OTTAWA — John Love was honored Friday night by for his service as a commissioner in Putnam County.
Love will retire from the position Dec. 31 after serving for the past 12 years. John Schlumbohm will fill the seat Jan. 1. Love will continue to serve as co-owner of Love-Heitmeyer Funeral Home.
Love’s family, friends and colleagues gathered for a party at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post in Ottawa and brought cards and presents to thank him for his service. Patriotic balloons were tied to chairs and framed photos of Love participating in county activities were displayed on tables. Attendees could sign their names on a framed photo of the Putnam County Courthouse.
State Rep. Jim Hoops presented Love with an award thanking him for his service to Putnam County and the state.
“He has been a great advocate for Putnam County’s needs and wants and has brought that down to Columbus with the legislature. He has made sure the values that the county holds true to are known about in Columbus,” Hoops said.
Love decided to not seek re-election.
“That’s three terms, and I felt it was time for someone else to take over,” Love said.
Accomplishments the county has had while he has served are development of a maintenance and grounds group to take care of buildings, the formation of an IT department and making sure the county has no debt.
Putnam County Commissioners Michael Lammers and Vincent Schroeder said they will miss Love serving on the council.
“He has a big heart. One of the key memories I have of him are I asked him how decisions are made in the commissioners office and he said he tries to think about what someone in 50 years will be looking back at,” Lammers said.
Schroeder has served with Love on the commission for 12 years and said he has learned a lot from him.
“He is good with business and policy and has been good for the county getting a lot of areas straightened up as far as proper policy,” Schroeder said.
Love has always been willing and open to listen to concerns, according to Michael Borer, Putnam County probate-juvenile judge.
“He has been a commissioner longer than I have been a judge and has been willing to listen to my concerns now as a judge,” Borer said.
Suzanne Dulaney, County Commissioners Association of Ohio executive director, said it has been a privilege to work with Love.
“He has been a dedicated member to the association board and done so much to help counties to be efficient,” Dulaney said.