Ford Oval of Honor 2019: Richard Ellsworth

Local News

COLUMBUS (WCHM) — Richard Ellsworth service was more than an action — it was a calling.

Basic training gave him the skills to handle the weapons of war. Joining the front lines in Germany was a different story.

“I don’t know that you can be prepared when all of a sudden, it happens,” he said. “My memory of the first arrival in France was it was cold. Very cold.”

After the victory in Europe, Ellsworth went to the Pacific, spending six months in the Philippines following Japan’s surrender.

Returning home, he earned his engineering degree, but his need to serve was not fulfilled.

Ellsworth went to seminary school, becoming the minister at Central College Presbyterian Church and also Chaplin for the Columbus Division of Fire and Police. In 1991, he was appointed state Chaplin for the Ohio State Highway Patrol, a role he continues to fill to this day.

At the age of 94, he still looks for ways to serve and to inspire others to do the same.

“There’s a satisfaction out of doing something, seeing the result,” Ellsworth said. “It’s not monetary. To see changes in people’s lives.”

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