The patriarch of Dogtown Rd, John (Jack) F. Herner died in his sleep in his home on May 18 at the age of 80.
Jack loved the farm he was born on, purchased it when he was 21 and continued to live there his entire life. He was very loyal to his family and his town, and even opted to join the National Guard so he didn’t have to go too far away. His home was the gathering place for many family reunions, birthdays, and countless holiday celebrations.
When asked what he liked about being on the farm so much, he told a family member that it was the smell of the dirt, and he loved being out in it.
Jack graduated from Bellevue High School in 1958, and remained lifelong friends with several of his classmates. Over the years, Jack worked in construction and while serving as Sherman Township Trustee, he covered numerous miles of roads with the snowplow. When he retired, he had risen to Superintendent of the Monroeville Street Department.
A generous, kind, and gentle soul, Jack was “Secret Santa” in Monroeville for several years. He would pay off utility bills for families in need and purchased toys for their kids for Christmas.
The youngest of three children, known as “Jackie” by his sister and mother, he could be recognized by his tall stature and uniform of flannel shirts and jeans, and shining white hair, which had started turning gray since he was in his 30s.
Jack was a man of few words, but quick to laugh, which sounded like “hehehe.” He was an excellent Euchre player and was a big fan of pies, especially grape. He loved to visit Amish country, collect antique toys (and sometimes big toys like his orange 1959 Chevy truck).
Jack will be so missed by his faithful and caring daughters Leah and Kristen and grandchildren Joel, Grant, Anna and Mary who all made him proud to be their Grampy. His son-in-laws John and Bill spent their last visit mowing the lawn and cutting up an old cherry tree that had blown down. He mentioned to his sister how nice they had everything looking. Slowed down from Parkinson’s Disease over the last five years, Jack was sometimes reluctant to ask for help but was always a gracious recipient.
Jack felt fortunate to have great neighbors who would routinely stop by to bring a delicious meal, catch up on things or to just check in. The family would like to express their sincere thanks to close friends and neighbors Don & Gwen Bores, R.A. & Pam Bores, Bill & Edna Miller, and faithful renter Ed & Kathy Eder as well as all the great gals from ACC Homecare. Your help along the way allowed Jack to fulfil his wish of remaining at home.
For 80 years, as close family members were lost and others moved away, the farm remained a constant, and so did Jack. He became synonymous with Herner Farm, a place that brought comfort to many, especially him.
Jack was preceded in death by his wife of 45 years Belle (Snyder) Herner; brother Robert Herner; parents Ralph & Doris (Fry) Herner; grandparents John & Katie (Brinker) Herner and Alger Nun & Iva (Grinstead) Fry. Jack is survived by his sister Marjorie (Paul) Brookover; sister-in-law Janet Herner; daughters Leah (Bill) Herner-Patnode and Kristen (John) Schuchmann; and grandchildren Joel & Grant Schuchmann and Anna & Mary Patnode. Snyder brother-in-laws, Bob, Bill and Harry, sister-in law Jill, and his beloved nieces and nephews.
A viewing will be held Friday, May 21 between 4-7pm at Pfeil Funeral Home, Monroeville Chapel, 109 Monroe Street, Monroeville. There will be a service Saturday, May 22 at 10am at St. Peter Lutheran Church in Pontiac. A luncheon will immediately follow.
Donations in Jack’s memory can be made to the University of Toledo Gardner-McMaster Parkinson Center, 3000 Arlington Ave, MS1083, Toledo, Ohio 43614 (Attn: Julia Spears, Memo: PD Research) or to the Piggyback Foundation of Norwalk, Ohio.
Condolences may be shared with the family at pfeilfuneralhome.com.
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University of Toledo Gardner-McMaster Parkinson Center
3000 Arlington Avenue, MS 1083, Toledo OH 43614
31 E Main Street, Norwalk OH 44857