Kiwanis K-kids and other children attending the Downtown Delphos Development Association First Friday Fire Prevention event watch as firefighters use the Jaws of Life to remove a door from a vehicle. (DHI Media file photos)
Kiwanis K-kids and other children attending the Downtown Delphos Development Association First Friday Fire Prevention event watch as firefighters use the Jaws of Life to remove a door from a vehicle. (DHI Media file photos)

As 2017 draws to a close, the staff at The Delphos Herald looked back and made note of the happenings in our area. Here is the final installment of the 2017 Wrap Up.

DHI Media Staff reports


Oct. 2 — Delphos City Council approved the SAFER Grant employees through March.

Oct. 4 — The Delphos Area Chamber of Commerce and Rotary Club announced a mayoral candidate forum for Oct. 17 at the Knights of Columbus hall for candidates Josh Gillespie, Doug Mullenhour, John Parent and Wayne Suever.

Oct. 5 — St. John’s Elementary School second-graders hosted their grandparents at school for snacks and to learn what their grandchildren were up to in class.

Oct. 6 — The Delphos Downtown Development Association held its initial First Friday event: Fire Prevention. Children and adults enjoyed watching Delphos Fire and Rescue personnel remove doors and windows from a junk vehicle with saws and the Jaws of Life, toured the Fire Safety Learning Trailer, bobbed for apples, painted pumpkins and more.

Global Precision Parts in Ottoville hosted a manufacturing day with students from Ottoville touring the plant to learn about its operations.

Oct. 8 — St. John’s High School Mission Society won the Golden Ladle for the third year in a row at the church’s Chili Cook-off.

Oct. 9 — Senior Jessica Odenweller was named the 2017 St. John’s High School Homecoming Queen.

Oct. 10 — The 2017 Delphos Zombie Walk was set for Oct. 22. The event is family-friendly and collects non-perishable items for the Thrift Shop.

Sew Helpful announced a “Tie a Blanket Day” for Oct. 11 at Trinity United Methodist Church. The blankets would be donated to St. Rita’s Oncology Department.

Oct. 12 — Community Health Professionals Home Care & Hospice Beacon of Hope dinner raised more than $10,000 for future hospice patients.

Oct. 13 — Elida FFA members spent the morning making apple butter. The group started at 6:15 a.m. with 20 gallons of red and yellow apple sauce and stirred their way to approximately 100 pints of butter.

Oct. 14 — The Delphos VFW Auxiliary announced a personal item drive for the Veterans Food Pantry of Northwest Ohio in Lima.

Oct. 15 — More than 30 blankets were “tied” during the Sew Helpful event at Trinity United Methodist Church.

Oct. 16 — Delphos City Council passed a resolution letting the state government know the city was handling its income collection just fine and didn’t need the state’s help or the fee that would come with it.

Jefferson High School teacher Missy McClurg won the Ohio Department of Education Spotlight on Education Award for her outstanding achievements. McClurg shared with the board the release of her School2Biz App in partnership with The Ohio State University, the Career Connections Student Center, the success of the local Future Business Leaders of America chapter and the newest Mentors3 Community Connectors project.

Oct. 17 — Mayoral candidates Josh Gillespie, Doug Mullenhour, John Parent and Wayne Suever sounded off on issues brought to the floor by attendees at the Delphos Area Chamber of Commerce and Rotary Club mayoral candidate forum at the Knights of Columbus hall.

Oct. 18 — St. John’s held its annual Children’s Festival, the kickoff event of the parish festival. Hundreds of children flocked to the Blue Jay gym to ring a two-liter, play Plinko and more for prizes.

Delphos Mayor John Parent attended an opioid epidemic conference hosted by Congressman Bob Latta in Defiance. He found that there aren’t enough resources to go around to combat the problem.

Oct. 20 — The Delphos St. John’s Hall of Fame Committee named this year’s class, including: Professional Achievement — Dr. Maurice Mueller, class of 1954, deceased; Athletic Achievement — Colin Westrich, class of 1994; Service to Mankind — Denny Elwer, class of 1971; and Service to St. John’s — Mel Westrich, deceased.

Oct. 21 — Delphos American Legion Commemorative Unit 268 hosted its annual Veterans Appreciation Dinner naming the late Romus S. Brandehoff as the Veteran of the Year. Brandehoff’s children, Todd Brandehoff, Lolly Baerveldt and Susan Brandehoff, accepted the award for their late father.

Oct. 22 — Zombies took over downtown Delphos as the Delphos Zombie Walk participants moaned and lurched down the street in search of … brains!

The ninth Habitat House in Delphos was dedicated with new homeowners Monica Brown and her fiance, David Hall, officially taking possession of the house.

Oct. 23 — Christopher M. Peters, who was convicted of murder in the death of 15-month-old Hayden Ridinger last month, was sentence to life in prison without the possibility of parole plus 16 years in Van Wert County Common Pleas Court by Judge Martin Burchfield. Peters was given credit for 304 days served.

Oct. 26 — St. John’s High School inducted 15 new members into its National Honor Society, including Rachel Hellman, Grant Czukker, Caroline Kopack, Adam Gerker, Betty Vorst, Luke Reindel, Halle Hays, Trevor German, Cassidy Schafer, Tyler Ruda, Olivia Buettner, Jarad Hesseling, Amber Palte, Erin Pohlman and Sydney Eley.

The count at Delphos Fire and Rescue surpassed 500 during Trick or Treat in Delphos.

Oct. 27 — Teens at Jefferson High School spent the day getting mental health tips and coping skills during the school’s first-ever Mental Health Awareness Day.


Nov. 1 — St. John’s Mission Society held its annual Halloween Party for fellow students. Games, a talent show and costume-judging contest were included.

Nov. 2 — St. John’s High School graduate Aly Parmelee won three Clio Awards for her work editing The Handmaiden’s Tale and The Mindy Project on Hulu.

Nov. 3 — Delphos VFW Post 3035 Commander Shannon Wagoner and Auxiliary President Missy Wagoner taught the Kiwanis K-kids U.S. flag ettiquette and the proper way to fold a flag.

Nov. 4 — The Kiwanis Club of Delphos flipped pancakes and served up sausage for a record crowd during the club’s annual Pancake and Sausage Day with 14,720 pancakes made and 1,150 pounds of sausage eaten. Meals were served to 2,076 with more than 240 children eating free.

The Delphian Social Club held its first-ever Harvestfest at Stadium Park with Big Wheel races, a corn box, inflatables and more for children and a beer garden and live entertainment for adults.

Nov. 7 — Delphos voters gave the nod to Josh Gillespie as the city’s new mayor. Jeff Klausing was also elected Third Ward councilman.

Nov. 8 — Jefferson High School inducted 13 new members into its National Honor Society, including Kali Lindeman, Rylee Heiing, Michelle Rode, Rachel Kroeger, Kylee Gossett, Lauren Grothaus, Alyssa Hohlbein, Conner Anspach, Allison McClurg, Emily Buettner, Allyson Hasting, Haley Smith and Trey Gossman.

Nov. 9 — The Delphos Community Christmas Project announced its Angel Trees were ready at local banks.

Nov. 11 — The Delphos Veterans Council held its annual Veterans Day ceremony at Veterans Memorial Park.

Nov. 13 — Delphos City Schools Board of Education announced it was taking applications for the vacant seat on the school board.

Nov. 14 — Volunteers prepared food at the Delphos Eagles during the Free Food On Us effort spearheaded by Community Unity.

Nov. 17 — Bob Grothouse of Delphos was celebrating 20 years with his new heart. Grothouse received his heart transplant on Nov. 17, 1997, at the Cleveland Clinic.

St. John Junior and High School students each donated a toy so they could enjoy a Jean Day. Nearly 300 toys were collected for the Delphos Community Christmas Project.

Nov. 18 — Turkeys for Delphos distributed 75 complete family turkey dinners during its third effort to bring a better holiday to locals.

The VFW annual Turkey Dinner sold out by 6 p.m. with more than 200 guests served.

Nov. 19 — More than 20 area Cub Scouts collected and donated Christmas gifts for kids in need through “Operation Christmas Child.” The gift boxes included school supplies, toys, hygiene items, photos of the Scouts and handwritten Christmas cards.

Nov. 21 — St. John’s Junior High Robotics Team The Robo Plumbers spoke at the Delphos City Council meeting, sharing their findings on wet wipes and how long they take to break down in Delphos’s sanitary sewer system. The group also held a fundraiser and purchased a billboard near Raabe Ford to bring attention to the problem.

Delphos Area Chamber of Commerce members put up the final Christmas decorations in downtown Delphos. The group had refurbished old decorations and purchased new Christmas banners with a donation from the city.

Nov. 23 — The Knights of Columbus Council 1362 held its annual Thanksgiving Day Dinner.

Nov. 25 — The Delphos Canal Commission Tree Festival opened with nearly 100 trees on display decorated by museum personnel, local civic groups, businesses and school groups.

Nov. 26 — St. John’s Alumni Association inducted its 14th class to its Hall of Fame, including: Professional Achievement — Dr. Maurice Mueller, class of 1954, deceased; Athletic Achievement — Colin Westrich, class of 1994; Service to Mankind — Denny Elwer, class of 1971; and Service to St. John’s — Mel Westrich, deceased.

Nov. 28 — Community Unity’s Free Food on Us served more than 60 local families with food and more.


Dec. 1 — It was learned Delphos will receive $400,000 in home repair funding. Putnam County, in partnership with Allen County and the City of Delphos, was awarded a $1.25 million Community Housing Impact and Preservation (CHIP) program grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The funding will allow the county to provide income-eligible residents with necessary home repairs or rehabilitations. Delphos will receive at least $400,000 to spread among approved projects.

Eighty-five fifth-graders from Franklin and Landeck elementaries received D.A.R.E. diplomas.

Santa Claus arrived in Delphos with his wife in tow. The Kiwanis Hometown Christmas was bigger and better with more participating businesses and civic groups. Hundreds of children, parents and grandparents enjoyed hot beverages, hot dogs, ham and bean soup and a visit with Santa.

Dec. 2 — Life Scout Jason Ditto finished his Eagle Scout project at Stadium Park. The Scout’s memorial to POW/MIA is a stone platform with an empty chair and plaque stating “The above unoccupied chair is in honor of those that are still Prisoners of War (POW) or Missing in Action (MIA), and symbolizes there will always be a place in this stadium awaiting their return. YOU WILL NOT BE FORGOTTEN.”

Dec. 5 — The Arnold C. Dienstberger Foundation spread holiday cheer while handing out $320,000 in grants to local non-profits. With this year’s awards, grants have come to more than $5 million.

Dec. 7 — Newly-elected Mayor Josh Gillespie was sworn in by City Law Director Andy Knueve at the city building.

Trinity United Methodist Church’s annual Christmas Bazaar was held. Dipped pretzels, Buckeyes, caramels, pies and canned salsa and more were offered in the General Store as well as beef and ham dinners. Hundreds of dinners were sold for dine-in and carryout during the biggest fundraiser for the Trinity United Methodist Women’s group to support missions.

The Delphos Midget Football League Raiders made get-well cards, collected donations and signed a helmet for teammate Blake Wagoner who has been diagnosed with stage 3 cancer. Supporters came from as far as Uniopolis to let Wagoner know they were thinking about him and to sign cards and drop off gifts.

Dec. 8 — Mike Knippen and the Knippen Chrysler crew dropped an overflowing pickup truck load of toys for the Delphos Community Christmas Project.

Dec. 9 — The Do-Rights Motorcycle Club held its annual Christmas Party for children and adults Saturday at the Eagles. Not only did Santa Claus pay a visit to the children, the club members had various events, such as cookie decorating and coloring, as well as had various items for raffles and sales. Later on, the club hosted its adult party.

Dec. 11 — The Allen and Van Wert County Republican parties announced they would jointly begin accepting resumes from individuals interested in fulfilling the unexpired term of Delphos City Councilman-at-Large. The seat was vacated by now-Mayor Josh Gillespie.

Dec. 14 — More than $2,000 had been raised for the upcoming Rise Against Hunger Meal Packing Event Feb. 11 in St. John’s All Saints Building. The Delphos Ministerial Association recently donated $300 to supply ingredients for 1,000 meals for the event for which organizers Buzz and Ellen Ditto have set a $7,200 and 25,000- meal goal.

Dec. 16 — From start to finish, a group gathered Saturday morning to build a wheelchair ramp for Mike and Deb Long Gallmeier. Many willing hands put this together in about four hours. This is the true “spirit” of Delphos and heartbeat of the community. Helping to build the ramp for Delphos’s former mayor were Rich Rakay, Bernie Schnipke, Ed Kneuve, Buzz Ditto, Gary Mack, Chuck Verhoff, Dan Meyers, Dan and Jeff Rostorfer and Shane, Travis and Kyle Gallmeier.

Dec. 18 — Those choosing to park illegally in Delphos may see a stiff increase in fines. Delphos City Council approved an increase in fines for drivers who aren’t parked correctly within the city limits. The rates for infractions increased from $5 for parking in a prohibited parking area; incorrect parallel or angle parking; selling, washing or repairing a vehicle on the roadway; unattended vehicles; and other parking violations to $25 per infraction with the fine doubling if not paid within 10 days. Those parking in handicapped parking with no placard will be fined $250 with the fine doubling if not paid within 10 days.

Dec. 19 — Community Unity has started a new program to assist those who are starting a new job and may not be able to afford the required equipment. Jobs On Us will provide boots (steel-toes or otherwise), eye protection, head gear and even perhaps the first tank of gas for new hirees.

Delphos and area bowlers from the Delphos Recreation Center pooled their resources and purchased gifts for fellow bowler Blake Wagoner, who is battling third-state Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Local businesses also contributed.

Dec. 21 — Jefferson High School students helped deliver gifts and fruit plates for the Delphos Community Christmas Project. Coordinator Edna Fischer said 293 children in 118 families were served this year. More than 175 fruit plates were also included. St. John’s students had finals Thursday morning and were unable to participate this year.

Delphos City Council will start the year with only one seat to fill. Scott Wiltsie will take the seat left vacant by now-Mayor Josh Gillespie. Wiltsie was tapped for the at-large seat by the Allen and Van Wert County Republicans on Thursday evening.

Dec. 24 — The 2017 Santa Visitation sponsored by the Delphos Optimists went off Christmas Eve.

Dec. 30 — Siblings Norbert “Nub” Grothause and Helen Kaverman were named the 2017 Tri-County Man and Woman of the Year.