John Kennedy Crawford County Senior Citizen of the Year

From left, Crawford County Commissioner Mo Ressallat, Crawford County Commissioner Jenny Vermillion, Crawford County Senior Citizen of the Year John Kennedy, and Crawford County Commissioner Doug Weisenauer.

ONTARIO – The Ohio District 5 Area Agency on Aging Inc. has announced John Kennedy has been selected as the 2018 Outstanding Senior Citizen for Crawford County. He and eight other recipients were honored on Thursday, Aug. 23 at a ceremony hosted at Hawkins Corner.

Kennedy was nominated by Cassie Herschler of the Crawford County Council on Aging. In his nomination, she shared that he graduated from Bucyrus High School in 1958 and attended Heidelberg College as a music major. He was employed at Farmers Citizens Bank of Bucyrus and later First Federal Savings & Loan, where he served as President and CEO for 28 years.

Kennedy has also been a member of the Bucyrus Kiwanis Club since 1963, where he served as President, Treasurer, and two terms as Lt. Governor. He is also a member of the Crawford County Development Board, the Crawford County Concert Association, the Crawford County Community Improvement Corp. and the John Q. Shunk Association.

In 1956, he organized the John Kennedy Orchestra with the support of his father. He is a member of the Bucyrus City Band, the New Washington Village Band, and organized the Concert in Aumiler Park starting in 1980.

Kennedy was Citizen of the Year in 2001 and he was inducted into the Bucyrus High School Hall of Fame in 2018.

“Mr. Kennedy has been a fixture in our community for, as you can tell, a long time,” said Crawford County Commissioner Jenny Vermillion during the ceremony. She shared about the relationship between Kennedy and her grandfather. “Had it not been for that, I would not have been exposed to such great music.”

She was joined by Crawford County Commissioner Mo Ressallat, who thanked Kennedy for his contributions to the community.

Each year the Area Agency on Aging honors senior citizens who are making a difference in their communities and present a positive image of aging.

There is one award recipient for each county in the Agency’s service area (Ashland, Crawford, Huron, Knox, Marion, Morrow, Richland, Seneca, and Wyandot.)

Awardees must first be nominated by an individual or organization involved with seniors. They are then selected by the Agency based on the impact of their contributions and accomplishments within the community made after reaching age 60.

Additionally, the following residents of Crawford County received the 2018 Safe Driver Award at the ceremony: Mike Browning, Sam Eichhorn, Richard Gearhart, Ron Higbie, Don Neumann, Dave Reffey, Kevin Ruth, Chuck Siefert, Darrel Smith, and Mike Tighe.

The Ohio District 5 Area Agency on Aging, Inc., located at 2131 Park Avenue West in Ontario, provides leadership, collaboration, coordination and services to older adults, people with disabilities, their caregivers & resource networks that support individual choice, independence and dignity.

CRAWFORD COUNTY

NOMINEE: John Kennedy

NOMINATED BY: Cassie Herschler, Crawford County Council on Aging

BACKGROUND & CONTRIBUTIONS:

John was born to Paul and Virginia Kennedy on Oct. 23, 1940. He graduated from Bucyrus High School in 1958 and attended Heidelberg College as a music major. John married Joyce Sours on June 18, 1960. They have two children, Lynn Kennedy-Starner and William

Kennedy, four grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. He was employed at Farmers Citizens Bank of Bucyrus from 1961—1970, and First Federal Savings & Loan from 1970—2003 where he served as President and CEO for 28 years. John graduated from the Ohio School of Banking and the Ohio Savings and Loan Academy.

A member of the Bucyrus Kiwanis Club since 1963, John has served as President, Treasurer, two terms as Lt. Governor, and was given “Life membership” in 2014. He is also a member of the Crawford County Development Board, the Crawford County Concert Association, the Crawford County Community Improvement Corp. and the John Q. Shunk Association.

In 1956, John organized the John Kennedy Orchestra with the support of his father. He is a member of the Bucyrus City Band, the New Washington Village Band, and organized the Concert in Aumiler Park starting in 1980.

John served several years on the Red Cross Board and was chairman for several terms. He is a member of St. John’s United Church of Christ and has been a deacon and elder. John was a member of the Bucyrus Community Hospital and campaign leader in 2007. He has served on the Board of Directors for the Salvation Army.

John has served at the Soup Kitchen in Bucyrus and delivered meals on wheels on a regular basis. He has been a part-time driver for the Cancer Society and Contact Crawford County. John was Citizen of the Year in 2001, and he was inducted into the Bucyrus High School Hall of Fame in 2018.

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