Esther (Klein) Baumgart
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Esther (Klein) Baumgart, 98, of Evansville, Indiana has gone to join her husband Elmer, on Thursday September 12, 2013.
Esther was born on April 6, 1915, in Evansville. The daughter of Bernard Henry and Norma (Greer) Klein, Esther was a west sider attending St. Boniface Catholic Church. She graduated from Reitz High School and the Evansville College. Esther was an excellent pianist and at the age of 16 traveled to the east coast to compete in a national piano competition. She took advance studies at Northwestern and Chicago Conservatory of Music and the Philadelphia Conservatory of Music. Esther married Elmer Baumgart in1940, and the new couple joined Assumption Cathedral. Esther and Elmer were the proud parents of four boys. The family moved to St. Mary's Catholic Church in 1965. They loved their church family, were very active in the parish and were the recipients of the Simon Brute Award.
Esther, when asked how many children she had, her response was "hundreds and I love every one of them". Passing on to the next generations a love of learning and a strong educational foundation was Esther's primary focus in life. One of Esther's best legacies was her presence at the inception and nurturing of what was to become the Evansville Day School. It began in the Episcopal Church on Southeast First Street, and as the student body grew the school moved down the street to be renamed The Little Red School House. The growth of the school continued and moved to Sunset Drive and later to Green River Road, where it is known today as the Evansville Day School. Esther is proud to have been the first teacher at the school, where she retired at age 70. She also influenced many young lives while teaching at the Newburgh Youth Foundation in Newburgh Indiana. Through the years Esther taught piano lessons and loved to gather her family around the piano. She enjoyed playing bridge and taught a night class of bridge for over twenty years for the Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation. Esther has never stopped teaching us! Esther was a ferocious reader from early childhood on having read every children's book at the West side Franklin Street Library. She was directed by the librarian to the main branch for more to read! Another favorite pastime for Esther and Elmer was square dancing at Bauer's Grove. They also enjoyed traveling with their family crossing the continental divide nine times in the 1950s. She and Elmer traveled extensively around the world. At the age of 91 she ventured to the floor of the Grand Canyon!
Esther was preceded in death by her husband, Elmer J. Baumgart who died in 2001; her brothers, Daniel Klein who died in infancy and Paul Klein in 2010.
Survivors include her sons, Danny Baumgart and David Klein Baumgart; son, Brad Baumgart and his wife, Mary Anne and their children, Andrew Baumgart (Lacy) and Erin Clemons (Wayne); son, Greg Baumgart and his children, Clarissa Singleton (Will), Greg Baumgart II, twins, Jennifer St. Pierre (John), Jessica Burns (Darrell) and Dara Baumgart; great-grandchildren; Haley Burns, Austyn, Benjamin, Ashlyn and Amber St. Pierre and Pierce Mann.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:30 a.m. on Monday, September 16, 2013, at St. Mary's Catholic Church, 613 Cherry St., Evansville, IN 47713, with Father Steve Lintzenich officiating. Burial will follow at St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery.
Friends may visit from 2 until 8 p.m. on Sunday, September 15, 2013, at Browning Funeral Home, 738 E. Diamond Ave., Evansville, IN 47711, or from 9 until 10:30 a.m. Monday at the church. A memorial service will be held at 8 p.m. Sunday at the funeral home.
In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to St. Mary's Catholic Church; VNA Hospice, 610 E. Walnut St., Evansville, IN 47713, or The Evansville Day School, 3400 N. Green River Rd., Evansville, IN 47715.
A special thanks goes out for the care provided by Alice Serr and Clark Field of Care Management who brought us angels, Jennifer St. Pierre, Janie Chappell, Liz Webster, Ascuncion Gibson, Carol Miskinis, Cammy Kempf, Mary Ann Joyce and Jackie Schwartz.
Condolences may be made online at www.browningfuneral.com.
Browning Funeral Home
738 Diamond Ave.
Evansville, IN 47711
Published in Courier Press on Sept. 13, 2013