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Arthur N. Gustke

September 28, 2009
Parkersburg News and Sentinel

The Honorable Arthur N. Gustke, 80, of Parkersburg died Sunday, Sept. 27, 2009, at his residence.

He was born in Parkersburg, a son of the late Walter F. and Freda (Meyer) Gustke.

Judge Gustke served on the 4th Judicial Circuit Court for 18 years, including serving as chief judge twice. During his judgeship, he had a passion for improving the lives of troubled youth, which resulted in him receiving many awards and distinctions, one of which was having the Arthur N. Gustke Shelter for Youth named in his honor. He also was the first recipient of the Nicely Award in 1994, received the Distinguished Service Award in 1962, Citizen of the Year Award for Wood County in 1979, and the West Virginia University Emeritus Award. He was a United States Army Signal Corps veteran and a member of St. Paul's Lutheran Church. He graduated from Parkersburg High School in 1946, West Virginia University in 1953, and West Virginia University College of Law in 1956. He was an avid fan of Parkersburg High School football and West Virginia University football and basketball. He played football for both schools. He was on the Board of the West Virginia University of Parkersburg Foundation and Wood County Commission on Crime, Delinquency and Corrections.

He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Mary Jo (Radcliffe) Gustke; two sons, David Gustke (Rhonda) of Parkersburg and James Gustke of Elkins; a daughter, Beth Gustke of Huntington, W.Va.; three grandchildren, Bryan Gustke, Anna Rae Anthony and Kristin Gustke, all of Parkersburg; a great-granddaughter, Justice Anthony of Parkersburg; three brothers, Paul Gustke of Dayton, Ohio, Dr. Robert Gustke of Vienna and George Gustke of Oklahoma; a sister, Ruth Gustke of Parkersburg; and several nieces and nephews.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a daughter-in-law, Cynthia (Santoro) Gustke.

Services will be 6 p.m. Wednesday at Leavitt Funeral Home, Parkersburg, with Pastor Beth Pyles officiating. Visitation will be from 6-8 p.m. Tuesday and from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4-6 p.m. Wednesday at the funeral home.

Memorial contributions may be made to Arthur N. Gustke Shelter for Youth, P.O. Box 763, Parkersburg, WV 26102.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at



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