Karen Gene Rubright
Karen Gene Rubright, 77, died Sunday, March 17, 2019, at home after a long struggle with heart and lung disease.
Funeral services will be at noon Friday at First Presbyterian Church in Iowa City, with the Rev. Sam Massey officiating. Visitation will be Thursday from 5 to 7 p.m. at Lensing's Oak Hill, 210 Holiday Rd., Coralville. Visitation also will be held Friday at the church after 11 a.m. A private burial will follow at Oakland Cemetery in Iowa City. In lieu of flowers and plants, memorials may be directed to the Karen G. Rubright Memorial Fund.
Karen Gene Richardson was born on July 1, 1941, in Davenport, Iowa. She was the daughter of Eugene H. and Margery M. (Riley) Richardson. She attended elementary, junior high and senior high in Davenport. Karen graduated from the University of Iowa in 1963 with a degree in elementary education. She began her teaching career at Mark Twain Elementary School in Iowa City in January 1963. In June of 1964, she and her husband, David Diehl, moved to Norfolk, Va. She taught school in Norfolk for two years at Larchmont Elementary. They then moved to Rockville, Md., where she taught in the Montgomery County school district for one year. In 1967, they moved to Davenport, Iowa, where she taught school in the Pleasant Valley school district for two years. In 1969, their son, Mark D. Diehl, was born. Karen stayed home for six years to care for him. During this time, Karen earned her pilot's license.
In 1974, Karen and Mark moved to Iowa City. For the next 10 years, Karen taught sixth grade at Grant Wood Elementary School. She was awarded a Master of Arts degree in educational administration from the University of Iowa College of Education in 1990. Karen taught in the Iowa City Community School District's Extended Learning Program from 1985 until retirement in 2003. In 1993, Kalamazoo County, Wis., awarded Karen the Significant Educator Award for her work with gifted students. In July of 1999, she earned the state of Iowa K-12 Talented and Gifted endorsement. Karen retired in June of 2003. In July of 2003, Karen married William C. Rubright.
Karen is survived by her loving husband, William; her son and his wife, Mark and Jennifer Diehl, and their remarkable granddaughter, Myra Diehl, of Cape Elizabeth, Maine; Karen's sister, Deborah J. Doolittle Campbell, and her husband, Dean Campbell, of Corona Del Mar, Calif.; stepson, David C. Rubright and his wife, Jutta, of Solon; and stepdaughter, Diane M. Rubright and her husband, Robi Chakraborty, of St. Paul, Minn.
Karen was preceded in death by her parents; her stepfather, Wayne Doolittle; her sister, Candace Bellamy; and her second husband, Jerry Zaiser.
Online condolences may be sent to www.lensingfuneral.com.