James and Jane Hutchinson have designated the German M.E. Church and the Millcreek-West Unity Schools (custodians of the Mary Gares Suter Scholarship) as recipients of the James A. and Jane A. Hutchinson Fund.
James, son of William and Lottie Hutchinson was born September 18, 1942. He attended elementary through ninth grade at the former Kunkle School and graduated from North Central High School in Pioneer, Ohio in 1960. He furthered his education by receiving his Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Defiance College and a Masters in Administration from the University of Toledo. Jim spent 41 years in the field of education serving the Millcreek-West Unity, Montpelier, Williams County, Stryker and Woodmore School Districts and four years as Vice-President of Finance at Northwest State Community College.
During his tenure as Superintendent of the Millcreek-West Unity Schools from 1979-1994 Jim saw a great need for scholarships for Hilltop graduates. In 1994, he spearheaded the formation of the Millcreek-West Unity Area Foundation. Through this foundation, Jim and Jane will continue to support the Mary Gares Suter Scholarship. This scholarship was originally established in 1985 by family and friends in memory of the former Millcreek-West Unity teacher. Mary Gares, the only child of Ed and Myrta Gares, was born near West Unity August 15, 1914. She graduated from West Unity High School, and continued her education at Bowling Green State University. Returning to West Unity, she taught first grade prior to her marriage to G. Richard Suter in 1938. They were the parents of three children, Jack, Jane and Barbara. With all their children attending school, “Mrs. Sutter” returned to the classroom teaching fifth grade and later kindergarten. After twenty seven years of dedicated service, she retired in 1977.
Jane was born September 24, 1941 to G. Richard and Mary Gares Suter. She was born and raised in West Unity and graduated from Hilltop High School in 1959. She went on to attend Ohio Northern University, obtaining a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education. In 1965 she married Jim and they chose to live on the farm that was purchased from the United States government by Jane’s great great-grandfather, John Gares in 1834. To them were born three children, Matthew, Sarah (Sally) and Mary (Molly). Matt, Sally and Molly were sixth generation to live on the Gares homestead. The Hutchinson siblings are graduates of Hilltop High School and Miami University. Jim and Jane have four grandchildren: Matt and Joy King Hutchinson are the parents of James Thomas and Marie Ann; Madeline Jane and Benjamin Henry are the children of Molly and Curtis Wyrick.
To honor and pay tribute to Jane’s heritage the Hutchinson’s have chosen the German M.E. Church as the other benefactor of their fund. This church was built in 1869 as a result of a small group of German immigrants who felt the need to worship God in the wilderness. They had first met in the humble log cabin of John and Sarah Gares in 1842. Even though the church has not held weekly services for over one hundred years, it continues to be a sanctuary for weddings, funerals and special services and a memorial to the forefathers of Brady Township, Williams County.