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Founder Cecil Maxwell

Cecil Maxwell was born in Cardington, Ohio on March 6, 1923, in the home where he lived nearly all his life. Cecil graduated from Cardington High School in 1941 and attended Ohio State University. On June 8, 1947 Cecil married Kathryn Pearl at the Warrensburg United Methodist church.

Cecil grew up the second of two children of Paul and Ada Maxwell. His father established the Riverside Dairy in 1915 and Cecil began working with his father in the delivery of those products when he was 13 years old and received his driver’s license. His sister, GaNell, helped on these deliveries, made first from a horse drawn wagon. “The horse was named Nettie and when we took too long to make a delivery, she moved on,” he said. Deliveries were made later from a pickup truck and still later, in 1945 they acquired a truck with refrigeration as they made deliveries to many school districts, including of course, Cardington School and to 225 residential customers. Eventually, their products expanded to include ice cream, orange drink, orange pineapple drink, chocolate milk and cottage cheese. The milk was produced by Holstein and Golden Guernsey cattle. “During this time the herd of cattle acquired Bangs disease,” said Cecil. “Dad was kind to me letting me reduce the herd by 50. It was the saddest day of my life when we got rid of them.”

Cecil assumed the operation of the dairy in 1953 upon his father’s retirement. He was assisted in its operation by his wife, Kathryn. The Maxwells sold the dairy business in 1994, the ice cream division to Vickie and Rob Lill, Country Caterers, Marion, who retained the Riverside Dairy logo and ice cream recipe.

Cecil's wife Kathryn passed away in January 2010 and daughter Janet Elaine in February 2011. Cecil passed away on February 17, 2014. He left a son, James Leslie and two daughters, Janice Haynes and Jeanne Vaughan; five grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews. 

Riverside Ice Cream is currently sold in 7 restaurants, 2 dairy bars, 2 market shops, 1 bakery, 5 grocery stores, and is used for over 25 church socials. 

In addition to Riverside Ice Cream we also distribute Toft Dairy soft serve mix. We distribute Toft soft serve mix to over 10 dairy bars and concessions.