Kay Kuhnle, pillar of community, remembered by family and friends
August 28, 2008 · Updated 9:17 AM
MARYSVILLE Long-time pillar of the community Kay Kuhnle passed away last weekend; the owner of Kuhnles Tavern was 79 years old.
The civic leader and businessman was fondly remembered by friends as a faithful companion and fishing buddy. The tavern on State Avenue has long been a community fixture which his family has owned since 1918. His wife Joanne said he started working in the place as soon as he turned 21. Kuhnle was born in Marysville.
He was a big guy and he was like a brother to me, said Bob Buttke, a life-long friend. We went places and did things. He did more for the community and the sports programs.
The many trophies and sponsorships in the State Avenue establishment were just the tip of the iceberg, as Kuhnle sponsored too many teams to list.
He really did things for the community, Buttke said.
Buttke was four years younger than his mentor, who lived next door to his family when he was born. He recalled Kuhnle making the trek across two vacant lots to visit his home at Sixth and Columbia, calling for Bucky in his toddler tongue. Buttke said he and Kuhnle would talk all the time about people and events in town. An avid sportsmen, Kuhnle loved to fish and hunt, and was renowned for his flies which he tied by hand; the lures were in great demand, according to Buttke.
People wanted his flies, Buttke said.
He was too nice to be a great hunter, and only shot pheasant and quail, preferring the quiet of the rod and reel.
The family business was founded in 1918 and was an ice cream parlor and cigar store during prohibition and switched to serving beer when the 18th Amendment to the United States constitution was repealed by the 21st in 1933. Kuhnle worked until recently and would still visit once a week, according to Buttke, whose daughter-in-law still works at the tavern.
Memorial Services will be held Friday, Nov. 24, at 1 p.m. at Schaefer-Shipman Funereal Home, at 804 State Avenue in Marysville.