John H. Ramey ’44 – Akron, OH

I was recognized with the award for “A Lifetime of Distinguished Service” at the 24th Annual Harold K. Stubbs Awards Dinner on March 14 in Akron.

The dinner was held annually in memory of Stubbs, a popular municipal court judge and West Side Akron resident who died suddenly in 1989. The City/County Safety Building is named in his honor.

My wife Carol died February 20, 2013, of an aggressive non-Hodgkin Lymphoma. She assisted me in administering the work of the Association for the Advancement of Social Work with Groups (AASWG) for many years.

After working since 2002 at getting my Myasthenia Gravis under control, I developed Multiple Myeloma Stage 1 in early September 2013. Considerable time was spent in rehabilitation this past year. At the moment I seem to be improving. I remain active in various community services and organizations. During our many years with AASWG Carol and I traveled extensively to represent it at conferences and meetings throughout the United States and Canada while I was the University and afterward in retirement.

With support from my family I continue to live at our home of forty-four years in the integrated West Side community in Akron. My books, office, shop and archives are here and I still know where everything is located! In addition to social work, music, gardening, and community services, I continue interests in bridge, genealogy, and family history, science and politics.

I received a “Keep Akron Beautiful” Award in summer 2013 for the garden and landscaping of our home and am well started on gardening for 2014.

Our granddaughter “Erzsi” (Elizabeth) Szilagyi graduated from Stanford with a Ph.D in Chemistry in June. She is the daughter of Imre and Janet (Ramey) Szilagyi of Kingwood, WV.

Ime and Janet have been retired from whitewater rafting for several years. My other daughter, Susan, operates Ridgetop Pottery, making hand-thrown porcelain, also in Kingwood.

I continue after 25 years to play Euphonium in the Cuyahooga Falls Community Band (CFCB). This is in addition to TubaChristmas (500 Tuba family instruments, two audiences totaling 5400), TubaSummer and the OSU Alumni Band at Lakeside each summer. I play in seventeen or more concerts each year. I remember well my years in the Junior and Senior High bands at Bexley and particularly my 1943-44 senior year as Drum Major. I was Assistant Drum Major in 1944 and 1945 at Ohio State.

I retired December 1989 after 20-1/2 years on the Social Work faculty of the University of Akron. This followed 21 years of social work in settlements, camps, etc., in Columbus, Chicago, Hartford, and Cincinnati. I was also instrumental in securing passage of licensing in Ohio for social workers in 1984. (June 2014)