“Gracious hostess,” “creative teacher,” “enthusiastic traveler and Florida snowbird,” “avid collector of antique dolls,” “life-long Hoosier,” “classy lady and loyal friend,” “so much fun.” The flame from this petite woman with the out-sized personality will endure among those who loved her long after her death.
Geneva was born in Kosciusko County in northern Indiana to William Kyle and Emma Bernice (Rogers) Gibson. She attended high school in Mentone, college at Manchester College in North Manchester, and graduate school at the Indiana University Bloomington campus.
Her career as an elementary school teacher unfolded primarily at the University School in Bloomington, where countless former students fondly recall her energy and enthusiasm. Their stories include remembrances of the above-and-beyond programs and plays that she orchestrated and the farm animals that she spirited into the classroom through the back door. Think of a diapered baby lamb. Shhh.
In spite of, or maybe because of her notion that farm-animals-in-the-school-room would be a good idea, Geneva became a member of Pi Lambda Theta Sorority, “one of the nation’s most prestigious education honor societies…membership signifies a strong commitment to academic excellence and the teaching profession…educators who join Pi Lambda Theta are recognized for their exemplary achievement.”
She celebrated three wonderful marriages to Doctors Lorin A. Burt, Beaufort “Bud” Spencer, and Bruce McQuigg. Her devoted husbands each preceded her in death.
She is survived by children Marianne Burt (Bloomington, IN) and Carl W. Burt (Warsaw, IN). Also, stepchildren Ellen (Jim) Strasma of Irvine, CA; Barbara Edmonds (Bloomington, IN); Maribeth Spencer (Seattle, WA); Ted Spencer (Washington, DC); Sue (Les) Dixon of Bend, OR; and, Paul McQuigg (Indianapolis, IN). And, numerous grandchildren and great grandchildren.
With immeasurable gratitude, the family profoundly thanks the caregivers and support staff at both Meadowood Health Pavilion and Heart to Heart Hospice for their tireless patience, professionalism, and kindness.
Geneva’s memorial service will be held on Saturday February 10,2018 at 11:00 am at St. Mark’s United Methodist Church (100 State Road 46, Bloomington, IN) where she was a long-time member, followed immediately by a reception in the fellowship hall. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service. Internment will take place back in Kosciusko County.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Carl W. and Lorin A. Burt Memorial Fund at Manchester University, 604 East College Avenue, North Manchester, IN 46962 (Geneva’s father-in-law, Carl W. Burt, was a well-respected, long-time football coach at Manchester.); or, the Heart to Heart Hospice at 463 South Landmark Avenue, Bloomington, IN 47403.