Jean Tam (1949 - 2019)

4 entries | 1 photo
  • "Jean & Scott were friends & will be missed. hard..."
    - connie lynch
  • "Jean and Scott were wonderful people, taken too soon from..."
    - Gary Bullock
  • "Jean served as a judge for the Map and Plat Contest as part..."
  • "Alaska will miss Jean Tam's expertise, and her willingness..."
    - Bonita Geary
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Service Information
Celebration of Life
Friday, Jul. 12, 2019
5:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Odum Hanger at the Alaska Aviation Museum
Friday, Jul. 12, 2019
6:00 PM
Odum Hanger at the Alaska Aviation Museum

Jean Tam, born on Dec. 27, 1949, age 69 years, passed away suddenly in Moose Pass, Alaska, on June 28, 2019. Born in Detroit, Mich., her parents moved to Birmingham, Mich., in 1953 to take over Rose's Hand Laundry. Jean was of Chinese descent. She was a 1968 graduate of Birmingham Seaholm High School. She graduated from MIT in Boston, Mass., with a degree in physics and obtained a master's degree in forestry from Yale University. She moved to Alaska in 1985, and began working for the State of Alaska Geological Information Service in 1986. One of her accomplishments in this position was the mapping of the Valdez Oil Spill in 1989.
She met her husband, Michael Scott Christy, at work and they were married on June 22, 1991, at a lake resort. The wedding included a llama drawn carriage and a fly off in Scott's float plane. The wedding reception in Anchorage, Alaska, was held at a Chinese restaurant to honor Jean's parents.
As an active naturalist, Jean was the longest serving member of the Board of Directors of the Anchorage Audubon Society, a member of the Alaska Conservation Foundation and the Alaskan Native Plant Society. One of Jean's favorite projects was her famous Loon Cam, viewed by people around the world. She and Scott placed an artificial loon nesting platform in the lake near their home on Memorial Day and retrieved it on Labor Day every year.
Jean and Scott made many trips throughout the world, including a memorable trip to China, Jean's ancestral home. After retirement, Jean served as Scott's co-pilot, making many trips to visit family and friends in the Lower 48. Jean recently traveled to Michigan to attend her 50th high school reunion.
Jean is survived by her younger brother, George Tam of Troy, Mich., and several cousins. She was predeceased by her parents, Wah and Beck Tam; and older brother, Ford Tam.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Friday, July 12, 2019, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., in the Odum Hanger at the Alaska Aviation Museum, with memorial tributes at 6 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to the Alaska Conservation Foundation.
Published in Anchorage Daily News on July 12, 2019
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