Former Jerusalem Township Trustee Ray Cedoz was remembered
last week as a trustee who cared about his community, and had a common sense approach to running the township.
Cedoz died Monday, Nov. 9, of pneumonia. He was 75-years-old.
Cedoz, a lifelong resident of the township, had battled cancer for a long time, according to his wife, Jeanette, whom he had been married to for 56 years.
As trustee, Cedoz was passionate about the township and was widely known for listening to both sides of an issue.
“He cared a lot about the township,” said Jeanette. “He wanted to do the right thing for everyone.”
He and Jeanette lived on a farm on Jerusalem Road for 50 years.
Cedoz loved farming, said Jeanette.
“Farming was his hobby. He grew beans, corn, wheat and hay. Even after he quit farming, and had a heart bypass, he bought a baler to make hay because he loved to be out in the hayfield. People with horses would come by and pick it up, and Ray would deliver some loads around the neighborhood to people who needed it,” said Jeanette.
He was also known to have one of the best gardens in the township in the last couple of years, she said.
“Everyone marveled at it. He had the time, and a watering system,” she said.
In addition to farming, he was also a shift foreman for Toledo Edison for 35 years before retiring.
Jerusalem Township Trustee Joe Kiss called Cedoz “a giver.”
“He was a township activist, through and through. He loved the township. He absolutely believed in it. He wasn’t afraid to say what he thought was right. He was an outstanding public servant, a Christian, husband and father. Ray was as good as they get. He is someone who you certainly want to model yourself after. Whether you agreed with him or not, he still stood behind his opinions and thoughts,” said Kiss.
Trustees held a moment of silence in memory of Cedoz at last Tuesday’s trustee meeting, said Kiss.
Sandy Nissen, a long time friend and community activist, had visited Cedoz last week.
“He had a great spirit all through his illnesses,” said Nissen. “He said it was in God’s hands. His faith in God was amazing. He was ready and prepared,” she said.
As trustee, Cedoz “always took a common sense approach,” said Nissen.
“He would listen to both sides. He gave the people what they wanted,” she said.
She recalled a meeting when a group in the audience didn’t agree with the way Cedoz had voted.
“He said, `Well, if that’s not the way you want it, I’ll rescind it and vote the other way.’ Well, over time, people in the audience found out he was right all along. We should have listened to him instead of him listening to us,” she laughed.
When Boy Scout Troop 131 asked trustees if they could put up signs at all the entrances of the township that said “Home of Boy Scout Troop 131,” two trustees turned them down, saying the township wouldn’t pay for it, recalled Nissen. “Ray told the boy scouts to go ahead and get the signs and he would pay for them.”
She credited Cedoz with getting regular garbage pickup for township residents. Previously, residents had to pay for their own garbage haulers.
“He checked into that and got it all put in place. In the beginning, it was one bag per week. Unlimited pickups were twice per year. That really helped clean up the township,” said Nissen.
Cedoz also helped get sewers installed in the Bono and Reno Beach area, she said. “Even though it was mandated by the EPA, it was held up by a lack of funding sources. Ray finally got the township to kick in some money to get that done.”
Cedoz was first appointed to the board to serve out the term of Calvin Carter, who had died. He was subsequently re-elected to two terms.
Per his request, Cedoz’s body will be donated to the University of Toledo Medical Center, said Jeanette.
“When he was going through all his illnesses, taking chemo and going through all kinds of operations, he had talked to his doctors, and thought maybe some young medical students can learn something about his body that would help someone else, so he wanted to donate his body,” said Jeanette. “He just had so many medical problems over the years, he thought it would be beneficial for upcoming doctors to know. He was always trying to help someone.”
Besides his wife, he is survived by children, Karen (Dore), Roger, Michael, and Steven.
There will be a memorial mass on Saturday at 10 a.m. at St. Ignatius Catholic Church on Stadium Road in Oregon. The family will be there at 9 a.m. to greet the public.