Written by Press Staff Writer
October 15, 2013
The 2013 Birmingham Hall of Fame’s 37th Annual Inductee and Scholarship Banquet will be held Sunday Oct. 20 at St. Stephen School Hall, 2018 Consaul St. in East Toledo.
The celebration will begin at 4:30 p.m. with a social hour. A Chicken Paprika and Pig in the Blanket dinner will be served family-style at 6 p.m. Guest speaker for this event is Chris Bergeron, head coach of Bowling Green State University’s men’s ice hockey team.
Banquet tickets are $25 per person for adults; $12.50 for children 6-12 years old and free for kids under 6. Tickets are available by calling Takacs Grocery & Meats at 419-693-9233.
This year’s inductees include:
Stephen Martin Junga, of Curtice, will be honored as a Distinguished Citizen and Athlete. Junga was born on Magyar Street, and graduated from Waite High School in 1983. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications/Broadcasting/Public Relations.
Since 1987, he has been a sports reporter at The Blade. Junga has covered 15 state football championship games, 16 state basketball championship games, and also has reported state title games/meets in baseball, softball, volleyball, track and field, cross country, wrestling, hockey and soccer. He covered the Toledo Storm ECHL hockey team for nine seasons (1991-2000) and five PBA National bowling tournaments in Toledo. He’s also covered 15 LPGA Jamie Farr Classic tournaments and two U.S. Open senior men’s golf tournaments.
In 1995, he won two national second-place writing awards for daily news story and feature story. He has also won statewide writing awards in categories including Features, Investigative/Enterprise, and Game Stories; received the Ohio High School Athletic Association’s northwest district Media Service Award; and served eight years on the OHSAA’s Media Advisory Committee.
Junga played baseball and basketball at Raymer Elementary and Waite High School, wining two varsity letters in baseball and one in basketball. He also played 31 seasons on softball leagues in Toledo, Maumee, Rossford, Oregon, and Curtice, and played basketball in the Toledo Federation League from 1978-83.
He played on the three unbeaten St. Stephen’s teams that won diocese titles from 19983 to 1985.
Jason Thomas Way, of Nashville, Tenn., will be honored in the category of Business. Way and his grandfather, Frank “Red” Veres, are the first grandfather-grandson combo in the Birmingham Hall of Fame.
Way grew up on Caledonia Street, and attended Holy Rosary School and church from 1977 to 1986, and graduated from St. John’s Jesuit High School in 1990. He played baseball, basketball and soccer at Holy Rosary, and earned a varsity letter in baseball from St. John’s.
He earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering Technology from the University of Toledo and went on to receive a Master of Business Administration from the University of Findlay. He started his engineering career with Mechanical Design Associates in Maumee, working as a mechanical systems (Plumbing, HVAC and Fire Protection) designer, developing systems and construction drawings.
He was hired as an Energy Engineer with Brewer-Garrett Company in Middleburg Heights, working with customers like Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company and the Ohio School Facilities Commission.
After taking a job with Siemens, Way and his wife moved to Tennessee, where he worked with customers to identify energy reduction strategies and implement projects to reduce energy usage.
He is currently with Constellation, an Exelon Company, employed as a Program Manager, working to develop and implement projects for customers to meet their energy needs.
Glen John Mesteller, of Jupiter, Fla., will be honored in the category of Business. Mesteller grew up in Birmingham, the son of Weizer Furniture Company founders John and Eleanor Mesteller. He graduated from Birmingham Elementary and Macomber High School and earned a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Toledo in 1973, with a major in Marketing in Business Administration and a minor in Military Science.
After completing schooling for the Army, he returned home to join his family in the business, learning all aspects from delivery to repair and refinishing. He managed Weizer after his parents’ retirement in 1980. He retired in 1997 and currently resides in Jupiter, Fla., where he is “semi-retired” with a landscaping business.
Mesteller maintains many strong ties to Toledo and the neighborhood. He has been an active member of Calvin United Church of Christ, serving on the Consistory Board and served terms as assistant treasurer and treasurer.
He is a member of the Hungarian Club, supported the development of the Birmingham Ethnic Festival, and worked to keep the library in Birmingham.
Joseph S. Tinta, Sr. (posthumous), formerly of Paine Ave., Toledo, honored as a Distinguished Citizen.
Tinta, who died Dec. 7, 1993, was brought up in the Birmingham neighborhood, attending St. Stephen’s school and graduating from Macomber High School.
Tinta played baseball for the neighborhood May Coal team. He served in the Navy during World War II and was employed at Libby Owens Ford’s East Broadway plant until it closed, and then went to the Rossford plant. He retired in 1984 with 40 years of service to L-O-F.
Tinta was a sponsor for Collins Park Teen Town for three years. He also coached the Birmingham Pee Wee youth baseball team.
He was a member of the VFW Post 4906 and belonged to Calvin United Church of Christ. Those who knew him say his wife Betty was the love of his life; he adored his grandchildren, and his Hungarian heritage and his neighborhood were his pride and joy.
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