BINGHAMTON (WBNG) — The Broome County Community mourned the death of businessman George Akel Tuesday.
His funeral service was held at Binghamton’s Trinity Memorial Church at 10 a.m. Church leaders say more than 500 people were in attendance and it was one of the largest funerals they’ve ever had.
Akel’s long-time childhood friend Martin Hanafin was among those at the service. “He was just a giver. Some people are takers, George Akel was a giver,” said Hanafin.
The businessman helped his family run Giant Markets until they were sold to Weis. Akel was also known for his involvement in many community groups and charities.
Members of the church community said he always put his community first.
“I can tell you that George Akel was one of the finest men I’ve ever known,” said Phyllis Amenda.
Akel passed away on Wednesday after a two year battle with Cancer. He was 84-years-old.