Tom Renner, 76, passed away due to complications from Parkinson’s disease on March 5, 2020. He was born July 26, 1943 in Akron to the late Ralph and Caroline Renner. He was raised in Cuyahoga Falls and graduated from CFHS in 1961. He proudly attended Kent State University, graduating in 1965 with a major in English and a minor in Spanish. His first job after college was as a freshman English teacher at Twinsburg High School where he also coached football and basketball. On December 31, 1969, Tom was sworn into the Akron Police Academy, graduating in March 1970 and beginning a career that would last over 32 years.
As a young uniformed officer, Tom worked in Patrol before transferring to Traffic where he spent much of his career. During his time as a traffic officer he survived a duty-related motorcycle accident as well as, in 1985, a horrific accident on I-76 in which his police cruiser was hit and he was trapped while it burned. Remarkably, he was able to save himself and recover from injuries, returning to work as the best Girl Scout Cookie salesman and resident joke teller the APD Information Desk had ever seen! Eventually, he continued in traffic until he served as president of the Fraternal Order of Police, Akron Lodge #7 from 1992-93. After serving as FOP president he was transferred to the Detective Bureau, finishing the last 9 years of his career in property crimes, crimes against persons, and warrants. He retired in April 2002 after serving 32 years and 4 months. During his time with the APD and even after retirement, Tom was active with the FOP at local and state levels, serving on the Lodge #7 Executive Board in several capacities as well as a mentor to the FOP presidents who came after him. He was a regular for Saturday Morning Coffee and Taco Tuesday, and was always quick with one of his one-liners and “dad jokes”. Also after retirement, Tom renewed his teaching license and spent several years as a part-time substitute teacher for Green Local Schools.
Throughout his life, Tom enjoyed swimming, skiing, golfing, and roller coasters. He particularly enjoyed bus trips to casinos with his wife and brother-in-law. He loved watching and attending Cleveland Indians games, especially with his children and when his daughter Kerry would sing the National Anthem. He was an avid supporter of Kent State University and Ohio State University Football. He enjoyed classic cars, John Wayne movies, and making people laugh. He also loved animals, including the dogs he adopted throughout his life – Foxy, Schnapps, Samantha, D.O.G., Midnight, Bubba, and his pal until the end, Cuz.
Besides his parents, Tom was preceded in death by his son, Jordan. He is survived by his devoted wife of 38 years, Diane; loving daughter, Dr. Kerry Renner; granddaughter and light of his life, Ava Marie; Ava’s mother and grandmother, Marissa and Darlene Musarra; caring neighbors, George and Pam Wetzel; lifelong friend Mick Williams; “private barber”, Larry Ange; as well as numerous other wonderful friends.
A Celebration of Tom’s Life will be held at 5pm on Saturday March 14, 2020 at the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #7, 2610 Ley Drive, Akron, Ohio 44319. Family and friends may gather at the FOP Lodge from 2pm to the time of the service (and may stay after as well). Memorial contributions can be made in Tom’s name to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, Donation Processing, P.O. Box 5014, Hagerstown, MD 21741-5014 or follow the link https://www.michaeljfox.org/donate. To leave a special message online for the family, visit our website at www.schermesserfh.com.
Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research
P.O. Box 5014
Hagerstown, MD 21741-5014
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