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Published: Monday, 2/17/2003

Firefighter had his own landscaping business

FINDLAY - Paul A. Honse, a volunteer firefighter who operated his own landscaping business here and worked as a welder at two Chrysler stamping plants, died Saturday at Blanchard Valley Regional Health Center. He was 61.

Mr. Honse had been ill for a short period of time and died of heart failure, his daughter, Kimberly Honse said.

Mr. Honse was born and reared in Findlay, where he attended high school until he enlisted in the Army during the Vietnam War. Mr. Honse served until 1973 and was discharged with the rank of sergeant.

He continued his military involvement until he died as a sergeant major in the Ohio National Guard, Ms. Honse said. “The service has always been a part of his life because he loved it,” she said.

Mr. Honse spent 13 years working for Chrysler stamping plants in Fostoria and Twinsburg, Ohio, until 1984. He also was a maintenance worker for the former Holiday Inn here. He especially enjoyed owning his own landscaping business, Ms. Honse said.

“He liked being outside and he really enjoyed taking care of people's yards.” Ms. Honse said. “Meeting new people was also a big thing for him because he was a really outgoing person.”

Mr. Honse spent nearly 20 years as a volunteer firefighter in Findlay. When he was young, his grandmother, grandfather, and two cousins died in a fire. That event prompted him to become a firefighter, said his daughter.

Surviving are his wife, S. Jean Henry; sons, Paul III, Vance, and Brad; daughters, Carol Ann Ferguson and Kimberly D. Honse; stepsons, Vincent Ludwig, and Brian Scott Ludwig; brothers, Robert and Roy Honse; 15 grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren.

The body will be in the Coldren-Crates Funeral Home, Findlay, after 2 p.m. tomorrow, where there will be a service at 11 a.m. Wednesday.

The family suggests tributes to the Kidney Foundation of Northwest Ohio Memorial Program.

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