Wednesday, January 23, 2002

Auto dealer Ron Borcherding, 65, dies

Known for fun-loving personality, bluntness

By Kristina Goetz
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        He was the embodiment of the “Borcherding thing.”

        Ron Borcherding, whose name is synonymous with the automotive industry in Greater Cincinnati, died Sunday of cancer. He was 65.

        Family and friends say Mr. Borcherding led Borcherding Buick, Pontiac, GMC Truck with vision and integrity and he expected excellence from his employees.

        He owned dealerships in Loveland, Deerfield Township and Lawrenceburg, Ind.

        Bill DeLord of Bill DeLord Auto Center in Lebanon was a friend since 1989. He described Mr. Borcherding as a straight-shooter.

        “He'd tell you exactly the way he felt, not what he thought you'd want to hear.”

        His fun personality was always reflected in his advertising.

        Mr. Borcherding frequently walked through his dealerships, stopping for coffee and asking customers for their input. He made a special effort to recognize even small accomplishments in private.

        In public, he organized a company Thanksgiving food drive and a monthly employee birthday party.

        “Ron was a kind, gentle person,” said Kim Borcherding, his wife of nine years. “He was mild- mannered, but when Ron told you something, you could take it to the bank.”

        Born in Indiana, Mr. Borcherding graduated from Indiana University. And though he had been a Cincinnati resident for 40 years, he never let go of his Indiana roots.

        In Mr. Borcherding's Bible, Philippians was the book most underlined. He advocated overcoming adversity, of making changes that could change a life. Over the years, he served on a variety of dealer councils and boards to show community support.

        An outdoorsy type, Mr. Borcherding loved fly and bass fishing.

        But, his wife said, “He was a catch-and-release kind of guy.”

        He also doted on his dog, Gena.

        Other survivors include three daughters, Wendy Martin of Kenwood, Kathy Brooks of Las Vegas and Kerry Borcherding of Southgate; two sisters, Bette Push of Key West, Fla., and Diane Ballard of Phoenix; and a brother, Michael Borcherding of Goshen.

        Visitation is 5-9 p.m. today at Jon Deitloff Funeral Centre, 4389 Spring Grove Ave., Spring Grove Cemetery. A celebration service will be at 11 a.m. Thursday at Vineyard Community Church, 11355 Century Circle East, Springdale.

        Memorials: Make a Wish Foundation, 4770 Duke Drive, Mason 45040.


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