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Former head teacher dies just a few weeks short of her 102nd birthday

A former headmistress at a city school, who, even as a centenarian, attended flute and gymnastics lessons, has died just a few weeks before what would have been the 102nd anniversary of her birth.
Annamarie Schuh-Custer was born the daughter of a pharmacist in Rapperswil in the canton of St Gallen. Having been awarded a doctorate in history, she began to teach at a number of schools including at the Hohe Promenade Gymnasium in Zurich. With her flair and energy for the job she soon began to take on leadership roles and from 1966 until her retirement she was headmistress of the Töchterschule III girls’ school, overseeing the move of the institution from its premises near the Grossmünster to Riesbach.
This article in the Neue Zürcher Zeitung (NZZ) mentioned how she became a widow in 1969 after her husband, Gotthard Schuh, a photographic reporter and the first ever pictures editor with the aforementioned newspaper, died in 1969. He was also instrumental in setting up the newspaper’s “Weekend” section. In his time, he had taken over 100,000 photographs from numerous journeys.
With the help of her daughter, Schuh-Custer managed to be able to stay in her own home in Küsnacht, which she had lived in for seven decades, until the time came a few months ago when a move to a home was inevitable. According to other residents, she continued to be of a cheerful disposition right to the end, and was most philosophical about her death, which she realised was not far off.
Writing about her in the NZZ, an acquaintance mentioned how, when a 20-year-old, Schuh-Custer went to Paris to work as an au pair. It was while there she nearly died as a result of a middle ear infection, but, as we now know, she went on to live for a further eighty more years, pursuing a career and raising a family with her customary proficiency and a joie de vivre at a time when balancing both was not as common as it is now.
Annamarie Schuh-Custer, 1914-2016.

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