HARTVILLE, Ohio—Longtime tire trade press journalist Charles (Chuck) Slaybaugh Jr., who served 15 years in the editorial departments of Rubber & Plastics News and sister publication Tire Business, died June 28 at his home in Hartville. He was 80.
Slaybaugh spent more than three decades covering the tire industry, working initially in the editorial department at Modern Tire Dealer, under Editor Ernie Zielasko.
When Zielasko left MTD to start RPN, Slaybaugh was named MTD's editor and later became its editorial director. He left MTD to write a book, the "Grandparent's Catalog: An Idea Book for Family Sharing."
Zielasko later sold RPN to Crain Communications Inc., and soon thereafter launched Tire Business. This is when Slaybaugh joined the Crain Communications team, first serving as a freelance writer before taking on the role of special projects editor for both RPN and TB.
Before his retirement in 2002, Slaybaugh served as executive editor of Tire Business.
Travel was an important part of Slaybaugh's life. In addition to visiting all 50 states, he and his wife Elaine visited five continents and 40 countries.
Slaybaugh fostered a love of fishing and photography, and he spent time studying history, particularly the Civil War.
He also gave back to his community. Both Slaybaugh and his wife volunteered for several community organizations, including Quail Hollow State Park, Hartville Thrift Shoppe and Friends of the Library.
Later in life, Slaybaugh overcame three back surgeries and, while battling Parkinson's disease, learned to walk again. It was during this time he became an avid bike rider, using a tandem recumbent bike. His famly said he biked more than 3,000 miles throughout the last two years.
Slaybaugh, who according to his obituary "lived his 80 years to the fullest, with a sense of humor, humility, and sincerity" is survived by Elaine, his wife of 58 years. He also is survived by his three children—Charles III, Chris and Julie— a son-in-law and granddaughter.
The family requests that memorials be sent to St. Jacob's Evangelical Lutheran Church, 1460 State St. NE, North Canton, Ohio, 44721. Donations also may be made in his memory to the Brain Support Network, P.O. Box 7264, Menlo Park, Calif., 94026.
A private service will be held at noon on July 8 at St. Jacob's Evangelical Lutheran Church. The service will be livestreamed via Zoom.
Calling hours will take place that night at St. Jacob's from 5 to 7 p.m.