Barbara Sufka-Litke

Barb Sufka-Litke

Barb Sufka-Litke

Barb Sufka-Litke passed away from cancer at her home in Pierz, MN yesterday, Sunday, April 26, 2009.  Arrangements are being made locally with the Shelley-Virnig Funeral Chapel.

Barb was a kindergarten teacher all her life, making her home in Little Falls, MN for many years, then later in Pierz after she married Kurt Litke.

A letter to the parents from Barb’s school:

It is with deep regret that I am writing to inform you that long time teacher, friend and community member Barbara Sufka-Litke passed away on Sunday, April 26, 2009. Barb was our Kindergarten teacher for many years, having started with Pioneer Elementary in 1998. Barb also worked for Holy Trinity School in Pierz from 1986 to 1997 prior to her hire at Pioneer. Many children in our schools and communities once had Barb as their teacher. She taught for most of this school year as well until having to take some time off the last few months. Barb has been battling cancer for the last four years. Her strength and courage allowed her to fight off this disease and deal with the chemotherapy treatments and still maintain her love and commitment to children throughout her personal challenge. She is an inspiration and role model for all of us.


Everyone will remember her absolute love of children. Her life was dedicated to nurturing and caring for all children, never putting her own challenges or personal goals ahead of the needs of the children she served. We will all miss her. Few people were as creative in terms of making things, getting children involved in projects and using creativity as a teaching tool as Barb. Her values and spirit will be carried forward not only through the children she taught but also by the impact she had on the rest of our staff. Barb’s husband Kurt Litke is also a teacher in our schools. Kurt currently teaches 5th grade and has taught in our schools since 1992.


Our thoughts and our prayers are with Kurt, the extended family members and the many friends of both Kurt and Barb. Our teachers discussed her passing with the children as we started the school day today. We also have counselors available for any children who want to talk about it in more detail. As parents, please let us know if there are any specific counseling needs you think your child might need in order to best cope with this event.


We are planning a pink and white day on Friday, May 1 as a gesture of our memory of Barb. If you have any specific questions regarding that plan, please feel free to direct them to your child’s teacher.
Thank you for your understanding and support.

Sincerely,
George Weber

Check back here for more details as they become available.

*** UPDATE TUESDAY, APRIL 28, 2009 ***

Barb Sufka Litke

Barb Sufka Litke

Her obituary from the funeral home:

Barb was born to Larry and Rose (Wojtanowicz) Sufka on June 5, 1955. She was born at St. Gabriel’s Hospital in Little Falls, MN and later moved to Iowa. She attended Iowa State University and after graduation started her career of teaching at Christ the King in Iowa. Barb later moved to Little Falls, MN in 1986 and began teaching at Holy Trinity (St. Joseph’s) in Pierz for 12 years. She then taught at Pioneer Elementary for the past 11 years. Barb was united in marriage on June 5, 2002 to Kurt Litke where they reside on the Platte River in Morrison County. Barb has touched many people’s lives through her love of teaching, creativeness in crafts, and overwhelming talent of quilting. She will be deeply missed by her husband, Kurt; father, Larry Sufka; siblings, Larry Sufka Jr., Sue (Bruce) Eveland, Pam (Mike) Boyd, Ken Sufka, Jim (Karen) Sufka and David Sufka. In-laws, Renee (Larry) Litke, Lora (Roger) Henze, Cory (Rhonda) Sufka; 8 nieces & 4 nephews, many relatives and friends. Barbara was preceded in death by her mother & grandparents. Barb’s wishes were to be cremated with a private family gathering at a later date. Memorials preferred in lieu of flowers to a scholarship in Ms. Sufka’s name which can be made through Pierz Farmer & Merchants State Bank in Pierz.

Barb Sufka with her kids

Barb Sufka with her kids. She's in the middle in the fireman's hat and yellow jacket.

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4 Responses to “Barbara Sufka-Litke”

  1. Deb Leahy Says:

    Barb and I go back to Christ the King School in south Des Moines. She was a kind and caring person all through the school years we were together. She will be missed.

    Deb Petosa Leahy

  2. Jill Hoffman Reynolds Says:

    I remember Barb well through Dorian Art. She was always positive, kind and caring. It wasn’t until the last few years while I had Lindsay at CTK Religious Educ. that I found out Barb’s younger brother was also challenged. I chatted with him one Saturday while Lindsay and I were decorating The Church for Christmas. A nice guy. Think Barb was very proud of his accomplishments. She too new it was the soul that counted not the outside package. Barb’s Mom was wonderful too. My first real job was at Target on Fleur right after it opened. Rose worked in “flowers right across from the Snack Bar. So we chatted some. She had a wonderful smile and personality also.

    It’s good to remember those that go before us and count every little blessing life has to offer. Barb offered so much to many–what a great life she had.

    Jill Hoffman Reynolds

  3. Debbie Says:

    When my Marine son was in Iraq at the start of the war, Barb had her class write him letters and sent them to him. I can only imagine how many children have memories of Barb’s classroom and were influenced in a special way by her as their wonderful teacher. My thoughts and prayers to her family and loved ones. Deb Birdsall Williams

  4. tiffany Says:

    i had ms. sufka for a teacher i was in fifth grade when this happened i cried the whole day. and now i am in 7th grade i still cry when i see pictures of her. :9

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