Jeffrey Edward Dye December 16, 1944-March 23, 2018


Jeff was born in a small town Garrett, Indiana on December 16, 1944.

Little Jeff
With his mom Winnie

After their parents divorced, it was him and his Mom Winnie.

With his Dad Wayne Lancaster
With his Grandfather
Jeff was a cute little boy. His mom said that her friends adored him and often came over to play with the little boy.
His friends called him "Butchie"

Jeff grew up as a happy boy. While his mom was at work, he used to go to his aunt Boo's house after school. She prepared meals for him and Jeff stayed there until his mom picked him up on her way home from work. Summer time, he spent a lot of time paying outside with his friends, riding a bicycle, and swimming in the neighborhood pool.

High school graduation
Cheerleader at the high school
Jeff also played baseball
January 1963

His last years of school, Jeff attended Orland High School, Indiana. Jeff was a good student and a good athlete. He played football, baseball, and basketball, was a cheerleader. While in high school, after school, he worked packing groceries and stocking goods at the local grocery store to earn some money. After school graduation, Jeff enrolled in the Taylor University in Indiana. He graduated with two majors: Batchelor of Art in Biology and Science in Social Studies. While in college, Jeff met Mary Lou. They married later.

Mary Lou and Jeff

Kalkaska, Michigan

At Au Sable, with little Erica

After university graduation, Jeff worked as a teacher of Sciences and Social Sciences at a school in Kalkaska, MI. He also had a lot of memories related to Au Sable Camp, a nature camp for boys and girls, which later became a field for study for biology students from the Taylor University.

Bonn 1972-1978

In 1972, Jeff was hired by the Department of Defense Education Activity. His first assignment was Bonn American High School, Germany. He taught Biology, Computers and Human relations. By then, Erica was two years old and Bryna was born a year later.

With Erica and baby Bryna
Jeff was involved in theatrical plays and coached football. Mel, Jeff, and the school team.

Jeff had always remembered Bonn years with warmth and excitement. He made a lot of friends while working there with whom he continued having close friendship until his last days.

Houston 1978-1995

In 1978, the family returned to the U.S., Houston, TX. Jeff got a job as teacher of Science at the Alternative School in the Alief Independent School District.

Their house in Houston
Jeff, Erica, and Bryna lived in Houston, where both girls graduated high schools
Jeff had a lot of interests. One of them music. Love to music and ability to play musical instruments allowed Jeff to play in the band.

While working as a teacher, Jeff also worked as a school bus driver. Both Bryna and Erica were involved in a variety of after school activities: payed in band, Erica danced and Bryna loved sports. All those years, their father was their loving and supporting parent, friend, and mentor.

Escape to Reality meeting

When the girls grew up, Jeff worked on continuing his education and graduated the University of Houston with a Master Degree in Social Work in 1982. After graduation, in 1985, Jeff changed his career and established a small enterprise "Escape to Reality" helping psychiatrical hospitals build ropes course, a type of therapy used for patient rehabilitation. As always, Jeff devoted his life to people: helping, supporting, encouraging, guiding, and persuading. He was skillful and passionate about everything he was involved in.

At Erica's wedding. Jeff, Mary Lou, Erica, Tim, and Winy

Overseas again 1995-2018

Turkey 1995-1996

In 1995, Jeff returns to overseas work. For a year, he was employed as a social worker at Incirlik Air base, Turkey. He fell in love with the sunny country, friendly people, and Turkish cuisine and had always dreamed of going back.

South Korea 1996-2002

In 1996, Jeff joined the DoDDS family again. His assignment was Osan High School. He was excited going back to teaching. He taught World Geography, History, AP Biology. He was also a Student Council sponsor.

With his biology students
Working hard. At one of the school's talent shows, he sang and played guitar.
Jeff loved his students and they loved him.
A short trip to the beach

In 1999, Jeff and I met in person the first time after being pen palls for about half a year. Neither of us spoke the other person's language when we met. We carried dictionary everywhere. Married in December of 1999.

We met and got married when Jeff lived in Korea. We liked getting our pictures taken at every school dance.

Ansbach, Germany 2002-2015

Our house in Herrieden, Germany

Jeff's next overseas assignment was Ansbach High School, Germany. This place had truly become our home. We purchased a house and lived there most of the time we were married.

We liked going out to eat downtown Ansbach
Bryna's and her family's visit while we lived in Germany
Carolyn and Ralph also came to see us
Meeting with Marsh's family during summer 2010

Jeff's mom

Jeff's mom, Winifred Blossom (Winnie, 1921-2003), was a huge part of his life and he spoke about her often. Jeff was very appreciative of everything Winnie had done for him and Jeff's half-brother David.

Last couple of decades, after her retirement, Winnie lived in Orlando Florida near her son David. She was a wonderful woman and great mother. I remember her as a soft, very kind, loving person.

Jeff and Winnie traveled sometimes together and Jeff visited her in Florida every year.

At Bryna and Chris's wedding
Erica and Bryna have good memories of them being with their Grandma
Joshua and Kien meet their Grand-Grandma the first time
Inez and Winnie
Judy and Winnie

Jeff's mom, Winifred Blossom, passed away in 2003. It was such a tragedy for the whole family and everybody who knew her. She was an unforgettable person. Winnie was buried in her home land, Indiana.

Jeff's retirement

2017. Summer visit in WA
Bryna and Erica visited Jeff when he was at Mayo clinic in 2011.

Jeff retired DoDDS in 2011, but we remained in Germany. I worked for DoDDS and it allowed us to stay in Germany after Jeff's retirement. From 2013-2015, Jeff was employed with AAFES, a short, but memorable experience. So many people will remember his friendly smile at the store entrance.

Last few years Jeff reunited with his old high school friends. They had great time seeing each other every summer and sharing memories.


Jeff loved traveling, learning about new places, and meeting new people. He had been in most of the United States and a many places outside the US: Europe, South America, Australia, Asia, Middle East.

Trip to Thailand
Australia, 1998
Another trip to Thailand, with me
Russia. With me and my sister

His dream was to visit Grand Canyons, Alaska, and Africa one day...

Okinawa 2015-2018

In 2015, I was offered a teaching job in Okinawa. We left Germany and moved to Japan. The apartment we moved in was found by Jeff.

Okinawa 2017. He used to drive me to school and back home every day
This photo was taken for an International Drivers' License on March 22, 2018
February 2018

Jeff's passing was sudden and shocking. It is hard to believe that he is gone. He is not there to greet me in the morning and hug in the end of the day. He is not there to call his daughters and say, "Hi, honey, how are you?" He is not there to talk to his grandchildren and ask, "Tell me about what you have learned." He is not there to talk to his friend Jim every day...

There are not enough words to describe all Jeff's qualities and the person he was. He had a bright and interesting life and he is going to remain in hearts of hundreds of people as

  • smiling
  • curious
  • hardworking
  • kind
  • giving
  • loving
  • caring
  • encouraging
  • persistent
  • enthusiastic
  • intelligent
  • friendly
  • knowledgeable
  • patient
  • passionate
  • forgiving
  • insightful
  • generous
  • proud
  • attentive
  • funny...

The Memorial was held on August 12, 2018 in Austin, TX

The notes about Jeff's life were written the way I remember Jeff and other people sharing with me. I also used Jeff's own notes-memories. If some facts are incorrect, please inform.

Created By
Roza Dye

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