Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

Obituaries

February 26, 2014

William J. Sweeney

ST. CLOUD, FL — William J. Sweeney, age 76, of St. Cloud, FL, passed away February 23, 2014, surrounded by his family. Born in Buffalo, NY to the late Golda "Peggy" Rhea Sweeney and William Tyner Sweeney, he was the brother of the late Dennis R. Sweeney, Cristy A. Hubbard (Charles), D. Elizabeth "Betsy" Higgins (Paul); and beloved husband of 55 years to Carol Baer Sweeney. He was the father of William J. Jr., (Mary Beth) of  Alpharetta, GA, C. Lynn Traudt (Dean) of St Cloud, FL, Patricia Baer Sullivan (Mark) of Galveston, IN, and Jeffrey Rhea (Jacqueline) of Woodstock, GA; by six grandchildren, Megan E. Sweeney, Kathleen E. Sweeney, Kelsey L. Sullivan, Derek A. Sullivan, Christopher J. Sweeney and Casey R. Sweeney. Also survived by mother-in-law, Claudine R. Baer of Casselberry, FL; sisters-in-law, Nancy A. Glinski, Buffalo, NY, Jean Sweeney of Lockport, NY; and brother-in-law, Richard E. Baer, Casselberry, FL.

He was a 1955 graduate of Lockport High School, Lockport, NY, and he attended the             University of Pennsylvania after receiving the Abel Lukens Stout Academic Scholarship. He later attended the University of Buffalo, studying Mechanical Engineering. He started his adult life in Olcott Beach, NY, located on Lake Ontario. He left Western New York and relocated in St Cloud, FL in 1996. He continued his love of being near lakes and oceans. He was in the automobile business for 45 years. He began his automotive career selling cars from his backyard. Mr. Sweeney was the co-owner of Hess & Sweeney Ford, Akron, NY (at 30 years of age). The dealership received the Distinguished Service Award (highest award for quality dealership operation) for four years. He served as Chairman of the Ford Dealers' Council (225 dealers in Upstate NY and Northern Pennsylvania, and served on the Ford Dealers'   Advertising Council Board of Directors (5 years). Over the years, he managed both domestic and   foreign dealerships in the Western New York area, and continued managing in Kissimmee, FL. Member of Newstead Fire Department, Akron, NY, for 25 years, serving as President and EMT of the year twice, President of Akron Clarence Kiwanis Club. He was a member of St Paul's Lutheran Church, Eggertsville, NY for 40 years, where he served as Chairman of the Finance Committee and Steward Committee.

A memorial service will be conducted at 4:00 PM on Saturday, March 1, 2014, at the Osceola Memory Gardens Funeral Home in St. Cloud, with the Rev. Steve Underwood officiating. The family will receive friends beginning at 2 PM until service time. Arrangements entrusted to Osceola Memory Gardens Funeral Home, 2000-13th Street, St. Cloud, FL  34769 (407-957-2511).

Visit www.osceolamemgds.com for online condolences.

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