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Nov. 14, 1949 – June 17, 2013

Mark Louis Kaiser, former principal of Holmes Elementary School in the Town of Tonawanda, died June 17 in Greenfield Health and Rehabilitation Center in Lancaster. He was 63.

A Buffalo native, Mr. Kaiser was a 1967 graduate of Williamsville Central High School. He received his bachelor’s degree from Fordham University in 1970 and went on to receive a master of science degree in education from Buffalo State College in 1977.

He began his teaching career in 1972 as a second-grade teacher at the Academy School in Williamsville.

“He was a master of elementary education, a position he loved, and was beloved by his students and their parents alike,” said Margaret Louise Kaiser, his wife.

Before taking over leadership of Holmes, Mr. Kaiser served as superintendent of buildings and grounds in the Ken-Ton School District.

An Amherst resident, he was appointed principal at Holmes in 1993. During his tenure, the school was honored numerous times for excellence.

“He really showed his leadership and organization skills while at Holmes,” Mrs. Kaiser said.

In 1997, the school was awarded a certificate of recognition from the state Department of Education. Buffalo State named Holmes a Professional Development School in 2002, citing the school for its “commitment to the professional preparation of pre-service teacher candidates.”

An avid sportsman, Mr. Kaiser was an accomplished fly fisherman and sailor.

“He loved to fish the streams around Western New York,” his brother Steven said, adding that he had traveled to Alaska to fish for graylings.

Mr. Kaiser owned and sailed boats on lakes Erie and Ontario. He was a member of the Tuscarora Yacht Club.

In addition to his wife and brother, he is survived by a son, Matthew A.; a daughter, Jessica; another brother, Robert A.; and his first wife, Sandy Beth Barton.