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John P. Vanco

John P. Vanco, 83, of Elyria, passed away Wednesday, March 27, 2013, at his home, following a 20 year battle with breast cancer. He was born March 14, 1930 in Elyria, and was a lifelong Elyria resident.

John was a real estate agent for 53 years, and was currently working for Northern Ohio Realty. He also served as an assistant Elyria Safety Service Director for 15 years, was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Elyria, a United States Air Force veteran, a member of AMVETS Post 32, the Elyria Elks Lodge 465, American Legion Post 12, Elyria Kiwanis, Elyria Chamber of Commerce and the Lorain County Board of Realtors. John also served on the Elyria Parks and Recreation Board for over 30 years and was very involved in reopening the pools and ice rink and also was on the committee to start the Elyria High School swim team in 1997. He served over 32 years on the Elyria Y.M.C.A. board, served on the Elyria Sports Hall of Fame board and the Center for the Sightless board. John was a former partner in the ownership of Forest Hills Golf Course, and was a vice-president of Precision Plastics Co., and the Alsport Co. He was very involved in the cancer support group at the main campus of the Cleveland Clinic for over 20 years, and also the men's breast cancer awareness group at the Clinic, and helped many men when they were diagnosed with male breast cancer. His six grandchildren were his life and he attended their sporting events whenever he was able.

Survivors include his wife of 60 years, Claire (nee McIntyre); daughter, Nancy (Michael) Gebhardt of Elyria; son, Jim (Robin) Vanco of Strongsville; grandchildren, Amy, Kara, Emily, John, Grant, and Meredith.

He was preceded in death by his sister, Mary (Andy) Pavlenda.

There will be no visitation. A Memorial Service will be held Saturday, March 30, 2013, 11 A.M., at the First United Methodist Church, 312 Third St., Elyria. The Reverend Roger Talbot will officiate. Burial will be private.

Memorial contributions can be made to the First United Methodist Church or to the Maygar United Church of Christ, 6119 West River Rd., Elyria.

Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to the Laubenthal-Mercado Funeral Home and Cremation Service, 38475 Chestnut Ridge Rd., Elyria. Online condolences may be expressed at

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