Political leader and longtime resident of Lapeer County, Jerry Tkach, passed away Saturday.
Jerry was born on April 9, 1959, in Hamtramck, Michigan and was a resident of Oregon Twp in Lapeer County. He was also an activist and multiple time candidate in political races for the Democratic Party in Lapeer County.
Tkach ran for 82nd district for House of Representatives in 2020 and for Lapeer County Commissioner in 2022, but lost in both races. Tkach was not only involved in Lapeer County politics, but was also active in neighboring counties and was chairman in the former 10th Congressional District for the Democratic Party.
“His commitment to civic duty shone through his membership in organizations such as the League of Women Voters and Voters not Politicians. He was an avid political activist who also found pleasure in life’s simpler moments. Jerry enjoyed nature, hiking, kayaking, cheering on his sports teams, exploring new cities, reading and writing. Jerry loved a good quote, poetry, music and art. He had a great sense of humor, his laughter and enthusiasm was infectious and he never missed an opportunity to make a joke. His interests reflected a man who understood that balance in life is key to happiness and fulfillment,” said his obituary.
Tkach had a zeal for education, reading and the language arts. He earned a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership and taught English, History and Writing and was also involved in teaching G.E.D. courses at the Genesee County Jail.
Tkach was a big part of establishing the Mt Morris Alternative Education Association and was voted the association’s first president. He was a member of the United Methodist Church in Columbiaville where he was highly active.
In the recent months before his passing, Tkach could be found frequenting the Lapeer County Board of Commissioners’ meetings where he would routinely speak during public time and give his opinions and suggestions to the commissioners on various topics. He was also recently appointed by the county commissioners to the VAAA (Valley Area Agency on Aging) board.
According to many who knew him, he was a focused and dedicated man, but also would try to laugh and joke around with others whenever he could.
Contributions in memory of Tkach may be made to the Lapeer County Democratic Party. Visitations are from 3-9 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 8 at Jansen Family Funeral Home in Columbiaville and Friday, Feb. 9 at 10 a.m. at the United Methodist Church in Columbiaville. Funeral will be held at United Methodist Church in Columbiaville on Friday at 11 a.m.