Edon Area Foundation
Founded in 2000, the Edon Area Foundation exists to enhance the quality of life for all citizens of the Edon and Blakeslee areas, now and for generations to come, by building community endowment, addressing needs through grant making and serving as a leader, catalyst and resource for charitable giving.
- Susan D. Allomong – Co-President
- Jo Ann Luce – Co-President
- Cody A. Best
- Tricia Bloir
- Lee Dick
- Fr. Fred Duschl
- Jim Gallehue
- Michael Krill
- Annette Peckham
- Estel Wyrick
L to Rt. Jim Gallehue, Mike Krill, LaRue Reitzel, Cody Best, Susan Allomong, Estle Wyrick, Jo Ann Luce, Lee Dick, Tricia Bloir, and Father Fred Duschl. Missing from photo is Annette Peckham.
The Edon Area Foundation currently has the following Named Funds:
EAF Community Funds
Edon Area Foundation Community Fund
Edon State Bank Community Fund
James and Elizabeth Fuleki Family Community Fund
This gift is made in memory of James and Elizabeth Fuleki who were natives of Hungary but who came to the United States in the early 1900s. Mr. Fuleki worked as a coal miner in Pennsylvania coal fields for about twenty-five years. Following his employment in the coal mines he moved to near Edon, Ohio where he worked as a farmer from early 1930s until his death in 1963. Mr. and Mrs. Fuleki had five children namely; Mary, Emery, Joseph, Irene and Irma. Emery and Joseph served in World War II from Williams County in the European Theater. Mrs. Fuleki was a homemaker until her death in 1983.
This gift is given by Irene (Fuleki) Frank who was a long time resident of Mark Township, Defiance County. She is the widow of Elmer Frank who died in December 2005. Mr. and Mrs. Frank were lifetime farmers. Mrs. Frank is a member of St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Hicksville.
Earnest L. and Thelma F. Reas Memorial Community Fund
They were married June, 1933 and have one son, Ronald, who was born in July, 1936. At the time they were married, Earnie worked in the garage that belonged to A.E. Gier. In the fall of 1936, Earnie decided he wanted a garage of his own, and on January 1, 1937, he opened for business. It was known as Reas Chevrolet Sales.
All three members of the Reas family enjoyed traveling, and by the time Ronald graduated from Edon High School they had been in all 48 states. Ronald went to Purdue University to study electrical engineering. Since graduation and marriage, he has always lived in Anderson, Indiana. He has two children, Evan and Erin. In 1996, Evan died of cancer at age 35. Evan’s wife, Sue and their two daughters live in Clarkston, Michigan. Erin married Scott Williams, and they have a son Brandon. They live in Dearborn, Michigan.
After Earnie sold the garage in December, 1958, he and Thelma did quite a lot of traveling. They went to Canada, Mexico, Nassau, Cuba, Hawaii, Alaska, and in 1960, they spent three months in Europe touring 14 countries.
Earnie passed away in February 1993 and in 1996 Thelma moved to an apartment in Bryan.
Keith Reitzel Memorial Community Fund
He was a United States Army Veteran serving in the Korean Conflict from 1952-1954. Returning home from service, he wanted to buy some farm ground but nothing was available in Wood County. He followed the old saying, “Go West Young Man!” He purchased 80 acres from Ira Kiess in Florence Township in 1954. In December of that year he married Doris Hufford at Perrysburg and the young couple settled in the newly purchased farm residence. Keith David Jr. was born September 1955 and twins, Kenneth and Kay were born in September 1957.
Over the next 20 years Keith kept busy raising his family and expanding his farming operation to over 1000 acres. He raised chickens, cattle, feeder pigs and grain crops. Always looking for new ventures he started dealing in used farm equipment. Keith founded Reitzel Machinery in 1970 at State Route 49 in Edon. The sons graduated from Edon High School and joined their dad in the business driving semis and repairing and selling equipment. The business moved to Archbold, Ohio in 1977.
Keith was a very busy man attending farm auctions. He had eight grandchildren that kept him very busy as well, all of them living nearby. His wife of 32 years suddenly passed in April 1987.
In November of 1988 he married LaRue Held. LaRue is a lifetime resident of the Edon-Blakeslee community and retired in October 2006 after 50 years of service at the Edon Farmers Co-Op.
The machinery business returned to the Edon area in 1998. Keith had semi-retired and the sons took over the business as Reitzel Brothers Machinery. Keith was still busy attending auctions, but spent time traveling with LaRue. He enjoyed the 7-10 day bus trips to different areas. Thru the years he traveled to Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Mexico, Canadian Rockies, and the majority of the states.
Keith was proud to be a member of the Edon community and supported it well. His three children and grandchildren are all graduates of Edon High School. He was proud of their many accomplishments. Keith was a member of St. Peters Lutheran Church in Edon and the Edon American Legion Post #662.
Keith passed away February 8, 2003 from complications of injuries suffered in a January 11th automobile accident. To keep supporting the Edon community and its many projects, the Keith Reitzel Memorial was established. Through this memorial Keith will always be remembered for how proud he was of his home-town, Edon.
Toner-Allomong Family Community Fund
Glade Toner (1889-1960) was very active in the Edon community all of his life, serving as mayor when the first brick pavements were constructed in Edon, serving as an elected member of the Florence-Edon (now Edon Northwest) Board of Education during the first two major construction projects to modernize school facilities, and serving as a volunteer fireman for many years. He was a past owner and managing partner of The Edon Hoop and Lumber Company from its inception in 1923 until its voluntary dissolution in 1956. He also served for many years as a director of The Edon State Bank Company.
Leona (Gearhart) Toner (1891-1975), prior to marriage on June 30, 1925, was an elementary school teacher, teaching at several one-room school houses in the Edon area.
To this union, one child was born and raised, John Glade Toner (1930).
W. Carleton Allomong(1898-1990) was a highly successful farm owner and operator in Florence Township, northeast of Edon, producing grain crops and raising and marketing cattle and sheep. He also served for many years as a director of The Edon State Bank Company.
Rosemary (Roseberry) Allomong (1900-1969), prior to, and after marriage on August 24, 1925, was a high school teacher, teaching in Edon.
To this union four children were born and raised: Marjorie (Allomong) Cornell (1927-1989); Marilyn (Allomong) Toner (1930); Phyllis (Allomong) Headley (1933); and John W. Allomong (1940-1999).
Designated Agency Funds
John G. and Marilyn C. Toner Williams County Veterans Memorial Fund
John G. and Marilyn C. Toner Williams County Historical Society Fund
John W. Allomong Memorial Scholarship Fund
Education was important to John. After high school, he graduated from The Ohio State University and Michigan State University agricultural programs. Using this knowledge, he returned to Edon to continue farming, which he loved, with his father, W.C. Allomong. During this time, he also served his country through the National Guard Reserve Unit. By 1975, he was married (July 24, 1971) to the former Susan Dianne Hughes and they had one child, Gina Marie. In the forthcoming years, he served as Master of the Edon Masonic Lodge, president of the Williams County Farm Bureau, and as Edon United Methodist Church trustee.
John’s family was also involved in education. Both John’s mother, Blanche and his wife, Susan, were teachers. Gina was a National Merit Scholar. In support of Gina, John attended her high school and college activities. Furthermore, John worked very hard so Gina could attend law school, but was tragically killed on June 11, 1999, one year before Gina’s Northwestern University Law School graduation. At the time of his death, John was owner of Allomong Farms, Inc.
John was a terrific guy, and he would have been pleased to have a high-achieving Edon High School graduate receive a scholarship in his memory.
Edon Northwest School Alumni Scholarship Fund
Dr. Mark Alan Gearhart Memorial Scholarship Fund
Mark Alan Gearhart was born to Louise (Wehrle) and Larry Gearhart on September 14, 1956 in Montpelier. He had three younger brothers, Ronald, Gary and James. Dr. Gearhart was on his way to his 15th class reunion of Edon High School when he died in a tragic plane crash in Sioux City, Iowa. He was 32 years old. Mark A. Gearhart graduated valedictorian of the Edon Northwest High School Class of 1974. He earned a bachelor’s degree in zoology from Ohio University in Athens where he graduated summa cum laude. He played in marching bands at both Edon High School and Ohio University. He was a member of Phi Beta Kappa at Ohio University. He then entered Ohio State University where he received his doctorate in Veterinary medicine in 1982, graduating summa cum laude. After a year at Ontario Veterinary College, earning a diploma in large animal surgery, he went to Colorado State and received a master’s degree in clinical sciences and agricultural economics and was studying towards a Ph.D. in analytic epidemiology dairy production medicine. When he died, Dr. Gearhart was completing work on his doctorate in the epidemiology and economics of dairy cattle production, making him one of few experts in this field. Jack Lebel, a professor of radiology and radiation biology said at the memorial service, “Mark had a zest for life and was a brilliant, brilliant young man.” In spite of all of his achievements, Dr. Gearhart’s co-workers and friends both in Colorado and in Edon remember him for his spirit and personality. A fellow veterinarian said, “He majored in being a good guy. He was welcome in the kitchen of every dairy farmer in this community. He was as comfortable on the farm as well as behind the computer.” The Dr. Mark Alan Gearhart Memorial Scholarship Fund was established to provide scholarships for students at Edon High School entering the field of science.
Fred & Hazel Ingram Family Scholarship in Memoriam to First Lieutenant J. W. Ingram, U.S. Army Air Corps, Killed in Action May 24, 1944 at 25 Years of Age
Fred B. Ingram (1891-1966) and Hazel Y. (Allomong) Ingram (1894-1966) were united in marriage on November 7, 1914, and they were engaged in farming in the Edon area until relocating to Edon in 1942.
To this union was born two children: H. Pauline (Ingram) Hand (1915-2006) and John W. Ingram (1918-1944), commonly referred to as “Jay or J.W.” Ingram.
Pauline married Kenneth E. Hand (1899-1980) on February 8, 1942, and they were engaged in farming and meat trade in Steuben County, Indiana, east of Angola, until Kenneth passed away, and Pauline relocated to Angola, Indiana.
Jay graduated from Florence-Edon (now Edon Northwest) High School in 1936 and from The Ohio State University in 1941. While at OSU, Jay was an outfielder with its varsity baseball team.
During World War II, Jay served with the 601st Squadron, 398th Bomb Group, 8th Air Force, based in England. On the 24th of May, 1944, Jay was killed while piloting his B-17 Flying Fortress “The Buckeye” during a bombing run over Berlin, Germany. He is buried in the Ardennes American Military Cemetery, Neuville-en-Condroz (near Liege); Belgium.
John T. Kindler Scholarship Fund
John T. Kindler was born July 22, 1923, to Albert and Roma (McCormick) Kindler on a farm near New Albany, Ohio. After graduating from New Albany High School in 1941, John immediately went to work for what is now known as Nationwide Insurance Company. In December of 1942, he married Virginia M. Lautzenheiser of Edon. They shared sixty-four wonderful years together before her passing in 2006.
Drafted into the United States Army in 1943 during World War II, John served stateside for a brief time prior to the Pacific area where he was part of the invasion of Okinawa and later in Korea. Upon his discharge in 1946, John returned to the United States and he and Virginia moved to Montpelier, Ohio where they owned and ran Kindler’s Greenhouse and Flower Shop for 26 years. After selling the shop, they worked at Allen-Cunniff furniture store for 27 years.
John and Virginia were members of St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, where he served and chaired several committees including district lay reader and district trustees. John was also a member of the American Legion and Lions Club for over 60 years and served the Montpelier Village Council and Montpelier Tree Commission. In 2001, he and Virginia were the Grand Marshalls for the Bean Days parade.
Jerry Luce Memorial Scholarship Fund
Gerald E. (Jerry) Luce was born on April 7, 1950 to Edward and Ramona (Joice) Luce. His brother, Michael Allyn, is two years younger. Jerry graduated from Edon High School in 1968 where he was vice-president of his senior class. After attending Fort Wayne Indiana-Purdue University for one year, he became a charter member of Four County Technical Institute (now Northwest State Community College) where he received his Associate Degree in Applied Business in 1971. On June 26, 1971 he married Jo Ann Thiel. Their daughter, Jennifer Ann, was born on January 30, 1975 and their son Allyn John, was born on October 8, 1977. Jerry joined the Edon Volunteer Fire Department in 1969 and became chief of the department in 1981. In 1979 he joined the New York Life Insurance Company as a field underwriter. He attained many sales goals and assisted clients in northwest Ohio as well as the tri-state area. Jerry was extremely dedicated to the fire department, to his insurance clients, and above all to his wife and children. He always endeavored to schedule his meetings and appointments around his family and their activities. On a foggy, January 21, 1993, while he and his wife were enroute to their son’s freshman basketball game, Jerry lost his life in a tragic automobile accident. Since children and education were so important to him, his family chose to establish a scholarship so his memory could live on. An Edon High School student that demonstrates scholastic achievement and the spirit of hard work with personal goals is selected each year to receive the Jerry Luce Memorial Scholarship. Preference is given to a child of a firefighter or a student interested in the field of business. His work is not measured in the years he lived, but in the love he left behind.
Thomas E. Phillips Memorial Scholarship Fund
Thomas E. Phillips was born March 12, 1952 to Robert and Louise Mohre Phillips. He was also the grandson of the late Sam and Anna Mohre of Blakeslee. Tom was the second of eight children. He attended the St. Joseph School in Blakeslee, Ohio, and was a member of the St. Joseph’s Church. As a young man, Tom attended Edon High School, graduating with the class of 1970. Tom was very creative young man and always had a natural talent in art. He had hoped to go to college to pursue a career in art. During his senior year, Tom was honored by receiving the Outstanding Art Student Award. Unfortunately, Tom died accidentally on June 30, 1971 at nineteen years of age. His family has established this scholarship in his memory, and the scholarship will be presented yearly to a worthy Edon High School graduate.
Robin Spangler Scholarship Fund
John G. and Marilyn C. Toner Scholarship Fund
John and Marilyn Toner have supported the Edon community and students of the Edon Northwest School District through a variety of ways over the years. From the numerous scholarships and the media center donation, John and Marilyn Toner have greatly impacted the students of Edon Northwest. The Toners have spent their entire lives in Edon. Both were born in Edon in 1930 and will be laid to rest in Edon Union Cemetery.
John was Valedictorian and Class President of the Class of 1949 at Florence-Edon High School. He continued his education by attending the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts at the University of Michigan 1949-1955, before receiving an appointment as midshipman at the U.S. Naval Academy. Graduating on June 3, 1955, John was, by choice, commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant Captain in 1959. He then attended the University of Michigan Law School, receiving a Juris Doctor Degree in Law in 1962, and maintained his attorney license for 50 years. In 1995, John retired from his role as CEO of The Edon State Bank Company.
Marilyn Allomong (Toner) graduated with the class of 1948 from Edon-Northwest (then Florence-Edon) High School. After attending Ohio Wesleyan University from 1948-1950, and majoring in Elementary Education, Marilyn taught first grade in the Pike-Delta-York School District in Fulton County for three years. John and Marilyn were married on June 12, 1955, in the Edon United Methodist Church (Episcopal Church), with Reverend/Lieutenant Colonel, Army Chaplain Corps Howard Tomlinson, officiating. She then joined her husband with his Marine Corps assignments, and she taught in the Ann Arbor City School System teaching first graders from 1959-1962.
Edon Area Foundation Grants Given
2023-2024 - Edon ($12,377.50)
The Edon Area Foundation recently awarded four local community organizations with grants.
- The Village of Edon received $6,000 to help pay for the all-inclusive portion of the Walz Park Playground.
- The Friends of the Edon Library were given $5,000 to assist in updating their current facility.
- Edon Summer Ball League got $1,000 for program enhancements.
- Edon Area Ministerial Association accepted $377.50 for programming support.
Pictured left to right during the check presentation are Lee Lawrence, Village of Edon Park Committee Chairman; Jo Ann Luce, Edon Area Foundation Representative; Cindy Jewell, Edon Public Library Branch Manager; Trista Wehrle, Edon Summer Ball League Treasurer; Jim Gallehue, Edon Area Foundation Representative; and Jeff Bowling, Edon Area Ministerial Association Manager of the Edon Food Pantry.
2021-2022 -Village of Edon ($21,571)
Edon Area Foundation- The Edon Area Foundation awarded a grant of $21,572 to the Village of Edon for new playground equipment and improvements to Walz Park in Edon.
Pictured (L to R) representing the EAF Board is Mike Krill, LaRue Reitzel, Cody Best, Susan Allomong, and Estle Wyrick. In the center is Duane Thiel, mayor of Edon accepting the donation. Other board members to the right are Lee Dick, JoAnn Luce, Father Fred Duschl, Tricia Bloir and Jim Gallehue.
2018 – 2019 – Village of Edon ($1,852)
2022-2023 - Edon ($11,000)
The Edon Area Foundation has been busy awarding grants to enhance their community. Pictured left to right is Doug Widdowson, with the Edon Area Ministerial Association, accepting a $500 grant from Edon Area Foundation representative Tricia Bloir, for their summer lunch program. Allison Herman, President of the Edon High School parent’s club, accepts a $2,500 grant for the purchase of new books for the John and Marilyn Toner Media Center from Edon Area Foundation representative Jo Ann Luce. And Lee Lawrence, Edon Park Board playground council representative, accepts a $8,000 grant for the construction of phase two of an accessible playground area at Walz Park.
2020-2021 -Edon Northwest Local School ($1,939)
2022-2023 -Village of Edon ($8,000)
The construction of phase one of the new playground at Walz Park in Edon is currently underway thanks to multiple partners including the Edon Area Foundation! Pictured, left to right, showing the progress of the playground equipment are Edon Park Board Council Representative, Lee Lawrence, Edon Mayor, Duane Thiel, and Edon Area Foundation members, Jo Ann Luce and Tricia Bloir. Luce and Bloir also presented Lawrence and Thiel another $8,000 check for phase two construction for an accessible playground area with the goal to have it completed in the year 2023.