Arkansas pubTV advocate Jane Krutz dies at 86

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Jane Krutz, an enthusiastic advocate for the Arkansas Educational Television Network for more than 47 years, died March 25 in Little Rock. She was 86.

Jane Krutz“It is literally true that there might not have been an AETN without her,” said Allen Weatherly, executive director of AETN, in a tribute to Krutz on the network’s website. “In fact, she was advocating for a public television station for Arkansas years before we finally made it to the air in the mid-1960s.”

Krutz frequently appeared during membership drives, testified before Congress for public broadcasting in 1995, served since 1996 on the AETN Commission, and received the PBS National Volunteer of the Year award. The state network’s original studio, still in service, is named for her.

She was active in numerous statewide charities and service organizations, starting in childhood, and known throughout Arkansas as “Miss Jane.”

“She was just a remarkable person,” Weatherly said.

She was born Frances Jane Gray on Oct. 1, 1925, the only child of Victor Gray and his wife, Fannie, in Conway, Ark. She married Ted Krutz on March 14, 1943, and they celebrated their 64th anniversary before his death June 10, 2007.

Also preceding her in death was a daughter, Vicki Kreulen.

Krutz is survived by son Ted Krutz Jr. and daughter Jane Lay, as well as seven grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

Her funeral took place March 31 at First Church of the Nazarene in Little Rock, with burial at Vilonia Cemetery in Vilonia.

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