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Published: Thursday, 4/7/2005

Rogers teacher helped send aid to Ukraine

Vera M. Cready, 60, a special education teacher at Rogers High School for 26 years who was active in Ukrainian cultural and charitable groups, died Monday in Toledo Hospital.

Mrs. Cready, of Perrysburg and formerly of West Toledo, had cancer and an autoimmune liver disorder, her daughter Susan said.

She retired last July from Toledo Public Schools after 36 years in special education, first at Glendale-Feilbach Elementary School and then at Start High School.

At Rogers, she taught and was a former chairman of special education.

"She really enjoyed helping kids get the same opportunities and the same education," her daughter said. "She was very patient, and she always was very good at explaining things. It was easy to understand things when Mom explained them to you."

The last 2 1/2 years, she was building representative for the Toledo Federation of Teachers.

Mrs. Cready and her husband, Ronald, volunteered with the Anastasia Fund, begun by U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D., Toledo) to help Ukrainians in need and named after Miss Kaptur's late mother.

Mrs. Cready "went out of her way to do what she could for people," her husband said.

Mrs. Cready taught religious education at her church, St. Michael's Ukrainian Catholic in Rossford, and Ukrainian language classes. For 24 consecutive summers, she and her family went to Soyuzivka, a Ukrainian-American resort in the Catskills.

"It was fun to be immersed in the culture and the traditions," her daughter said.

Mrs. Cready was born in the former Czechoslovakia as her parents traveled away from Ukraine. The family lived in a West German displaced-persons camp until 1949, when they emigrated to the United States, settling in Springfield, Mass.

She received a bachelor's degree from the University of Massachusetts. She worked for the U.S. government as program director of a military service club in South Korea. That's where she met her husband, who was in the Army and who worked in the club off-duty.

Mrs. Cready later received a master's degree in education from the University of Toledo.

Surviving are her husband, Ronald, whom she married Nov. 18, 1967; daughters, Catherine, Susan, and Christine Cready; and sisters, Maryann Mysyshyn and Orysia Popovych.

The body will be in the Reeb Mortuary, Sylvania, after 4 p.m. tomorrow, with a Parastas prayer service at 7:30 p.m. in the mortuary. Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday in St. Michael's Ukrainian Catholic Church, Rossford.

The family suggests tributes to the church or the American Cancer Society.



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