Olean- Carl Christian (Chris) Henzel passed away on February 26,2020, after a short illness at Olean General Hospital, surrounded by his loving family. He was born in Olean on August 19, 1948 to parents, John R. Henzel and Jean Fitzpatrick Henzel.
He lived his entire life in Olean and attended Alfred and St. Bonaventure Universities. His newspaper career actually started in 1963 while still in high school, working in the advertising and circulation departments at the Olean Times Herald. After college, he went on to become Executive Vice President and Advertising Director at the family-owned paper until its sale in 1988. Chris left the Times Herald in 1990 to pursue other business opportunities but was always a true newspaper man at heart.
He is survived by his wife of 49 years, the former Patricia Carapellatti.
Having suffered the deaths of his father, mother-in-law, and father-in-law without care and support at home, Chris was instrumental in starting Hospice in the Olean area and had served on its board of directors until his passing. He realized, first-hand, how vital it was for a patient to be tended to at home and for families to be supported in their time of grief.
He was also one of the founders of the Kathi Ward Foundation for Nursing Practice and had served on that board since its inception. Kathi Ward was a friend of the family and a kind and caring nurse. Her friends and family members established the foundation in her name to assist student nurses with scholarships and practicing nurses with continuing education. More than 100 men and women have been aided by the efforts of the Foundation.
Chris also served on the board of Total Senior Care. He loved to coach young basketball and baseball players and helped coach his son Kevin’s teams when he was young. He was a loyal follower of his grandson’s Huskies basketball and baseball teams and also his travel teams in Buffalo. He was a die-hard Yankee baseball fan from childhood and a loyal Sabres and Buffalo Bills fan, although he was originally a Cleveland Browns supporter.
To Chris, his family meant everything and he doted on his grandchildren. He was an avid reader and played euchre with his friends weekly in the winter. His annual fishing trip with friends and family to Port Clinton, Ohio, was a highlight for him each year. He was very knowledgeable about basketball and loved the sport. He would often point out that he had the distinction of playing in the first game at the newly-built Reilly Center in 1966 against Bob Lanier and the SBU freshman team. Chris was a 6-foot 1 1/2-inch center for Alfred. It didn’t matter that Bob was slightly taller and more talented.
He served as Chairman of the Southwestern New York-Northwestern Pennsylvania Men’s Amateur Golf Tournament, taking over from his father in 1974. In celebration of the 50th Men’s Amateur Tournament, he conducted a weeklong OTH Junior Golf tour in 1986 that took 16 juniors from the area to WNY’s premier golf courses. Over the years, the tournament’s proceeds have supported Intandem, HomeCare & Hospice, and Penn York, along with a scholarship in his father’s name, awarded to an outstanding student golfer.
Chris also loved golf and starting in the early 70’s and through the early 90’s, he traveled to the Masters with his father John and later on with his son Kyle. Each year he would call in daily articles to the newspaper during the tournament. He was a past president of Bartlett Country Club and a past president of the New York Newspapers Advertising and Marketing Executives Association. He was also instrumental in starting the Olean Times Herald Volleyball League in the mid 80’s.
In addition to his wife, he is survived by sons Kyle (Amy) Henzel and Kevin (Tara) Henzel; five grandchildren, Dylan, Dominik, Alyxandra, Brynn, and Rhett; siblings, Dr. John (Judy) Henzel; Susan (Jamie) Koblick, and Robert (Anne) Henzel; brother-in-law, John, and nieces Kaley and Joanna and nephews, John and James: and very dear friends. He was predeceased by his parents.
Friends are invited to a celebration of his life at the Guenther Funeral Home Inc., 1303 E. State Street on Saturday, (February 29, 2020) from 10am-noon. Funeral services will follow at 1pm. Burial will be in Mt. View Cemetery, Olean.
Flowers are gratefully declined but donations may be made in his name to HomeCare & Hospice Foundation or the Kathi Ward Foundation for Nursing Practice, both which are located at 1225 West State Street, Olean, NY 14760. Online condolences can be made at www.guentherfh.com.
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