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Clemens Andrew Gruen

February 19, 1940 September 2, 2018
Clemens Andrew Gruen
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Obituary for Clemens Andrew Gruen

Mr. Clemens Andrew Gruen, EdD, age 78, departed this life on Sunday, September 2, 2018, with Parkinson’s/dementia complications.

Clem was born February 19, 1940, in St. Louis, MO, to Clemens Eugene and Willie Francis Gruen. He is preceded in death by his parents and youngest sister Patricia Ramsey.

He is survived by his wife of 43 years, Janet Martin Gruen; daughter, Lori Ann Smith; grandchildren Joshua Andrew Meeks (Lauren Kuvula) and Melody Jean Smith; sister Sandra B Malson, as well as beloved nieces, nephews and cousins.

Clem attended Grace United Methodist Church for over 10 years. For several years Clem was a member of the Conway Fitness Center and played racquetball with his best friend, Steve Laca. He was a member of TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) and was the AR State King of 2013 for losing over 100 lbs.

His long teaching career of 47 years began at junior and senior high in House Springs, MO; Sam Houston State University, TX, Valley City, ND, Appalachian State University, NC, UCA, AR, and UACC-M, AR. He was foremost a teacher educator and would not have retired at 70 if not for the Parkinson’s diagnosis. He loved teaching and loved both co-workers and students whose lives he shared. “Doc” was happy to claim as friends many students from his days at House Springs, Appalachian State, and Arkansas.

He loved teaching, but his role of father and grandfather were his biggest blessings and he cherished the time spent with them above all.

Many participated in his caretaking in the last years of his life including David Edwards, Dr. Randall Bowlin and Banister-Lieblong staff, Dr. Tim Freyaldenhoven, and the many nurses, aides, PT’s, and other staff at Heritage Living Center, but especially Carron Holland-Rains, Shantell Hendrix, and Melissa Reynolds, who continued their care of him at home. The last months of his life were enhanced by Arkansas Hospice who allowed him to depart with dignity and peace. He could not have been treated with more care and love.

There will be a celebration of his life on Saturday, November 17, 2018, at 3:00 p.m. at Grace United Methodist Church, Conway, AR. Memorials may be made to Grace UMC, Parkinson’s research, or the charity of your choice.

Services entrusted to Larry G. Acklin Funeral Home, 910 Walnut Street, Conway, AR. "IN YOUR TIME OF NEED...WE CARE."

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