Crouse, Virginia L.  1947-2019

Virginia "Ginny" Lee Crouse, 71, St. Joseph, formerly of Savannah, passed away Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019, peacefully at her home.

Born Oct. 31, 1947, in Council Bluffs, Iowa, she spent her childhood years in rural Southwest Iowa and Oklahoma before returning to Council Bluffs, where she graduated in the Class of 1965, from Lewis Central High School, lettering in three sports: softball, tennis and track.

She went on to attend Northwest Missouri State University, earning a bachelor's and master's in special education.

Ginny's teaching career began in the Maryville School District, where in 1979 she was awarded Northwest Missouri Vocational Teacher of the Year.

She wrote several vocational education grants for the district, and served as a mentor and evaluator for scores of education majors at NWMSU.

Her career went on to take her to the Platte Valley Education Cooperative and the Saint Joseph School District, teaching at both Hillyard Technical Center and Lafayette High School, where she taught her final 14 years and served as chairperson of the special education department.

She considered her singular most important contribution to her profession, authoring the Goals 2000 and A+ Grants for Lafayette, which have helped thousands of students pursue college degrees and certificates.

In 1993, she received the St. Joseph School District Teacher of the Year Award.

On June 25, 1977, she married her best friend, Ronald Crouse.

They went on to become principal owners of Breit & Hawkins Funeral Home, in Savannah. She played an integral role in the operation of the family business, while at the same time fulfilling her lifelong teaching goals.

She and Ron were members of the Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce, and upon their retirement in 2005, they received an Honorary Life Membership.

Ginny also served on the Savannah R-3 School District Board of Education, the Andrew County Ambulance District Board and the Rolling Hills Regional Library Board.

In 1984, she was baptized a Christian by Rev. Frank Hall, at the Disciples of Christ First Christian Church, in Savannah.

Raised on a farm, Ginny inherited her mother's sincere love for horticulture and nature. Her flower gardens were opulent and enjoyed the compliments she received for them.

She also had a love for baseball, which she imparted on her son, Taylor, rarely missing a Royals televised game and never missing her grandsons' games.

She was an avid reader and spent much time at the Savannah Library. Her cooking and baking skills were notorious, and she indulged her family and friends with them. In recent years, she enjoyed sharing her cookie recipes with her grandsons.

Ginny had a strong faith and spent time each day in private prayer for those in need, while never forgetting to give thanks for her blessings.

Ginny was preceded in death by: her parents, Arthur Rodenburg and Fern (Clark) Hamilton; a sister, Lois Rodenburg; brother, Lyle Rodenburg; and her precious daughter, Amy Lynn.

Survivors include: Ron, of the home; Taylor, and his sons, Gabriel and Raphael, St. Joseph; brother, Robert Rodenburg, Council Bluffs; her aunt, Lillie Manhart, with whom she often resided during her youth, Council Bluffs; stepfather, Robert Hamilton, Council Bluffs; best friends: Pam Wall, Connie Hass, and Mary Beth and Frank Davis, all of St. Joseph; and many other family and friends, who occupied a place in her heart.

She had a special affection for the generosity she received in recent years from Dr. Raj Rangineni and the staff, at Mosaic Oncology.

The family will gather with friends 6 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, Meierhoffer Funeral Home & Crematory.

Private Family Inurnment: will be held at a later date, Savannah Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial gifts be given in Ginny's name to: Broken Creek Youth Ranch, Inc., 9902 Southwest Highway 31, Stewartsville, MO, 64490.

Online guest book and obituary at www.meierhoffer.com. As published in the St. Joseph News-Press.