Former Austintown School Board member Dr. David Ritchie passed away Friday morning at age 83.

Dr. Ritchie was the longest serving member on the Austintown Board of Education. According to the Ohio School Boards Association, his tenure began in 1967. Ritchie reached 52 years of service to the Austintown Local School District. He served longer than any other school board member in Ohio.

During his time on the school board, he was instrumental in the planning of each school building currently in use today, from the opening of the new Fitch High School in 1969 to the more recent middle, intermediate, and elementary schools.

The Board of Education dedicated their meeting room to Ritchie in 2017, known as the Dr. Ritchie Legacy Room.

Ritchie's dedication to the Austintown community did not stop at the school board. He was currently serving as the President of the Board of Trustees for the Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County, and was a long time member of the Austintown Hall of Fame.

"He always wanted to serve people," said Austintown Schools Superintendent David Cappuzzello. "Just a great human being and a true gentleman. He will be definitely missed."

Calling hours for Dr. Ritchie will be held Friday from 2 p.m. to 5:45 p.m. in the Austintown Fitch High School auditorium, followed by a 6 p.m. service. Both the calling hours and service will be open to the public.