In honor of Labor Day, I’m taking a moment to recognize the occupation of my grandfather, Lloyd Ballenger. Lloyd was a restaurant worker and owner from the time of his first job. In the 1930 census, when he was just 18 years old, Lloyd was enumerated as co-owner and co-proprietor of a restaurant with his mother, Irene (Clark) Ballenger. This had to be about the time this photo was taken. The restaurant was a lunch counter in Westerville, Ohio. You can see part of a word, which I believe might be “Cornors,” on the sign, but no one in the family seems to recall the full name. Something for me to look into.
By 1933, Lloyd was working for Ed Reeb at Reeb’s Restaurant in Columbus. He soon became co-owner and spent over 50 years operating Reeb’s—but that’s a story for another time. Let’s just say that restaurant work was in his blood from the time he first put on an apron.