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MHCO sells Hilty building to Village of Pandora

The Board of Mennonite Home Communities of Ohio (MHCO) has announced the sale of the Hilty Home building, 304 Hilty Dr., to the Village of Pandora, Ohio. The sale was completed on June 4 and includes the 60,000-square-foot former Hilty Memorial Home building and two adjacent parcels of land donated to the Village by MHCO. 


Following the November 1, 2022 announcement that the Hilty Memorial Home would close, efforts were made to find buyers for the long-term care facility. In addition, efforts were made to find a new owner-operator or location for the Hilty Preschool & Childcare program. MHCO did not receive offers for either operation, and no suitable location was found to relocate the childcare operation.

The Pandora Village Council stepped forward in early 2024 and submitted a purchase proposal to HUD, the loan holder for the empty facility. 

The Putnam County Community Improvement Corporation joined the Village in its efforts to find a solution for the building and childcare. Jenna Buckland and Molly Schroeder offered to purchase the childcare operation. Hilty Faithful Foundation Preschool and Childcare, LLC was established and remains in the Hilty Building under the continued direction of Amanda Dettrow. Expansion of the childcare space and program is in progress.

Additional business operations are sought for remaining areas of the building.

Hilty Memorial Home opened in 1979 after retired teacher Margaret Hilty left her entire estate to the Missionary Church East Central Conference District to establish a nursing home “like the Mennonites did in Bluffton.” The Hilty Memorial Home was acquired by Mennonite Home Communities of Ohio in 2012 when the Missionary Church decided to divest of the long-term care facility.

MHCO Board Chair Elizabeth Kelly has offered these reflections, “We have been committed to honoring Margaret Hilty’s generous legacy and her intention to serve the people of Pandora and Putnam County. Sometimes we must bring closure to something so that new life has an opportunity to emerge. Already, new and good things are happening. Our Board remains deeply grateful to the many people who made this transaction possible and wish the Village and new tenants well in their future endeavors.”