MONROEVILLE Ronald "Shorty" Stang remembers the late Dennis Didion as an accomplished firefighter who was "always active" during his 25 years with the Huron River Joint Fire District.
Didion, 52, lived in Monroeville his entire life until he moved to Willard in 1999. He was promoted to fire captain in 1983.
Fire chief Stang recalled Didion cooked breakfast every month for the Knights of Columbus and American Legion.
"He was good for the community," Stang said. "He was a good guy. The community will miss him."
Norwalk resident Don Long, who was in kindergarten through high school with Didion, described him as "a really good friend." Long shared his memories of his friend, who was Long's best man at his wedding, as the couple looked through photographs for Didion's family.
Long also worked with Didion in the fire department from 1974 until 1984. He helped the Monroeville native and general contractor with roof work through Didion Builders.
The friends often played dartball. "We had a good time drinking beer together," Long recalled.
Didion played baseball, basketball and football in school.
"He was really good at basketball. That was his sport," Long said.
The pair would watch the Ohio State-Michigan game at Didion's home. Long and Didion once played foosball at the Michigan State campus while visiting Didion's older brother Ron in East Lansing.
"That was a good time. We ruled the foosball table," Long said.