Funeral arrangements have been set for Jan Spreeman, a beloved husband, father, grandfather, friend and Stillwater educator. He was 70.
Spreeman passed away Nov. 21 from an aggressive form of lung cancer.
A celebration open house will be held from 2-6 p.m., Sunday, December 4 at Bradshaw Celebration of Life Center, 2800 Curve Crest Blvd. Memorials to Bantfwana Phambili are preferred.
Spreeman retired as a social studies teacher at Stillwater Junior High School and philosophy teacher at Stillwater Area High School. He also taught World Religions classes in Stillwater schools and through community education.
“Jan Spreeman was one of the best,” Stillwater Mayor Ted Kozlowski said last week. “His stories were legendary. He helped this 8th grader understand morality in the most beautiful way. He was such a positive force in my life and the lives of many many others. He will be greatly missed, but remembered with love.”
A hallway was named after him at the Junior High, known as the “SPREEWAY.”
In 2012, Spreeman was honored with the Stillwater Human Rights Award.
“He was one of my favorite people, and some of my earliest memories were of him sitting around a campfire, him and my dad playing the guitar, us singing and laughing,” Amy Bancroft Schilling said.
According to his obituary posted on Bradshaw Celebration of Life Center’s website:
Spreeman taught “from his heart, not from a book.” Jan was a true renaissance man with interests in philosophy, building, music, coaching, mentoring, and nature.
He was a notorious storyteller and inspired laughter. Jan was humble and curious, a life-long learner, a philanthropist and humanitarian. Formerly a teacher in Stillwater, Spreeman enjoyed his retirement at his hand-built cabin near Turtle Lake.
Spreeman is preceded in death by his parents, Roy and Jean.
He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Julia; children, Jen (Ron) LaMone, Barry, Adam (Erin); grandchildren, Julia (Chelsea), Hannah, Estes, Sedona; aunt, Anita Kalinoff; mother-in-law, Norma Ressler, special family friend, Liz Nelson; a large extended family and many friends.
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