In the 63 years she's lived in Canal Winchester, Pat Hartman has devoted much of her time to community and charitable service.

In the 63 years she's lived in Canal Winchester, Pat Hartman has devoted much of her time to community and charitable service.

Now the community is giving back.

Hartman, 84,will be the grand marshal in this year's Labor Day parade.

The parade will start at 1 p.m. Sept. 6 at at the high school. It will wind more than two miles through historic downtown Canal Winchester, ending at the community pool.

"My husband (Bill) was born and raised here," she said. "I met him at Ohio University. We were married in 1947. I loved the town from the time that I first moved here."

She said she was surprised to receive the letter telling her she would be honored as parade grand marshal.

Canal Winchester Village Councilwoman Bobbie Mershon, also a member of the Labor Day Festival committee, nominated Hartman to be grand marshal.

"She has devoted her whole life to serving Canal Winchester, whether through veterans' organizations or the historical society," Mershon said. "She has always given of her time."

Hartman was one of the original founders of Canal Winchester Human Services, an organization that was created in 1955. She said the inspiration was a family that lost their home in a fire. Women from the village tried to get help for the family through the American Red Cross and Charity Newsies but were unable to find assistance.

"They had nothing," she said. "Nobody would help us. We gathered up clothing. Someone offered them a place to live. People donated furniture."

The organization has been known to pay utilities or buy groceries for struggling village families, Hartman said but the need has decreased with the existence of the Canal Winchester Community Pantry.

"In an emergency, we buy food," she said. "It has kind of changed. We have gone more to tools for schools and adopt-a-family at Christmas time."

Hartman is also actively involved with the American Legion Women's Auxiliary, where she serves as president this year. Her duties with the legion also include putting together the annual Memorial Day program.

"I have kind of been the chair of that for at least 30 years," she said. "I get the speaker make sure the band is there."

She was also on the committee that established the village's senior citizen center and worked with the superintendent of schools to organize a bus to take seniors to the high school for lunch.

Hartman noted that the senior citizen center stands on the site where the Lions Club shelter house once stood. Portions of the shelter still remain, including a fireplace and stone wall, she said.

"The idea of helping other people is ingrained in me," she said. "The Lord has been good to me."

Working at a hostess for Bob Evans also takes up a lot of her time. She has been employed at Bob Evans for the past nine years.

"I enjoy working," Hartman said. "I worked most of my life."