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Kiwanis Club of Okeechobee Inducts Hall of Fame Class

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2018 Inductees and family

2018 Hall of Fame Active Member pic

The Kiwanis Club of Okeechobee  inducted five members into it’s inaugural class on Thursday. April 12th in the fellowship hall of the Methodist Church. Active members Louis “Red” Larson, Jack Wolff and Don Kelly along with posthumous inductions for the late Dick Blair and Donna Enrico.  A progressive plaque was unveiled showing the Kiwanis logo along with name plates and induction year for each member. The club plans on adding members on an annual basis.

Dick Blair

Richard “Dick” Blair was raised in Painesville, Ohio. After marrying Marge in 1933, they operated a local restaurant called the “RichMar”.  He served in WWII with the Sea Bees in the Pacific Theater and, after the service, returned to Painesville where he owned a local restaurant.  He subsequently managed restaurants along the I90 interstate in Pennsylvania. In 1968, he and Marge moved to Okeechobee where he served as comptroller for Aid Labs for many years (Bernie Braz) and then worked in collections with Sun Bank before really retiring. Marge worked in the office at the “Boys School” for many years. He loved music and played trumpet in a small band in his younger years.  Dick sang in the choir at First United Methodist Church, was active in the Chamber, and loved his beautiful stag horned ferns. He was instrumental in organizing the Kiwanis Pancake Breakfast.

CLICK THIS LINK TO LISTEN TO MARGE BLAIR TALK ABOUT HER LATE FATHER’S INDUCTION TO THE KIWANIS CLUB OF OKEECHOBEE HALL OF HAME

CLICK THIS LINK TO LISTEN TO RIKKI BLAIR TALK ABOUT HER LATE FATHER’S INDUCTION TO THE KIWANIS CLUB OF OKEECHOBEE HALL OF HAME

Donna Enrico

Donna Gail Enrico was raised in Centralia, Ill. and move to Okeechobee in 1972 with her husband Jim Enrico when the family dairy farm was relocated here. Donna and Jim were very active in the community and especially athletics at the High School. They had four children, Tony, Paul, Myla, and Jon.  Jim was a Kiwanian where he served as program chairman, and was a huge supporter of OHS sports, serving as president of the OHS Athletic Booster Club for years and always attending his sons’ football games. After Jim’s passing, Donna became the first woman member of the Kiwanis Club of Okeechobee. Donna served on the School Board from 1980-2002, loved to play golf, and remained a member even after moving to Melbourne to care for her Mother. Donna Enrico, first female member of the Club and our Hall of Fame.

CLICK THIS LINK TO LISTEN TO TONY ENRICO TALK ABOUT HIS LATE MOTHER’S INDUCTION INTO THE KIWANIS CLUB OF OKEECHOBEE HALL OF FAME

Don Kelly 

Don Kelly was raised in Rochester, NY, graduated from Oklahoma A&M (now Oklahoma State) and went to work on a ranch in Ohio. Tiring of the cold and snow, he moved to Florida in 1972 to manage Rocking K Ranch. He then  worked at Barnett Bank as an Ag Loan Officer, and just retired from Syfrett Ranch. Don has two sons, Tim and the late Charles, (3) grandchildren, and (4) great-grandchildren. Don is one of only two of our members who have been honored with the Hixson Award for outstanding service to the Club. He was the pancake batter and coffee man for the pancake breakfast for 27 years. Don Kelly, a quiet and “behind the scenes” member of our club.

CLICK THIS LINK TO LISTEN TO DON KELLY TALK ABOUT HIS INDUCTION INTO THE KIWANIS CLUB OF OKEECHOBEE HALL OF FAME

Jack Wolff

Jack Wolff is a charter member of the Kiwanis Club of Okeechobee from 1971. Jack is a native of Okeechobee and remains active in the club attending every meeting and event. For years, Jack donated the orange juice from his orange groves for the Kiwanis Club pancake breakfast.

CLICK THIS LINK TO LISTEN TO JACK WOLFF TALK ABOUT HIS INDUCTION INTO THE KIWANIS CLUB OF OKEECHOBEE HALL OF FAME

RED LARSON

Louis E. “Red” Larson was born in SD in 1924 and the family moved to Hollywood, FL in 1932. Red bought his 1st cow “Bess” in 1938 (14 years old) for $65. When WWII broke out, Red joined the Army Air Corps and became a pilot, flying B-26’s. After the war, Red had offers from commercial airlines, but wanted to follow his passion of dairy farming. He married Reda in 1947 and, with several different partners, began building his dairy business. They lived off of Reda’s salary from working in the banking industry and invested Red’s income into buying more cows. After selling their land in Davie, they moved to Delray, and then to Okeechobee in the late 60’s, becoming the largest family-owned dairy farm in the state of FL. Red joined Kiwanis in Davie in 1949, and then the Boynton Beach Club while in Delray. In 1971 Red was a charter member of the Kiwanis Club of Okeechobee. He held the position of Pres. in all three clubs.

Red is a member of the Agriculture Hall Fame for UF and the state of FL, has the Red Larson Dairy Science Building at UF named in his honor, has been named National and International Dairyman of the Year, and past member of the IRSC Foundation Board of Trustees (he still supports scholarships for first responders). Red is one of three Life Members of our Club.

Red is always quick to give credit for his success to his partners over the years, his family and many friends, and Kiwanis friends. Red says he is most proud of his family, daughters Kathy and Barbara, sons Woody and John and 11 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren (with 2 more on the way)!

Red Larson, charter member of the Club and of our Hall of Fame.

CLICK THIS LINK TO HEAR RED LARSON TALK ABOUT HIS INDUCTION INTO THE KIWANIS CLUB OF OKEECHOBEE HALL OF FAME