The Virginia Lukshaitis Memorial


Virginia was born in 1951 to Ken and Margaret Maher of Port Sanilac. She was the sixth of nine children. She attended Carsonville-Port Sanilac School and graduated Valedictorian in 1969. Virginia went on to Central Michigan University where she earned a Bachelors Degree in Elementary Education, and later a Masters Degree in Reading. Virginia married Tom Lukshaitis of Hamtramck, Michigan in 1974. Virginia also started teaching at the Kingston Community Schools that same year. After some unknown health problems, she was diagnosed with progressive multiple sclerosis in 1979. Even though Virginia's health slowly regressed with each passing year, she taught fourth and fifth grade for 21 years.


Virginia and Tom moved to Sandusky in 1979. They had and raised two children, Greg (1981) and Margie (1987). Virginia loved her job and her students, but in 1996 she could no longer teach on a day-to-day basis, so she retired. Until her passing in 2001, Virginia could be seen on the streets of Sandusky driving her battery powered "Amigo" scooter. Her two favorite hangouts were the Sandusky Library and the Melting Pot Restaurant.

Virginia always had a smile on her face and a witty comment to offer. When people saw her around town, their own personal concerns and problems seemed less important. Virginia gave the people of Sandusky a little more strength.

—Tom Lukshaitis

Library patrons come in many shapes and sizes, of various ages, and with lots of different reading interests and abilities. Many users make regular trips to the library, stopping in not only to check out whatever items they may be interested in or to use the public computers, but also to share a word or two with the staff. We as a staff have made numerous connections with our patrons; and on the whole, we look forward to these interactions a great deal. You always have your favorites...the little girl who has been a "regular" since the age of two or three when her grandpa first introduced her to the library. Or perhaps it is the elderly gentleman who has been a user and supporter since his younger days, and would not dream of missing an opportunity to joke with the "library ladies".

One particular person stands out in my memory as a favorite of every member of our staff. Virginia Lukshaitis was an avid library user. She visited us almost every single day when we were located in the City Building, stopping in to chat, to drop off treats, to grab some books-on-tape, or to just catch up on "what's new". My only sadness when we moved to our new facility was that our location was not quite as easily accessible to "Ginger". It didn't stop her from continuing her visits, but it did cause us to see her less often.

The Virginia that we came to know and care so much about was a vivacious, witty, warm-hearted woman who cared deeply about her family and her community. She loved her independence and did not let much of anything slow her down. We admired her for her perseverance and determination, and loved her for her warmth and humanity. We miss her sense of humor and her constant support of just how much a library can influence a community and those who live there.

—Gail Nartker, Director, 6/2002

The Virginia Lukshaitis Collection

Memorials to the Library in memory of "Ginger", have been used to start a book collection in her honor. Below is a partial list of the collection. If you would like to make a contribution towards the collection, please contact the Library Director.


Title Author
The Dungeon Banks, Lynne Reid
Wenny Has Wings Carey, Janet Lee
Artemis Fowl: The Arctic Incident Colfer, Eoin
Crush Conford, Ellen
12 Again Corbett, Sue
Where I'd Like To Be Dowell, Frances O'Roark
Backfield Package Dygard, Thomas J.
Once Upon A Marigold Ferris, Jean
Up On Cloud Nine Fine, Anne
Whirligig Fleischman, Paul
Just Ask Iris Frank, Lucy
Waiting To Disappear Fritz, April Young
The Ghost Sitter Griffin, Peni R.
Loose Threads Grover, Lorie Ann
Time Stops For No Mouse Hoeye, Michael
Stormbreaker Horowitz, Anthony
Skeleton Key Horowitz, Anthony
Thorn Ogres Of Hagwood Jarvis, Robin
Gina.Jamie.Father.Bear. Lyon, George Ella
Over The River Moranville, Sharelle Byars
Before The Creeks Ran Red Reeder, Carolyn
The Great Blue Yonder Shearer, Alex
My Heartbeat Weyr, Garret
Revenge Of The Whale Philbrick, Nat
King Of The Mild Frontier: An Ill-Advised Autobiography Crutcher, Chris
Starting School Hurwitz, Johanna
Simon Says Alphin, Elaine Marie
Ashes Of Roses Auch, Mary Jane
Tithe: A Modern Faerie Tale Black, Holly
The Second Summer Of The Sisterhood Brashares, Ann
Remembrance Breslin, Theresa
Rundown Cadnum, Michael
Cheating Lessons: A Novel Cappo, Nan Willard
Losing Louisa Caseley, Judith
Postcards From No Man's Land Chambers, Aidan
Frozen Rodeo Clark, Catherine
Things Not Seen Clements, Andrew
Gingerbread Cohn, Rachel
St. Michael's Scales Connelly, Neil O.
Goddess Of Yesterday Cooney, Caroline B.
Comfort Dean, Carolee
Born Confused Desai Hidier, Tanuja
Breaking Point Flinn, Alex
America: A Novel Frank, E. R.
Friction Frank, E. R.
The True Meaning Of Cleavage Fredericks, Mariah
The Year They Burned The Books Garden, Nancy
Troy Geras, Adele
Shattering Glass Giles, Gail
The Cannibals Grant, Cynthia D.
Bronx Masquerade Grimes, Nikki
Dr. Franklin's Island Halam, Ann
Thursday's Child Hartnett, Sonya
Waiting For Christopher: A Novel Hawes, Louise
The Shakeress Heuston, Kimberley Burton
Stoner & Spaz Koertge, Ronald
Straydog Koja, Kathe
The Lightkeeper's Daughter Lawrence, Iain
Looking For Alibrandi Marchetta, Melina
Lightland McCutchen, Heather
Shadow People McDonald, Joyce
Water: Tales Of Elemental Spirits McKinley, Robin
Zipped McNeal, Laura
Blizzard's Wake Naylor, Phyllis Reynolds
Who Are You? Nixon, Joan Lowery
Born Blue Nolan, Han
Dancing On The Edge Nolan, Han
Big Mouth & Ugly Girl Oates, Joyce Carol
Places I Never Meant To Be
Three Clams And An Oyster Powell, Randy
The Sterkarm Handshake Price, Susan
After Prose, Francine
One Night Qualey, Marsha
Breaking Rank Randle, Kristen D.
Head Above Water Rottman, S. L.
Hero Rottman, S. L.
Lucy The Giant Smith, Sherri L.
Shopaholic Waite, Judy
Jinx Wild, Margaret
The Long Night Of Leo And Bree Wittlinger, Ellen
The Boy In The Burning House Wynne-Jones, Tim
The Beetle And Me: A Love Story Young, Karen Romano
Bringing Up The Bones Zeises, Lara M.
Chocolate For A Teen's Heart
Chocolate For A Teen's Spirit
The Best American Nonrequired Reading
Always Running: La Vida Loca, Gang Days In L.A. Rodriguez, Luis J.



Contributors to the Virginia Lukshaitis Collection

The Book Collection is made possible by the generous memorials made by the friends of Ginger. If you would like to make a contribution to the collection, please contact the Library Director.

Tom, Greg & Margie Lukshaitis John & Sally Armstrong Bob & Marilyn Armstrong

Connie Benedict & Sandusky

Middle School 8th Grade Class

John & Anne Bezotte Chris & Barb DeRose
Fred Hicks Family Dick & Sandy Kaatz Allen & Marion Little
Marilyn Loding Ralph & Lavonne McCallum  Joe & Gail Nartker
Mark & Emma Navarro Terry & Diana Osborn Michael & Sheree Phillips

Howard D. Crull Elementary

School, Port Huron Area Schools

Robert & Maureen Rietz John & Linda Rose
Mark & Mary Lou Ruggles Carl & Phyllis Silvernail Rebeccalynn Staples
Lynn & Cathy Staples Bob & Charlyne Stasuik James & Sharon Brandibur
Dale & Phyllis Chambers Gary & Cindy Chambers Bob Dear
Randy Filkins Katie Frostic Ann Glavich
Aline Heckroth Bob & Colleen Kaltz Phil LaGore
Jim & Dawn Licht Stephanie Lulis Don & Sue Meissner
Jean Mossett Mary Pikarski Dennis, Jerry, Larry & Rob Schommer
Nort & Linda Schramm Larry Schroder Ann Schrope
Russ & Bev Schumacher Dean & Carole Speidel Tim & Pam Thomson