John F. Ritter 1940-2021

BOARDMAN — John F. “Jack” Ritter, P.E, FNSPE, 81, passed away at home Wednesday morning, Jan. 13, 2021, surrounded by his family.

Jack was born Jan. 3, 1940, in Youngstown, a son of Gottlieb and Emma Nickel Ritter.

He was a graduate of The Rayen School, Class of 1957. He then attended Youngstown State University, obtaining his B.E. in civil engineering in 1962 and earned his M.E. degree in civil engineering from Carnegie Mellon University in 1964.

Jack became a professor at Youngstown State University in the civil engineering department from 1963 to his retirement in 1996, and taught for many years after his retirement. He also was the vice president of engineering for Interlock Steel Co. of Hermitage, Pa. from 1965 to 1991.

Jack’s professional activities included the Mahoning Valley Society of Professional Engineers, where he served on the board of trustees and served as coordinator for Mathcounts for more than 30 years. He was a member of the Ohio Society of Professional Engineers. He also served on the Mahoning County Justice Center building commission and was the chairman from 1993 to 1996.

Jack was a member of the Shepherd of the Valley Retirement Services, serving as treasurer and vice president, and a member of the Shepherd’s Foundation. Jack also was a member of the Protestant Campus Ministries and the Mahoning Valley Association of Churches, where he was treasurer for both organizations.

Jack was honored with the Distinguished Professorship Award in teaching at YSU in 1989, the Outstanding Engineer Educator Award from the Ohio Society of Professional Engineers in 1989, and in 1994 received the Civil Engineer of the Year Award from the American Society of Civil Engineers, Youngstown branch.

He was the Protestant Family Services Man of the Year, 1996, and a Protestant Family Services ministry board member. He was recognized as the outstanding volunteer fundraiser by the philanthropic organization, Engineers Foundation of Ohio, and was an Engineers Foundation of Ohio President’s Award recipient. He was on the board and served as vice president of finance at For Us All Ministries.

Jack’s dedication to teaching and the engineering profession was surpassed only by his love of Martin Luther Lutheran Church, where he was a lifelong member. Jack started his work for the church as a teenager and continued through his whole life. He sang in the choir, taught Sunday school, served as president of the congregation, was church treasurer for many years, outreach coordinator and financial secretary. Jack was also a lay preacher, serving several congregations in the area.

Jack’s favorite pastime was fishing, anywhere there was a fish to be caught.

Jack is survived by his wife, Mardell Miller, whom he married on June 26, 1965; two sons , David (Paula) and Tim (Kim) Ritter; and a daughter, Cindy (Eric) Ericson. He also leaves five grandchildren, Mary, John, Emma, Alyssa and Jack. Jack is also survived by many dear family members in his family’s ancestral home of Germany.

He was preceded in death by his parents, and his brothers and sisters.

The Ritter family wishes memorial contributions to be given to Martin Luther Lutheran Church or Southern Care Hospice. They also would like to thank the caregivers of First Light HomeCare and Southern Care Hospice for the compassionate care that was given to Jack.

Funeral services for Mr. John F. Ritter will be private due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Funeral arrangements have been conducted by Szabo and Sons Funeral Home.

(special notice)