Class of 2004


On Wednesday November 3, 2004 at the Statehouse in Columbus, Ohio, Governor Bob Taft, Robert J. Labadie, Director of the Govenor's Office of Veteran's Affairs, and Christine M. Cook, Network Superintendent of Ohio Veteran's Home, inducted 19 members of the Class of 2004 into the Hall of Fame. A bronze plaque is dedicated to every class memorializing those veterans inducted into the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame. These plaques, representing each of the classes inducted, are on display at the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame Museum located in the I.F. Mack Building on the grounds of the Ohio Veterans Home in Sandusky. The bronze plaque for this year 2004 is displayed in the Statehouse at the 3rd Street entrance.
David Aldstadt
David E. Aldstadt

Franklin County
United States Army Veteran
Vietnam War

  • Was a driving force for veterans' affairs in Ohio and the nation for the past 20 - 25 years
  • Co-founded the Vietnam Veterans of America in Ohio
  • Established the Vietnam Veterans Leadership Program in Ohio
  • First Director of the Governor's Office of Veterans' Affairs
  • Established the Governor's Task Force on Desert Storm
  • Organized Operation Welcome Home Ohio for returning Desert Storm troops
  • Established the Governor's Advisory Committee on Women Veterans
  • Helped to re-establish oncology program at the Columbus VA Clinic
  • Established the Ohio Military Transition Assistance Task Force to prepare for the return of veterans to Ohio as a result of military downsizing
  • Established the Hire a Veteran Week Program
  • Helped establish the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame
  • Established the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame Foundation to support the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame
  • Established the Ohio Veterans Plaza
  • Assisted with the establishment of the second Ohio Veterans Home in Georgetown, Ohio
Hubert Amstutz
Hubert M. Amstutz

Fairfield County
United States Army Veteran
World War II

  • Exceptional career as an ear, nose and throat physician for over fifty years
  • As a practicing physician in Fairfield County, Dr. Amstutz began his career by delivering over three hundred and fifty babies in his first seven years of practice and performed over five thousand tonsil operations
  • As a professional educator at the high school and college levels, Dr. Amstutz had occasions to impact wisdom and enlightenment to such noted Ohioans as General Curtis LeMay and the distinguished cancer researcher Dr. Arther G. James
  • Served on the Board of Governors of the Lancaster-Fairfield County Hospital
  • At the age of 102, perhaps the oldest living veteran inducted into the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame
Virgil Arling
Virgil C. Arling

Auglaize County
United States Marine Corps Vet
Korean War Era

  • Recognized as a civic activist
  • Volunteer fireman for twenty-six years
  • Volunteer Commissioner for the American Legion Buckeye Boys State
  • Member of the Regional Planning Commission for twelve years
  • Served as Village Administrator for the Village of Minster
  • Volunteer for the Veterans Service Commission
  • Member of the Military Funeral Detail
  • Post Commander of the American Legion
  • Volunteer for promoting veteran's programs
  • Volunteer representative to the West Ohio Rail Authority for twelve years
  • Life Member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars
  • Rescued an individual from probable death on three different occasions
Henry Banning
Gen. Henry Banning

Knox & Hamilton Counties
U.S. Union Army Vet
Civil War

  • A practicing attorney in Knox and Hamilton counties
  • Experienced combat in fourteen battles during the Civil War
  • Promoted to Major General for his gallantry on the battlefield
  • Served one term in the Ohio Legislature
  • Served three terms in the United States House of Representatives
Wilbur Blount
Wilbur C. Blount,

Franklin County
United States Air Force,
Air Force Reserve &
Ohio Air National Guard Vet
Korean War Era

  • Distinguished military career as a medical physician
  • Nationally recognized for advancements in eye surgery
  • Served in a variety of professional medical assignments
  • Volunteer Ophthalmologist in the Physicians Free Clinic
  • Member of The Young Astronauts Program; also became the "father" of initiating a chapter at the Neighbor House in Columbus, Ohio
  • Member, Board of Nominations, National Aviation Hall of Fame
  • Benefactor of the annual Air Force JROTC Program's Soaring Eagle Award
  • Board member of the Ohio Diabetes Association
  • Active member of the Ohio Chapter of the Tuskegee Airman Association
Morris Briggs
Morris F. Briggs

Franklin County
United States Air Force Veteran
World War II, Korean War and Vietnam War

  • Served with distinction in both Air Force and Army assignments over three conflict eras
  • Served in various capacities at Otterbein College with noted achievements
  • Served as a Member of the Board of Trustees for Columbus Colony, a housing project for the deaf
  • Exceptional volunteer service to the Boy Scouts of America
  • Served in several capacities with Rotary International receiving several awards and recognition for his dedicated service
  • Active member and volunteer instructor at the Westerville Senior Center
  • A noted speaker for military and veteran activities
  • Member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars
Michael Chakeres
Michael Chakeres, OD

Franklin & Madison Counties
United States Navy Veteran
World War II

  • Practiced optometry in London, Ohio for over thirty-five years
  • Member of the Madison County Hospital Foundation Board
  • Board member of the Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Home in Xenia, Ohio
  • Past Ohio Department Commander of the American Legion
  • Volunteer at the Veterans Hospital in Chillicothe, Ohio for the past fifty years
  • Received the Meritorious Public Service Award from the City of Columbus Athletic League
  • Current President of the Veterans Service Commission of Madison County
  • Participated in several projects to honor veterans
  • Received the "Person of the Year, Four Way Test" Award from the London Rotary Club
  • Received the Ohio State Optometric Association Commendation Award for service to veterans and optometry
Ralph Ciavarro
Ralph N. Ciavarro

Cuyahoga County
United States Navy Veteran
World War II

  • Noted volunteer at Ohio Veterans Home, the Veterans Administration Medical Centers
  • Nationally recognized for his efforts in the Spinoza "Talking Bear" Program for terminally ill children
  • Noted for military, historical and veteran-related presentations to high schools and businesses
  • Served on numerous committees and boards in support of Veterans of Foreign Wars programs
  • Active member of "Rolling Thunder"; serves on many committees for Chapter 1
  • Has been instrumental in efforts to feed and cloth the homeless veterans in the Cleveland area for the past 10 years
  • Served on Community, Business, Schools for Parma School System
  • Commander of VFW Post 7609 Fleur-de-Lis, Seven Hills Ohio for the past two years
  • Committee Chairman Providence House Orphanage; donated over 300 pounds of chocolate over a five year period
Donald Harrington
Donald E. Harrington

Butler County
United States Navy Veteran
Korean War

  • Native of Chile and Peru in South America
  • Naturalized U.S. Citizen in 1945
  • Served with distinction in the U.S. Navy and acquired education from ROTC programs at Miami University
  • 2002 recipient of the Miami University NROTC Admiral Sidney W. Souers Distinguished Alumni Award
  • A noteworthy career in the tire industry, rising to the position of Vice President, Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company
  • Extensive membership and official positions in professional, educational, veterans, military and civic associations and organizations
Michael Lacivita
Michael J. Lacivita

Mahoning County
United States Navy Veteran
World War II

  • Noted for safety communication contributions in the steel manufacturing industry
  • Award winning amateur photographer for more than a half a century
  • Noted speaker and presenter to many senior citizens groups on World War II and the Great Depression
  • Authored a book called "Rag Man, Rag Man" at 80 years of age
  • Inducted into the Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame in 1996
  • Honored as Man of the Year at the Greater Youngstown Italian Fest in 2003
  • Life member of both the U.S. LST Association and the Ohio LST AMPIBS Association
  • Listed In Who's Who In America, 1998 through 2004
  • Has written an ongoing regular monthly column in Youngstown's major newspaper for the past 12 years
Alan Lance
The Honorable
Alan Lance Sr., BA, JD

Hancock County
United States Army Veteran
Vietnam War Era

  • Born in Ohio, relocated to the state of Idaho to open a law firm after service with the U. S. Army as a Judge Advocate General (JAG) officer
  • Elected to the state legislature of Idaho in 1990 and 1992
  • Elected as Idaho Attorney General in 1994 and 1998
  • Served as member of the Executive Committee of the National Association of Attorneys General
  • Active member of the American Legion having served as the Commander of the Department of Idaho
  • National Commander of the American Legion and Chairman of the American Legion National Foreign Relations Commission
  • Elected to the position of National Commander of the American Legion at the 81st National Convention in 1999
Robert Lucas
Gen. Robert Lucas

Scioto & Pike Counties
United States Army &
Ohio Militia Veteran
War of 1812

  • Worked as a surveyor in Scioto County where he was the Justice of the Peace
  • Achieved the rank of Major General in the Ohio Militia, and also served as a Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Army
  • Elected Governor of Ohio in 1832 and served two terms
  • His aggressive defense of Ohio territories against Michigan earned the naming of Lucas County after his efforts in that border dispute
  • Served in the Ohio House of Representatives 1808-1810 & 1830-1832
  • Served in the Ohio Senate, 1814 - 1822 & 1824-1830
  • Served as Governor of the Iowa Territory, 1838 - 1841
John Moon
John E. Moon

Paulding County
United States Marine Corps Vet
Vietnam War

  • Recognized as a veterans' advocate, he was appointed by the Chairman of the Ohio House and Senate Veterans Affairs committee to re-write Title 59 of the Ohio Revised Code
  • Awarded an Honorary Certificate of Teaching and Distinguished Citation of Merit for his dedication regarding all American military personnel listed as POW-MIA from World War II through the present
  • Served as the Mayor of the community of Grover Hill from 1980 to 1996
  • Held several state and national positions within veterans' organizations including National Commander-in-Chief of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, 1998
  • Recently distinguished himself as the Assistant Director of Veterans Training and Employment Services for the United States Department of Labor
Phillip Ross
Phillip J. "Jack" Ross

Cuyahoga County
United States Army Veteran
Vietnam War Era

  • Recent retiree from thirty year career with the United States Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Recognized for exemplary commitment to service veterans while offering continuous improvement to the business processes of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Selected by Anthony J. Principi, Secretary of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, to head a critical project called "Tiger Team." The project locates, consolidates and oversees processing of claims for senior veterans in danger of passing before their benefits can be processed
  • Special advocate to POWs in the Cleveland, Ohio Veterans Administration service area
  • Two time recipient of the Presidential Rank Award
William Schmidt
William F. Schmidt

Franklin County
Prisoner of War
United States Army Veteran
World War II

  • Widely recognized for service to community, veterans and ex-POWs
  • Chapter Commander of American ex-POW organizations and national service officer for the organization
  • Performed service on the Veterans Plaza Committee, Bicentennial Commission, and Columbus Advisory Board for the Veterans Administration Healthcare System of Ohio
  • Member of the Columbus Board of the USO, serving as its Chaplain and also volunteers at the Columbus Airport USO
  • An active member in the AARP Chapter 252 and served two years as Chapter President
  • Was National Commander for American ex-POWs
Linda Schwartz
Dr. Linda Schwartz,

Medina County
United States Air Force Veteran
Vietnam War Era

  • Earned Master of Science in Nursing from Yale School of Nursing and from the Yale School of Medicine; earned Doctorate Degree in Public Health
  • Research Scientist at the Yale School of Nursing; funded by Department of Defense TriService Nursing Research Program to conduct the "Vietnam Nurses Health Study"
  • Recognized for activism in support of improved delivery of service to disabled veterans
  • Served as Director of Legislative Affairs and Treasurer of the Vietnam Women's of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C.
  • Past Chair and Member of the Governor's Advisory Committee on Women Veterans, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Helped to initiate the first "Stand Down" in Connecticut, a three-day intervention for homeless veterans
  • Member of the Planning Committee for the Veterans Improvement Program
Vane Scott
Vane S. Scott Jr.

Tuscarawas County
United States Navy Veteran
World War II

  • Noted speaker, entertainer, and researcher related to Americanism, patriotism and the United States flag
  • Wrote, produced and performed nationwide the show, "Many Faces of Old Glory" for presentation to organizations, conventions, schools and the public
  • Founder and co-owner of Colonial Flag Company of Coshocton, Ohio, a Division of Annin & Company, manufacturing specialty flags for many major events including World Olympics and Super Bowls and the world's largest producer of U.S. flags
  • Helped organize and performed in major productions in local area to raise funds for community projects
  • Life member of many veterans and fraternal organizations
  • Founder, National President and Editor of USS Radford DD/DDE 446 Association and the USS Radford National Naval Museum in Newcomerstown, Ohio
John Siemer
Col. John P. Siemer

Franklin County
United States Army &
Ohio National Guard Veteran
World War II and Korean War

  • Noted for distinguished service in two conflicts
  • Lifetime of contributions to veteran community, Ohio National Guard and state legislature as Veterans Affairs Director for seventeen years
  • Recognized as a dedicated military lobbyist who provided assistance to veterans' families and was recognized for his support of the veteran community in campaigning for state and federal veteran cemeteries in Ohio
  • Was active in working with AARP organizations
  • Volunteered as a tutor, mentor and role model for elementary students
Thomas Zeak
Thomas A. Zeak

Franklin County
United States Army &
United States Air Force Veteran
Korean War and Vietnam War Era

  • Noted for his work with rehabilitation of wounded and disabled veterans of the failed Bay of Pigs invasion in Cuba
  • Recognized for his work in massage therapy and physical rehabilitation expertise
  • Noted as an amateur archeologist, born of a lifetime of involvement with the Boy Scouts of America
  • Extensive recognition for civic and veteran community services
  • Recognized for his contributions to historical societies in three states and for his educational programs for youth on American Indian lores