Delaware City Schools inducted five alums into its hall of fame Friday.
The inductees were Kay Conklin, class of 1954; John Ditslear, class of 1960; Paul Lyons, M.D., class of 1982; Jim Mendenhall, class of 1969; and Frederick “Rick” Scarry from the class of 1960. The five were honored during a ceremony at Cornell Stadium Friday evening. Scarry was unable to attend but attended a virtual ceremony to accept his induction.
The district reported that Conklin worked as a deputy county recorder for 12 years after she graduated from Willis High School. After leaving the recorder’s office she worked at Ohio Wesleyan University’s Department of Education office. Conklin took one class a semester for 11 years and graduated from OWU in 1988 with degrees in sociology and anthropology. She was elected Delaware County recorder and served in that role from 1989 until she retired in 2004.
As a writer, Conklin is a contributing columnist to The Delaware Gazette and has been published in the Columbus Dispatch. The district reports that Conklin served on the Ashley Wornstaff Library Board of Trustees for 30 years and was a member of the Progressive Mothers Club for 40 years. She and her husband, George, live in Ashley and have two children, Cathy and Carolee.
The district said that Ditslear was very involved while he was a student at Willis, serving as a member of Key Club and an editor for the Gazette page. He graduated from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, with a bachelor’s degree in finance and served as an officer in the United States Navy.
After the Navy, he built a successful insurance business in Noblesville, Indiana, and served as the president of the Life Underwriter’s Association. He was named Indiana Life Underwriter of the Year in 1989. He has served as president and a board member for the chamber of commerce, Boys and Girls Club, United Way and Noblesville School Board of Education.
He was elected mayor of Noblesville in 2003 and established the charity fund, Helping Hands of Noblesville, which has raised over $1 million for children and families in the city during his 16 years of public service. He and his wife, Teri, have five adult children, eight grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
The district described Lyons as a physician, educator and author, and said he currently serves as the president of California University of Science and Medicine and as the dean of its School of Medicine. He previously held positions with the University of California, Riverside School of Medicine, Temple University School of Medicine and Albert Einstein College of Medicine.
The district said Lyons’ work in education and medicine has been recognized regionally and nationally by the American Association of Medical Colleges’ Humanism in Medicine Award, American Medical Student Association’s National Golden Apple for Teaching Excellence Award, a Lindback Foundation Award, Temple University’s Great Teacher Award and University of California, Riverside’s Distinguished Teaching Award.
He has served as a media medical expert for Vogue, Cosmopolitan, CNN, NBC’s Today Show, Prevention magazine, USA Today and numerous local outlets. He and his wife, fellow Hayes graduate Cynthia Sprague, have two children, Devin and Dylan.
During his time within the district, Mendenhall was a member of Student Council, Key Club, French Club and band. He played football and was a starter on the 1969 OCC Championship team. He ran on the track team as well as wrestled. He attended OWU and received his bachelor’s degree in pre-medicine and botany-bacteriology in 1973.
After graduation, Mendenhall spent more than 35 years in the pharmaceutical/biotechnology culminating in an international assignment with Johnson & Johnson Healthcare located in the United Kingdom and Ireland. During his career, Mendenhall won numerous sales, marketing and leadership awards. After retiring in 2009, Mendenhall moved back to Delaware and joined the OWU advancement team and served as a major gift officer and assistant director of alumni relations.
Mendenhall recently held a position with the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium where he was a development officer on the philanthropy team, focusing on corporate and foundation giving. He served two terms as a board member for the United Way of Delaware County from 2013 to 2019. In addition, Mendenhall has served as a board member for SourcePoint, the Delaware County Historical Society, the Delaware Women’s City Club and the Stratford Ecological Center.
Mendenhall and his wife, Gail, currently live in Powell and have a daughter, Taylor, and three grandchildren, Mekhi, Malaysia and Mahaylah.
The district reports that Scarry is an actor, writer, producer and broadcast personality. After graduating, he served as a photographer for the Delaware Gazette and worked at WDLR before being called to military service in 1964. He worked as a military broadcaster and writer for three years in the U.S. Army. He relocated to California after leaving the service and attended film school at Columbia College.
He is a member of the Screen Actors Guild, Actor’s Equity and the American Federation of Radio and Television Artists for over 50 years and regularly appears in episodic television, in feature films, on stage and as a vocal performance for commercials and television shows.
Scarry has appeared on more than 150 TV shows, including “Mad Men,” “VEEP,” Scandal,” “Desperate Housewives,” “The Office,” “Bones,” “Murder She Wrote” and “Star Trek: The Next Generation.” He appeared most recently on the Netflix series “Ratched.”
He has appeared in 33 feature films, including “Space Cowboys,” “The Negotiator,” “Naked Gun 33 1/3” and “Wag the Dog.” He also wrote the screenplay for the film “Fear.” He has also appeared in six Hallmark movies, including “Flower Girl” and “Undercover Bridesmaid.”
Scarry lives in Toluca Lake, California, and has two daughters, Michelle and Jennifer.