In Memoriam

James O. Frendewey, Past International Director (1983-1985), died on April 7, 2021, at Florence Health Services in Michigan while recuperating from a fall. He was 97 years old.

A Lion and member of the Iron Mountain Lions Club since 1960, the late Past Director Frendewey served as club president, zone chairman, district governor and multiple district council chairman.

For his efforts on behalf of the association, he received the 100% District Governor Award, two Extension Awards, a Key Member Award, three International President's Awards, three Monarch Chevrons, and the Ambassador of Good Will Award, the highest honor granted to a member by the association. He was also a Melvin Jones Fellow.

Active in the community, Past Director Frendewey served on the Upper Michigan Lions Eye Bank Committee and the Bay Cliff Health Camp for physically handicapped children. In addition, he was president of his local PTA chapter, a post commander for the American Legion, a Boy Scout leader, and president of both the Michigan Tech. Local Alumni Association and the Dickinson County Industrial Development Corporation.

The late Past Director served in the U.S. Naval Reserve, was accepted for flight officers training, and became a U.S. Marine Corps pilot. He enjoyed a successful career in the mining industry and had a small role in the history of snowmobiling in the early 1960s through sales of a rudimentary snowmobile called the Trailmaker.

PID Frendewey was a dedicated husband and father to four children, nine grandchildren, and seven great grandchildren.

 

 

William A. McKinney, Past International Director (2013-2015) died on Friday, July 9, 2021 at Anderson Hospital in Maryville, Ill. He was 73 years old.

A Lion since 1973, the late Past Director McKinney was a member of the Marine Lions Club, and an associate member of the St. Jacob Lions Club. He served the association at multiple levels at the District, Multiple District, and International levels and as a co-coordinator for Campaign SightFirst I. Past Director McKinney was also instrumental in the formation of the Regional Eye Care Committee serving clients in southern Illinois. He loved traveling and meeting Lions from every corner of the world with his life partner Lydia Ellis.

For his dedication to the association, the late Past Director received multiple awards including several Presidential Awards, the 40- and 45-Year Monarch Chevron, and the Ambassador of Good Will Award, the highest honor the association grants its members. He was also a Progressive Melvin Jones Fellow.

Past Director McKinney loved farming and was a member of the Farmers Livestock Market Association and National Stock Yards since 1970. He was a natural caregiver; working the soil, raising animals, or taking care of people in need. Most of all, he enjoyed spending time his children and grandchildren, especially collecting model tractors with his son, Bryan.

 

Pat Ryan, Past International Director (1982-1984) died on April 15, 2021. He was 89 years old.

The late Past Director Ryan became a Lion in 1960 and then a member of the Rotorua Host Lions Club in New Zealand in 1975. He held many positions at the club, district, and international level. As District Governor, he attended conventions in Australia and was recognized as a great orator who would command an audience to silence when he spoke. He was inspirational and encouraged Lions to achieve outstanding goals in service.

For his dedication and service to the Association, the late Past Director Ryan received numerous awards including the 100% District Governor Award, eight International President's Awards, the Life Membership Award, and the Ambassador of Good Will Award, the highest honor the association grants its members. He was also a Melvin Jones Fellow.

Active in his community, he served as a past chairman of the Advisory Committee Foundation for the Blind and was a life member of the Rotorua Senior Citizens Association. A dedicated husband to his late spouse June, father, and grandfather, the late Past Director Ryan offered others support and encouragement with a caring heart.

 

Tom Lehman, Past International Director (1992-1994), died on April 3, 2021. He was 84 years old.

A Lion since 1961, and most recently a member of the Bozeman Gallatin Empire Lions Club, the late Past Director Lehman served twice as 100% District Governor. On the international level, he was a member of the Nominations and Elections Committee and Chairperson of the Parade Contest Committee. He served as an appointee to the International Board of Directors, and as a member of the USA/Canada Lions Leadership Forum Planning Committee.

For his dedication to the association, the late Past Director Lehman received numerous awards including the Senior Master Key, the Guiding Lion Award, seven International President's awards, and the Ambassador of Good Will Award, the highest honor the association grants its members. He was also a Bronze Diamond Humanitarian Partner and multi-level Progressive Melvin Jones Fellow.

The late Past Director encouraged others to reach for and accomplish higher goals. He loved being a Lion and was especially proud of his involvement in the formation of the Montana Lions Sight and Hearing Foundation and the Gallatin Empire Lions Foundation. He will be remembered as a respected mentor, advisor, and friend.

 

 

Dr. Ashok Mehta, Past International President (2005-2006), passed away on March 17, 2021.  He was 89 years old.

The late Past President Mehta became a member of the Bombay Sion Lions Club in 1963. True to his presidential theme, “Passion to Excel,” he immediately began to sponsor new Lion members and continued to for the next 57 years. The late Past President Mehta organized more than 30 eye camps in India and Africa. He was dedicated to the success of the Lion Tarachand Bapa Hospital, and mobilized international support during major catastrophes, including earthquakes and super-cyclones in India. His peace mission to Pakistan, promoted by Lions of the two nations, added to the spirit of building bridges between the people of these countries.

During Campaign SightFirst, Mehta served as an International Committee member for South Asia and Africa, contributing to the campaign’s success in raising more than US$150 million.

The late Past President Mehta served the association in numerous roles. He was a regular participant at Lions conventions, Forums, and Lions conferences, served as a member of the faculty at 10 District Governors-elect Schools, and was chairperson of the District Governors Orientation program at the 75th International Convention in Hong Kong.

His numerous awards include the Lions International Key Award for sponsoring 250 new members and 28 extension awards for organizing new clubs, the Friend of Humanity Award, and the Ambassador of Good Will Award, the highest award the association gives to its members. He was also a multi-level Progressive Melvin Jones Fellow.

The Jaycees of Mumbai declared him “Man of the Year” in 1986. The government of Maharashtra appointed him to the Senate of Mumbai University, and he was awarded an honorary doctoral degree in humanities from the University of the World in Missouri, USA.

The late Past President Mehta enjoyed a successful career as chairperson and managing director of a company in India and was actively associated with more than a dozen major medical, educational, welfare, social, and cultural institutions. His spouse, Kokila, daughter, Sheetal, and extended family and friends mourn his death.

 

Kenneth M. Lentfer, Past International Director (1980-1982) OAM, died on Sept. 10, 2020 at the age of 96. The late Past Director Lentfer became a Lion in 1958 and served in many offices with 40 years of perfect attendance. As a life member of his club, he was recognized with numerous awards including the Ambassador of Goodwill Award, the highest honor bestowed upon a member by the association. He was also a Progressive Melvin Jones Fellow. He was elected to the Lions Australia Hall of Fame in 2004, and was a life governor of the NSW/ACT Save Sight Foundation, the NSW/ACT Public Health Care Foundation, and a justice of the peace. For his services to the community Lentfer was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) and he is remembered by the NSW/ACT Nurses Scholarship Foundation through the Ken Lentfer Commitment to Service Award. He enjoyed a successful career as the managing director of two companies in property development and investments. A beloved husband, father, father-in-law, grandfather, and great-grandfather, PID Lentfer was known for his generous spirit. First as a member of the Parramatta then Newcastle Lions Club, he was one of the ordinary people doing extraordinary things to make the community better.

 

Past International President Rohit C. Mehta, known as the Father of Indian Lionism, died on the morning of September 17, 2020. He was 91 years old.

The late Past International President Mehta became a Lion in 1956 and after years of dedication and service to the association, became International President in 1992-93. He was the first Lion from India to serve as International President of Lions.

PIP Mehta was the charter secretary of the first Lions Club in his state of Gujarat. He served in numerous capacities and was appointed district governor in 1959-60, elected district governor in 1960-61, and served as a member of the association's board of directors from 1970 to 1972. In 1987, Mehta was elected as the association’s third International Vice President. He served as LCIF Trustee, LCIF Steering Committee Member, Lions Quest Advisory Committee, Chairman of the Lions Quest India Foundation and CSFII PIP Campaign Ambassador.

The late Past President Mehta was also the editor of the LION Magazine in India for many years and was an acting member of Ahmedabad Host Club and Honorary Member of Lions Club of Ahmedabad Karnavati.  He was instrumental in the initiative of Sight First and Lions Quest Program. He was also one of the key members to start China Action Program for Sight Conversation, and was the pioneer of several service projects including Lions Karnavati Shantaben Vishnubhai Patel Eye Hospital, Lalji Mehrotra Lions School, Lions Blood Bank, and Lions Kidney Dialysis Center. Until recently, he served as a chairman of the School for Deaf-Mutes Society, founded by Mahatma Gandhi and visited by Helen Keller. He also served as chairman of an educational institute Bhartiya Vidya Bhavan; imparting education to more than 4,000 students.

For his dedication and service, the late Past President Mehta was recognized with the Master Key, six Extension Awards, a 50, 55 and 60-Year Charter Monarch Chevrons, Humanitarian Partner Bronze, Life Membership Award, over 20 International President Medals, and the Ambassador of Good Will, the highest honor granted to a member by the association. He was a generous donor to LCIF, including being a Major Donor to both Campaign SightFirst I and II, and he was a multi-level Progressive Melvin Jones Fellow.

After losing his parents in an air crash in 1950, 20-year-old Mehta quickly accepted the responsibilities of his family’s textile and pharmaceutical business, and continued to acquire many international businesses and collaborations. Retiring from business activities in 2001, he continued to serve society through various institutions, including serving as the president of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Indian Cotton Mill Federation, president of Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and chairman of Bet Dwarka Temple Trust. He was also the chairman of more than 20 state public sector undertakings and notable amongst them was GNFC, Ahmedabad Electricity Company, and GRUH Finance Bank.

On August 26, Lions around the world celebrated PIP Mehta’s 91st birthday by doing individual Acts of Kindness, and he was delighted to receive a scrapbook that described 100 of these selected acts.

The late Past President was devoted to his family; wife Asha, two sons Rajesh and Anuj, four grandchildren, and one great grandchild, and was proud of the worldwide Lions family. He recognized the needs of others and through determination and kindness improved countless lives.

 

 

 

Past International Director Dr. Earl Dotson died on September 3, 2020, at the age of 95.  A member of the Buckingham County Lions Club since 1961, he served as International Director from 1984 to 1986.  He held many offices and served as a Vice President of the Lions of Virginia Foundation (LOVF).  LOVF was founded after Hurricane Camille devastated many Gulf States and flooded Nelson County in Virginia with rainfall that challenged existing world records for a 24-hour period. Rain in excess of 25 inches—and possibly as high as 37 inches in one area—were recorded. The devastation led the Lions of Virginia to develop a plan for a statewide foundation which continues to serve those in need today. For his dedication and service to the association, PID Dotson was honored with many awards including the Ambassador of Good Will Award, the highest honor the association gives to its members. He also received a special citation from the Commission for Visually Handicapped in recognition of his service to the Rehabilitation Center for the Blind. In 1980, he was commissioned by the governor of Virginia to serve the Commonwealth of Virginia for a term of seven years. He enjoyed a successful career in his dental practice, and was a devoted husband, father, grandfather, and great grandfather.

Past International Director Nobuharu Kikuchi (1991-1993), of the Sendai Aoba Lions Club, District 332-C, Japan, died on August 15, 2020, at the age of 92.  A member of the Sendai Aoba Lions Club since 1967, the late Past Director Kikuchi held many positions in the association and served as Lion Magazine Editorial Committee chairman. He will be remembered for his generosity to LCIF as a major donor as his support of the Foundation enabled Lions to improve the lives of many in need. For his contributions to the association, the late Kikuchi received numerous awards, Donor Pins - Immediate Recognition, and two Lion of Commitment Pins as well as the Ambassador of Good Will, the highest honor granted to a member of the association. He was also a multi-level Progressive Melvin Jones Fellow. Active in his community, the late Past Director Kikuchi served as chairman of the Miyagi Prefecture Juvenile Guidance Association, the Sendai City Juvenile Guidance Association, and the Sendai City Counseling Research Center. He was also board chairman of the Aigo Welfare Association.  Additionally, he was a successful businessman, devoted husband and father.

Past International Director Trevor P. Baron died on May 8, 2019. He was 99 years old -- 85 days short of his 100th birthday. The late past director became a member of the Hamilton Host Lions Club in 1958. He held 33 years of perfect attendance, has received eight International President’s Awards, and the Ambassador of Good Will Award, the highest honor bestowed upon a member by the association. Baron chartered the first Lions Club in the Fiji Islands and chaired the committee for the formation of the Nadi Lions Club that is still serving the community today. He dedicated his time to helping children, was a life member of the Society for Intellectually Handicapped Children’s Association, now called the IHC New Zealand. Now more than 60 years old, IHC New Zealand is the largest provider of services to people with intellectual disabilities and their families, supporting more than 6,000 people.

Past International Director Scott Rennels (1999-2001) died on January 9, 2020 at the age of 71. A Lion since 1987 and member of the Jonesboro Nettleton Lions Club, Rennels held many offices within the association. He served as a presenter, moderator, and discussion leader at the USA/Canada Forums and was chairman of the leadership committee. Rennels was past president of the Lions World Services for the Blind. His numerous Lions awards include the Ambassador of Good Will award, the highest honor the association bestows upon its members. In addition to his Lion activities, the late international director was state president of the Arkansas Society of the Sons of the American Revolution and served as a North Vietnamese interpreter and translator. He and his wife, Deborah, cofounded the southern Illinois chapter of The Dream Factory, an organization that grant dreams to seriously ill and terminally ill children. Rennels served in the United States Air Force and studied North Vietnamese at Pacific Western Defense Language Institute.

 

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