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July 7, 1927 – Jan. 17, 2013

Betty A. Krafft, a Buffalo native and real estate broker, died Thursday in Wilmington, N.C., after a short illness. She was 85.

The former Betty Szymanski was born in Buffalo. She was a 1944 graduate of Kensington High School and attended Millard Fillmore College and Bryant & Stratton.

Mrs. Krafft was a top sales producer working as a residential real estate broker for Sherlock Holmes Realty, which became one of the first ReMax franchises in 1987, operating as ReMax Sherlock Holmes.

Mrs. Krafft was an avid swimmer, co-captain of her school’s synchronized swim team, and loved the beaches of Sanibel Island and Hawaii. She mixed her love of swimming and real estate when she bought a listing from her client, Walter Bird, the former president of Birdair Inc., who developed air-supported structures, now used for dome stadiums. Bird’s famous indoor pool, featured in 1957 Life magazine, showing his family swimming inside in the Buffalo winter, became the family pool where she taught her grandchildren to swim.

She also enjoyed bridge and belonged to many different bridge clubs in the Amherst area.

Mrs. Krafft was a member of the Millard Fillmore Suburban Woman’s Board and co-chairwoman of the Parent’s Board at Rosary Hill College. She enjoyed painting, and she was a seamstress who made many of her daughters’ outfits when they were young.

Her husband of 56 years, Karl A. Krafft Sr., died in 2003, and afterward she moved to Wilmington, N.C., to be closer to one of her daughters, Paula Krafft Bachman, who survives her. Other survivors include a son, Karl A. Jr.; two other daughters, Kristina K. Sheehan and Susan K. Laine; and a sister, Ruth Hess.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered today in North Carolina.