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Heath, Geoffrey

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Geoffrey “Geoff” Heath passed away at home in Gaylord on February 6, 2017.

He was born in Kalamazoo, on April 7, 1946 and was the son of Frank Allgeo and Jane Sidnam Heath.

He attended University High School in Kalamazoo, received a business management degree from Northwoods Institute and a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in education from Grand Valley State College.

He moved to Gaylord in 1971 to become an elementary school teacher in the Gaylord Community Schools, teaching 2nd, 3rd and 4th grades over a 27- year period.

He was a member of St. Mary Cathedral parish, the Gaylord Area Jaycees and a life-long member of Nautilus Fitness System.
He loved his springer spaniels and was never without a dog.

His surviving family includes his brother and sister-in-law Alan and Jerry Heath of Lafayette, CO; niece Mollie Heath Niess of Charlotte, NC and her husband Tyler Niess; and niece Katherine Heath of Boulder, CO; as well as two grand nephews Duncan and Malcolm Niess of Charlotte, NC.

Memorial services will be held on Thursday, June 8, 2017 at 1:30 PM from St. Mary Cathedral in Gaylord.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Frank A. Heath Scholarship Fund for Dental Hygiene at the Kalamazoo Community Foundation or St. Mary Cathedral Schools in Gaylord.

16 comments on “Heath, Geoffrey”

  1. I well remember Geoff, our good friend and fellow U-High classmate. Like all of us, I’d looked forward to seeing him at our reunion and was disappointed when he couldn’t make it. Any time talking or having fun with Geoff left an indelible imprint of his unique spirit. His father was our family dentist and my parents and his were good friends. We both moved away from Kalamazoo for our careers . . . Geoff northward and me south, and I had not been in touch since 1965. My sincere condolences to his family. Geoff was a very special man.

      1. David Franklin Sturgeon

        Those big brown glasses he wore in the early 80’s, loved that teacher. 2nd grade Class of 96, Mr. Heath, you have influenced the world!!

      2. Susan May Fitzgerald

        I went to HS with Geoff and last spoke with him at our 40th class reunion. At our 50th reunion I heard that he could have joined me, if I had known he needed a ride. I’m in northern Michigan too. Wish that could have happened.
        My thoughts are with Alan, Jerry, Geoff’s extended family, and his companion Nancy. He was one of the good guys, and will be missed.

        • Jim and Barb Lappan

          A gentle man, educator and good friend for over forty years. Our sincere condolences to family and friends with Jeff’s passing.

          • My condolences to the family and Goeff’s close friends. I had not kept in touch with him since he moved north but have fond memories of Geoff from high school – poker games and practical jokes. He was a gentle, sensitive guy with a dry sense of humor. Luckily I spoke to him in 2015 in the course of inviting him to the class reunion. He sounded just the same. He wanted to come but couldn’t and now it’s especially unfortunate.

            • Alan and family, our deepest sympathy! Geoff has been a friend of ours for years, always caring, and considerate of others. He will be missed by many.. RIP my friend!

              • Ed and Jane Sandri

                We have known Geoff since he moved to Gaylord in 1971. He was a friend and fellow educator. He worked very hard to be successful. His teacher friends worked and supported him for the 27 years he was employed by the Gaylord Schools.

                He will be missed by his many school friends and those friendships he made in retirement.

                We offer our sincere condolences to his brother Alan and his family.

                • David and Dixie Granlund

                  Geoff was a wonderful man. He was a very good teacher who cared very much about his students. Geoff was a good friend as well who had a great enthusiasm for life. All of us who were privileged enough to know Geoff will surely miss him. Our condolences to the family.

                  • Geoff was a neighbor of my parents. He would often bring his dogs over to visit with our dogs in the summer. He was also my brother’s fourth grade teacher many years ago. I will always remember him loaning me videos when I would come up north to visit my parents. I will always think of Geoff when I watch the movie “My Dog Skip” as he warned me it was a tear jerker! My thoughts and prayers are with your family.

                    • Amy (Westphal) Peters

                      Mr. Heath was my third grade teacher. My mother helped in the classroom and he gave us a light up Christmas tree as a thank you gift. I always thought of him when we would use it. Many prayers to his family and friends. He was a wonderful teacher and one who made me think of teaching as a career. God’s blessings to all those who are mourning him. May he be walking dogs in heaven.

                        1. David Franklin Sturgeon

                          I remember i think second grade the two classes next two each other would switch sides for certain lessons. Mr. Heath my teacher for that. I absolutely loved it. He was a great teacher. I would always raise muggy hand wanting him to call on me, but, he would always call on someone that wasn’t paying afternoon. So, every time he’d ask a question, I would always look out the window, or act like I’m talking to someone and 9 times outta 10 he’d call on me. Yes! I whispered, followed by the correct answer. Loved his methods. Great man I’m betting.

                        2. Marjie and Mitch LeClaire

                          Last week Gaylord lost a loyal patriot of some 46 years. Geoff Heath leaves behind a true loss to many: long term companion Nancy, Gaylord schools past principals, fellow teachers and the many students he taught. Geoff was proud of his status as one of the original Nautilus members and he will be remembered with affection by so many. Rest in peace dear friend.

                          • Just heard the sad news of Geoff’s passing. My heartfelt condolences to his family and friends. I met Geoff several years ago and have never met a kinder soul. He was a regular at the Sugar Bowl in Gaylord, The Breakfast Club! I know the Lord had reservations at a new table for Geoff with his family and friends waiting to welcome him home! Enjoy your new breakfast nook Geoff and God Bless!

                            • I was saddened to learn of Geoff’s death. I missed seeing him at our last reunion and have many very fond memories of our joint escapades at U High. I will keep Geoff’s family and friends in my prayers.

                              • So sorry to learn of Geoff’s passing. I remember Geoff as a quiet, kind hearted soul. We were a small, close group of classmates at ‘the school on the hill’. My condolences to his family, and to all those who were privileged to call him ‘friend’.

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