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Ruth Wunderlich, Masters Swimmer and Teacher, Passes Away at 85 -- December 25, 2003

BEDFORD, Ohio, December 24. RUTH Wunderlich, 85, retired Spanish and French teacher for Bedford schools and an outstanding Masters swimmer, died Monday in a daughter's Chardon, Ohio, home.

Wunderlich began teaching in the Bedford schools in 1964 after raising her children, and retired in 1975. She volunteered as a French teacher for second-graders at Glendale Elementary School in Bedford for several years afterward.

She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University where she was a member of the swimming, basketball and volleyball teams. She was inducted into the university's Athletic Hall of Fame in 1984.

When she was 58, shortly after retiring as a teacher, she returned to competitive swimming. From 1976 through 1998, when she was 80, she competed in hundreds of USMS events throughout the United States, swimming the breaststroke, backstroke, freestyle and individual medley.

Wunderlich was fond of music and had a tenor voice. As a member of a choir, she sang with the Cleveland Orchestra for several years. She also sang with the "Notabelles," an area trio that entertained at nursing homes and various charitable functions, and Mastersingers, a Greater Cleveland group.

Wunderlich sang with church choirs in University Heights, Pepper Pike, and most recently with the First Baptist Church of Bedford.

She was born in Ashland. She raised her children in Cleveland Heights and later moved to Bedford. Wunderlich was a former Girl Scout leader, a swimming instructor and camp counselor.

Services will be at 11 a.m. Saturday at the First Baptist Church of Bedford, 445 Turney Road, Bedford, Ohio.

Contributions may be made to:

The Hospice of the Western Reserve, 300 East 185th St., Cleveland, Ohio 44149.

The Music Fund at First Baptist Church of Bedford, 445 Turney Road, Bedford, Ohio 44146.

Arrangements are by the Johnson-Romito Funeral Home, 521 Broadway Ave., Bedford.