Cover photo for Lucille Leatherberry's Obituary
Lucille Leatherberry Profile Photo
1921 Lucille 2017

Lucille Leatherberry

April 26, 1921 — October 28, 2017

Lucille E. Leatherberry, age 96, of Ripon, WI, went to be with her Savior and loved ones on Saturday, October 28, 2017, at Barrett House in Ripon.

Lucille was born on April 26, 1921, during a blinding spring blizzard at home on her family farm in Poynette, WI. She was the daughter of George A. and Lucenia C. (Bloomer) Irons. She graduated from Poynette High School in 1938 where she was a member of the band (playing saxophone), chorus, and orchestra. Lucille attended the 2-year Columbia County Normal Teachers' College in Columbus, WI. She began her teaching career at a country one-room schoolhouse teaching grades 1-8. She had the full responsibility of running her school, being the janitor, starting a fire in the wood burning stove each morning, pumping water from the well for the students to drink and wash, shoveling snow, and caring for the outdoor bathroom facilities-all for $90/month!

On October 17, 1942, Lucille married the love of her life, Iver Leatherberry, at the Presbyterian Church in Poynette, WI. The couple spent their first 17 years of married life farming and raising their four children in Lodi, WI. In 1959 Iver and Lucille left farming and moved their family to Ripon, where Lucille resumed her teaching career for a total of 30 years, spending most of those in the Fairwater/Brandon school districts. In spite of her busy schedule, Lucille found time to complete her Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Oshkosh in 1962. She loved teaching science to her students in middle school and was proud of her creation of a Science Lab and her ability to engage her students in lab experiments. In 1973, Lucille was honored as an Outstanding Elementary Teacher of America. Even today, many years after retirement, former students approach her to acknowledge that she was their favorite teacher. Lucille was an active member in the Retired Teachers' Association, serving as treasurer for a number of years. She truly believed in their purpose of protecting the rights and benefits of teachers. Teaching was one of her greatest passions!

Although Lucille was dedicated to teaching, her first priority was her family. She worked diligently to care for her children while balancing the demands of a career, wife and mother. She always made time to support any activity in which her children were involved-be it concerts, school happenings, sports events, or even shopping for that perfect prom or wedding dress. Lucille was steadfast and constant-always being there for children, often times sacrificing her own needs for theirs. She was the behind-the-scenes support for her husband, Iver, as he pursued his dreams and ambitions. Later in life when Iver experienced heart and kidney failure, she learned, at age 90, to administer at-home peritoneal dialysis for him, which was a very involved medical procedure. She was a remarkable, self-sacrificing woman, who always found a way to rise to the challenges before her.

Lucille was an active member of the Immanuel United Methodist Church, where she taught Sunday School and Bible School, served and provided food for families after funeral services, and frequently attended Bible studies. For years she was a musical member of the hand bell choir.

Lucille had a strong love for music, especially keyboard. Early in her life she played organ at the Lodi Presbyterian Church services. She also used her proficiency on the piano to accompany her classroom students in Solo and Ensemble contests and often did the same for her husband Iver's solo singing engagements. Lucille continued to study piano, taking lessons after her retirement.

One of her favorite pastimes was gathering her family around the piano to sing the “oldies” of the 30's and 40's. Many hours of family fun were experienced around her piano, much to her delight!

Some of Lucille's interests and hobbies were flower gardening, square dancing, ballroom dancing, golfing, exercising, boating on Green Lake, snow skiing with her family, playing cards with her Friday night group of friends, and making huge meals every time the family landed on her doorstep.

Lucille lived her life with dignity and grace, giving herself unselfishly whenever anyone she loved or cared for was in need of help. Her bright light and energy will be greatly missed by her loving family, dear friends, and her multitude of students.

Survivors include her beloved children, Linda (Dr. Thomas) Licking of Green Lake, WI, Diane (Ken) Rutsch of Menomonee Falls, WI, Elaine Kubicki of New Berlin, WI, Sherman Leatherberry of Ripon; a proud Grandma of eight grandchildren; eleven great-grandchildren; and two great-great-grandchildren; and her sister Betty (Wayne) Heydan of Yuma, AZ. Lucille is preceded in death by her parents, George and Lucenia; Iver, her loving and devoted husband of 70 years; her son-in-law, Tony Kubicki; and her sisters, Irene Hutchinson and Luella Quam.

A visitation for Lucille will be held from 4:00 pm until 7:00 pm on Friday, November 3, 2017, at Butzin-Marchant Funeral Home, 515 Mayparty Dr., Ripon, WI, 54971, and again from 10:00 am until 11:00 am on Saturday, November 4, 2017, at Immanuel United Methodist Church, 401 W. Fond du Lac St., Ripon, WI, 54971.

A funeral service for Lucille will be held at 11:00 am on Saturday, November 4, 2017, at Immanuel United Methodist Church, with Rev. Michael Morning officiating. Interment will follow at Woodlawn Cemetery in Ripon. Memorials may be directed to Immanuel United Methodist Church in Ripon, or Agnesian Hospice Hope, 745 South St., Suite 4, Green Lake, WI, 54941.

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