Ken Gast, long time volunteer, retires from NEEDS Board

Husband, father, grandfather, veteran, golfer, longtime Kroger employee and volunteer – these all describe Kenton Gast.

Ken Gast

Born August 15, 1926 in Logansport IN, Kenton had one brother and a sister Karen, who still lives in Bloomington IN.  He joined the Naval Air corps and served in the South Pacific during the last two years of World War II on the USS Shangri-La, but says he “never saw any action.”

On June 7, 1953, Ken married Betty Paulin and they began their 66 year marriage. The couple went on to have five children: Charlie (who lives in Mason), Andy (Leesburg, OH), Mike (Greenhills) and Tony (Finneytown).  They lost a daughter to cancer a few years ago.

Kenton (or Ken, as most of us know him) started with Kroger in a six month manager trainee program.  He went on to become Assistant Manager in Indianapolis for 1 ½ years.  Still in Indianapolis he became Produce Trainer and then Produce Buyer, then Assistant Grocery Merchandiser.  In 1965 he came to Cincinnati as Vice President of Manufacturing Procurement where he retired after a 32 year career.

Kenton and his wife Betty have lived in Kenwood for 50 years.  During that time he served as a deacon at Trinity United Church of Christ and in the early ‘80’s he began volunteering at NEEDS where he has served as vice president and as Director of Pantry Operations and Volunteers, and Director of Desk Operations.

He remembers that at that time Sycamore Jr. high school was the biggest donor to NEEDS followed by Greenhills schools.  He remembers that what was left over was always given to the Freestore Food Bank in Cincinnati. When asked what he sees as the biggest change in NEEDS he says the number of clients we serve.

As far as hobbies, Kenton always enjoyed playing golf.  Now his 11 grandchildren take up has spare time.

When asked what he would like to be remember for, Kent replies with no hesitation ”being kind to others.”

Ken, you’ve got your wish.

Thank you for your long years of service to NEEDS and the families of Cincinnati.

Ann Barfels
NEEDS President

NEEDS new look!

How do you like our new website?

We at NEEDS love it.

We think it will keep you, our donors, board members, volunteers and community members better informed on:

  • our hours
  • how to make a monetary donation
  • what our current panty needs are
  • latest news and events
  • heart warming stories of the people we serve
  • thought provoking stories on poverty and hunger in the city of Cincinnati

Plus the new website is responsive meaning its easier to read on your cell phone and tablets!

Thanks to our volunteer web designer, April! We appreciate your hard work!

Pantry Needs: June 20, 2019

Individual toothbrushes
Shampoo
Shaving cream and razors
Kleenex
Dish soap
Laundry detergent
Feminine hygiene products (pads and tampons)

Canned soup especially beef soups (any kind but chicken noodle)
Canned vegetables other than corn or beans of any kind
Canned chicken
Baked beans
Mashed potatoes, rice and noodle mixes, Au gratin potatoes, etc.
Canned prepared foods (Spaghetti, ravioli, chili etc.)

Please drop off these donations at NEEDS during business hours:
Monday-Thursday 9 am – 4 pm
and Friday 9 am -12 noon
at Kenwood Baptist Church 8241 Kenwood Rd, Cincinnati, OH 45241

NEEDS has volunteers at the church on Tuesdays or Thursdays from 9 am -1 pm.

Call 513-891-0850 to let us know you are dropping off a donation.

Thank you very much!

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