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April 29, 1933 – July 10, 2014

Melvin Richard Rathbun, of East Aurora, died Thursday in Father Baker Manor, Orchard Park, after a long illness. He was 81.

Born in Nunda, Mr. Rathbun graduated from Nunda Central High School in 1949.

He owned and operated R&R Interiors in West Falls.

Active in the Aurora Players Theatre, he was known for his set decoration and design and elaborate hat creations.

He and his wife of 34 years, the former Roberta Doubrough, met through their association with the Aurora Players.

She was a member of the Aurora Players, having both acted in and directed several of its productions, serving also as chief costume designer.

The couple enjoyed traveling to places including Europe, Australia and Thailand. She died in 2012.

Mr. Rathbun was a member and host in the Westminster Presbyterian Church Fireside Group, also known as “The Marriage Bureau.”

He was an avid gardener and took pride in his parklike gardens at home.

Survivors include a stepson, Derek Tully; a stepdaughter, Deborah Tully; a brother, Robert H.; and two grandchildren.

A service will be at 1 p.m. next Tuesday in Kenneth Howe Funeral Home, 64 Maple St., East Aurora.