Flossie Vogel (Miss Flossie), 89, was born Aug. 17,1928, in Lima, Pa., to Alan C. and Florence A. Read. The eldest of three daughters, she and her sisters, Doris (Read Pagesy) and Janet Sue (Read Speaker) were to become known locally as The Read Sisters.
Flossie graduated from Media High School but concentrated her attention on the dance career she'd begun at the age of 5. As a teenager she performed at every opportunity, including entertaining with the USO, and sang and tapped on the radio with Uncle Wip, a Philadelphia personality.
After her marriage to Emil Jacob (Jake) Vogel Jr., Flossie began her career as a teacher and mentor to thousands of students. She opened a studio in her home in Pennsylvania, but in 1966 came to Sussex County with her family. She immediately went to work. Miss Flossie's School of Dance (later to become Flossie Vogel's Dance Factory) had residences in Ocean View, Rehoboth, Lewes, Millsboro and Dagsboro. Although she began her career teaching ballet, tap and jazz, it was her love of tap that gave her the opportunity to educate dancers across the state of Delaware. In addition to her home studios, she headed the Tap Department for Marion Tracy and later Dan Kaiser in Dover, Maubra Randolf in Seaford, Gayle Gardiner in Milford, and finally Kate Downes Walker in Georgetown. She finished her career after retiring three times, teaching classes for Kate at Midway, and on her 85th birthday taught a Master Class for the Ta Da studio in Milford!
Miss Flossie loved her work and every one of her students. Her talent and dedication were an inspiration to many who went on to become teachers themselves. Flossie became involved with the Miss Delaware Scholarship Pageant in 1967, and over the course of 35 years held nearly every position on the board as well as producing and choreographing many of their shows. She encouraged her own students and others to enter the pageant, firmly believing that the experience was worth their time and effort. Many of "her girls" went on to achieve phenomenal things with the help of the scholarship monies they won at a time when scholarships for women were severely limited. The experience of competing and the education they could afford after winning were life changing.
In the ‘70s she became involved with the Possum Point Players where she made many lifelong friendships while working as choreographer. With family and friends, Flossie was the life of the party, the master of ceremonies and the entertainment director.There was rarely a dull moment when Flossie was around. And we loved her for that indomitable spirit, her fierce love of family and the true friend she was to so many.
Miss Flossie is survived by her son Alan Vogel, daughter Joy Vogel Cadden and housemate Elsie Cadden, all of Millville; granddaughter Jessica and her husband Simun Matesic of New York City; grandson Dylan Hamblin of Fenwick Island; sister Sue Speaker of West Chester, Pa., and brother and sister-in-law Charles Pagesy of Southhampton, Pa., and Frances (Honey) Shadel of Millville. She is also survived by many cousins, nieces and nephews, along with her granddoggies Butchie and Tank.
We invite you to join us for a Celebration of Life Saturday, June 2, at Mariner's Bethel United Methodist Church in Ocean View. Visitation will begin at 12:30 p.m., with services at 2 p.m., followed by a luncheon on premises. Please bring your music and stories that tell her life, for we're certain that if there is a party, she will be with us one more time.
In lieu of flowers, we ask that you send donations in her name to The Miss Delaware Scholarship Pageant, The Possum Point Players or the ballet/dance company of your choosing. Support the arts! She did.