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Published: Wednesday, 4/20/2005

Lawyer later taught Latin, French, math

June M. Kutzke, 86, a teacher and a lawyer who taught Latin, French, and math in Washington Local schools, died of pneumonia Sunday in Forum Trumbull Memorial Hospital, Warren, Ohio.

Mrs. Kutzke, formerly of West Toledo, retired in 1980. Much of her career was at Whitmer High School, although she also taught in Washington Local's junior high schools, her daughter, Ruth Bradshaw, said.

"She just thought that was the most wonderful opportunity to be able to work with the young people and do things with them that were enjoyable to her," her daughter said.

Mrs. Kutzke thrived on the rhythm of the school year, the routine and the preciseness that began anew each fall with a fresh group of students. When she taught French and Latin, she spoke in those languages and won her students' interest by, for instance, translating familiar songs into Latin.

"You wouldn't describe her as the Latin teacher who was deadly," said her daughter, herself a former Latin teacher. "You had as much fun as you could and maintain the order."

Mrs. Kutzke was a graduate of Waite High School. She received a bachelor's degree from the University of Toledo and intended to teach. But she was married before she began to look for work.

She was encouraged by her husband, William, to attend law school, which was eager for enrollees during World War II. She received her law degree from the UT law school and, in 1947, opened a law practice with two other women. She opened a practice with Harriet Goldberg in 1952. In the mid-1950s, though, the Perrysburg school system learned of Mrs. Kutzke's background in Latin and offered her a teaching position, which she accepted. She taught at Perrysburg High School for about two years.

Her husband, whom she married Aug. 26, 1939, died May 17, 2000.

Surviving are her daughter, Ruth Bradshaw, brother, Robert Lloyd, and a granddaughter.

Services will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday in Emmanuel Lutheran Church, Warren, where the body will be after 9 a.m. Arrangements are by the Roberts-Clark Funeral Chapel, Warren.

The family suggests tributes to the church.

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