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Wayne F. Drotleff

WAYNE F. DROTLEFF, aged 74 years, beloved husband for 41 years to the late Shirley A. (nee Noelck), dear father of Diane K. (partner Brandi Alicie) and Kurt W. (wife Lauren), loving grandfather of Henry Joseph Drotleff, devoted son of the late Fred J. and Cora E. (nee Herchler), cherished brother of Corinne Noelck (husband Myron – deceased), fond uncle and great-uncle.

“We are braver and wiser because they existed, those strong women and strong men… We are who we are because they were who they were. It’s wise to know where you come from, who called your name.”

* Maya Angelou

Wayne was born June 29, 1944 in South Euclid, Ohio, the second child of Fred and Cora Drotleff, joining his older sister, Corinne. He attended Brush High School, graduating in 1962, where he played football and ran track. He received his Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Ohio University in 1967. He was a member of the TKE Fraternity.

Wayne’s deep love of racing and all things automotive began as a child, racing go-karts through the streets of his youth in the 1950’s and later drag racing down Mayfield Hill, much to the chagrin of the local police department. His first job in the industry was at Fisher Body/General Motors where he worked as a production supervisor from 1968 to 1970.

Wayne was a 43 year member of the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) NEOHIO region, which he joined in 1975. He met many amazing and lifelong friends through that organization and also through his membership in Corvette Cleveland, joining in the early 1970’s. Wayne’s first race was at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course where he drove with racing partner Jerry Lancaster in a June 1974 IMSA race. He then partnered with lifelong friend Joe Kuhel in a 1972 Corvette, which they built together and raced regionally, primarily at Nelson Ledges Road Course and at Mid-Ohio. Wayne raced as a solo driver from 1982 until his retirement from racing only last year.

The true love of Wayne’s life, however, was his wife Shirley, whom he married in 1974. Their daughter, Diane, was born in 1975 followed two years later by their son, Kurt. The family spent many weekends at the race track watching Wayne take home the checkered flag (or trying his hardest to!) and laughing and working with close friends. His sense of humor, wonderful smile, and steadfast support of his loved ones and friends cannot be overstated and will be forever missed.

In lieu of flowers, donations suggested to The American Lung Association or The American Heart Association. Funeral services Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018 at the funeral home at 10:30 AM. Interment Knollwood Cemetery. Family will receive friends to pay tribute and celebrate the life of Wayne at THE DeJOHN-FLYNN-MYLOTT FUNERAL HOME OF SOUTH EUCLID, 4600 MAYFIELD RD. (just East of Green Rd.) MONDAY 4-8 PM.

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Condolence Messages

  1. Dear Kurt and Diane,
    Please accept our heartfelt sympathy on the loss of your father. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.
    Randy & Bob Stern

  2. My sincere condolence to Wayne’s Family. Wayne was a great person, a father and a friend to the many people he touched. He will be missed by many including the many friends he made in the racing community. I will miss him.

  3. Don & Ginny Veselenal

    Dear Diane .Kurt & Family. Our deepest sympathy to all of you. I think Wayne had a friend with many,many people that he met in his life. I know that I consider myself lucky to have met him racing
    in the early 70`s at Nelson Ledges in B Class of NCCC. May God Bless Wayne and his belover
    Sincerely Don.V

  4. Sending heartfelt condolences and wrapping the family with love and comforting thoughts – especially Diane and Kurt. XOXO’s….

  5. Dear Diane, Kurt and Family. Our deepest sympathy to you and your family on the loss of your Father. I’ve known Wayne since I joined the Corvette Club in 1974. He was always a good friend and we enjoyed seeing him at the old timers lunches. He would always take the time to sit with us and reminisce about racing and all the Club activities. Sue and I will him greatly. I’m sorry I won’t be able to attend the funeral because I just arrived in Florida on Sunday. Wayne will be in our hearts.

  6. Our deepest sympathy to Wayne’s family. We was so happy to be a grandpa!
    We are so glad we saw him just recently at a Corvette Cleveland “Old Timers” get together.
    Thinking of you,
    The CC “Old Timers”

  7. Thinking of you and sending my condolences for the loss of your father. I graduated with Wayne from Brush High School in 1962. Would see him occasionally through the years, at the track, and at Class Reunions. He was a great guy.

  8. I had the pleasure of working and getting to know both your Father and Mother at our therapy office. They were both very special people. So sorry for your loss. Prayers for your family.

  9. Dear Kurt and Di,
    It’s not fair to lose both your parents so young. I just know they will be supporting you still every day…and I’m so grateful you have one another. Diane, you are one of the few people I know who really can turn friends into family. Your family here on Earth is still plentiful and vibrant and I am happy to be a part of that motley crew! Mr. D, may your journey be smooth…I know you have open arms from Shirl waiting! Love to all of you, Katie, Callaghan, and Emma

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