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Deb Wensel reflects on career as Kane teacher

May 18, 2012

Photo by Ted Lutz Deb Wensel, a longtime math teacher at the Kane Middle School, is retiring at the end of the school year. She has served for 15 years as the adviser of the Student Council at the school.

Deb Wensel literally followed in her husband’s footsteps when she began her Kane teaching career in 1984.
Craig Wensel’s shift to the high school that year left an opening for a math teacher at the middle school. His wife, Deb gave up her post-college role as a “stay-at-home mom” to fill the vacancy.
“I inherited his job,” Wensel joked as she reflected on a 28-year teaching career that will end in the three weeks with her retirement.
The Wensels are both St. Marys natives, but they didn’t meet until their college days at Edinboro University. They married in 1972—the same year Craig began his teaching career in Kane. He retired 10 years ago as a high school math teacher and head football coach.
“We’re a family of educators,” Deb said.
The Wensels have one daughter—Michele “Shelly” Smith of Kane—who currently is a long-term substitute teacher at Kane High School. Smith’s husband, Nathan, is a Kane High School math teacher and is the school’s golf coach.
The Wensels have two sons—Rick of Kane, who is employed at Kane Hardwood, and Jason, also of Kane, who is a product engineer for Metaldyne in Ridgway. Jason’s wife—the former Christa Jamerson of Kane—is a Spanish teacher at St. Marys High School.
The Wensels have five grandchildren with a sixth “on the way this summer,” Deb said.
Teaching school has been Wensel’s ambition since she was in the third grade.

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