By Rebecca Goodman
The Cincinnati Enquirer
WHITE OAK - While Thomas B. Rumpke lay dying of cancer, two of the drivers for his waste-removal company were struck on the job by motorists.
Mr. Rumpke - co-president and CEO of Rumpke Consolidated Companies - died Sunday at his home in White Oak. He was 63.
"He loved working at Rumpke and talking with the employees, whether it was a driver, landfill operator or one of the managers," said his son Mark of Circleville, Ohio.
So his family has arranged for memorial donations to go to the families of the two drivers, one of whom was killed.
Tom Rumpke collected trash as far back as he could remember.
Mr. Rumpke's father, Bernard, started a waste and recycling business with his brother, William F. Rumpke, in 1932. Tom and his cousin, Bill (William's son), formed their own partnership, collecting residential trash in 1956. In 1978, they purchased Rumpke Inc. from their fathers.
Rumpke is the country's 11th-largest solid waste and recycling company.
"Tom was like a brother to me and will forever remain a vital part of this company," said Bill Rumpke Sr., president and CEO of Rumpke.
Even while battling cancer, Mr. Rumpke didn't give up hope of recovering and returning to work, said his son, Todd of Batavia. "Although he will not ever physically be here again, he will always live in the heart of Rumpke."
Mr. Rumpke grew up in Carthage and was a graduate of Roger Bacon High School and Xavier University.
Mr. Rumpke was a member of the National Solid Waste Management Association, the Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce, the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, and St. James Church in White Oak.
In addition to his two sons, survivors include another son, Matthew of Louisville; his wife of 40 years, Mary; a daughter, Melissa Krieger; and 13 grandchildren.
Visitation is 2-8 p.m. today at St. Ignatius Loyola Church, 5222 North Bend Road in Monfort Heights. Mass of Christian burial is 11 a.m. Friday at St. Ignatius. Burial will be at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Montgomery.
Memorials: Thomas B. Rumpke Memorial Fund, Attention: Amanda Wilson, Rumpke Consolidated Companies Inc., 10795 Hughes Road, Cincinnati, OH 45251.
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