Virginia Tepe Hotchkiss died on February 11, 2023, after a long illness. She was born in 1935 and attended Mother of Mercy Academy and Mt. St. Joseph College; she graduated from the University of Cincinnati and earned a teaching certificate there. She was a teacher, theatre director, and writer, and had several stories published in children’s magazines. She also wrote plays that were performed by the St. James Players and she belonged to the Greater Cincinnati Writers’ League through the 1960s.
At the behest of one of the parish priests who was looking for activities for young people, she founded the Avilians, a theatre group for high school and college students, at Price Hill’s St. Teresa of Avila parish in 1969 with a production of The Diary of Anne Frank. The group later put on many productions at The Palace Theatre at St. Michael’s Parish in Lower Price Hill, including the first amateur production of the musical 1776, which she produced.
Gini, as she was known, was the drama teacher at Western Hills High School from the mid 1970s to the mid 1990s, putting on a spring musical and a fall dramatic production each year for those two decades. She retired in 1995 but continued to substitute teach for several more years.
Gini met her husband Roy “Hotch” Hotchkiss at Philipps Swim Club in 1948 and they were married in 1956. They continued to belong to the swim club most summers of their 62-year marriage; Roy died in 2018. She is survived by their three children, Julie (Mike Flanders), Valerie (David Price), and Amy (Rob Kerby), and six grandchildren, Alice (Rory), Erich, Cyrus (Amanda), Jessica (Ray), Samuel, and Duncan. She is also survived by her brother, Frank R. Tepe, Jr. (Judy) and many nieces/grand-nieces and nephew/grand-nephews. She was predeceased by her parents, Virginia Ann and Frank R. Tepe, Sr.
Graveside services are planned at Spring Grove Cemetery on Saturday, April 1 (aka the 32nd of March) at 11:00 a.m., which would have been her 88th birthday (please wait in your car at the Spring Grove entrance to proceed to the grave site at 11:00 a.m.) Gini would have been delighted if you wish to remember her with a donation to the theatre of your choice or to Special Olympics Hamilton County. Ralph Meyer & Deters Funeral Home serving the family.
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