Longtime Butler County teacher dies

A longtime teacher in Butler County has died.

Phyllis DiStaola, who taught in Ross and Hamilton school districts before retiring in 1995, died Saturday at Mercy Hospital of Fairfield. She was 80.

She worked five years in the Ross district, then started working in Hamilton in the 1974-75 school year, according to district records. She taught businesses courses at Taft, Garfield and Hamilton high schools.

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She was active at Berkeley Square Retirement Community, and was the past president of the Women’s Italian American Society and American Association of University Women. She enjoyed gardening, reading, and golfing.

She lived at Berkeley for four years and in that time, she made many friends, said Miranda Sitchanoff, vice president of health services there.

“She was a wonderful neighbor,” said Sitchanoff, noting DiStaola walked the community’s one-mile loop path twice a day. “She was energetic, vibrant and cheerful.”

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DiStaola earned her bachelor’s degree in education at Miami University.

She is survived by her children Mike A. DiStaola Jr., Christine DiStaola, MaryBeth (Martin) Miller; grandchildren Lance, Will, Elizabeth; and brother Art Koepke. She was preceded in death by her husband, Mike, who passed away on April 12, 2016, brothers Fred Koepke and Chad Koepke, and her parents.

Visitation will be from 10 to 11 a.m. Wednesday at the Webb Noonan Kidd Funeral Home. Funeral service will follow. Burial will take place at Rose Hill Burial Park.

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