Husband, Father of 3, Beloved Member of WNY Softball Community Passes Away.

May 18, 2018

Written By

Mary Friona Celani

Life is incredibly fragile. Today, many are grieving the loss of a beloved husband, father, and member of the WNY Softball Community – after he died suddenly this week.

Friends and family of Chris Potter have started a GoFundMe page to help his family; his wife and three young daughters.  Here is what the fundraising page reads,

“As so many of you have already heard, the WNY Softball community lost a vital member on Tuesday.

He was only 49.

He leaves behind his wife, his parents, siblings, family and a multitude of friends, but most heartbreaking is that he leaves behind 3 young daughters. We want to ease the financial burden that comes with losing someone so suddenly. This memorial fund will help to establish a small nest egg for each of his daughters for their future college needs.

From Mary:

Where to start? Isn’t that always the question. Well it all started just over 25 years ago, when this guy came up and started dancing behind me. I was told “that’s just Potsie, he’s harmless….ha!!! Now, fast foward through the years, we got married and settled into the wonderful community of Lancaster, NY and were blessed with three beautiful daughters. Then our lives were turned upside down and we lost a beloved husband, father, coach, mentor and friend.

God suddenly took Chris to early at the age of 49. He leaves behind his wife Mary and daughters Madilyn, Amelia and Clara. Chris graduated from St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute in 1987 where he played soccer, basketball and of course baseball. He then attended Canisius College and later graduated from Medialle College with a Master’s Degree in Organizational Leadership. Chris worked as a Network Administrator at ECMC for almost 18years. He was the president of the Niagara Frontier Girls Softball League and WNY Sting at the time of his passing. He was not just a coach he was a presence in the WNY softball community. He and Mary coached within the Lancaster Girls Ponytail and Heat organizatiton for a number of years and then through the WNY Sting. Last fall he and Mary opened WNY Fastpitch Academy. WNY Fastpitch was Chris’ dream to give girls and teams a place to train and practice the sport that he was so passionate about. He was making his dream a reality one player at a time.

Madilyn will be graduating this June from Lancaster High School and will be attending St. Bonaventure University in the fall. She plans on majoring in biology with the goal of becoming a doctor. Amelia is currently a freshman at Lancaster and hopes to play softball in college and maybe major in physical therapy. Clara is still in elementary school and is active in both chorus and band. All three of the girls play travel softball and will think of their Panda Bear (aka: Dad) every time they take the field.

Please help to support these girls in their dreams, of making their father proud and their future. Thank you for all of your love and support.

Considering the circumstances, the need for donations is urgent. Any donation, no matter how small is greatly appreciated. If you can’t donate, all we ask is that you kindly share this.

Although shocked & saddened by our loss, we thank you with all of our hearts.”


So heartbreaking for Chris’ wife and three little girls. Please help the family if you can.  Here is a link to the GoFundMe.



About Me

Welcome to Totally Buffalo! My name is Mary Friona-Celani and I am the creator of this site! After spending 20 years in the Buffalo media, I moved on to focus on my beautiful family. Now, the time has come for a new project. I was ready for something new. Something mine.
I am born and raised in WNY and my pride runs deep. My husband, Scott and I are very happy to be raising our four daughters here.






  1. Avatar

    Condoléances to family. Worked with Chris and always enjoyed talking with him. He will be missed.

  2. Avatar

    Condoléances to family. Worked with Chris and always enjoyed talking with him. He will be missed.

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