I had the honor of spending time with Donald Mathias, his son, Bob and future daughter-in-law, Brenda Bletz last yearto reflect and reminisce on 99 years and am happy to share with you that he marked 100 years this April! Mathiascelebrated with a little help from the Coast Guard and more than 60 family and friends who surprised him with a party at the Masonic Hall in Richfield.

A WWII veteran, Mathias enlisted in the US Coast Guard in 1942 and served in the South Pacific, including Guam, Saipan and the Philippines. He was honorably discharged in March 1946 as a Ships Cook 3rd Class. Members from the Greater Cleveland Chiefs Mess presented him with certificates of appreciation, challenge coins and an honorary promotion to Ships Cook 2nd class. His service is also recognized on the Bath Township Veterans Memorial.

Born and raised in Northeast Ohio, Mathias has been a Bath resident for more than 60 years. He retired from BF Goodrich after 42 years and following retirement, started a bicycle repair shop, Don’s Bicycle Shop,out of his home. He estimated that he recycled and repaired upwards of 2,000 bicycles during this time. To this day, Bath residents still inquire about the “bicycle repair man.”

Mathias was married to his wife, Edith for 70 years. He has three children, Bob, Carol and Donna Jean, five grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren. He enjoys watching sports and the antics of his rescue cats, Jocko and Suzy-Q. Mathias loves and appreciates his family, crediting his longevity to the care of his son, Bob with the help of Brenda and other family. Congratulations on this amazing milestone!

Akron Children’s Museum hosted its fundraiser “Grown-Up Play Date, the ACMys,” co-chaired by Bath resident Leigh Ann Swartz and Dana Day of Wadsworth. Serving on the committee were Breanne and Shaun Castillo, Kristin Goff Durian, Melissa Fashinpaur, Betsy Hartschun, Beth Kerechanin, Lori Lankfort, Lisa Little, Katie O’Brien and Katie Smith. This adult-only fundraiser took place at the museum and featured a glam station and silent disco. More than 300 attended to raise money to support the museum’s operations.

Local attendees included Emily and Matt Carpenter, Becky and Nate Voris, Anya and Nick Albrecht, Lori and Scott Lankford, Robin and Paul Christensen, Natalee and Aaron Caipen, Chris and Melissa Fashinpaur, Ben and Tessa Tegel, Phil and Alexandra Vukoder, Tom and Jen Towell and Kathryn and Marc Miller.  

American Cancer Society volunteer advocate, Vince Marchetta traveled with fellow Bath resident and American Cancer Society vice president, Sarah Wells to the state capital to join others from across Ohio in advocating for continued improvement in cancer screening, research, treatment and care for patients throughout our state. The community appreciates all you are doing to help cancer patients and their families.

Bath resident Dennis Kleidon has had his book “Unleash Your Imagination: Transform Your Life” published. The book shows how to use design thinking to challenge normal routines, increase imagination power and harness new sources of creativity. It launched on April 5 and was published by River Grove Books. Kleidon co-founded a marketing communications firm, worked as a designer, taught as a college professor, and is an artist whose paintings are internationally exhibited.

It has been a thrill to learn about the great residents of Bath and their wonderful work in the community. Continue to email me at with your good news and good deeds. ∞