By Jennifer Pauly
Niagara River Chamber of Commerce President
Robert "Bob" Monroe was chosen by Village of Youngstown Mayor Raleigh Reynolds and trustees as the 2016 Village of Youngstown Citizen of the Year.
Monroe is always willing to lend a helping hand to anyone who needs it. He is quick to volunteer to help and has made life a little easier and enjoyable for many in the community.
The Village of Youngstown has been home for Monroe and his wife of 28 years, Pat, along with their cat, JJ.
Monroe grew up in Niagara Falls and worked 28 years for the Niagara Falls Police Department as the head of the dispatch department. Moving from Niagara Falls to Youngstown was an easy transition. His parents lived in Youngstown and, in 1989, he and Pat moved into a house right around the corner.
The two love living in Youngstown and attend many community events.
Having been retired for the past 11 years, he enjoys keeping busy by helping others and fixing things that need repair. Pat refers to him as a "tinkerer" - one who will find a way to fix anything.
Helping others has always been something Monroe has done. From neighbors to friends to family members, he's there to help. Having been a caretaker for his mother, it was always a priority. However, he has always made time for others. He was a devoted son to his parents and also a devoted son-in-law to Pat's parents.
Monroe's observant nature has made him the unofficial neighborhood house watchman. He has watched over homes for those going on vacation, taken people to doctors' appointments, and fixed everything from garage doors to security cameras. He is happy to do this for all of his neighbors or anyone who would ask. The neighborhood and friends just seem to know to "call Bob."
In his spare time, Monroe enjoys watching animals in his yard. He even built a special squirrel contraption for the squirrels to have their own food. He also likes to read books involving anything technical, and watching science-inspired TV channels. "The Big Bang Theory" is one of his favorites.
The couple has traveled around the county and, along those travels, has enjoyed looking for antique phones. His antique phone collection is quite extensive and impressive, as well has his collection of heirloom family photographs.
Reynolds put it best saying, "Bob was chosen for this award because he is an 'unsung hero' to all of his neighbors, friends and family in the village. He is continuously looking out for and checking on everyone in the neighborhood. It is not unusual for him to show up at a neighbor's door with the simple and unassuming request: 'Anything you need?'
"The Village of Youngstown is a friendly community where people look out for one another, and Bob goes above and beyond to demonstrate these qualities."
The Niagara River Region Chamber of Commerce, Reynolds and the Village of Youngstown trustees are proud to honor Monroe as the 2016 Village of Youngstown Citizen of the Year.