CAREY - Dr. Harold Richard Wenner, an avid conservationist and a community leader, died of heart failure Friday in the Blanchard Valley Regional Health Center in Findlay. He was 80.
Dr. Wenner was a veterinarian in this rural Wyandot County community for 57 years. During that time, his practice grew, as did his reputation as an “honest, caring man,'' said his daughter, Tacy Raymaley.
“He was very devoted in his church and community,'' Mrs. Raymaley said. “He would never turn away anyone. If a farmer called in the middle of the night, he was out there, many, many times - on holidays, weekends. He was really loved by the farmers.''
Dr. Wenner had a history of heart problems. He suffered his first heart attack 23 years ago.
“Six weeks ago, he began having more problems,'' his daughter said, but he didn't let that slow him down.
“He would get out of the hospital and get back in the office,'' Mrs. Raymaley said. “Last week, we brought him home after a week in the hospital after another heart attack, and the next day, he was back in the office treating patients. He never retired. He loved his job.''
Friday afternoon, Dr. Wenner was taken to Blanchard Valley with chest pains. He died a few hours later.
“We knew his time was limited, and every day he had was special,'' Mrs. Raymaley said. “And he kept using it. He would say, `I've got to keep going. I have things to do.' He was always looking out for the community.''
His other daughter, Cassandra Kromer of Carey, agreed.
“He was just so gentle,'' Mrs. Kromer said. “He loved people. He loved dogs. He loved cats. He loved animals. Everybody liked him so much. He was very well-respected and cared about the development of our community.''
Dr. Wenner graduated from Carey High School in 1937 and Ohio Northern University in Ada a few years later. He received his veterinary degree from Ohio State University in 1943 and served in the Army during World War II before starting his practice.
He was a conservationist who was “concerned about pollution from factory farms,'' Mrs. Raymaley said. “He believed in protecting the environment.''
As a hobby, he made many objects from stained glass. He loved antiques, his family said.
“He was very talented,'' Mrs. Raymaley said. “He loved to work with glass. He made beautiful stained-glass windows for me. Wonderful lamps - he just finished a lamp for me about 11/2 years ago.''
Dr. Wenner was a member of the American, Ohio, and North Central veterinary medical associations. He was a charter member of the Carey Jaycees and was the first president and a life member of American Legion Post 344 and Masonic-Carey Lodge 420.
He served 12 years on the Carey board of education and was a board member of Angeline School of Opportunity. He was inducted into the Carey Hall of Fame in 1985 and was recognized for meritorious service to the Wyandot County 4-H in 1978. He received the Carey Jaycees' Distinguished Service Award.
Surviving are his wife, Mary Frances; daughters, Tacy Raymaley and Cassandra Kromer; stepsister, Jeanne Christian; five grandchildren, and five great-grandchildren.
Services will be at 2 p.m. today in Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church, Cary, of which he was a member.
The family requests tributes to the church memorial fund, Carey Ecumenical Choir, or Our Lady of Consolation School.