William Haeseler III passed away on Friday, October 25th at the age of 83. Known as Buck to his friends, he was born in North Tonawanda, NY and attended both South Kent Boarding School in Connecticut and North Tonawanda High School. He went on to major in English and History at Valparaiso University and earned a Masters Degree in Public Relations from Boston University.
Buck began working in Certified Finance in North Tonawanda with his father, William Haeseler, Jr. and ran the business. He married Gloria Barth from Buffalo, NY in 1960. He followed his passion for history, geography and travel and in 1961 by leading tour groups all over the world from the Buffalo area, which became a regular hobby. Turning his travel hobby into a business, he established Certified Travel, which he ran for 30 years, and led tours all over the world with his wife, Gloria. They led groups from Buffalo to remote destinations such as Antarctica, Easter Island, New Guinea and Timbuktu. All told, Buck traveled to over 150 countries on all seven continents and documented his life's work and experiences in his book "My Whole Life was a Vacation", published in 2002.
Buck was known in the Buffalo area from his weekly column "Globe Trotting" in the Courier Express and the Bee Newspapers for more than 20 years, his regular travel talks to include the Fairchild lecture series at the Buffalo Museum of Science and his regular "travel expert" appearances on AM Buffalo. He accomplished his goal to climb the Matterhorn in 1970 in his favorite destination, Switzerland. In 1991, Buck won the National Geographic geography contest winning around-the-world vacations for himself and his wife, Gloria. And, in 1995, he won Travel Agent of the Year from the American Society of Travel Agents. He was a former President of the Rotary Club of the Tonawandas. He served as an elder in his church, St. Matthew Lutheran, in North Tonawanda.
Buck is survived by his loving wife, Gloria (nee Barth). Father of Susan Haeseler, Mark (Bridget), Karen (Barry) Bebart and Dr. Lisa Haeseler. Grandfather of Nora, Austin, Erik, and Ava. Brother of Audrey (Hubert) Velepec of Fairport. Uncle of several nieces and nephews.
Friends may call at the Fretthold Funeral Home, Inc., 1241 Oliver St. at Ward Rd. in North Tonawanda on Monday from 7-9 PM and Tuesday from 2-4 PM and 7-9 PM. Funeral services will be held on Wednesday at 10:30 AM from St. Matthew Lutheran Church, 875 Eggert Dr. in North Tonawanda. The Rev. Gregory J. P. Barth will officiate. Interment in St. Mark Lutheran Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to St. Matthew Church.
Visit frettholdfuneralhome.com for guest register.