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Morton O’Ryan

MAYOR MORT O’RYAN age 84 died peacefully February 5, 2014 at Western Reserve Hospice House surrounded by his loving family. He was the beloved husband for 63 years of Florine “Flo” (nee Cicchella); loving father of Sherie Ragan (husband Walt) of MO, David (wife Dorothy, nee Morrell) of MI, Kathleen Mekesa (husband Vyto) of Highland Heights OH, Nancy of FL and the late Patricia Frantz; devoted grandfather of 12 and great-grandfather of 9; treasured son of the late William and Marjory (nee Bradford); cherished brother of John “Jack” (wife Beverly), William (wife Janet) and Catherine Gibbs Horning (husband Dick); favorite brother-in-law, uncle, great-uncle and godfather of many.

Mort was the Mayor of Willoughby Hills from 1995 to 2003 and a resident since 1962, after previously residing in Willoughby. He was a member of the Willoughby Hills Lions Club where he received the Melvin Jones Award; Willoughby Hills Community Days Committee for 25 years; Willoughby South Band Boosters and Athletic Boosters; the Willoughby Hills Veterans Memorial Committee; the Willoughby Hills Recreation Commission; City Council for 16 years; and was instrumental in the development and building of the Willoughby Hills Community Center. He also received the 2006 Distinguished Citizen Award from the Rotary Club of Willoughby. Mort was a graduate of Cleveland Heights High School, where he played football and attended Fenn and Adelbert Colleges. He was the Vice President of Jergens Tool and Specialty Company. While Mort enjoyed his time serving the community of Willoughby Hills as well as gardening, growing roses, recording movies and listening to Big Band music, his children and grandchildren gave him the most enjoyment. His family will remember him as a strict, caring, giving, easy going man who had a great sense of humor.

Contributions may be made in Mort’s memory to the Mayor Mort O’Ryan Scholarship Fund Trust, c/o Kathleen Mekesa, 681 Bishop Rd., Highland Heights, OH 44143.

Relatives and friends are invited to meet for the Celebration of Life Service Tuesday, February 11, 2014 10 AM at Willoughby Hills United Methodist Church, 34201 Eddy Road, Willoughby Hills 44094. Burial following at Western Reserve Memorial Gardens.

Family will receive friends to pay tribute to and celebrate the life of Mort THE DeJOHN-FLYNN-MYLOTT FUNERAL HOME OF WILLOUGHBY HILLS, 28890 CHARDON ROAD (between Bishop Rd. and Rt. 91) MONDAY 1-4 and 5-8 PM. Willoughy Hills Lions Club Service 7:30 PM.

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Condolence Messages

  1. A gentleman whose handshake was genuine. He with his wife made contributions in our city which enhanced our lives, and will carry on to further generations.

    To the family, so sorry for your loss.

  2. Daniel W Cicchella :

    Always remember Uncle Mort with a hand shake AMD a smile. Picnics and family. He and Aunt Flo wonderful loving people. May God bless and keep him.

  3. Sending heartfelt wishes for peace, comfort and healing to the entire family. May this time that brings families together bring blessings as you comfort one another. So very sorry for your loss.

  4. Jaclyn Botts Soroka :

    I remember Grandpa O’Ryan as the classic Disney grandpa with a smile on his face and constant love around him. My prayers are with your family and I know that he is with my Grandpa Botts smiling down on all of us. Wish I could attend the celebration of life. All my love, Jaclyn

  5. Sheila Cholyk :

    We are so sorry for your loss. . .what a beautiful family he started. Our thoughts are with you at this sad time.

  6. George Kistner :

    Dear Flo, sorry to hear about your loss. I am the Past Commander of the Willoughby Hills VFW and I served with Mort as the Liaison Officer between the City and the Post in building the Veterans Memorial. He was a great help to us and I enjoyed my time working with Mort on behalf of all the Veterans who have served our country. I am proud to have my name on the stone in front of the Memorial along with Mort’s and our Commander at that time, Norm Drenski and Quartermaster, Tony Iskra.

  7. A good man, loving and caring, serving man kind in so many ways. He will of course be missed by all hat knew him. God Bless Florien and the entire O’Ryan Klan,

  8. Kate and Andy Rivers :

    Our heartfelt condolences to the family, we are thinking and praying for you in your time of sorrow.
    May God Bless you and ease your pain.
    Kate and Andy Rivers and Family
    South Africa

  9. Don and Lynn Erickson :

    Dear Florine and family,
    Our deepest sympathy to you in the loss of a respected and loved husband, father, grandpa and friend.
    Each time we use the O’Ryan Room we feel so grateful for your beautiful gift to the Willoughby Hills community.
    May God shower you with His comforting spirit is our prayer.

  10. Jeff Cicchella :

    Although I haven’t seen “Uncle Mort” in years, he was one of my favorite family members. He always made me laugh. To make people laugh is a true gift and a blessing. God gives all of us certain gifts that are to be shared with the world. Uncle Mort shared his gift with all of us for many years. I pray that he is with Jesus, Mary and all of the Saints. I’m sure that he’s making them laugh!

  11. Gail Tanner Keesecker :

    My thoughts are with you all. Memories are wonderful to help you all through this time. I remember Mr. O’Ryan as warm, caring and always with a generous smile. You are all in my thoughts and prayers.

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