Old man speaking into a microphone
William Danuloff receives the Richland County Outstanding Senior Citizen Award during Wednesday's ceremony at the Ohio District 5 Area Agency on Aging.

MANSFIELD — William “Bill” Danuloff has a hard time saying no when someone asks for help.

For him, saying yes whenever you can is simply the right thing to do.

“It’s been my belief, not just as a senior citizen, but when I was younger, that we should always do what we can to help other people,” said Danuloff, who retired as vice president and chief information officer after 40 years at Gorman-Rupp.

“Whenever you’re asked to do something, someone must value your ability. Because of that, I think we should almost never say ‘no.’ My wife will probably attest that I have a hard time saying no.”

Danuloff was one of nine active community members to receive an Outstanding Senior Citizen award Wednesday from the Ohio District 5 Area Agency on Aging (AAA5).

THe ceremony took place at the AAA5’s Hawkins Center on Park Avenue West, a facility Danuloff himself helped create.

“When we established the (Ohio District 5 Area Agency on Aging) Foundation and we were gifted this building, I knew I needed Bill to be involved,” said Duanna Patton, CEO of AAA5.

Danuloff was a member of the foundation board for eight years. As building committee chairman, he worked with construction firms and contractors to make sure the AAA5’s vision for the building became a reality.

Today, the deserted Hawkins Corner grocery store is a modern facility with offices, meetings rooms and a health clinic.

Danuloff and his wife are active members of Mansfield St. Peter’s Catholic Church. Over the past 50 years, they’ve helped during academic booster fundraisers and Thanksgiving dinner celebrations.

“We still make potato salad and egg salad for the Easter bake sale,” he said. “We enjoy doing it.”

Danuloff has served on the St. Peter’s School board. He’s currently part of a crew undergoing construction work in the building.

He also received the Area Agency on Aging’s Annual Meeting Award of Excellence in 2013.

Richland County Commissioner Darrell Banks presented Danuloff with a proclamation affirming his legacy as a civic-minded, selfless and a dynamic leader.

Danuloff said he appreciates the honor, but doesn’t feel his contributions make him outstanding.

“I think it’s just what you should do,” he said. “If I can do something for somebody, I’m going to do it.”

Third Street Family Health Services receives community service award

Third Street Family Health Services received the AAA5’s community service award. CEO Peggy Anderson accepted the award and congratulated all the senior citizen honorees.

“It’s folks like you that start organizations like Third Street,” she said. “About 30 years ago that were community members that realized there was a gap in health care. It’s folks like you that make the community better and we couldn’t do this if it weren’t for you.”

Peggy Anderson, CEO of Third Street Family Health Services, accepts an award from the Area Agency on Aging.

“It’s an honor to be recognized for the service that the whole 210 member team does every day to serve the community.”

Anderson also thanked the AAA5 for their partnership. Third Street staffs and operates the Hawkins Medical Center, which is located inside the agency’s Park Avenue West building.

“Being a partner organization, we don’t do it alone,” Anderson said.

Sherry Williams receives Knox County award

Sherry Williams said she was honored and surprised to receive the award — she almost deleted the notification email because she thought it was spam.

Williams was president and CEO of Prevent Blindness Ohio for more than 35 years. During that time, she worked with the Ohio Department of Aging to form the Ohio’s Aging Eye Public Private Partnership (OAEPPP). The group pursues advocacy work, educates the public, offers a fellowship award for young vision researchers, provides adult vision screening training and provides eyeglasses to seniors who can’t afford them.

Sherry Williams speaks during Wednesday’s ceremony.

“We did this in response to the fact that right now, 2.5 million Ohioans over the age of 60 have a sight threatening vision problem whether it be glaucoma, cataract age related macular degeneration or diabetic retinopathy,” Williams said.

Although retired, Williams continues to advocate on behalf of Prevent Blindness. She is also is a member of the Mental Health and Recovery Board for Licking and Knox Counties and serves as a volunteer mentor for ten non-profit charitable organizations in Knox County.

Williams said she was grateful for the chance to work on behalf of seniors.

“The aging population in Ohio makes up one quarter of the entire population,” she said. “It is a force to be reckoned with and important to consider in all policies and programs.”

Other honorees hailed from across north central Ohio

The AAA5 presents nine awards each year, recognizing one person or couple from each county in its service area.

The agency selected award winners based on the impact of their contributions and accomplishments within the community made after age 60.

Bob “Buck” Frazier of Ashland County. Frazier is a Vietnam veteran and active member of Christ Community Evangelical Free Church. Frazier has been the lead laborer for his church’s remodeling project and plays bass guitar for the worship band. Frazier is also part of the “helping hands” ministry, which provides home repairs for senior citizens who can’t afford them. He also helps out his neighbors by mowing lawns.

“We joke around he’s got his own lawn service, but he doesn’t charge anything,” said Luke Kelley, pastor of Christ Community and Frazier’s next-door neighbor. “He just helps out people that need it.”

Dennis and Alice Teynor of Crawford County. Dennis is a Navy veteran and finance officer for the American Legion Post 181. Alice is a member of the American Legion Auxiliary and retired Crawford County Board of Elections worker. Dennis and Alice remain active in their community, often barbecuing chicken or grilling hotdogs for community fundraisers.

The Teynors said they were humbled to receive the award.

“The thing that bothers me about this is, I don’t consider myself old,” Dennis said. “I don’t want to slow down. I want to keep going as long as the good Lord will let me.”

Joyce Ditz of Huron County, founder of Love Your Neighbor Norwalk, which brings residents together to talk about problems in their community and brainstorm solutions. Ditz became a deacon at her church, First Presbyterian, at the age of 83.

Fred & Margie Saull of Marion County. Both are retired educators who remain active in their community. Margie is the organizer of Honor Flight at Home, which recognizes veterans who cannot physically travel to Washington D.C. for an Honor Flight trip.

Raymond Dietz of Morrow County. Dietz was honored posthumously for his service to the community and its veterans. Dietz was involved in local fire services for more than 40 years. He was chief for the Braceville Fire Department for more than 20 years. Dietz was a member of the American Legion Post 710, where he served as post commander for 10 years. He was also on the board of Seniors on Center in Mount Gilead.

Leonard Skonecki of Seneca County. Skonecki was a longtime local news reporter in Fostoria, where he wrote positive human interest stories and profiles on local veterans. Skonecki volunteers with his local historical society, hosts a book club and places American flags at the graves of local veterans every May.

Marilyn Baughman of Wyandot County, who attend the event in a sash and tiara. Baughman is a social butterfly and active member of her local senior center. She has volunteered for a variety of organizations in her community, including the local board of elections. Baughman has volunteered at her local hospital since 2007.

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Staff reporter at Richland Source since 2019. I focus on education, housing and features. Clear Fork alumna. Always looking for a chance to practice my Spanish. Got a tip? Email me at katie@richlandsource.com.