FORT JENNINGS — Former Fort Jennings Police Chief Ethel Vaughn, who died Sunday in her Columbus Grove home, is being remembered by the community and family as having a positive impact on children and law enforcement.
Vaughn, 74, started 25 years ago as a patrolman on the department and became chief two years later, serving in that role for 23 years.
Michael Schleeter, the current police chief, served under Vaughn as a patrolman and took over her duties when she retired.
He said she started the H.U.G.S. program where she went to Fort Jennings Elementary School to teach children about self-worth, treating others with respect and being the best person they could be. She also organized the department’s annual Easter Egg hunt that will be renamed this year to The Chief Vaughn Memorial Easter Egg Hunt. She also passed out candy at Halloween to area children and started a pumpkin patch with Peanut characters that the department still sets up every year.
“To me she was like a grandmother. She trained me how the Fort Jennings department worked and how she was active with the kids,” Schleeter said.
Marianne Von Sossan, Fort Jennings Elementary School secretary, said Vaughn made a large impact on the school’s students.
“She was a very pleasant lady and worked with the students once a week in the H.U.G.S. program, and the kids were excited to see her and it made their day,” she said.
Reach Jennifer Peryam at 567-242-0362.