May 28, 2018 Ian Duke

Last Alarm – Richie Sikora

July 19, 1944 – May 10, 2018

What can I say about a man that was larger than life? To say we were all shocked when we learned of the sudden passing of GTMAA member Richie Sikora on Thursday May 10th is a huge understatement. It is hard to think of a club event that Richie wasn’t at, he would make the drive up from Buffalo without a second thought. Be it for the Bruce Beauchamp dinner, Christmas get together, Easter or Canada Day parades or June BBQ, not to mention the trips he and his wife Sandie made just to visit with their friends. No matter where you went within the fire service once they heard you had a connection to the Buffalo area you always got “Do you know this guy named Richie Sikora?”

Richie was an avid collector of anything fire related and a regular vendor at the OFBA flea market. For all those that have been to his house or seen pictures of his firematic collection, you were in awe. For those that haven’t, it has taken over the family dining room turning it into the Sikora museum and was two to three shelving units deep all around the room. Once Richie knew that you were interested in something it would be on his radar. It may take a month, a year or more but once Richie found what you were looking for, there would be a call or email telling you just what he found. Richie could never pass by a garage sale, no matter where you were, for fear he may miss a treasure waiting for him.

Another of his loves was photography, to say he had a thousand pictures would be an enormous understatement. Over the years he has amassed quite the collection of prints whether it was of a Super Pumper, sticks up working, a canteen call, pumpers, garbage truck or pelican sweepers, plus family events or food. Once Richie got on to Facebook, you know it was a slow day in Buffalo when your whole news feed was full of pictures from back in the day– New York, New Jersey, Buffalo, or Toronto.

Richie’s greatest love was his family. He is survived by his amazing wife Sandie and their five children: Karen, Kim, Kathi Jo, Kristen and Ken as well as their spouses. They shared their love with ten grandchildren and recently welcomed their first great grandchild.

Richie will truly be missed by everyone who got the privilege to know and love him. May he rest in peace.

Originally published in the May 2018 edition of the Trumpet Newsletter.
Reprinted with permission.