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Monday, April 19, 2021

Annie Gogel Gunselman, 55, Santa Claus

Annie Gogel Gunselman, 55, passed away peacefully at home on September 28, 2019.

Annie was born on October 20, 1963, in Huntingburg, to Jack and Philomena (Jones) Gogel from Mariah Hill. She attended Mariah Hill Elementary School, David Turnham Elementary School and Heritage Hills High School. After graduating in 1981, Annie received an academic scholarship from Oakland City University where she would also play basketball and volleyball. In 1985, she received a Bachelor of Arts with a major in English and a minor in Physical Education, and in 1997 completed a Master of Science in Secondary Education at the University of Southern Indiana.

In 1986, Annie began her career as a high school English teacher and girls’ basketball and volleyball coach at South Knox High School in Vincennes. She returned to Heritage Hills High School in 1990 to teach English and coach girls’ sports. She developed a successful volleyball program which took the school from never winning a Pocket Athletic Conference or advancing through a sectional to winning eight Pocket Athletic Conference titles, five sectionals, two regionals and making an appearance at the 2003 state finals. During her 31 year career as a coach, she also served the Indiana Coaches of Girls’ Sports Association (ICGSA) as a volleyball rater, the South All Star Tryout Director, state volleyball committee member, and was in charge of the state volleyball poll. She was honored with District and State Coach of the Year awards, numerous service awards, and the 2016 Phyllis L. Tubbs Award.

As a teacher, Annie was known for her passion, kindness and leadership. She served on various committees, including Academic Honors, School Improvement and Interdisciplinary. She supported community groups and participated in Polar Plunge and Riley Dance Marathon. She volunteered as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA), advocating for children with abuse and neglect cases.

Annie is survived by her spouse, Sarah; daughter, Kirstie; son, Matthew (Gianluca Pelagatti); father, Jack Gogel; brother, Mark Gogel (Terri); sister, Kim Sibrel (Jeff); nieces and nephews.

A memorial service will be held on October 12, 2019 at 3 p.m. in the Heritage Hills High School auditorium, followed by food and drinks at the Mariah Hill Conservation Club. 

In lieu of flowers, Annie’s family asks for donations to the Annie Gunselman Memorial Fund, Freedom Bank, 10 E Medcalf Street, Dale, IN, 47523 or Gofundme  https://www.gofundme.com/f/annie-gunselman-memorial-fund.

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