Wed October 23, 2013
Remembering two pioneers in their professions
Two pioneers of their respective professions died in recent days -- one a photographer, the other a sportscaster. Photographer Ettore Porreca and sportscaster Bill Mazer are being remembered for their remarkable careers.
Ettore Porreca was a well-known photographer --especially among local brides. He teamed with his classmate Ralph Winter to operate the Ettore-Winter Photography studio on Seneca Street in Buffalo from the 1950s until the early 1980s.
Last spring, WBFO News featured Porreca in a story about his bridal portraits. They were part of an exhibit at the Buffalo History Museum. He had discovered 50 unidentified brides from his portraits taken for the former Tegler's bridal shop in Buffalo. In an interview -- Porreca told us the photos were sent to the newspapers society pages.
Porreca was recognized nationally for his photography. He is also remembered for playing his trumpet in jazz bands.
Porreca is survived by his wife of 63-years, a daughter and three sons. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held Thursday at Queen of Heaven Church in West Seneca.
A pioneering Buffalo sportscaster died Wednesday. Bill Mazer, a sports anchor for WGR, Channel 2 in Buffalo when the station first signed on in 1954, died at Danbury Hospital in Connecticut. He was 92.
Mazer's sportscasting career started in Buffalo at WKBW Radio and WGR Radio. For a time, he was the play-by-play announcer for the Buffalo Bisons baseball and hockey teams.
After leaving Channel 2 in 1964, Mazer headed to New York City, where he enjoyed a stellar career.
Mazer joined WNBC-AM where he pioneered a sports talk format that is the standard today. He followed that with a long run as WNEW-TV’s sports anchor. Mazer was also part of CBS broadcast coverage of NHL and NFL games and hosted post-game shows for New York Mets radio broadcasts, including 1973 when the Mets won the National League pennant.
Mazer wrapped up a remarkable 60-year broadcasting career when he retired in 2009. He was inducted into the Buffalo Broadcasting Hall of Fame in 1999 and is also in the Buffalo Baseball Hall of Fame.