LATEST NEWS:

100 bills in 10 days: Mad finish on tap as lawmakers, Kasich wrap up session

5 things to know: George Voinovich


George Voinovich, a household name in Ohio, peacefully passed away last night in his sleep.  Voinovich was from Cleveland and started his political career as mayor and managed to serve three terms. Voinovich’s popularity in as a Republican in the typically Democratic-leaning Cleveland area was rare.

>>> Former GOP Senator And Ohio Gov. George Voinovich dies

Family Tragedy

When Voinovich was running for the mayor of Cleveland in 1979, his family experienced sudden heartbreak. Their youngest of four, Molly, was hit by a van running a red light while she was returning to school after lunch. 

This put the campaign on a virtual halt due to Voinovich turning down debate invitations against his opponent, incumbent Mayor Dennis Kucinich. Voinovich went on to win the election that year with over 20,000 votes.

Frugal

It was well-known that former Ohio Gov. and Senator Voinovich was a frugal man. Even though he was a millionaire, he once was known to reach into a urinal to retrieve some change -- a penny. 

In fact, he and his wife, Janet, still lived in the Cleveland home that they bought in 1972, according to Cleveland.com.

Years in office

Voinovich spent nearly 43 years in the public eye serving his city and his state both at home and in the District of Columbia. He started out becoming the mayor of Cleveland in 1979 and served for three terms. While he was mayor he ran for the U.S. Senate but was beaten by Democrat Howard Metzenbaum by over 500,000 votes.

He then went on to serve as Governor for Ohio in 1990 through 1998. While in office he was able to cut $720 million from the state budget in just two years. His mantra while governor was “working harder and smarter, doing more with less.”

In 1999, Voinovich began his time in the Senate, and served until 2011. While in office he always had the people of Ohio in mind, which showed when he advocated for a proposed federal bailout of the auto industry. In Ohio, the auto industry employs thousands of people.

>>>Voinovich to Kasich: Stay In

Dayton Connection

In 1993, a prisoner riot broke out at the state prison in Lucasville, Ohio, which led to press coverage from across the state and nation.

Much of the coverage of the 11-day riot and siege was highly speculative and turned out to be incorrect. One evening a few days after the riot had been cleaned up and the press was gone from Lucasville, a copy editor on the nightside desk at the Dayton Daily News picked up the phone and found – much to his surprise – none other than Gov. Voinovich on the line.

  He had called the newsroom number to talk to whoever picked up the phone, to compliment the newspaper on its coverage of the riot, which he said he thought was the best in the state.

Rickety Old Boat

Our staff reminisced about Voinovich with words such as extremely warm, charming, smart and focused. An anecdote that came to mind to several of our staff was Voinovich’s small rickety boat, which he enjoyed so much that he’d often navigate alone across Lake Erie from East Cleveland to the western end of the lake. His staff was so worried that the boat would not hold up that they had a person drive along the coast parallel to Voinovich, to keep an eye on him out on the water.

 >>> Former Ohio Sen. Voinovich says Romney, Obama not doing enough about debt


Reader Comments


Next Up in Local

TONIGHT: Dayton groups plan human rights vigil at Butler County Jail
TONIGHT: Dayton groups plan human rights vigil at Butler County Jail

More than 100 people from the Miami Valley area, and beyond, will ascend in front of the Butler County Jail tonight for a candlelight vigil to raise awareness of human rights abuses committed in the name of immigration enforcement, according to a release. The Butler County Jail is also an ICE Detention Facility located in Hamilton. Vigil attendees...
1990 basketball card appears to show Menendez brothers in background 
1990 basketball card appears to show Menendez brothers in background 

A sports card that has been practically worthless for more than 25 years has suddenly become a sensation in the collectibles hobby. >> Read more trending news  That’s because the two men in the background of a 1990-91 Hoops basketball card of Mark Jackson look like the infamous Menendez brothers, the New York Daily News reported...
Lawmakers put partisan differences aside in recent series of area announcements
Lawmakers put partisan differences aside in recent series of area announcements

Despite all the partisan rancor in Columbus and Washington, a recent spate of announcements by area lawmakers shows the two parties can at times carve out some middle ground. “Not all issues are really partisan in nature. Not every issue is ideological,” said Mark Caleb Smith, director of the Center for Political Studies at Cedarville University...
Miami U. fraternity buddy helps double-lung transplant student grow
Miami U. fraternity buddy helps double-lung transplant student grow

Elementary student Noah Trumbull’s recent double lung transplant saved his life and taught him many life lessons, including his favorite saying of “every day is a good day.” That’s especially true on Friday’s for the 10-year-old special needs student and his Bridgeport Elementary classmates because that’s when his...
Some changes you’ll see in our Dayton Daily News pages
Some changes you’ll see in our Dayton Daily News pages

As loyal readers know, we’re several years into the “Ideas & Voices” format for our opinion pages that focuses on community voices and balanced views. We’ve been listening to your comments and suggestions for the page, and we’ve kicked off some changes to make these pages more valuable to our readers. The most prominent...
More Stories