Elizabeth M. "Betty" Sdao, age 82, of Niagara Falls, NY, died peacefully on July 13, 2013, after a courageous fight against pancreatic cancer. Born December 10, 1930, in Niagara Falls, NY, she was the daughter of the late Joseph and Helen (Stack) Marcinko.
A loving wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, Betty cherished her family and friends and was happiest when surrounded by those she loved. Her grace and generous spirit touched the lives of all who encountered her.
After attending local schools, Betty worked at Levy Brothers Furniture, where she met the love of her life, James A. "Jimmy" Sdao, with whom she was married for 56 years until his death in 2010. After years as a homemaker, she returned to work in the early 1960s alongside her husband when they co-owned the Mall Restaurant in the Boulevard Mall. In 1966, they bought the Carrousel of Flowers, on Niagara Street, which they operated for 11 years. After selling the flower shop, Betty returned to her secretarial career, working at Great Lakes Carbon and the Niagara Falls Board of Education. Always seeking to perfect her skills, Betty earned administrative professional certification in 1991. She retired from the Board of Education in 2001. She was also a licensed realtor and worked with Coldwell Banker Talarico Real Estate.
Betty loved warm weather, mostly because it meant she could be on the golf course with her friends. She was active in several leagues at Hyde Park Golf Course, serving as vice president of the Tuesday and Thursday Hyde Park Ladies' 18-Hole clubs, and was previously secretary for the Friday Ladies' 9-Hole league. She also enjoyed playing in area tournaments and taking golf trips with her friends. In recent years, she participated in bocce leagues at Hyde Park.
Betty enjoyed travel, whether it was a summer week at Long Beach, a Mediterranean cruise, visiting family in California, traveling with family to Maui and Las Vegas, road trips to college campuses to visit with her grandchildren, or spending time with family in Fairport, her bags were always packed and ready for the next adventure.
Betty was a member of Our Lady of Mount Carmel parish and a volunteer at Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center.
Betty is survived by two daughters and their husbands, Cynthia (William) Miller of Brisbane, CA, and Lori (Donald) Barrette of Fairport, NY; five grandchildren, Daniel (Jessica) and Andrew Miller and Zachary, Alexander and Megan Barrette; great-granddaughter, Lilah Jai Miller, and many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by a sister, Ann Marcinko; a brother, Joseph (June Kawalerski) Marcinko, Jr.; three sisters and their husbands, Elsie (Bill) Bushnell, Helen (Ted) McGovern and Frances (Stanley) Sojka; a great-grandson, Collin Miller; and a dear niece, Betsy Sojka.
Consistent with her life-long grace and generosity, Betty arranged for her anatomical gift to the University of Buffalo. A "Celebration of Life" memorial service will be held on Saturday, August 3, at Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph Parish at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church, 27th Street and Independence Ave., Niagara Falls, NY, with a noon mass officiated by Rev. Duane Klizek. Family will be present at the church beginning at 11 AM. Mass will be followed by a "Celebration of Life" luncheon at Como Restaurant, 2220 Pine Ave., Niagara Falls, NY. All are invited to attend. Betty loved the color pink, so if you feel inspired, please wear a little something pink to the service.
If desired, memorial offerings may be made in lieu of flowers to Wilmot Cancer Center, Geriatric Oncology, University of Rochester Medical Center, 601 Elmwood Ave., Box 704, Rochester, NY 14642; Visiting Nurse Hospice, Visiting Nurse Service of Rochester and Monroe County, Inc., 2180 Empire Blvd., Webster, NY 14580; or The Lustgarten Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research, 1111 Stewart Avenue, Bethpage, NY 11714.
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