Claudette St. Clair
Date & TimeSaturday Apr 15, 2023 @ 10:00 am - @ 11:00 am
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It is with immense sorrow, and love that the family announces that the gracious lady, Claudette Yvonne Ballinger St. Clair, resident of Brown Deer WI, transitioned from this earthly life on Friday, March 31st, 2023. Claudette had reached the beautiful age of 87.
Claudette Yvonne Ballinger was born on March 24th, 1936, in Wichita Kansas, America’s heartland, to the proud parents of Roscoe and Betty Mae Ballinger. Like most American families during this period, life for the Ballinger family presented hardships associated with the greatest economic downturn in American history, the Great Depression. The family later migrated to Milwaukee Wisconsin in search of better economic and educational opportunities for their daughter Claudette. Claudette’s faith in God was initiated and nurtured by her mother Betty Mae, from infancy and has been sustained throughout her glorious life.
Claudette was an Academic Scholar at North Division High School, excelling in mathematics, literature, and the sciences. She was a proud member of the Graduating Class of 1956. Claudette did not have the luxury of just attending college full-time, after graduating from high school, she worked full-time in an industrial factory, while attending college simultaneously. This relentless pursuit of academic excellence resulted in Claudette attaining the following Educational Degrees; In 1961 she earned a BSN degree from MATC and Marquette University. In 1971 she earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Marquette University. And in 1978 she obtained a Master’s in Education and Leadership, from the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee.
Freddie Lee St. Clair met Claudette Yvonne Ballinger in the fall of 1955 after moving to Milwaukee from St Louis Missouri. Two years later Claudette Yvonne Bellinger and Freddie Lee St. Clair were joyously united in holy matrimony on June 22nd, 1957.
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the World.” ~Nelson Mandela~
Claudette and Freddie were young adults during the height of America’s Civil Rights Movement of the 1960’s. They were very concerned about justice and equality for all. To fight the injustices of the time both of them pursued a quality education. During their professional life, they championed and fought for equality; Claudette by being a Nurse, a public school teacher, and an Elementary Principal. Freddie by being a Police officer, Lawyer, and Circuit Court Judge, fighting through the Justice System for a better tomorrow. Claudette and Freddie were married for 36 years, Freddie transitioned from this life on Sunday, May 16th, 1993.
Claudette started her teaching career at Robert M. LaFollette Elementary School on the far north side of Milwaukee, she was a staunch believer that all children were capable of achieving academically and had a sacred right to a life-affirming quality education. At the Inception of her career as an educator, Claudette fought to change the methodology and paradigm in which these critical core subjects of math, science, and reading were taught.
It was at Lowell Elementary School, where Claudette found her professional Utopia. She remained at Lowell Elementary for over 30 years, because of her deep affinity and love for her students and staff.
Claudette had a multitude of life pursuits beyond her professional passion. She was a member of an all-women Investment Club, She enjoyed bowling, a little fishing, and a lot of shopping; Retail Therapy. Claudette’s inquisitive mind mandated that she become a lifelong learner, who was always interested in different cultures and people. Whether it was by train, plane, automobile, or sailing the seas, she traveled throughout the United States seeking new knowledge and the beauty of life. Her journeys of adventure included trips throughout the Caribbean, and Europe. She was particularly fascinated by the United Kingdom and England. She received tremendous joy in sharing these life’s precious moments with her friends and family who went on these wondrous adventures with Claudette.
Claudette departed from life on March 31st. 2003, leaving the following family members with cherished and loving memories.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Matthew 5:4.
Margie Woodson, Joyce Read, Eddie Maxwell Read,( Pamela) Michael Read, Larissa Read, Vonn Lee Read, Morgan Read, Anthony Read Jr. Stephanie Reid, Derek Reid. Sherri Reed, Gregory Reed Jr. Lakeshaia Gunn-Reed, Shanda Read, Khristin Read. Melvin St. Clair (Lutelia) Robert St. Clair (Dorothy) Dennis St, Clair.
Claudette was preceded in death by her husband Freddie Lee St.Clair, and the following family members.
Freddie Lee St. Clair, Betty Mae Read, Eddie Morgan Read Sr., Eddie Morgan Reid Jr. (Betty) Gregory Reed, Anthony Read, (Annette) Virgie Read.
We welcome those who shared this life with Claudette to attend her celebration of life and journey home, on Saturday, April 15th, 2023. The services for Claudette will take place at Krause Funeral Home, 7001 W. Brown Deer Rd., Brown Deer. Visitation at from 10:00 AM until time of funeral at 11:00 AM. Interment to follow in Graceland Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers the family request that a donation be made to the Milwaukee Public Schools Education Foundation, In honor of Claudette’s lifetime commitment to Public Education.