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Published: Friday, 10/21/2005

Waterville death ruled homicide

BY MEGHAN GILBERT
BLADE STAFF WRITER

A 62-year-old Waterville man's death was ruled a homicide yesterday after the Lucas County coroner's office found that he died from being beaten severely.

Jim Steinhurst was found unconscious on the bathroom floor of his Harvest Lane home about 3:30 p.m. Tuesday by a family member. He was flown by medical helicopter to the Medical University of Ohio Medical Center, where he died about 9 a.m. Wednesday. An autopsy yesterday showed he died of head injuries as a direct result from an earlier beating about his head and neck, said Dr. Diane Barnett, a Lucas County deputy coroner.

Mr. Steinhurst was assaulted at a location other than his Waterville home, police Chief Bob Selders said. He said police are investigating the homicide, and did not know yesterday where Mr. Steinhurst was beaten or how he got home. There were no suspects.

Mr. Steinhurst was in management at the Dana Corp. until his retirement.

He was a product specialist for axles, transfer cases, clutches, and transmissions, and later became the district manager for the drivetrain service division.

In 1980, he was named manager of technical training for the service parts group of Dana and operated the product and sales schools of the drivetrain service division.

Mr. Steinhurst served in the U.S. Marine Corps during the Vietnam War.

He was an avid bowler and scored a nearly perfect score of 299 in the 1971 Toledo Times Traveling Classic. He averaged 206.22 for all 75 games in the tournament and led the classic as a rookie.

Mr. Steinhurst also enjoyed flying radio-controlled airplanes and served as director of the District III International Miniature Aircraft Association.

Mr. Steinhurst's neighbors said Waterville is a family-friendly area. They were surprised to hear of trouble in the village.

"I'm very shocked," said Carol Rea, who moved into her Rutledge Drive home in June. "You never hear of things happening here."

Robert Johnson has lived in his Harvest Court home just down the block from Mr. Steinhurst for 10 years and in Waterville for more than 40 years.

"It's the type [of community] that if you were to go to the grocery store, you wouldn't think twice about leaving your door unlocked," he said.

Neighbors said Mr. Steinhurst was a quiet, private man.

In 1969, Joyce Ann Lease was founded stabbed to death in her home on South Mount Vernon Drive, the last time such a crime occurred in the village.

Contact Meghan Gilbert at:

mgilbert@theblade.com or

419-724-6050.



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