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In Memoriam: Jim Buhrmaster, September 30, 1945 – July 16, 2019

It is with the heaviest of hearts that we inform you of the passing of our dear friend Jim Buhrmaster, 73, on Tuesday, July 16.

Jim Buhrmaster
Jim Buhrmaster

“Jim was known to all as one of the industry’s staunchest advocates, but more than that, he was a constant source of strength and support to me and many others in the association. He was not just a leader, but a friend and mentor. His witty sense of humor, fun-loving smile and presence will be forever missed,” ESEA Executive Director Kris DeLair stated.

“To say Jim was an extraordinary man is an understatement,” DeLair continued. “He will be remembered for his perseverance, commitment, dedication, and most importantly, the great love he had for his family, friends, community and business – and in that order. Jim was a true gentleman. We have lost one of the greats! Please keep the Buhrmaster family in your thoughts and prayers during this very difficult time.”

So that you may have a deeper understanding of how special Jim was, we are sharing the notice that was published in The Daily Gazette on Thursday, July 18.

James Roy Buhrmaster, 73, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, July 16, 2019 at home surrounded by his family.

Born on September 30, 1945 in Schenectady, NY, Jim was the son of the late Kenneth E. and Flower Sheldon Buhrmaster. He was a lifelong resident of Scotia and was a 1963 graduate of Scotia-Glenville High School. He is a proud alumnus of Syracuse University, receiving his Bachelor of Business Administration in 1968. While at Syracuse, he was a member of the Kappa Sigma fraternity and the Hendricks Chapel Choir.

Jim met the love of his life, Sandra Coons Buhrmaster, in 1967. They were married on August 4, 1968 at Zion Lutheran Church in Schenectady, NY and celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary last summer. Jim was president and co-owner of J.H. Buhrmaster Company Incorporated for over 45 years. He was a dignified public servant as a member of the Schenectady County Legislature since 2004, former Chairman of the Schenectady County Republican Committee, and former Chairman of the Scotia-Glenville Republican Party. Jim loved his communities and was an avid supporter and advocate for everything and everyone within them.

Throughout his life, Jim enthusiastically volunteered his time and energy to numerous organizations and associations. Formerly, he served as Chairman of Petroleum Marketers Association of America (PMAA), Empire State Petroleum Association (ESPA), and Schenectady County Chamber of Commerce. He was past President of Oil Heat Institute of Eastern New York (OHI), Scotia Rotary Club, Twin Rivers Boy Scouts Council, and Rubacks Grove Campers Association. Jim was a board member of The Foundation for Ellis Medicine, Schenectady Museum, Freedom Park Foundation, Schenectady Military Affairs Council (SMAC), Scotia-Glenville Community Drug and Alcohol Task Force, Scotia-Glenville American Field Service, New York State Superfund Management, New York State Diesel Tax Advisory Commission, and New York State Department of Social Services HEAP Block Grant Advisory Committee. Jim was also a former Commodore of the Galway Lake Sailing Club and a member of the Mohawk Valley Chorus. Jim enjoyed sailing, cheering on his beloved Syracuse Orange as a season ticket holder, and spending time with his family at home in Scotia and at Galway Lake.

Above all, Jim cherished supporting his wife, children, and grandchildren in all of their activities and milestone events. Jim is survived by his beloved wife and sons, Kenneth C. (Kathleen), Neil E. (Tina), Christopher J. (Nicole), and Kevin R. (Alissa); and grandchildren, Trevor (Sarah) Burton, Tylyn Burton, Preston, Reagan, Arden Mae, Gage, George, Christopher Jr., Phoebe, and Isabel Buhrmaster. He is also survived by his brother, Louis H. (Judith) Buhrmaster; sisters, Elisabeth (Dennis) Madden and Lois (Will) Seyse; brother-in-law, Ronald C. Coons (Lillian Zanella); and many cherished nieces and nephews.

A memorial service honoring Jim’s life was held on Saturday, July 20, 2019 at 1 p.m. at Zion Lutheran Church, 153 Nott Terrace, Schenectady, NY. The family would like to extend their deep appreciation to the caring and dedicated staff at The Johns Hopkins Hospital and Angel MedFlight Worldwide Air Ambulance.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Jim’s memory to The Foundation for Ellis Medicine, 1101 Nott Street, Schenectady, NY 12308; or The Community Hospice Foundation, 310 S. Manning Boulevard, Albany, NY 12208. Arrangements by Bekkering-Ellis Funeral Home, 1 Mohawk Ave, Scotia, NY.

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