Former City Council President dies

Chris Dunham, PDT Sports Writer

October 26, 2012

Frank Lewis

PDT Staff Writer

A former Portsmouth city councilman and president of city council has died. Howard Elsworth Baughman III, 57, died Friday in his home.

Baughman came to the Portsmouth City Council in 1998 when he replaced John Thatcher as the fifth ward councilman when Thatcher resigned. He served on the council for ten years. Baughman became president of the council in 2004 when city councilwomen Carol Caudill and Ann Sydnor were recalled. He remained on the council until his resignation in 2008, amid a recall attempt. Baughman chose to resign at the time because he had not planned to run for re-election in 2009.

One of the people who worked closest with Baughman was former Portsmouth city clerk Jo Ann Aeh.

“He and I were good friends,” Aeh said. “I lost a good friend.”

Aeh said Baughman had kept in regular contact with her over the years even after she retired as city clerk.

“He was a likable man,” Aeh said. “I don’t think he ever said anything bad about anyone. He was very private. He had a wonderful sense of humor and a unique laugh.”

Aeh said visits and phone calls had decreased in recent months as Baughman became ill.

“When he stopped calling, I started missing the phone calls,” Aeh said. “He just was a good friend.”

Baughman was a member of Second Presbyterian Church. He was a former salesman at Covert’s Furniture, Big Sandy Furniture, Pinkerton Tobacco and JWL Waterbeds. Along with his wife, Leah, he owned the former National Video Yearbooks.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday at the Ralph F. Scott Funeral Home in Portsmouth with Rev. John Gowdey officiating. Interment will be in Sunset Memorial Gardens. Visitation will be Monday from 4 - 8 p.m. and one hour before services Tuesday at the funeral home.

Memorial contributions may be made to SOMC Hospice, 2201 25th St., Portsmouth, Ohio 45662.

Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 232, or at flewis@heartlandpublications.com