Dr. Ray Kuehl, noted Iowa educator who finished his career as Professor Emeritus of Education at the University of Northern Iowa, died on January 20, 2014, at Sartori Memorial Hospital in Cedar Falls. He was 94.
Ray influenced the education of thousands of Iowans in his position as Director of Student Field Experiences at UNI, a position from which he retired in 1988. Before joining UNI, Ray engineered the establishment of the Starmont Community Schools, a consolidation of schools from Strawberry Point, Arlington, and Lamont in 1962. He served as Starmont's first superintendent from 1962 through1966.
Prior to serving as superintendent of the Strawberry Point Consolidated School District from 1955 through1962, Dr. Kuehl held increasingly responsible educational positions in Delhi (1946-1949), Traer (1949-1952) and Dundee (1952-1955).
As a teacher and administrator, Ray was fiercely dedicated to his students' success and to the development of good teachers. Generations of students and teachers have paid tribute to his influence in their lives.
Dr. Kuehl received his Doctor of Philosophy degree from the University of Iowa in 1973, and also held a Master of Arts degree from the University of Iowa and an Education Specialist Degree from Drake University. He did his undergraduate work at Upper Iowa University, where he starred on the university baseball team.
Ray married Frances Morgan Kuehl in 1943, and she survives him.
He was a veteran of the U. S. Army (1941-1945), where he achieved the rank of First Sergeant.
In addition to his career in education, Ray held many leadership positions in the Lions Club, including President of the Cedar Falls Lions Club, as well as District and Regional positions, and received many Lions awards and honors. Ray was a well-known figure in community service circles, participating enthusiastically in pancake breakfasts and as a neighborhood Santa Claus. He was also chairman at one time of Friends of Western Home Communities and was involved in the Cedar Falls Historical Society.
Ray was a faithful member of the Cedar Falls United Methodist Church, where he held numerous volunteer positions.
Raymond William Kuehl and Ralph Doyle Kuehl were born on May 1, 1919, on a farm near Elkport (Clayton County), Iowa, one of nine children of John and Clara Kuehl.
In addition to his wife of seventy years, Fran Kuehl, Ray is survived by a brother, Laverne Kuehl, of Elkader, son Craig (Jane Lucas) of New York City, daughter Vicki (Bruce) Smith of Bettendorf, grandsons Justin (Stephanie) and Ryan Smith of Ankeny and Arlington, Vrginia, respectively; and two great-grandchildren. Also surviving are numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, a sister and six brothers.
He was a devoted and faithful husband and loving father, grandfather, and great-grandfather.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be given to First United Methodist Church, Western Home Communities, or the UNI Foundation.
Memorial services will be held 11 a.m. Tuesday at First United Methodist Church, with burial in Greenwood Cemetery, both in Cedar Falls. Visitation for one hour prior to services Tuesday at the church. Richardson Funeral Service is in charge of arrangements.
Condolences may be left at www.richardsonfuneralservice.com
Copyright Waterloo Courier on-line edition; downloaded January 27, 2014.