By Joshua Benton
Blade Staff Writer
Carl Florian, a World War I veteran who ran his family’s insurance business for more than 70 years, died Saturday in St. Luke’s Hospital, Maumee. He was 99.
He was born and raised in Toledo, his son Jack said, attending St. John’s High School and St. John’s College. As World War I approached conclusion, he enlisted in the Army and trained at Camp Perry in Port Clinton.
But the war ended before he saw action.
In 1907, his father founded the Florian Insurance Agency. When Carl was in his early 20s, he took control of the company. It was a job – and a title, president – he would keep for more than 70 years, until his retirement in 1994.
“He was a hard-working man,” his son said. “He was demanding of his employees because he want ed the best service given.”
After he relinquished control of day-to-day affairs to his son and grandsons, he still showed up at the office every day.
“He had built that business up for his entire life,” his son said. “He took pride in being a good, honest insurance agent and giving people a little extra help.”
Outside the office, he spent much of his time on the docks of the Maumee River, enjoying his boat. He rarely took the boat out on the water, perhaps once or twice a year he ventured to Put-in-Bay, but he loved the camaraderie of dockside life.
“Back in those days, they’d just sit at the boat and talk,” his son said. “It was a social gathering.”
He had a variety of leadership roles in area boating clubs, including commander and head historian of the Toledo Power Squadron, rear commander of the U.S. Power Squadron, president of the Detroit Navigators Club, and vice-president of the Toledo Navigators Club.
He was a charter member of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church and attended services often until advancing age made it too difficult.
Surviving are three children, Jeanne Nielsen, Jack Florian, and Marjorie Ronau; 39 grandchildren, and a great-grandson.
Funeral arrangements are being handled by the Coyle Funeral Home, 1770 South Reynolds Rd., where the body will be from 6 to 9 p.m. tomorrow and where a Scripture service will be held at 8 p.m.
The funeral Mass will be held at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church, 2255 Central Grove Ave., at 10 a.m. Wednesday, with burial afterward at Calvary Cemetery.
The family requests that tributes be to the church building fund.