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March 10, 1934 – Aug. 23, 2014

WARSAW – Kenneth R. Bresien, a black-powder gunsmith, died Saturday in his Warsaw home under hospice care after a long illness. He was 80.

Born in Orchard Park, Mr. Bresien graduated from Orchard Park High School in 1952. He served as an auto mechanic in the Army from 1957 to 1959.

Mr. Bresien was owner of the Antique Black Powder Gunsmith shop in Warsaw. He learned the trade during high school years and pursued it as a hobby until opening his shop in 1975.

He was known for the accuracy and quality of his handmade barrels, which have been used to obtain many national records by him and others.

He was a member of the National Muzzle Loading Rifle Association and was elected to the National Muzzle Loading Hall of Fame in 2005, in recognition for his lifetime work and contributions to the field.

An avid gardener, Mr. Bresien enjoyed growing a wide variety of fruits, vegetables and flowers. Among his many hobbies were making wine and building violins.

He enjoyed Western movies and old-time country music.

His body was donated to the University at Buffalo Anatomical Gift Program.

Survivors include his wife of 51 years, the former Judith Wieder; two sons, Daniel K. and Andrew W.; and a granddaughter.

A memorial service will be scheduled.