Barbara Elizabeth Lueck was born June 16, 1942 in Kansas City, MO to Robert and Lillian Blank. It was at West High School, in Rockford, IL where Barbara developed her love of vocal music and music theater.
Barbara attended Ripon College from 1960 to 1964 where she majored in music and met her husband of fifty-four years, John Lueck.
After graduation, Barbara shared her love of music with young people at Charlotte Amalie High School, USVI. This was the beginning of her practice of teaching the whole person, not just a subject.
On August 21, 1965, she married John Lueck in Rockford, recounting this as the "best day of [her] life." In 1967, she followed John to Munich, Germany where she taught typing to American service people. From Germany, the couple located to Fredonia, NY. Here she refined her "teaching minstrel" philosophy, teaching the whole person through music.
The next three years found Barbara and John in Wooster, Ohio, where both Elizabeth and William were born. Moving to Fullerton, California, Barbara taught preschool teachers how to teach music. Here the couple made numerous life-long friends, bought their first house together on Central Avenue, and enjoyed life near Newport Beach and Disneyland.
In 1976, the four Luecks moved to Fort Collins. Barbara became the choir director at Lesher Junior High School, naming the school's main choir The Viking Voices. In 1988, Barbara moved to Rocky Mountain High School where she led three choirs. At Rocky, Barbara directed numerous music theater productions, associating each show with the student performers that made them wonderful and unique.
Barbara's tutelage of people through music and her love of travel can be seen in the number of student trips she spearheaded, performing around the world. She loved to make the big world smaller by exposing her students to new cultures and opportunities. Barbara retired from teaching in 2004.
Barbara loved to plant roses and vegetables, watching them grow and flourish as did her students. The beautiful flowers remain by her home. Her life's work was to plant seeds of inspiration within people. These seeds live on within her husband John, daughter Libby, son Bill, and three grandchildren.
We remember Mama Lu's life with innumerable students, friends, neighbors, and colleagues for whom her beauty, grace, and grit will bloom forever.