Sarah Louise Rosemond, 89, one of the city’s first black teachers, died April 6 in New Orleans, where she’d lived since 2013.
Her funeral is 11 a.m. today in Daytona Beach, Fla., where she taught for many years at Bethune-Cookman College.
“She was a trailblazer” said Ruth Smith, Rosemond’s niece. “She loved teaching and education and was a good, loving person”
Rosemond graduated from Sandusky High School in 1942 and taught music in the district from 1959 to 1967, at a time when many schools did not employ black teachers. Her hiring helped end racial segregation among faculty in the district, her family members said. Rosemond devoted her life to education, which wasn’t easily accessible to many black women at the time.
She received her bachelor’s degree from the Boston Conservatory of Music, her master’s degree from Case Western Reserve University and her doctorate from Florida State University. She taught for 32 years at Bethune-Cookman College and also served as head of its humanities department until she retired in 1999.
Her other achievements include a 61-year membership with Delta Sigma Theta sorority, including two terms as president and one term as vice president.
She was also minister of music at St. Stephen’s AME Church in Sandusky for many years.
Her family members described her as a kindhearted, generous person with a deep passion for her work.
“She was a short little thing, always happy and perky and lots of fun,” said Jennifer Washington, Rosemond’s cousin. “She was a sweet, giving person and very intelligent. She will be dearly missed”
Sandusky school board president Tom Patterson said he is familiar with Rosemond’s family, especially her nieces and nephews, who also attended Sandusky Schools. Some of her relatives were also local educators.
“They’re a class act,” Patterson said. “I have a lot of respect for them”
A group of Sanduskians established the Louise Rosemond Scholarship Fund in 1967 after Rosemond left the district to teach at Bethune-Cookman College. The fund still assists Sandusky High School graduates today and is awarded to black students who are interested in studying teaching.
Condolences can be expressed to Rosemond’s family at baloneyfuneralhome.com .