East Toledo’s Yenrick family was honored Tuesday night during the first annual
Toledo Glass Key Awards ceremony at Inverness Country Club.
Mayor Carty Finkbeiner and co-hosts honored deserving Toledoans for their lifetime of service to Toledo. Included among them were humanitarians, educators and civic leaders who, over the past 25 years, have committed themselves to making Toledo a better place to live.
A press releases states that a major factor considered when selecting the nominees was their continuing commitment to the region over a period of time.
“Many individuals participate periodically in various events benefiting our community, but few continue this contribution year in and year out. The award winners of this prestigious Glass Key truly demonstrate a lifelong commitment to Toledo and Northwest Ohio. These dedicated individuals have selflessly given of their time, knowledge, and resources. They have touched the lives of countless people in this community,” the release states.
“Citizen leadership is a cornerstone of great urban centers. Our city is the home of major hospitals, universities, museums and corporate headquarters. The city houses the very rich and very poor, the blue-collar worker and the corporate executive. With such diversity, a strong dose of citizen leadership is required,” it continues.
Mayor Finkbeiner commented, “Their impact has not only benefited our community in the past but set an example for others to follow in the future. Toledo is fortunate to have individuals and families who are willing to share their time, energy, and resources to make our region a better place.”
The Yenrick family includes father Robert E. Yenrick and his wife Jane Palmer Yenrick, along with five children — Deb Yenrick, Robert Yenrick, David M. Yenrick, Timothy Palmer Yenrick, and Connie Jane Yenrick.
David and Tim are commonly seen at East Toledo Club monthly luncheons. David is the principal at his alma mater, Morrison R. Waite High School, and Tim is the former director of the East Toledo Family Center and current director of the Greater Toledo Chapter of the American Red Cross.
Tim’s father, Robert E. Yenrick, the father, is a well-known coach, having started in 1949 and he is still coaching 60 years later. He has coached basketball, baseball, and softball, and during the 1950s he was involved with the East Toledo Junior Football League.
“I reorganized the junior football league and made sure the boys had decent equipment,” Robert writes in his biography. “For 20 years, I coached at the Boy’s Club for Homer Hannum and had many winning teams. Some of my players played pro basketball.
“Later on, I was asked to form the first girls’ slow pitch for the City of Toledo. The team went to the World’s Tournament in Burlington, North Carolina representing the City Toledo. We were the youngest team there,” Robert wrote about his 1964 softball team.
Robert also coached at the East Toledo Family Center while his son Tim was director, and he asked Tim to form the first senior slow pitch softball league there. There were only six teams in 1992 when it first started, and now there are 30 teams playing in Toledo.
Robert was also involved in the establishment of Friends of Navarre Park, which sold memorial bricks to help fix a historical building there. Four “friends” from Waite High School wanted to form a scholarship program there, so W.A.I.T.E., Inc. was established and became the organization for Waite graduates to apply for scholarship financial assistance.
“I have many awards for volunteering, but the ones that meant the most to me is the East Toledo Neighborhood Distinguished Alumnus in 1998 and the Boys Club Friends to Youth award,” Robert wrote.
Jane Palmer Yenrick said she “was raised in a family of volunteers and when I married my husband, Bob was already a volunteer coach. We had five children and all have become active in helping other people.
“We raised our family on the old east side at a good time — we never had a key to our home and never knew what neighborhood kids would be there,” Jane wrote. “We always had dinner and discussed the day’s happenings.”
She volunteered for “many things back then,” including as Mother’s Club president. She organize3d and ran a church food program, belonged to the Parent Teachers Association, the city-wide PTA, and Waite High School PTA.
After the children were raised, she became treasurer for the East Toledo Historical Society and helped organize the Golden Luncheon for Waite High School. She volunteered at the ETFC and catered luncheons for sons David and Tom at their respective work.