People

David Downing, Towne Auto Group, 1964 — 2018

Martin Romjue
Posted on April 11, 2018
David Downing was an avid hockey player and fan. Hockey stats here (photos courtesy of Downing family/Towne Auto)
David Downing was an avid hockey player and fan. Hockey stats here (photos courtesy of Downing family/Towne Auto)

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — Longtime livery vehicle dealer David Bastian credits his boss, David Downing, the CFO of Towne Automotive Group, for supporting him during one of the most difficult periods in his career.

Bastian was working for another dealership when it closed in August 2007. For about four months, the 15-year Lincoln/Mercury sales manager was looking for another vehicle sales job.

“I was stressed out about kids, my family, my mortgage, and he was there for me,” Bastian recalled. “David and his brother gave me the opportunity to come and bring business here to Towne Automotive and run with the ball,” said Bastian, who for the last 11 years has run the Towne Livery division that has become a leading supplier of luxury fleet vehicles to operations nationwide.

“I credit much to Mr. Downing; the guidance and leadership he gave me helped us get to where we are, and helped me be a better business person. He was the guy I had to report to and he was a very supportive boss.”

Brothers Frank Downing Jr. (President) and David Downing (CFO/vice president) on the golf course.
Brothers Frank Downing Jr. (President) and David Downing (CFO/vice president) on the golf course.
Bastian shared his memories of David Downing this week following his death on Sunday, April 8 after a long and recurrent battle with cancer. He was 53.

Downing and his brother, President Frank Downing Jr., ran the Towne Automotive Group that now sells 17 vehicle brands across multiple dealerships. The dealership was founded in 1969 by their father, Frank Downing Sr., who died in 2014.

“David was one of those people who did things for others behind the scenes, and they had no idea he was doing that for them,” Bastian told LCT.

Frank Downing Jr. (L) and David Downing (R) with their father, Frank Downing Sr., celebrating Towne Auto's 40th anniversary in 2009.
Frank Downing Jr. (L) and David Downing (R) with their father, Frank Downing Sr., celebrating Towne Auto's 40th anniversary in 2009.
An obituary and biographical information on David Downing is available here in The Buffalo News.

Amigone Funeral Home obituary and comments page here

A funeral mass for Downing will be held Friday, April 13 at 10:30 a.m. at St. Michael Church in downtown Buffalo.

After the mass, the Downing family will host a brunch at the Buffalo Club.

Related Topics: David Bastian, dealerships, deaths, family businesses, memorial, New York operators, Towne Livery

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