Weekly Feature

2012-06-14 / Obituaries

Carl F. Burgwardt, founder, Pedaling History Bicycle Museum

Burgwardt Burgwardt Carl F. Burgwardt, 80, of Orchard Park, died Sunday, May 13, 2012.

Mr. Burgwardt was born in Hamburg and graduated from Hamburg High School. While attending high school, he began working for his father’s company, Community Steel Corp., sweeping floors among other tasks.

Following high school, Mr. Burgwardt attended the University at Buffalo and University of Rochester, Eastman School of Music.

He trained in opera, and went on to be a soloist in many Western New York churches and choir groups, as well as becoming a multiyear tenor finalist for the WBEN Voices of Tomorrow contest.

Mr. Burgwardt continued to work for Community Steel until 1998 — having served as secretary, treasurer, president and chairman of the board — when it was taken over by his daughter.

Following his retirement, he and his wife, Clarice, became interested in bicycling history when they purchased the parts to an old, original, high-wheel bicycle.

After collecting a large array of bicycles and memorabilia, they began displaying the items to a few people and eventually the couple opened the Pedaling History Bicycle Museum, according to his daughter, Sally Lauck.

Mr. Burgwardt became an authority on the topic, speaking internationally at numerous conferences and becoming a member of The Wheelmen.

“He developed such a passion to teach the history and to bring it to life,” said Lauck.

Mr. Burgwardt is survived by his wife, Clarice Ruth Holes Burgwardt; one son, David Bruce; two daughters, Sally Burgwardt Lauck and Melinda Burgwardt Gibson; two brothers, Milford Roy and Paul G.; two grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.

He was preceded in death by one daughter, Tamra Jo Burgwardt.

The family will be present from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, June 15, at F.E. Brown Sons Funeral Home, 6575 East Quaker St.

A memorial celebration will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, June 16, at Orchard Park Presbyterian Church, 4369 South Buffalo Road.

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