Clauson Kids with Omi
Annelies "Frau" Clauson
  • 95 years old
  • Date of birth: Oct 5, 1919
  • Place of birth:
    Goschin, Schlesian, Germany
  • Date of passing: Apr 1, 2015
  • Place of passing:
    Kirkland, Washington, United States
Those we love can never be more than a thought away...for as long as there's a memory, they live in our hearts to stay.

This memorial website was created in memory of our loved one, Frau Clauson, 95, born on October 5, 1919 and passed away on April 1, 2015. We will remember her forever.

Frau pictures - many of you will have some great pictures of Mom that we would like to share at the Memorial - please choose your best 3 and sent to Marc at Thank you.

Please join us at her memorial on April 25th at 3pm at the Holy Spirit Lutheran Church in Juanita for a time of sharing, fond memories, and closure as we honor her life and friendships with those she held dear. All "Frau-ites" are welcome.

We are currently trying to set the site up to allow posting of pictures, memories, and other websites and facebook pages to both share your memories and to connect with the "Frau People" to perhaps reconnect and start your own programs to continue to make the world closer.  

Memorial Tributes
This tribute was added by Miranda Clauson on 30th December 2017

"Nuh  -  so many years with you on the Hale Koa balcony in Hawaii for New Years - you always insisted on seeing the fireworks - I owe you for teaching me not 'to miss things' - to pay attention to the milestones and the history of things (the eclipse was your influence) - always thinking of you, always sending you thanks and love - deine marvinchen"

This tribute was added by Miranda Clauson on 17th April 2017

"Mom - laughed with you on the 1st - we all got together for Easter - you and Michael were there with us   ... the grandkids are raising amazing families - you both did well - love always, mc2"

This tribute was added by Miranda Clauson on 28th November 2016

"Mom - you always worked so hard to make the holidays special and full of warmth, love, and traditions - you fill my thoughts and heart in so many little ways during this season - I miss you so much, mc2"

This tribute was added by Maria Mackey Gunn on 5th October 2016

"Frau Clauson babysat me and my sister when we were little girls in Redmond, while she was going to college to get her teaching degree.  She always brought us the most magical games and toys and we loved her dearly, and when I got to high school, even though I was at Redmond HS not Juanita, she included me in her incredible exchange program.  She sent me to Hamburg in 1972 to a wonderful family who became like blood relatives from the very start (and are, to this day, part my family, we see each other all the time).  Frau changed my life in every possible good way. I loved her and will never ever forget her."

This tribute was added by Deborah Peterson on 4th October 2016

"Frau Clauson was my mentor teacher when I student taught through the UW at Juanita High School. I went on to be the founding director of the German American School of Portland, now the German International School and I am now am an assistant professor preparing future school leaders. Your dear mother and omi was such a guiding spirit in my life-and I would not have had the successes I have had without her guidance and her belief in me. Her spirit lives on through the work of her students and mentees. I am so blessed to have known her. Yours, Deborah"

This tribute was added by Robin Ballard on 1st April 2016

"I think of Annelies often - usually a memory of some silliness on a tennis court or a sly remark in her kitchen.  She was a unique, adventurous, fun person to know!"

This tribute was added by Carrie Nelson-Parks on 30th November 2015

"Frau was a great German teacher!  She knew when to have fun and when it was time to get down to business in class.  I never participated in the Juanita exchange program, but I was inspired by it and ended up  joining another exchange program after I graduated from Juanita.. and spent my Junior year in Mainz, Germany through the U of W Foreign Exchange Program.  It was an invaluable experience.  R.I.P. Frau!!"

This tribute was added by Kamilla Esfahani on 29th October 2015

"Liebe Frau Clauson,
Words cannot express how grateful I am for your friendship and your love - and for you teaching me when you were in your eighties. Kant's Imperativ and your favorite poem, Mondnacht by Johann von Eichendorff, are one of the many glimpses into our stimulating afternoon Kaffee Kuchen teaching sessions that will remain with me forever. Thank you for touching so many of our lives. Thank you for loving me and being my friend. You will always have a place in my heart. May you rest in peace... "...Und meine Seele spannte, weit ihre Fluege aus, flog durch die stillen Lande, als floege sie nach Haus." Deine Kamilla"

This tribute was added by Robin Ballard on 5th October 2015


I think of you often and miss our talks.  Your vibrant spirit lives on in the way you touched our lives."

This tribute was added by lSharon pAKKALA on 13th June 2015

"Frau Clauson opened the door to a bigger world for our daughter Lauri in the early 1970's and, as a result, for us her parents as well.  Lauri began German classes with Frau at Juanita High School, and by her junior year set off to Emmerich in Nordrhein Westphalia.  There she lived with the Hein and Rosi Kreutz family.  That began a life-long friendship between our families and ultimately resulted in a joining of the families as Lauri and Bernhard Kreutz were married in August of 1986 here in Bellevue, Washington.  As a result of Frau's exchange program we have been blessed with two beautiful granddaughters, Anna and Katrin, now 25 and 23.  Thank you to Frau for these additions to our family as a result of her German and exchange program at Juanita High School.  We have been blessed and thank God for her hand on the life of our family."

This tribute was added by Deborah Lajiness on 11th May 2015

"Frau was not only my teacher but also a neighbor, so I have many memories of her. I still remember "Auf, Ausser, Bei, Mit, Nach, Seit, Von, Zu" which she sang to the Blue Danube Waltz, Her scolding the classmate I sat next to in the middle of class "Mr......, Do not flirt with Miss Hirt!" The amazing opportunity she provided us with the German Exchange program and the tour of the sites in Germany that were important to her at the end of our stay.  As her neighbor I remember the time a group of us were studying for a World Studies exam on Halloween, we gave up and went out trick or treating, when we got to Frau's' house we all got on our knees to look smaller as we rang her bell. The time I complained (at the beginning of class) that one of her dogs was chasing me when I ran on her street while training for cross country.  Her answer was that I run on a different street (I did which added an extra hill...).  Crawling under her sports car after the big windstorm in '93 to pull a tree branch out from underneath it, as I was driving out of the neighborhood behind her. Attending the gathering for her at the last night at her house.  Thank you Frau for everything!!!"

This tribute was added by Edith Dixon on 30th April 2015

"Marc, you did an outstanding job with your tribute to your mama, what a beautiful memorial, I think that was the best memorial I have ever been to, the stories were so wonderful, pastor was great. I didn't get a chance to say goodbye to you, big crowd. Your mom would have really enjoyed that whole program. We all loved her so much. I would still love a copy of that wonder story of her life that she read at her 90 th birthday party, did she read it or did you, I can't remember but it was so well told, if you have a copy anywhere I would love to have it.

Hugs and kisses to you, Marvin and  Mike, and those beautiful grandchildren, and I'm so sorry I didn't get to say hi to your lovely wife.


This tribute was added by Marty Nystrom on 27th April 2015

"My wife and I attended Frau's memorial service this past Saturday. It was a wonderful tribute to an extraordinary woman who influenced many lives.  
I enrolled in German my sophomore year in high school. This was in the fall of 1971, the year Juanita High School opened its doors for the first time.  Initially, I had no real interest in Deutsch other than to fulfill the 3 years of foreign language required by the college of my choice. Frau soon changed that.  
She would not allow me be half-hearted about German. I was going to learn it, learn it well, and love it!  Her example of passion for her subject and concern for her students stayed with me even as I pursued a career as an educator.  
Frau came to mind often in my years as a college vocal major. As I performed the art songs, arias, and choral works of Schubert, Schumann, Mozart, and Bach, my professors would sometimes comment on the precision of my German pronunciation. Under my breath I would whisper, "Thank you Frau."  
I am grateful to God for the impact this lady made on my young life."

This tribute was added by gretchen Mokrani on 25th April 2015

"Frau was kind enough to take me on halfway through my 1st year in high school and help me catch up with my German to enable me to participate in the exchange program in 1983.  I had the wonderful opportunity when I was with my exchange family in Ahrensburg to also get invited to live with a family in East Germany before the wall came down.  I was the first American in the city since  WW II, and my stay there not only opened my heart and eyes, but also those people around me in Neukalen who had heard only negative things about Americans.  Frau was able to make a positive impact on so many people, and I count myself lucky to have gotten to know her during my schooling.  She had such a positive influence on my life!!  Ich werde immer dankbar fur die Gelegenheit sein, die du mir gegeben hast.  Sie wir wer
den vermissen!!!"

This tribute was added by Toni Chamness on 25th April 2015

"I was lucky enough to go  to Lubeck courtesy of Frau. Then I was fortunate enough to be one  her TAs.  Danke, ihre kleine Toni"

This tribute was added by Peter Godwin on 23rd April 2015

"Guten tag Frau Clausen. I really enjoyed meine drei jahre auf Deutshe mit dir. Looking back now it was really great having all the exchange students come to America. My family hosted Arndt Furken from Ahrensburg. I'm sorry I sprayed snow on you while skiing at Alpental, actually it was kind of fun to ski fast by my German teacher! Although we did not stay in contact I still held a place for you in my heart. Some of my best artist friends are from Deutschland! So das ist gute, ich will ein bier trinken in your honor. TschuB, til spater, Peter"

This tribute was added by Barb Goodwin on 22nd April 2015

"I had the privilege of teaching with Frau Clauson at Juanita High School from 1979-1985.  German was so popular at Juanita that I taught the overflow German classes that she couldn't teach.  Our World Language Department was made up of amazing individuals.  Besides Frau Clauson, I worked with Wilma Price, Karen Matsunaga, Sergio Luna, and Margaret Ondruch.  I only taught at Juanita for 6 years; but Frau, Wilma, Margaret and I remained friends for many years.  We met together for lunch around once a year, catching up on each others' lives.  I recently retired from teaching the last 22 years at Monroe High School, where I was also known as "Frau."  I felt honored to be called by that name, but I felt like it never really belonged to me ..."

This tribute was added by Brian Laschkewitsch on 15th April 2015

"Frau Clauson left an indelible mark on me. I attended Lake Washington High School in the 70's and was one of the lucky ones who was part of her renowned exchange program. I attended a high school in Fuhrberg (near Hannover), and the family I stayed with had relatives in Hamburg, with whom I also stayed. During my Hamburg stay, I took the train to Berlin (when East Germany and Berlin were still "walled"), and I was able to contemplate a world divided. These and many other experiences in Germany, have helped to greatly influence the person I am today. As memorable as my experience in Germany was, even more memorable was the way Frau taught us. She was singularly focussed on us understanding German people, German culture, German holidays, and, oh yes, German, too, with her very strong emphasis on German grammar. I learned far more about English grammar from her than I ever learned in all my English classes put together. Her determination, focus, and approach to life have guided me to this day. We have lost a true shining light, and one that, I'm sure, changed the lives of countless others."

This tribute was added by Jay Richards on 14th April 2015

"Frau, Frau, Frau. So much impact on so many people. Take no guff, give them what you knew they needed, heart of gold. I learned a lot from Frau and her exchange program which I carry to this day, a high compliment. A truly one off who made her mark and touched many. She named my first puppy, wrangled me to stay in the exchange program when homesickness was overwhelming, and bailed out a young man with tears in her eyes that made him think. The grating of potatoes for pancakes, the sheets of Kuchen (not so much the poppy seed) etc.. I could go on and on but I'll stop. All my condolences to the Clauson brothers and rest in peace Frau Clauson. A life well lived."

This tribute was added by Susi Cradduck on 13th April 2015

"Marvin, Mike and Mark how blessed you were to have Annalies as your mother!  She was so proud of all 3 of you and loved you all so much. When Annalies and my mom got together we got all the updates.  She was loved and will be missed by many."

This tribute was added by John Gorow on 13th April 2015

"I had the honor and privilege of being a colleague of Annelies’ from 1971 - 1978.  I was an Assistant Principal at Juanita High School during most of those years.  Frau was a dedicated teacher who not only cared for her students, but was concerned for the whole school.  Those first years of Juanita called for a staff that was willing to try things, make adjustments, and work collaboratively.  Frau was a great leader of the teaching corps.  She brought all kinds of ideas to the administrators, and if we told her we would follow up – she made sure we did.

There are so many things that creep out of my memory bank when thinking about Annelies:  the extravagant gingerbread houses, her German exchange program, her regular trips back to Germany for the “spa,” and many more.  I remember one of the early Mardi Fash Ca events she and the rest of the foreign language department put on.  Frau asked me to participate in the dunk tank.  Of course I agreed – I had learned that it best you say yes when Frau asked a favor.  I was the first one to be put on the tank that evening, and so was the first one to be dunked.  As I hit the water it was obvious no one thought that perhaps the water should be warm.  The water was straight out of the cold water tap, and I thought I was going to have a heart attack.

Annelies Clauson – what a great teacher – what a wonderful human being."

This tribute was added by Barbara Struble on 13th April 2015

"I was a student of Frau Clauson's at Juanita High School. Angela visited  from Germany and stayed with us for 6 months. I went back and stayed with her family in Hamburg. When my daughter graduated from College I took her to Europe. We were delighted to visit my host family in Hamburg 35 years later. They were delighted to see me again. What a wonderful experience."

This tribute was added by Bob Kelly on 13th April 2015

"I was at Lake Washington rather than Juanita and didn't get to know Frau Clauson well.  But her exchange program was life-changing.  I used kid my mother that I was born in Germany at age 17, as if nothing that happened before mattered."

This tribute was added by Maria Mackey Gunn on 13th April 2015

"Frau Clauson babysat for me and my sister when we were very little.  She brought toys and games from Germany for us to play with, and at that time (I was born in 1956) we didn't have anything remotely like them in the US and we thought they, and SHE, were absolutely magical.  She was going to the UW at that time, to become a teacher.  I went to Redmond Elementary, Junior High (where Mr. Clauson was my science teacher and I started taking German in 7th grade), and High School.  Even though Frau taught at Juanita and I was at Redmond, because of her long-time friendship with me and my parents she offered me the chance to go to Germany in her program when I was a junior, and I went to Hamburg (Marc remember we were there the same year, 1972)?   The family she chose for me couldn't have been more wonderful and they are, to this day, just as much "mine" as if we were related by blood.   I see them almost every year and we are as close or closer than my US family - as with thousands of others, Frau absolutely changed my life in the best imaginable way and I can never ever thank her enough.   I am grateful beyond words that that tiny indomitable lady was in my life and I loved her very very much."

This tribute was added by Jeannine Bannick on 12th April 2015

"Annelies was a friend through and through.For years we celebrated our October birthdays. We played tennis on her court and then with friends for years in Bellevue.A tradition In December was her tennis luncheon with all the German fare. Just think of all the people that will miss her food.
To Mike,Marvin,Mark and Fiona and the grandchildren I offer my kindest and warm sympathy.
Knowing Annelies for over 40 years I say Auf Wiedersehen (the extent of my German) and may Peace be with you forever and ever with Love..."

This tribute was added by Stephanie Bannick Simpson on 12th April 2015

"Frau made such an impression on me and was my favorite teacher at Juanita High School. It was hard for me learning the German language but, Frau taught with such enthusiasm and power that it forced me to learn! It was at times very intimidating! I made a mistake however when she pleaded with me to go as an exchange student to Germany. I was too afraid to leave home and didn't go! I'm sorry to have missed that experience!
I grew up down the street from her. My mom played tennis with her over the years and they remained good friends.
She made amazing Kuchen too!
God bless you Frau and all the Clausens!
warmest regards!"

This tribute was added by Sandy Stark on 12th April 2015

"Our family will be forever grateful to Frau and the exchange program.  Our three kids participated in the exchange and we have maintained the connection with our German kids and their families to this day.  They are a very important part of our family and we can never thank Frau enough.  My husband and I took German classes in the evening from Frau after she retired from Lake Washington School District.  This provided us the opportunity to get to know her better and we will always treasure her friendship."

This tribute was added by Dan Burwell on 10th April 2015

"Thank you Frau for not only teaching German but teaching Life!  Living with another family at a young and impressionable age forever shaped me and all the friends I had that were a part of the program. I am still close friends with my exchange student and a friend in my class in Emmerich.  Because of you I see the world differently.  Your legacy has gone so far as to teach my kids about Germany, soccer (BVB!) and give them the opportunity to learn firsthand by traveling.

I will never forget when the Wall came down and Frau announced it with the map of one Germany outlined with a marker.  She had tears in her eyes.  She tended to yell at me more than most and I deserved it.  She’d say, “Herrrr Bur-vel,” and then ask me to conjugate a verb or sing along to “aus, auser, bei, mit, nach, zeit, von, zu.”  Remember that song?  When she came back from Winter Break she’d be crazy brown, smiling and with a bit more spring in her step.  That weird sloped room with swivel desks at JHS would light up when she entered to start class.

My condolences to the family for their loss.  Frau’s memory will live on forever.  Thank you Frau!  You changed the world for the better!"

This tribute was added by Robin Ballard on 7th April 2015

"Annelies was one feisty little frau!  I loved her spirit and played tennis with her right up to her 90's.  She was fun and could get past my anxieties with her practicality and heart.  She got me back into the game I love, fed us all rouladin at Christmas and shared her love for travel and the world around her.  She was a great friend and I enjoyed any time I got to spend with her.  She touched many lives and I'm so glad mine was one of them."

This tribute was added by Megan Brazeau on 6th April 2015

"My dad still tells the story how Frau approached him at the grocery store, asking why he wouldn't let me go to Germany. My dad told her he'd let me go, but she'd need to "turn up the heat" to convince me. Next day, I get in the car showing my paper with a picture of "my German"! I made such a connection that I was homesick for Antje and my other German friends after leaving, I returned following my freshman year of college, made her my bridesmaid and we continue to keep in touch today. My life had changed because of this experience and this wonderful woman who pushed us so hard. We argued, teased, shook our heads at one another, but Frau always kept her end of the bargain, making us work for what we wanted. I'll always remember her dedication to this program and hope my children can experience the magic of an exchange program. Than you Frau!"

This tribute was added by Jill Huentelman on 6th April 2015

"I was part of Frau's German class during high school, and participated in the exchange program of 1988.  I will always remember that one of her goals with the exchange program was to learn and appreciate people from other cultures, and the benefit of education.  She truly changed my life and will be greatly missed!"

This tribute was added by Kristina Raabe on 4th April 2015

"Frau touched all of our lives.  Her "tough" exterior barely concealed her pride and belief in every student who passed through her doors, even though she often couldn't remember our names - I was her "Roberta".  The stringency of the exchange program forced me to be a good student, which lead to my successes later in life.  I still use the skills she taught - hard work, a smile for everyone, and the knowledge that the world is so much bigger than any one of us.  Some of my fondest memories and best friends are because of Frau.  In the words of Sir Terry Pratchett, another who recently passed on: “Do you not know that a man is not dead while his name is still spoken?” Frau's name will be spoken with well-earned love and respect for many, many years."

This tribute was added by Steve Lane on 4th April 2015

"How do you thank Frau enough and what words can express how much we all loved Frau, even though she was tough on us. We knew it was because she loved us and believed in us. The exchange program and my time with familia Buss in Hamburg and with Helmut at our house are some of my most cherished and talked about memories. So many stories, but one that sums up how well she taught me German was when I was getting ready to come home in August, '75, I went to buy Adidas running shoes. I told the lady I was buying 2 pairs because they were twice as expensive where I was from. She asked me where, Bayern? I said, no, America. She wouldn't believe me, because I had no American accest. She made me show her my license to prove it. That's Frau's great teaching. Will miss her forever, even though I didn't get back up there to visit much since i moved away."

This tribute was added by Ryan Ladiges on 3rd April 2015

"WOW- what a wonderful woman- what an awesome legacy! Frau Clauson touched so many of us is so many positive ways from the subtle to the profound. When we signed up for her class, we thought we were going to learn German, but what we got was so much more. I am truly thankful for the life lessons that Frau and her exchange program created for me, for my family and for my friends.  Frau- you will be missed, but your mission to make the world a smaller more familiar place and to foster understanding and compassion carries on. Thank You!"

This tribute was added by Robin Hansford Fontana on 3rd April 2015

"Frau taught me so much during my 3 years of German class.  She was very passionate about about teaching German that she made learning fun even if I wasn't very good at speaking German.  I loved going to her classes and I still remember our trip to Leavenworth.  She will be missed!"

This tribute was added by Wendy Nelson on 3rd April 2015

"The opportunity I had to study in Germany, thanks to Frau, literally shaped the rest of my life. Because of her, I had the courage to travel and explore the world. I truly believe I would not have had the guts to grab the chances that have been offered to me if I had never known Frau. It's hard to believe that someone who was in my life so briefly had such a significant impact. I will never forget her!"

This tribute was added by Laura Woodruff on 3rd April 2015

"Frau Clauson was a wonderful teacher, stearin yet caring. I had a lot of respect for her. She is one of the few teachers I remember; she clearly had a way of making a lasting impression!"

This tribute was added by Roberta Gwynn on 2nd April 2015

"I was a German Exchange Student from January-June of 1972 in Frau Clauson's program. I also had the pleasure of making friends with several German students who attended LWHS from her program. Being able to see the world, and how others live, changed my life immeasurably for the better. It was such a rare and incredible opportunity and I give thanks still for Frau Clauson, her energy, her enthusiasm and her gift for sharing the joy of her homeland. I am happy that she lived a long and full life, and sad for her family who must now go on without her. She was a truly wonderful lady. I will always have a place in my heart for her, because of the impact she had on my life. Rest in peace, Frau Clauson. From an old student, Roberta (Sonnie) Gwynn"

This tribute was added by Dierk Evers on 2nd April 2015

""Frau" was an incredibly good teacher who loved her job and loved her students. She inspired and deeply influenced all of us. I was one of her German exchange students, in 1972 at Juanita High, and this exchange program was her single-handed initiative. Without her, I would have never come to be an exchange student in the U.S., I would have never met my wonderful exchange family who I love and with whom I still am in close contact. Without her, my life would have been different. I will always remember her, and I am so grateful!"

This tribute was added by jen leu on 2nd April 2015

"Thank you Frau, for making the world a bigger and more amazing place than I ever could have realized. You believed in yourself and your students and created generations of kindred spirits touched by the truth of seeing the world from more than one lens. You stood up for yourself and for each one of us as individuals, reached out when we needed it and encouraged our parents to trust us too. Your impact on this world cannot be measured, but the influence you had on me is celebrated everyday. Your life lives eternal in all of us, well done Frau!"

This tribute was added by Jackie Payne on 2nd April 2015

"I will forever be greatful for you kindness, and the wonderful gift you had as a educater , you brought a lot of fun to our class. You will always be the best German Teacher LWSD ever had. God bless you Frau!"

This tribute was added by Jackie Payne on 2nd April 2015

"I loved Frau so much! I came to USA in 1977 I met her at Juanita High I became her TA we had so much fun, she was a teacher that everyone walked away with something. I will miss her but I know one thing she is up above showing her stuff in a very proud way. God bless you Frau I will love you forever , Thank You!"

This tribute was added by Kathleen Adams on 2nd April 2015

"Such vivid memories of Frau teaching us German.  I recall the earthquake in high school when Frau thought we were being bombed.
Loved the trips to Schnitzelbank for awesome German food.  You touched many lives in your time and I'm so blessed to have been one of them.  RIP little lady.  Guten nacht, Frau."

This tribute was added by Samantha Harris on 2nd April 2015

"So many wonderful memories of Frau.  Cooking hot potato salad, making gingerbread houses, shouting at the boys in class, convincing our parents that even though Desert Storm was happening we would still be ok in Germany, making tie dye shirts at her house.  She left the world a better place than she found it and I will always love and remember her.  Hugs and blessings to her family."

This tribute was added by Dani Keller on 2nd April 2015

"I attended Juanita when it first opened, 1971-1975. My sophomore year was when I began taking German from Frau. By the end of that school year, she was talking to my parents about sending me to Germany. To this day I am amazed that she convinced them to send me (and all without consulting me!). That had never been their parenting style before! People have posted on facebook that she was 'a force of nature' and 'a force to be reckoned with', and it certainly was the case. So, off to Hamburg I went. At the time I struggled with fierce homesickness and felt totally out of control of my life, but it's one of the best things that has ever happened to me. I have not seen the world or myself in it the same way since. The impact has been life-long, and I am grateful. RIP Annelies M Clauson, you certainly are loved."

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