Byron D. Quandt passed away on Sunday, September 16, 2012, at Hospice of the Western Reserve in Westlake, Ohio after a short battle with brain cancer. He was born in Carroll, Iowa on March 7, 1942, to Ivadell (Bednar) Quandt and the Rev. Harvey Quandt.
Byron grew up in various towns in Iowa and graduated from New London High School in New London, Iowa where he played football, basketball, and baseball. The football team was undefeated from the beginning of his sophomore year through his senior year with a twenty-two game winning streak. Their senior year, only seven points were scored against them. Byron maintained friendships with some of his teammates throughout his life. He was a member of the concert band, playing the French horn, the clarinet, trumpet, and later the piano and guitar. In the state music contest, he received the highest rating possible for solo performances. Byron was also quite proud of being selected, in junior high, to play the French horn solo from Dvorak's "From the New World" symphony with the high school concert band. He sang in the mixed chorus, acted in plays, and served as editor of the yearbook. Upon graduation, he went to
Cornell College where he
received a Bachelor of Arts with a major in Sociology. Following college, he spent two years in Chile while serving in the Peace Corps. He then attended the University of Iowa where he received a Master's Degree in the Arts with a Major in Voice.
Byron's professional life began with Sheller Globe Co. in 1967-68, followed by Massey Ferguson from 1971-1985 serving as vice-president from 1981-85, at which time he moved to Toledo, where he lived for the rest of his life. From 1985-2001 he was with Pilkington/Libbey-Owens-Ford Co., an automotive and commercial glass company. He was Senior Vice President from 1986-2001, directing the Human Resource Department. One of his fellow
professionals said, "Byron had a way of bringing out the best in his employees. His leadership was evident and appreciated yet he never took credit for success...credit went to his team."
Byron's athletic enthusiasm lasted throughout his life as he played tennis and golf, rode his bike through many metroparks and exercised at the gym most days of the week. He enjoyed music throughout his life, especially jazz and classical. Always inquisitive and eager to learn, he read constantly,
always on the lookout for a new book.
Byron served on the Board of Junior Achievement of Northwest Ohio for many years and on the Toledo Opera Board. He was a member of Epworth United Methodist Church and Sylvania Country Club where he was elected President of the Board of Trustees. His additional memberships (past and present) include: the Toledo Club, Toledo Tennis Club, The Toledo Museum of Art, Toledo Jazz Society, Wildwood Metroparks, The Toledo Symphony, Toledo Botanical Gardens, Toledo Zoo, and WGTE. With his wife, he enjoyed Inverness Club.
Byron will always be greatly missed by those who knew him and remembered as a humble, unselfish man who was kind, compassionate, had a quick wit and a good sense of humor. More than anything, Byron enjoyed his family. The grandchildren adored their "Papa" and he them, as they experienced the fun activities, trips and adventures they shared.
Left to cherish his memory is his devoted wife, Nancy (Buss Straub) who he married on December 21, 1991. He is also survived by his children, Kristine (Jeffrey) Burk of Houston, TX and Timothy (Julie) Quandt of Columbus, OH; as well as Nancy's children, K. Matthew Straub of Granby, Colorado and Stephanie (Kennedy) (Derek) Harley of Avon Lake, OH, all of whom enjoyed an especially close relationship with him. His eight grandchildren include, Ethan and Evan Burk, Samantha and Owen Quandt, Blake Straub, and Madison, Tommy, and Billy Kennedy. Byron had eagerly anticipated the arrival of baby Kate Harley, due this fall. Also surviving is his brother, Marvin Quandt of Des Moines, IA. He was preceded in death by his parents, and brother, Harvey D. Quandt.
A private memorial service will be held at a later date. The family would like to
express appreciation to the knowledgeable and compassionate doctors and caregivers at the Cleveland Clinic, Towne Center of Avon Lake, and Hospice of the Western Reserve, as well as to the many friends who remembered Byron throughout his illness.
Those wishing to extend an expression of sympathy are asked to consider the Toledo Jazz Orchestra, P.O. Box 353123, Toledo, OH 43635; Metroparks Toledo Area, 5100 W. Central Ave. Toledo, OH 43615; the Toledo Symphony Orchestra, 1838 Parkwood Ave. Toledo, OH 43624, or the Cleveland Clinic Brain Tumor Research Fund T56123, P.O. Box 931517 Cleveland, OH 44193-1655. The Walker Funeral Home is assisting the family with
arrangements, 419.841.2422. Online condolences may be shared by visiting
Published in Toledo Blade on Sept. 30, 2012