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Jean Ottomar(September 26, 1925 - February 13, 2013)

Jean Ottmar

September 26, 1925 ~ February 13, 2013

Pacific Grove - Jean was born and grew up in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Her first employment was with the Civil Aeronautics Administration as an Aircraft Communicator. After training for this position in Chicago, she was assigned to Dickinson, North Dakota, where she met Bud Ottmar. They were married in February, 1944, on a day in which he also received notice he was drafted.

Jean and Bud resided in North Dakota after the war so he could continue his education. He earned his Master of Education Degree at the University of Minnesota. His first teaching position was in 1950 in Anchorage, Alaska, where he taught in the high school and the community college. In 1953, Jean returned to work as secretary to the manager of a department store.

Jean and her family later moved to Hollister, San Benito County, where Bud taught physical education and sports at Hollister High School and later at Gavilan Community College. Bud passed away in 1980.

Jean was employed as secretary or executive secretary to many different employers, including the superintendent of the local school district, the City Attorney of Hollister, the Selective Service System for San Benito County, and the Construction Engineer for San Felipe Water Project of the Bureau of Reclamation. From 1981 to 1987 she served as secretary for the Sacred Heart Church in Hollister.

Governor Jerry Brown appointed her to be one of seven directors of the 33rd Agricultural District Board which ran the San Benito County Fair.

Believing that women should have responsible positions, Jean ran for County Supervisor of San Benito County, but was unsuccessful. Later she was elected to one of seven positions as Trustee of Gavilan Community College District. She then became Chairman of the Board, a position rotated by the seven members.

After retiring in April, 1987 from her secretarial position with the Sacred Heart Church, she attended San Jose State College from 1988 to 1992, where she obtained a degree in Social Science, a praiseworthy achievement after her years working in various secretarial positions, in which she gained much information about business, education, law, government, and engineering.

Jean has travelled widely outside of the United States. She has travelled through Europe, China, Mongolia, Russia, Thailand, Mexico, South America, twice to Africa, and twice to Japan. She enjoyed freighter travel the best.

Jean is survived by her sons, Michael (Muriel) Ottmar of Seaside, CA, Richard (Sue) Ottmar of South Carolina and David (Cathie) Ottmar of Albuquerque, NM; and grandchildren, Scott, Ken, Ben, Karl, Lise Marie, Julie and Andrew.

Services will be on Monday, February 18, 2013 at 11:00 a.m. at San Juan Bautista Cemetery, 70 Monterey, San Juan Bautista, CA 95045. In lieu of flowers the family has requested donations to The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research.

Published in The Monterey Herald on Feb. 15, 2013
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