First Responders 04

Michael S. Semrau

March 28, 1945 ~ August 23, 2021 (age 76)


Michael S. Semrau, 76, of Black River, NY, passed away August 23, 2021 at Samaritan Medical Center following a long illness.

Born March 28, 1945 in Franklin, Pennsylvania, son of Frank & Geraldine (Tibbens) Semrau, he graduated from Franklin High School in 1963 and then entered the US Air Force.  While stationed at Fort Drum, he met Carol L. Ambrose and they were wed on July 8, 1967.   After being honorably discharged from his military service, they chose to remain in Black River to raise their family.

He started his career with the phone company as a lineman and retired from Verizon in Jan of 2000, as a central switch operator. 

He was a member of the Black River Fire Dept for 54 years, a member of the Black River American Legion and Black River VFW.  He also served on the Black River Village Planning Board and Zoning Board of Appeals.   He was a Vietnam War Veteran.  He often could be found puttering in his garage or working in his woodshop. He enjoyed NASCAR and watching the NY Yankees. Mike was Citizen of Year in Black River in 2008.

Among his survivors are his wife of 54 years, Carol Semrau a resident at Samaritan Summit Village, 3 children Amy (Glenn) Brownell, Mike Semrau II & Jeff  Semrauall of Black River; a grandson, Levi Brownell, Great Bend, his sister Patricia Holloway, Middleboro Mass, his brother Christopher Semrau, Franklin, PA, and several nieces, nephews, and his God Daughter, Gretchen Ponte. of Middleboro, Mass.  

Arrangements are with the Bruce Funeral Home, Black River.

Per his wishes there will be no services. There will be a private burial for family. A Celebration of Life will be held for friends and family on Saturday, September 4th at noon at the Black River American Legion.

Donations can be made to the Black River Fire Dept.  PO Box 95 Black River, NY 13612

Family would like to express their heartfelt thanks to all the staff on 5Pratt at Samaritan Medical Center for the compassion & care shown to our father during the past year.

Online condolences may be made at

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Michael S. Semrau, please visit our floral store.


Celebration of Life
September 4, 2021

12:00 PM
Black River American Legion
113 E Dexter Road
Black River, NY 13612

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