Louise Ann Dompier, a retired educator who taught nearly 35 years for Oregon Schools and was president of the teachers union, died in her home Monday from cancer. She was 81.
Known as Lou Ann to her friends and family, she spent her entire career with the district at Jerusalem Elementary and was exclusively a teacher in the fifth grade.
She came to the school district in the mid 1950s after teaching several years for Our Lady of Perpetual Help Grade School in Toledo.
Marge Brown, who retired from Jerusalem Elementary, said Miss Dompier had a positive impact on hundreds of boys and girls who passed through her classroom. "She taught fifth grade and I taught sixth grade. When I got her kids, I knew they knew their stuff," she said.
Miss Dompier's sister, Nancy Fisher, said: "She could be a tough teacher, but she was caring and always went the extra mile with her kids. She never let them get away with any nonsense."
The Ohio Federation of Teachers honored her for outstanding service in 1980 when she was selected for a trip to Washington, D.C.
Miss Dompier grew up on Utah Street in East Toledo and graduated from Central Catholic High in 1949.
In 1953, she obtained her degree in education from the former Mary Manse College.
Mrs. Fisher said her older sister had hoped to be a librarian but went into education because no library jobs were available.
Mrs. Brown said Miss Dompier instructed students in her classes to learn knitting. "I think she did it to show them something different. She was very innovative," Mrs. Brown said.
Miss Dompier earned a master's degree in administration and supervision in 1971 from the University of Toledo. However, she remained in the classroom and didn't use the degree to advance to principal.
"She felt she could do the most good in the classroom. She always looked out for the kids," said her sister, Denise Frazier.
She also was active in the Oregon City Federation of Teachers and served as the group's president.
Miss Dompier retired from teaching in 1988.
She was active in St. Ignatius Church, where she was an Eucharistic minister and sang in the choir. She was a past president of the Rosary Altar Society and represented the parish as a volunteer for the community meals program at St. Louis Helping Hands in East Toledo.
"She also would go to the nursing homes to distribute communion," Mrs. Fisher said.
Her sisters said she was an outstanding amateur photographer. They said she picked up the hobby many years ago and took photos at family weddings, baptisms, birthdays, and other events. She also was known in the family for her photos of wildlife and landscapes.
"We always teased her that she had missed her calling. She should have been a professional photographer," Mrs, Frazier said.
Surviving are her sisters, Nancy Fisher, Virginia Hart, and Denise Frazier.
Visitation will be from 6-8 p.m. Wednesday and 2-8 p.m. Thursday in the Freck Funeral Home, Oregon, where a Rosary will be recited at 7 p.m. Thursday. The funeral Mass will be at 10 a.m. Friday in St. Ignatius Church, Oregon. Tributes are suggested to St. Ignatius Church or St. Louis Helping Hands.
-- Mark Reiter