"Concerned with the General Welfare of the Deaf of Iowa"

Michel Laurent

September 29,1925--September 9, 2018

Michel Laurent,93,  passed away on September 29, 2018 at Oakland Manor. Michel, “the good looking Frenchman,” and his twin sister, Paulette, were born on September 29, 1925, in Montoire France. They joined older sisters Germaine, twins Madelein and Renee. They grew up in Paris and worked many different jobs at the food market Les Halles.

In 1942, he joined the French Underground, under the code name: ZiZi. In 1944, he enlisted in the French Army, serving under General Charles DeGaulle. 
In the fall of 1952 he sailed on the S.S. France with $20 in his pocket, to visit his twin sister, Paulette and her husband Stewart Russell in Council Bluffs, Iowa. Stewart’s parents, Bruce and Katherine Russell encourage Michel to seek employment at Iowa School for the Deaf. He worked there twelve years doing many jobs with deaf and blind students. 

Friends urged Michel to work toward his degree and become a school teacher. He had to talk his way into UNO because he had no high school records. Michel graduated from UNO in 1967 and was hired by Jerry Kleinsmith to teach sixth grade at Lakeview Elementary School in the Lewis Central School District, He taught there twelve years. He spent a year in France visiting friends and relatives. On his return, he was hired by the Council Bluffs School District and taught fifth grade at Petersen Elementary until he retired in 1985.

During retirement, he enjoyed life with family and friends, drinking fine wine and traveling. Michel was a wine connoisseur, a gourmet cook, a good storyteller, a great friend and host, and the highlight of many gatherings. 

Celebration of Life was held from 2:00p.m. to 4:00p.m. on Sunday October 28, 2018 at the Hoy-Kilnoski Funeral Home. Memorials are suggested to any education institution in Michel Laurent name.

Thanks to Hoy-Kilnoski Funeral Home, Council Bluffs, Iowa and Shirley Hicks for the information.


Updated June 30, 2019