Thomas Jeltes ’73

Dr. Thomas C. Jeltes (TJ), age 72 , of Dade City, Florida, passed away with his family by his side on May 16th, 2023.

He was born to Clara and Simon Jeltes on March 8th, 1951 in East Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Thomas graduated from Lee Highschool in 1969 and went on to receive his BA from Hope College in 1973 in Holland, MI. Thomas further his education and attended Michigan State University, where he received a Masters of Elementary Education, a Masters of Elementary Administration, and a PHD of Administrative Education.

He was an elementary school teacher at Freeport Public School in Michigan, an elementary and middle school teacher at Thornapple Kellogg Public Schools in Middleville,MI, the assistant principal at Sparta Public Schools in Sparta, MI, and the middle school principal at Bryon Center Public Schools in Bryon Center, MI. He also was the girls varsity basketball coach, JV boys basketball coach, and JV boys baseball coach during his time at Thornapple Kellogg.
One of Tom’s greatest achievements was being named the Administrator of the Year for the state of Michigan.

Some of Tom’s hobbies included attending football and basketball games at The University of Notre Dame, University of South Florida, The University of Florida and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He loved going to amusement parks, playing golf and tennis, reading, and most of all spending time with his grandchildren.

Tom is survived by his wife of almost 49 years, Jane ’74 of Dade City, his daughter; Sarah Dee  ’06 (Jeltes) her husband Austin Dee of Wesley Chapel, Grandchildren; Connor and Harper Dee of Wesley Chapel, Sister; Marcia DeFrancesco and her husband Roccy DeFrancesco of Naples, his sister in law; Betty  ’57 Jeltes of Hudsonville, MI, along with many nieces and nephews and we can’t forget Angela Mae, his fur baby.

He is preceded in death by his parents Simon and Clara, and his brother John.–

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