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John C. Buchta

1927 - 2018 Obituary Condolences
John C. Buchta Obituary
John C. Buchta passed away on April 13, his 91st birthday. John is survived by his wife of 65 years, Lora Lee (Player) Buchta, and his three sons and their spouses, Todd K. Buchta (Susan Gray) of Rockford, MI, Jay Wm. (Laurie) Buchta of Lexington, MA, Mark A. Buchta (Caroline) of North Andover, MA, six grandchildren, Koerner D. Gray-Buchta, Asa J. Gray-Buchta, Emma B. Buchta, J. William Buchta, John F. Buchta, and Katrina E. Buchta. John is preceded in death by his sister, Helen (Buchta) Gustafson, brother-in-law, Clair Gustafson. He is surv- ived by his nephew, Paul (Carol) Gustafson, and niece, Jill Gustafson both of Berkeley, California. John was born in St. Paul, MN in 1927, to an academic family. After serving in the US Navy, he earned a PhD in Electrical Engineering from the University of Illinois in 1959 where he programmed projects on the ILLIAC. Weighing five tons, ILLIAC was the first digital computer entirely built and owned by a university. A 30 year career at General Electric followed in both Syracuse and Schenectady where John held engineering and managerial positions. John worked in sonar res- earch and travelled to both Egypt and Taiwan, consulting on control systems for large scale turbines in power plants. After his first retirement, John had a very enjoyable career as an investigator for electrical fires and accidents with Jim Rodems in Syracuse. In 2006, after living in Liverpool, NY for over 50 years, John and Lora Lee moved to Bro- okhaven at Lexington, in Lexington, MA. John was an avid reader, especially of espionage thrillers and historical accounts. He loved photography and documented family trips and events for all in this way. John supported his childrens athletic interests as one of the more technically-inclined registrars in 1960s- era youth hockey, notably automating Midstate (NY) Youth Hockey Association registration process by borrowing weekend time on GEs mainframe. In retirement, John enjoyed building a family cottage near rural Lansdowne in Southern Ontario, being a gentleman farmer attempting to grow blueberry and even kiwi, and to the delight of his grandchildren, building clever contraptions for them to use such as chipmunk traps (catch and release; you get repeat customers that way). John continued to merge his enjoyment of grandchildren and hard- ware projects by winning the Pinewood Derby southeast division at Brookhaven with his grandson, Will, four years consecutively. In his memory, contributions (no flowers please) may be made to the Brookhaven Employees Scholarship Fund, 1010 Waltham St., Lexington, MA 02421. A private graveside service will take place at Westview Cemetery in Lexington.
Published in The Lexington Minuteman from Apr. 15 to Apr. 26, 2018
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