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June 9, 1926 – April 14, 2013

Elena A. Horwitz of the Town of Tonawanda, a retired shoe store manager, died Sunday in Buffalo General Medical Center. She was 86.

Born Elena A. Grimaldi in Buffalo, she was a 1944 graduate of Lafayette High School.

She started as an office clerk for Liberty Shoes at the company warehouse on Broadway until 1949, when she became a full-time mother and homemaker.

She returned to Liberty Shoes in 1966 as a sales clerk at its Main Street store in the City of Tonawanda.

In 1978, her husband, Solomon, who also managed a branch of Liberty Shoes, suffered a stroke, requiring Mrs. Horwitz to juggle being a career woman, homemaker and caregiver. Her husband of 47 years died in 1994.

Mrs. Horwitz retired in 1989 as store manager of Liberty Shoes’ Mid-City Plaza location on Payne Avenue in North Tonawanda.

During her retirement years, Mrs. Horwitz became active with Tonawanda Seniors Choral Group, which entertained at Veterans Affairs Medical Center and local retirement homes. She also was a member of the Red Hat Society and enjoyed line dancing with a senior citizens group.

Mrs. Horwitz was a member of Mount Carmel Lodge of Buffalo for more than 40 years and was the first woman elected to its previously all-male board of directors. She also was instrumental in organizing a monthly alumni luncheon group of her 1944 Lafayette High School graduating class.

She is survived by two sons, Sheldon and Loren L.; and a brother, Dr. John Grimaldi.

Services will be at 10 a.m. Thursday in Lombardo Funeral Home, 885 Niagara Falls Blvd., Amherst.