Licking County News

Cedar Hill Graveyard Walk slated Sept. 12

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Seven of Licking County's deceased leaders will "come back to life" during the fourth annual Graveyard Walk through Cedar Hill Cemetery on Friday, Sept. 12.

"All of the people are somewhat close together so people don't have to walk the entire cemetery," said Jeff Hotchkiss, superintendent of Newark cemeteries and parks and recreation.

Cedar Hill Cemetery is the resting place of many of the area's most prominent citizens, some of whom will be featured in the Sept. 12 graveyard walk. The Licking County Historical Society provides background information on people to be featured, and members of the Licking County Players and volunteers portray those people during the graveyard walk.

This year's event features leaders who contributed to the community in different ways.

Philanthropists John and Mary Alford continue to be recognized for their generosity in supporting local programs. A wing at Licking Memorial Hospital was named after them to recognize their donations.

John was one of the founders of Park National Bank, and Mary helped with Weathervane Playhouse and the 20th Century Club.

"Both were very involved in the community," said Bob Baldwin, treasurer of the Licking County Historical Society.

John David Spencer helped the community grow by adding a business and supporting local media. He is a former publisher of the Advocate and past general manger of WCLT-FM and operated his own printing business: the Spencer-Walker Printing Co.

Peter Androutsos was not a native of Newark but came to be known in town as Liberty Pete.

Androutsos was born in Greece and came to the United States in 1909. He once sold hot tamales and hot dogs on the courthouse square before going to work for a cousin at the Imperial Lunch Room on South Second Street, Baldwin said. Androutsos later purchased the restaurant and renamed it the Liberty Grill, which he operated until 1957.

"He used to do a free dinner, and the free dinner still goes on in his honor," Baldwin said.

Androutsos sold war bonds and sent items to troops in World War II, also retaining membership in the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the American Legion. Baldwin said he also sponsored programs for boys through the YMCA.

Newark native Chuck Beadle might be best remembered as Mr. Wildcat. He was born in Newark and graduated from Newark High School, later coming back from the service to teach geography and history at Newark High School.

Beadle led cheers during Newark High School football games and attended NHS basketball games to show support for the team, Baldwin said.

Beadle shared his passion for sports by supporting Newark High School sports teams, and baseball player Albert Casper (Cheese) Schweitzer shared his passion for baseball with everyone in the community.

A native of Cincinnati, Schweitzer played with the St. Louis Browns in 1908, on a team dubbed "the worst major league baseball team." Baldwin said in 51 seasons, the team had only 11 winning seasons.

Schweitzer came to Newark to work for the Pure Oil Refinery and became a manager and player in the Twilight League baseball program, which included teams from central Ohio.

Wayne Martin showed his love of the community by sharing his passion for music with people in Licking County and a lot of residents along the east coast. Martin, founder of Martin Music store on North 21st Street, played drums in the Wayne Martin Orchestra, a group that performed at the Crystal Ballroom in Buckeye Lake from 1944 to 1947 and traveled along the East Coast, performing through 1950s.

The music store he opened in the Newark Arcade downtown still operates on 21st Street.

The walk will be held at 6 p.m. Friday, Sept. 12, at Cedar Hill Cemetery. Admission is free for historical-society members and is $5 for others.

Call the historical society at (740) 345-4898.

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