N I A G A R A     G A Z E T T E   February 20, 2008

GI man dies from snowboarding injury

Friends remember chef’s loving spirit, creative cooking.

Staff Reports
Niagara Gazette

A Grand Island man was fatally injured on the slopes Sunday night at Holiday Valley. Leon D. Carr, 29, was pronounced dead Tuesday evening at Erie County Medical Center.

The accident occurred about 8 p.m. when Carr was snowboarding off Cindy’s Run at the ski resort in Ellicottville, said Bonnie Koshchir, vice president of operations at Holiday Valley. She said Carr apparently lost control and crashed into a tree, suffering a severe head injury. He was wearing a helmet at the time of the accident.

Carr was a chef at the Village Inn Restaurant on Ferry Road, a restaurant owned by his uncle, Mike Carr.

Leon Carr was known by customers and staff not only for his creative and delicious soups — his specialty — but also for his gentle and upbeat disposition.

“He never held a grudge,” said co-worker Sherri Robinson-Cooney. “He was very easy going. He was the best. ... He’s really going to be missed.”

Carr had worked full time at the restaurant for about five years. Before that, he had done landscaping and had worked as a union tile setter.

The family is holding visiting hours today from 7 to 9 p.m. at Trinity United Methodist Church on Whitehaven Road. Burial services will take place at 2 p.m. Friday at Steamburg Cemetery in the Southern Tier, where prayers from the Baha’i faith will be said. A talking circle and celebration of Carr’s life will begin at 11 a.m. Saturday at Trinity. Friends and family are welcome.

A temporary Web site has been set up at MySpace.com/in memory of Leon Carr. Friends also are organizing a benefit to help the family with medical expenses.