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Wayne Wagner, Penn Yan leader, remembered for service to community

Wayne Wagner was remembered by friends, family, and colleagues as a force for good.

He was raised in Steuben County, and called Penn Yan his home for most of his life. He passed away at the age of 79 on January 31.

Wagner was the president of The Birkett Mills, a charter member of the Penn Yan Lions Club, and served on the Board of Trustees at Keuka College for nearly 20 years. He was also a highly-respected Section V basketball referee for more than two-and-a-half decades.

“Wayne was a big supporter of the community and a big supporter of our employees,” said Jeff Gifford, who worked with Wagner for nearly 30 years and succeeded him as president of The Birkett Mills in 2007. “He always believed our employees made us what we are. Wayne understood that as well as anyone.”

RELATED: Inside the life of Wagner, who put community first (Finger Lakes Times)