Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Teacher was known as Gundella, the good witch

Gundella Obituary

The fruits of my hour or two with the Detroit News and Observer microfiche files at the local library produced quite a bit of new information, for me anyway. Besides the biographical sketch, which is very helpful for the larger picture of who she was as opposed to what she accomplished, the mention of books in progress and for future publication will help in compiling a bibliography.

Yes, I'm a little obsessed with putting it all together at this point. Considering that I have almost no personal interest in the occult other than as a curiosity, am not a witch by any means and am about as far from being a spiritual being, the intrigue seems a little odd even to myself but is fun to investigate nonetheless. I've even considered writing a book on her but that seems like a huge task that I'm not sure I'd be capable of bringing to completion considering that I've never written one and am an outsider to the field she was renown in.

Besides the Minnie Quay reference and the noting of "The Witch in the Kitchen" publication, which I'm not sure ever came to be, I also found a mention in her Livonia Observer obituary of a Halloween cassette she released called "Ghastly, Gruesome, Ghostly Tales" which was produced by Ron Rose Productions. Luckily, the company is still in business and I contacted them and received the expected response of "I'm sorry, but that was quite a long time ago." Which it was but he also pointed out that her family should have the master tape and also that she was a good friend of Detroit Public Television, which I did not know but makes perfect sense. You never know, maybe they could help out with some video footage!

As for contacting the family, I have contacted one of her sons recently but did not receive a reply. I also contacted a friend of hers who mentioned her by name on his website but got no reply from him either. I suppose it is a bit of an intrusion, no matter how polite it may be, so I'll not bother any more people with inquiries and let them contact me if they wish to do so. I welcome the intrusion.

from the Detroit News/Free Press July 12, 1993


Anonymous said...

Hello there! My mother and i were talking halloween and things of that nature recently. She told me about a very nice lady named Gundella the Witch. My mother even knew her real name (Marion) She said that she once spoke to Marion on the phone and knew a lot about her from her own childhood. I got online today and goggled her to learn more. She sounds like a great human being and a wonderful lady. I wish i had known her.
Thanks for writing this website about her, it's very interesting.

Thank you!

R. O. Glockenspiel said...

She is a very interesting subject to say the least. Interesting enough that I've spent about 100+ hours searching old newspapers for anything about her. Thanks for checking in!

Anonymous said...

As my son prepares for his upcoming marriag I was asked to write words of wisdom for him my thoughts went back to an evening of March 1979 when I met and had a reading done by Gundella. I have to say that most everything she told me that night has been realized. She told me that night I would have a son who would be the apple of my eye and one day he would do something that would make me proud of him. That son is now an EMT and Firefighter and has helped mamy people during his career. I person can't get much prouder than that. She was an amazing person.

texascom said...

George Noory, host of Coast to Coast AM, tonight briefly mentioned interviewing Gundella every Halloween when he was a 21 year old reporter in Detroit.

the said...

Yeah texascom, George Noory is responsible for my interest in Gundella. He mentioned her one night while I happened to be listening (which isn't very often) and since I'm from Detroit, too, it lead to my interest in and research for this blog.

Gavin Campbell said...

I don't remember this person, but my grandmother, Shirley Winkler, knew her well. My mother spoke of her fondly. Apparently we used to have her on record. I can't recall any of this as I'm the youngest born, though I hope someone here can fill me much as they can...

the said...

Gavin, there is a spoken word recording of her on this blog.

Anonymous said...

As a young person I used to see Gundella on various local TV shows around Halloween time.

She gave her address to write to, and I did twice at least and received a thoughtful letter and a small herb with instructions on how to use. This was around 1970 when I was in Junior High.

Many years later, as a more-realized Witch I also knew of her daughter, Veronica. Veronica was a much better friend to a member of my coven and he was one of the last people to see her alive, on the night she was murdered.

But her mother was a great influence on me as a younger Witch.

the said...

Thanks for the comment Anon. If you still happen to have that letter I'd love to see it.

Kathy Markovich said...

I knew “Gundella” Marion very well. My mother was in her innr circle, and I was friends with her daughter Veronica. I have a bunch of amazing memories of the Kuclo family. Marion threw many fabulous parties. Once, we made a giant paper mache volcano in her bsckyard for a hawaiian themed party, in which she had flown Don Ho and his dancers in to perform live on stage.
She had a gisnt 6 foot wooden toy solder named Charlie, who stood inside her front door. She also had a witch head, (sculpture) of a beautiful witch she called “Sharon”. I attended many events, readings, holidays with them. I am even mentioned in her book of michigan haunts. The story of Minnie Quay, where she discussed the ghost haunting her teen sged daughter, and friends. I was one of those four girls who did in fact hear Minnie that night.

Many amazing memories .....she was a one of a kind beautiful soul.

Kathy Markovich

the said...

Thanks, Kathy.

I'd love to hear any more stories that you have.