Dean Cole

Dean Cole

March 17, 1927 October 6, 2019

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Obituary for Dean Cole

Dean Cole, age 92, passed away peacefully on October 6, 2019, after a long and purposeful life as a husband, father, grandfather, friend, and lifelong teacher. The son of Fredrick and Rose Cole, Dean was born on March 17, 1927, in Baltic, MI. He grew up in Painesdale, MI, a small copper mining village in the Upper Peninsula. Dean attended Jeffers High School in Painesdale, where he was a member of the basketball, track and tennis teams, the math and photography clubs, and Boy Scouts. During his high school years, he also delivered groceries via horse and wagon for the only mercantile store in town, and spent what little free time he had hiking, hunting and fishing. Upon graduation, Dean enrolled in the electrical engineering program at Michigan College of Mining and Technology, where he completed his freshman year before joining the U.S. Army to serve in Germany during World War II. Upon returning from Germany, Dean continued his engineering studies under the G.I. Bill, completing his sophomore year before deciding that he would rather follow in his mother’s footsteps and pursue his childhood dream of becoming a teacher. He graduated from Northern Michigan College of Education in 1953 as a math and physics educator, and later that year found his first teaching job in Lake Orion, MI. On August 12, 1953 Dean married Carolyn Marcheschi of South Range, MI. Dean continued to teach while advancing his own education, earning several master’s degrees at the University of Michigan. In 1958, Dean accepted a job at a new school in Nyack, NY teaching physics and general science, though a year later the couple returned to Michigan to start a family. In 1959, Dean joined the faculty at Tappan Junior High School in Ann Arbor, where he would devote the next thirty years of his career as an educator, initially as chairman of the mathematics department, followed by roles as a guidance counselor and principal. Following his retirement in 1989, Dean showed no signs of slowing down, and he and Carolyn capitalized on their passion for travel, organizing and escorting tours for the Ann Arbor Senior Center for more than twenty years, to nearly one hundred destinations, traveling to almost every continent around the world; and in the process, developing many lifelong friendships. In addition, Dean was a member of the University of Michigan Alumni Association and the Zion Singers, he hosted Senior Moments on Ann Arbor Community TV, he danced often, performed magic tricks for anyone who would watch, was a prolific story-teller, and continued to teach, teach, teach. More than anything, he loved being with his family; traveling to the Upper Peninsula, leading cheers for his grandchildren at their sporting events, decorating for the holidays, and enjoying Sunday evening dinners. Dean was preceded in death by his wife, Carolyn; his daughter, Anne Marie; his parents; and his older brothers Fredrick (“Ted”) and Douglas. Surviving are his younger brother, Ward (Josephine), of St. Petersburg, FL; his son, Glenn (Erin) of Ann Arbor, MI; and his grandchildren, Leigh (Sean Wade) of Bethesda, MD, Kristyne (Kellen Russell) of Chelsea, MI, and Grant of Delray Beach, FL. A memorial service will take place at Zion Lutheran Church, 2501 West Liberty Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48103, on Saturday, October 26, at 11:00 am. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to Tappan Middle School / Cole PD and addressed to: Tappan MS, 2251 Stadium Blvd, Ann Arbor, MI, 48104.

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Service Details

  • Memorial Service

    Saturday October 26, 2019 | 11:00am
    Zion Lutheran Church
    1501 W. Liberty Street
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email |
    Saturday October 26, 2019
    Reverend James Debner

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