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Elisabeth Nhan Thuanh Schur, Lee’s Summit, Missouri passed away June 14, 2017. A visitation will be held 1:00 – 2:00 PM, Tuesday, June 19, 2017 at Heartland Cremation & Burial Society, 6113 Blue Ridge Blvd, Raytown, Missouri. Memorial services will follow at 2:00 PM.
Elisabeth Nhan Thuanh Schur was born in South Vietnam on 11/10/73 and passed away on 6/14/17 in KCMO. At birth she was dropped off at An Lac orphanage in Saigon and spent the first 18 months of her life there. She was adopted by her Mother Anne Williams and arrived in the USA in late April 1975 getting out of South Vietnam just before it fell to the communists.
Elisabeth was very nervous about her new home at first and cried a lot. Anne and Elisabeth’s sister, Susan, made a good home for Elisabeth. Eventually Elisabeth got used to everything and became a happy kid. She went to school K-12 in USD 500 in Kansas City, KS. She would eventually be valedictorian of the class of 1992 at F.L. Schlagle High School. While attending Schlagle, Elisabeth met two people that would be life-long friends, her English Teacher, Sharon Showalter and fellow student Jarius Jones.
When Elisabeth first started to college she attended Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Florida. She wanted to work for N.A.S.A. After a year there though, she missed her family and friends. She moved back home and decided to become a teacher. From that point on, she poured her heart and soul into teaching.
Elisabeth then chose to attend Emporia State University in Emporia, KS. After she started at ESU, Elisabeth met another life-long friend, Jennifer Crane . Elisabeth also met the love of her life, and most definitely the love of his, Joe. They had a class together and eventually went on their first date to see the movie, Forrest Gump. After Joe’s graduation in May of 1996, they wed on 6/1/96 and moved to Kansas City. Elisabeth finished her student teaching at Whittier Elementary in KCK and graduated in December 1996.
In her short life, Elisabeth had quite a varied and distinguished teaching career. She taught in the regular elementary classroom, K-5 music, K-5 art, high school math, and special education at both the elementary and secondary level. She worked in USD 500, St. Regis catholic school in KCMO, and in the Raytown school district. Her final teaching job was at her alma mater, F.L. Schlage High School. She felt empowered to not only give back, but to be a strong advocate for the students on her special education caseload and in her math classes. The only thing that Elisabeth was qualified for but didn’t get a chance to teach was technology. She graduated from MidAmerica Nazarene University with a Master’s degree in Educational Technology in 2005.
The greatest teaching job that Elisabeth accomplished was with her own children, Caleb and Anamaria. She took 6 years off from the work world to make sure her kids got the best possible start in life. She was able to let them play and be creative while also teaching them at the same time. Elisabeth helped out at Westview Elementary when the kids were in attendance there whenever she was needed. As the kids progressed in school and got more active in sports and activities, Elisabeth and Joe really enjoyed attending them and talking/joking with each other.
Always a very detail oriented person, Elisabeth was perfect for the rules and regulations of writing and administering IEP’s. She had a system for just about everything. She would develop a menu for Thanksgiving and then add/adjust/tweak the menu and cooking times from year to year. The meals always turned out perfect. She was always a good cook and hostess.
Elisabeth’s hobbies included music, not only listening to it and attending concerts, but singing as well. She sang for many years as an adult and had a vocal coach for the last 7-8 years. Several times a year, she would have a vocal recital to display all her work. She could play the piano well and also was starting to write her own music. Her interest in music ranged from Italian opera to vintage Reba McEntire. Elisabeth also liked to paint and was very good at crafts. She made several Halloween costumes for the kids. She would often buy clothes and then modify or adjust them to her needs.
Elisabeth valued the quality of her friendships much more than the quantity. She truly valued her friends and would do just about anything for them. She had a tender heart but could also stand her ground when necessary. She was smart, funny, beautiful on the outside and inside, and humble.
Elisabeth felt so blessed to have been adopted by Anne and to get to live in the greatest country in the world. Even though her life was short, she packed many accomplishments and success stories into it. She would encourage you, “to make the best of bad situations” and to keep learning as you go through life.
Left to mourn the loss of Elisabeth are her Husband Joe, Son Caleb, and Daughter Anamaria, all of the home in Lee’s Summit. Her Mother Anne (KCK), Sister Susan (Topeka), Nephew Lawrence (KCMO), Aunt Lee (Des Moines) and Uncle Butch (Texas), along with numerous cousins, friends, and family.