James Arthur “Jim” Muck


Arthur “Jim” Muck, 74, of

Washington Avenue,

Dunkirk, formerly of

Forestville, died peacefully

in his Dunkirk home Satur-

day, Jan. 12, after waging a

year-and-a-half battle

against esophageal cancer.

He was born in Buffalo, on

April 9, 1938, the son of

the late Norman C. and

Dorothy (Gassman) Muck.

Mr. Muck moved to

Forestville as a young boy

and spent much of his life

there, graduating from

Forestville Central School

in 1955. He survived polio

as a child and was told he

would never walk again.

But he defied the odds and

fully recovered from the

disease, earning 10 varsity

letters by the time he gra-

duated from high school.

Mr. Muck excelled in

baseball, basketball, foot-

ball and track & field and

he kept his passion for

sports alive as an adult

through softball, bowling

and the occasional game of

golf. He was a member of

the Forestville & James-

town Old Timers Baseball

organizations and was

elected to the Western New

York Softball Hall of Fame

in 1991, with a lifetime

pitching record of 347

wins, including 13

no-hitters and 3 perfect

games. He played on

several teams, including

Aldrich Dairy, First Ward

Falcons, Ralston Purina

and Kosciuszko Club. Mr.

Muck also successfully

coached the Forestville

Twins Little League Team,

for which his sons Steve

and “Chip” played, to two

back to back championship


He was an encyclopedia

of sports information and

followed many teams

throughout his life, with his

all-time favorites the Pitts-

burgh Steelers and the Tex-

as Christian University

Horned Frogs. As much as

he enjoyed professional

and college sports, and

more recently, fantasy

sports leagues, he loved

most his time on the pitch-

ing mound and could

recount details of games

played decades earlier right

up until his death.

He worked as a driver for

Dunkirk Fredonia Meals on

Wheels, Dunkirk, up until

last fall, where he enjoyed

the camaraderie of the staff

and loved visiting his

clients throughout Chau-

tauqua County, whether at

their homes or at the Forest-

ville Fire Hall. For many

years, he and his trademark

baseball cap could be seen

sitting in a certain corner of

Tim Hortons on Route 60

with his coffee club, a

select group of retirees who

solved the world’s prob-

lems and discussed sports

every morning for many

years. Mr. Muck also

worked as a vehicle opera-

tor for more than 20 years

with ConRail and was a

part-time driver for the

former Tri County News for

nearly a decade.

He was an avid reader

and expert extraordinaire at

his daily crossword puzzle

and Jumbo puzzle. Mr.

Muck was a loyal friend

and a champion of the un-

derdog, willing to give the

shirt off his back or his last

dollar to friends who’d fal-

len on hard times. He’ll be

remembered by his family

and friends as a champion

athlete with a big heart who

kept a low profile and did

not seek out attention. Mr.

Muck was a humble man

with a love for animals and

a generous nature, and he?ll

be deeply missed.

Survivors include two

daughters: Patti (Denny

Angelle) Muck, of Rich-

mond, Texas, and Traci

Koch, of Dunkirk; two

sons: Steve (Sandy) Muck,

of Forestville, and Nelson

“Chip” (Michelle) Muck,

of Cedar Park, Texas; a

stepdaughter, Jennifer

Salerno; a stepson, Eric

Botticello; a brother, Al

(Patty) Muck, of Silver

Creek; a sister, Sue (Gerald)

Olsen, of Forestville; a half

brother, Vern West, of Ro-

chester; the mother of his

first three children. Gerry

Bartlett of Richmond, Tex-

as; and second wife, Kathy

Berek, of Silver Creek.

Also surviving are 11

grandchildren, five great-

-grandchildren and several

nieces and nephews.

Besides his parents he

was predeceased by his

stepmother Agnes (Kings-

ley) Muck and by his wife

Mary “Debbie” (Kondolf)

Muck, who died in 2004.

Friends are welcome to

call at the Riles & Woolley

Funeral Home, 39 Main St.,

Forestville, on Tuesday

from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m.,

where Funeral Services will

be held Wednesday morn-

ing, at 11 with the Rev.

James D. Hankey, pastor of

Forestville United Metho-

dist Church, officiating.

Interment will follow in St.

Mary’s Cemetery, Dunkirk.

The family suggests

memorial donations may be

made to the Dunkirk

Fredonia Meals on Wheels,

314 Central Ave., Dunkirk,

NY 14048. To post con-

dolences go to