Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

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August 21, 2013

Former Lockport mayor Michael Shanley dies

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Former Lockport mayor, fireman and policeman Michael Shanley died Wednesday at Buffalo General Hospital.

Shanley served as an alderman before being elected the mayor of the City of Lockport from 1976 and serving one two-year term. He was also was the former civil defense director of Niagara County, a City of Lockport fireman and a City of Lockport policeman.

A parishioner of All Saints Parish, Shanley was past commander of the American Legion Leo Dolan Post 410, and also a member of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, the Navy Marine Club, and the Knights of Columbus. He graduated from DeSales Catholic High School, served in the Army National Guard and was past chairman of the City of Lockport Democratic Party.

Former mayor and fellow Democrat Tom Sullivan called Shanley a close friend and said he knew him for 50 years.

"When I became mayor, he offered his advice and help. And I certainly took it," Sullivan said. "He was just a great guy. I think he was liked by everybody. ... A good Irishman." 

John D'Onofrio, veteran US&J reporter, who covered Niagara County when Shanley was the civil defence director, concurred.

"He was bigger than life and always smiling," D'Onofrio said. "A well-connected Lockport Irishman. I liked him. All the reporters who covered the Legislature at the time liked him, too. I looked up to Mike and his brother, Dick, a lot. They were always accessible to the media and were easy to talk to."

Long-time city clerk Richard Mullaney said Shanley was a straight-forward kind of guy. Although Mullaney was hired to work in the streets department while Shanley was mayor, he said he knew him more socially.

"He said what was on his mind," Mullaney said. "You always knew what he was thinking. ... He was quick with a joke, just a good guy."

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