The Van Wert County Courthouse

Tuesday, Jul. 23, 2024

Waterman chosen as grand marshal

VW independent staff/submitted information

OHIO CITY — A longtime resident of Ohio City – over 90 years – has been chosen to serve as the grand marshal of this year’s Lambert Days parade.

When Joanne Rickard was two years old, her family moved to the home that she still resides at today. For 89 years she has lived in the same house on Archer St. At a young age her father, Arty, a Bible school teacher, would have the children attend the Ohio City Church of God. Joanne has enjoyed going to church ever since, except for the one day that she and her twin brother, Jim told their father that they were sick and couldn’t go that Sunday. Later that day they wanted to go outside to play, but since they didn’t go to church, their father would not allow it. Joanne never played hooky again.

Longtime Ohio City resident Joanne Waterman is this year’s Lambert Days parade grand marshal. Photo submitted

Joanne attended school at Ohio City-Liberty with her brother Jim and their older sister Alice. While in school, she was a cheerleader for the Warriors and graduated as a co-salutatorian of the Class of 1951. Joanne would one day be employed by Ohio City-Liberty and work in the cafeteria.

A year after high school a friend, Meda Waterman, wanted Joanne to meet her brother-in-law, Byron “Bud”. She met him on March 29,1952. Bud received his draft notice for the Korean War soon after, so Bud and Joanne decided to get married on November 29, before he was deployed. Bud served for two years in the military and came back as a sergeant and went back to work at International Harvester. He retired after 30 years in 1980. Bud Waterman passed in July of 2012.

Joanne and Bud have two sons. Greg Waterman was born in December of 1956 and Steve Waterman was born in January of 1958. Joanne said that she has truly been blessed by her sons and their families, and she added that not everyone can be so blessed as to have two wonderful daughters-in-law. Greg and Ellen live in Ohio City and Steve and Gloria live close by in Rockford. Joanne also has five grandchildren and five great- grandchildren. She has been attending the Olive Branch Church of God ever since her son, Steve, was a pastor (now retired). Joanne has always supported and helped behind the scenes of many community events.

91 years in the village and Joanne said that she has never been a leader, but always a follower. She is unsure why the Ohio City Park Board would vote to make her this year’s Lambert Days Grand Marshal and she feels a little timid to be in the parade.

A press release from the Lambert Days committee said “You do not have to be a leader to be a great example for future generations. We hope that many “O’Citians” will look toward Joanne for inspiration and follow the follower.”

This year’s Lambert Days will be held July 19-21. The parade is scheduled for 3 p.m. Sunday, July 21.

POSTED: 07/10/24 at 3:47 am. FILED UNDER: News