Voinoviches are a pair, by George!
They are usually seen cheerfully holding hands and walking down the sidewalks near their east-side Cleveland home or at a friend’s house there near East 185th Street where the once-annual Old World Festival attracted them to the polka music and dancing.
When he announced this week he wouldn’t seek re-election as a U.S. senator from Ohio, it was those kinds of personal memories recalled by this reporter of chance and seconds-only meetings.
It was often when Voinovich wasn’t in the news and this acquaintance wasn’t carrying a press card. Or when he is at the news podium, and she with him.
The Voinoviches are always in good humor.
That goes back even to when they were seen at the now-closed Euclid Beach Park when he was the lesser-known Cuyahoga County auditor before he was the better-known Cleveland mayor before he was the Ohio governor before he was the U.S. senator.
Or when the Lake County Republican Party had the Voinoviches out to its summer picnic in his first bid for statewide office; there if he got a snack for himself, he got a snack for her.
And remember former U.S. Sen. Bob Dole, then running for president, and Voinovich having him dance on national TV and Page 1 with Polka Hall of Famer Cecilia Dolgan, as George and Janet applauded?
It was the governor once hosting reporters on a three-county trip to see Ohio tourist spots and then he escorted Mrs. Voinovich arm in hand through the Ohio State Fair, all silent and smiling, as they led us in the trail behind them as he got a snack for himself, and one for her.
— David W. Jones