WARREN - Bob Sauer says helping people just comes naturally.
The retired head of Warren Engineering and 2013 Community Star said recently from his home on the northeast side that he's gotten plenty of help from others over the years, so he's just trying to pay that all back.
''People help me all the time, so all I can do is help them,'' Sauer said.
Rotary, member of First United Methodist Church and Northeast Christian Church
Now in its 12th year, the Community Star program celebrates the volunteers who have had a significant influence on Trumbull County. It is sponsored by the Tribune Chronicle and Trumbull 100.
Sauer said now that he is retired, he can devote more time to helping others and he said he has plenty of energy despite the fact he is 91.
Even though he does work for Trumbull Meals on Wheels and helps out tenants whom he rents buildings to, he said it is often the smallest acts that get the most attention.
''It's like letting a car out ahead of you,'' Sauer said. ''I just like to help people, that's all.''
Judy Lonsbrough said Sauer doesn't just see something wrong; he tries to correct it.
''We just saw he was such a generous person,'' said Lonsbrough, who nominated Sauer for the award along with Jennifer Koreki. ''When he sees a need, he goes and meets it.''
Lonsbrough said Sauer will drive people places who can no longer drive and once he loaned his car to someone to visit a sick relative in Pittsburgh and went without his own transportation until the person returned.
Sauer owns a series of apartments on Porter Street, and Lonsbrough said he often helps those tenants. He took care of one elderly tenant whose family wanted her in a nursing home so she could stay in her home.
''It's hard to describe. He's much more than a landlord. He's a friend to the people,'' Lonsbrough said.
The two women said Sauer will shop for tenants if they can't leave their apartments, and he has even walked dogs for people who can't get outside on their own.
They said Sauer has also helped people get a fresh start through his work with the Warren Family Mission, even giving them a place to stay in his home until they can find a home of their own.
Sauer said helping others is easy because he likes people.
''You just get along with people,'' Sauer said.
He said on his Meals on Wheels runs every Friday, he has gotten to know well some of the people he delivers meals to and he enjoys talking to them.
''You meet the people who need help,'' Sauer said.
He also hosted an exchange student from Sweden once and then went to visit the student's parents in Sweden.
Sauer began learning to help others early, growing up during the Great Depression next to Warren Engineering, which his father started. He said that from an early age he and other family members worked there.
After college, he was a Scoutmaster and also joined Rotary, where he served for a time on their board of directors and was also president for a year. His father was also a member of Rotary. In 2011 he was given the honor of Rotarian.
He is a graduate of St. Mary's, Warren G. Harding High School and has a civil engineering degree from The Ohio State University.
Sauer said being around people is easy for him and he will always try to help them.
''I don't do it for recognition,'' Sauer said. ''I guess it's just my nature. I've always helped out.''