Obituary – Jack Dene Sommers

Jack was born in Athol, Kan., Jan. 25, 1934, the son of Earl J. Sommers and Helen Frazier Sommers. His family moved often and he attended several different elementary schools. His family returned to Kansas for his high school years, and he graduated in 1952 from Athol Community High School, where he was a four-year letterman in basketball and baseball.  Following graduation he enlisted in the U.S. Navy, serving four years as a mineman second class.

Jack Sommers

Upon his release from the Navy Jack came to Colorado and worked to gain residency in order to attend Colorado State University. He met Beth Miller and it was all over for them. They married and are the parents of three children; Bill, John (Karin) and Anne. They also have three grandchildren, Brittany, Alex (Kayla) and Landon, and are now blessed with three great-grandchildren; Sadie, Luke and Ruby. Jack was always involved in all their activities, whether as coach or spectator. He served as a role model for them, and after every family gathering he always said the same thing. “We have good kids, don’t we?”

Jack graduated from CSU in 1962 and again in 1972 with a master’s degree. He began his teaching and coaching career in Minatare, Nebr. After three years there, he returned to Colorado where he was employed for 29 years with the Thompson School District, serving Berthoud High School as a math teacher and head basketball coach, including two trips to the state tournament.  Jack started cross country at BHS and also started the baseball team. The baseball field is named for him. He loved every member of every team he ever coached and he has maintained that friendship over the years.

The last years at BHS he was assistant principal and athletic director.

Jack had a set of principles that served him well until the end of his life. He believed in hard work and dedication. He meant to do every job well, regardless of the time it took to accomplish that job.

Jack was a deliberate decision maker. In his discipline at BHS, he was fair and consistent, but his fairness was always tempered with compassion and a desire for every student to succeed. He was constant in being true to his beliefs and the way he lived his life.

Jack joined the First Presbyterian Church of Berthoud, Colo., in1965. He served as trustee and elder and was a faithful member of the choir for 40 years. He especially enjoyed the friendships he made with his church family and all the social activities .

He is survived by his family, his brother Dan (Patty) and many nieces and nephews.

His memorial service will be held at the Presbyterian Church in Berthoud, Friday, Dec. 20, at 10 a.m. A reception will follow in the church social room. Those wishing to give a memorial may direct it to First Presbyterian Church, Berthoud.


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