TONAWANDA — Louis Michael Reuter Jr., 74, passed away in the presence of his family Monday, Aug. 17, 2009 at his home in Tonawanda.
Mr. Reuter was born on Dec. 20, 1934 in Elizabeth, N.J., the son of Louis Michael Reuter and Elizabeth Currie Reuter. After graduating from high school in New Jersey, he served in the United States Army and was a military police officer stationed in Munich, Germany, where he met his future wife, Judith Schwartz.
Shortly after receiving an honorable discharge from the Army, Mr. Reuter attended the University of Buffalo, where he earned a bachelor of arts degree in history in 1961. Upon graduation, he first taught in Newburgh, and returned to the Buffalo area, settling in Tonawanda.
Mr. Reuter was a well-loved teacher and football coach at Kenmore East High School. He started teaching and coaching at the school in 1963, and retired in 2000. Following his retirement, Mr. Reuter continued to coach high school football for several years.
As an advocate for scholastic sports in Western New York, Mr. Reuter received numerous honors, including an induction into the Kenmore East Hall of Fame. The most recent recognition he received for athletics was being honored by the Niagara Frontier League with its Key Person Award for 2009.
Mr. Reuter also played important roles in the Empire State Games, first as a volunteer in 1980. He volunteered at the games every following year until he took on the position of Western Region Director of the Empire State Games, a post he held for 11 years.
Following his retirement, Mr. Reuter was elected as a member of the Kenmore-Town of Tonawanda Board of Education. At the time of his death, he was in his third term and was the board’s vice president.
Other honors bestowed on Mr. Reuter include: The Erie County Association of School Board’s Laura M. Burns Award for Advocacy for Children, the Town of Tonawanda’s Community Service Award in 2003, and further recognition as a “Leader of American Secondary Education.” Mr. Reuter was also a member of the Town of Tonawanda Board of Ethics.
On New Year’s Eve 2001, Mr. Reuter was an Olympic Torch bearer, carrying the Olympic flame along a stretch of Delaware Ave. in Tonawanda as a member of a cross-country relay leading up to the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Games.
On June 13, 2009, Mr. Reuter celebrated his 50th wedding anniversary with his wife.
Mr. Reuter is survived by his wife, Judith Schwartz Reuter, and five children: Jane R. Casey of Kenmore, Louis Michael Reuter III of Lake Clear, Peter Michael Reuter (Daun) of Bloomingdale, Gretchen Reuter Smith of Saranac Lake, and Susan Polly Reuter (Kasey Nye) of Tucson, Arizona. He is also survived by nine grandchildren.
A Mass of Christian burial will be held at 9 a.m. Friday, Aug. 21 at St. Amelia’s Church on Eggert Road in Tonawanda. Burial will be at Mount Olivet Cemetery in Tonawanda.
Arrangements are in care of the Amigone Funeral Home in Tonawanda
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Louis M. Reuter Scholarship, Kenmore-Tonawanda School District, 1500 Colvin Blvd, Tonawanda, NY 14223.