Conrad J. Storad, Sr., age 82, passed away peacefully on July 18, 2018. He was challenged for years with many illnesses.
Conrad was born on August 30, 1935 in Barberton, Ohio, where he was a life-long resident. Known best as “Connie” by all of his friends, he was the older of two sons born to Joseph and Anna Storad. He married Mary Ann Leuenberger, his high school sweetheart and love of his life, in 1955. Together, they worked hard and enjoyed many good times while raising a family of five sons and one daughter during more than 62 years of marriage. He was extremely proud of his family and all their accomplishments.
Connie began work as an apprentice meat cutter at the age of 15. He often reminded people that he was not a “butcher.” Meat cutting was a craft. For Connie, it was an art form. He perfected his craft and worked for 41 years cutting meat at many Akron area stores, including long service with A&P and Acme supermarkets. He often helped out at Bozin’s IGA, Ellet IGA, and many other small neighborhood stores. His meat case displays were beautiful to behold.
A 1953 graduate of Barberton High School, Connie was an outstanding athlete. His class celebrated their 65th reunion the Saturday before his death. Connie played quarterback for the Barberton Barons bantam football team. A fire-balling right hander for Les Scarr’s Barberton Magic’s baseball team, Connie was a strikeout king. He pitched several no-hitters. One of his proudest moments as an athlete was getting a try-out invitation from the Cleveland Indians in 1953. He often joked, “The Indians had Bob Feller, they didn’t need me.” The invitation letter remained a prized possession. Connie also was an outstanding bowler, earning many league honors over the years. He led his Bozin’s IGA team to an Ohio State Tournament championship in 1979.
As a middle-aged father, Connie often joined his sons and their friends in pick-up basketball games at Crisman Park. Even in his 40s and early 50s, Connie’s dead-eye accuracy with a midrange jump shot was the envy of every youngster on the court. He once won a lunch-time free throw shooting contest at the Steiner Center in Wadsworth by sinking 96 of 100 shots.
Family meant everything to Connie. He was the ultimate “nicknamer.” He had nicknames for almost every family member, starting with his oldest son, whom he dubbed Toppy. Connie enjoyed family gatherings. He was a master pig-roaster. Over the years, thousands of friends and family members feasted on pork, lamb, beef, and chicken roasted on a huge stainless steel rotisserie that was known as “Connie’s Snack Bar.”
Connie was a lifetime member of St. Augustine’s Catholic Church. For decades, he was a member of the Perpetual Adoration Society. He often made a “holy hour” in the early morning before going to work. He was a past president of the Fraternal Order of Police Auxiliary in Barberton.
Connie was preceded in death by his father, Joseph, and mother, Anna, who lived to be 100 years old. He is survived by his loving wife, Mary Ann; sons, Conrad Jr. (Laurie), Michael (Mary), James, David (Nancy), and Joseph; daughter Carolyn McCullick (Don), daughter-in-law Kris; and brother Anthony. He was known as “Papa” to his 12 grandchildren and nine great grandchildren. He also leaves behind dozens of nieces and nephews, cousins, and many wonderful friends, including meat-cutting colleagues Larry Lambright and Jack Thompson.
Calling hours will be held on Tuesday, July 24, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Cox-McNulty Funeral Home, 222 Norton Avenue, in Barberton. A mass of Christian burial will take place Wednesday, July 25, 10 a.m., at St. Augustine Catholic Church in Barberton.
To honor Connie’s memory, in lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the charity or organization of your choice. The Storad family also gives special thanks to the professional care-givers and staff at Pleasant View Health Care Center and at Crossroads Hospice. The kind and loving care you provided our father will always be appreciated.