but enjoyed being anonymous - he wanted to give like God had given to him. He valued his family and friends, and was a gentle man. He loved to laugh and play practical jokes on people and was genuine. Norman loved to fix things - "His Way!" Mr. Oliver and Barbara enjoyed traveling and had traveled the world from the Far East to Alaska to the Caribbean. One of his favorite places was the "one happy island" of Aruba. Norman and Barbara's first visit to the island of Aruba was to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary and since that time, they have spent many happy, wonderful times in their home at Tierra del Sol.
In addition to his beloved wife, Barbara, of 57 years, Mr. Oliver is survived by three daughters, Audrey (Mark) Oliver Dailey of Chester, VA, Lori (Robert) Thomas-Manera of Houston, TX and Amy Jo (Ricky) Lefebvre-Loughrey of Fort Meyers Beach, FL; three grandsons, Michael David Thomas, Richard Aaron Thomas and Isaac Norman Lefebvre; one brother, Galen Franklin Oliver, Jr. of Lapeer, MI; two step-sisters; two step-brothers and many nieces and nephews. In addition to his parents, Norman was predeceased by one brother, Jack Oliver.
The family will be present to receive friends on Monday from 2-4 and 7-9 PM in the Chapel of the OTTO REDANZ FUNERAL HOME, 2215 Military Road, Niagara Falls, NY (297-9007), where a funeral service will be held on Tuesday, February 14th at 11:00 AM with his son-in-law, Mark Dailey officiating. In lieu of flowers, memorial offerings may be made to Roswell Park Alliance Foundation, Barbara and Norman Oliver Endowment Fund for Melanoma Research, Elm & Carlton Streets, Buffalo, NY 14263. Condolences may be sent to the family by visiting us at www.ottoredanz.com and www.niagara-gazette.com/obituaries.