February 2, 2016

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Former U.S. House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) today issued the following statement on the passing of longtime friend, mentor and community leader Richard “Dick” Slagle of Middletown, OH:

 “Dick Slagle was a giant of a man whose impact on the Middletown region will be evident for generations to come.  His spirit was as strong as the wood of the gavel he fashioned for me as I prepared to become Speaker.  That gavel was by my side through my speakership as a source of confidence and strength – the gift of a teacher, a mentor, and a true friend.  He was all of those things to me, and to many others who were blessed to know him during his long and remarkable life.

“Dick was a major force in my career, teaching me how to sharpen my communications skills when I was a young salesman and state legislator, and helping to persuade me to leave my small business and commit myself to public service as a candidate for the U.S. House.  Dick believed I could do it before anybody else did.  He believed in me before I believed it myself.  

“Dick’s finest work was the work he did for the family and community he loved.  He was a devoted husband and father.  As a result of his work for the Middletown Chamber of Commerce and later at Armco, he became an icon in the Middletown community.  He was a visionary who loved his adopted hometown and never stopped believing in its potential. 

“He was one of the greatest men I ever knew.  May God rest his soul and bring comfort to his family.”