Ronnie “Dog” Wininger is not your average garbage truck driver. For 22 years, he has gone the extra mile to make residents and businesses feel like family here in Calvert City.
To commemorate his retirement, the Calvert City Lions Club chose Wininger as the 2023 Grand Marshal of the Lions Club Christmas Parade to be held on December 2 at 6:00 p.m. along 5th Ave.
“When the parade committee members were throwing around names for this year’s parade, we wanted to focus on devotion to Calvert City and Ronnie was first on the list,” said Christmas parade chairperson Tanara Babcock.
Originally from Shoals, Indiana, in 1977 Wininger moved to Calvert City to work on Interstate 24. Shortly after moving to the city, he met his wife, Julie, of 45 years. “It’s been three years since Julie passed away, and if it weren’t for this community, I wouldn’t have got through losing her,” he said. He is blessed with two children who live here in Calvert City and five wonderful grandchildren. Darlene, his girlfriend, has plans to travel when he retires, “I plan on learning to relax,” he said. “Maybe chop some wood and do some yard work,” he followed. Darlene, his girlfriend, was a big help in his recovery from grief. “She has plans to travel when I retire, I plan on learning to relax,” he said. “Maybe chop some wood and do some yard work,” he followed.
Wininger shared that he’s been a part of several church families in Calvert City, Pathway Baptist Church, and St. Pius Catholic Church, and he now attends Hopewell Baptist Church. “I give all the glory to God for the things in my life,” he said.
The Calvert City Lions Club hosts the longest-running Christmas Parade in Kentucky and this is the 64th year with the theme being, “It’s all about Christmas!” The Grand Marshal is bestowed annually upon an individual or couple who has made a significant contribution to the City of Calvert City through volunteer/professional efforts and who has demonstrated patriotism through the development of community and community values.
“Just like a turtle on a fence post, it needed help to get up there, and that’s what Calvert City has done to me. I would love to start naming names, the ones who hired me, the guys on the back of the truck, my church family, everyone has been great to me. We’ve had some interesting times on the garbage truck and some fun times.”
For more information on the holiday activities in Calvert City, visit calvertcityky.gov.