Jacquline “Jackie” L. Tetzlaff, 73, of South Bend, passed away Monday, November 16, 2020 at her home. She was born August 10, 1947 in South Bend, to the late Harry and Daisy (Hostetler) Tetzlaff.
She is survived by her daughter—Rhonda (Ty Arrowood) Adams of South Bend; two granddaughters—Chelsea (Justin Anteau) Tetzlaff of Fort Wayne and Gabrielle (Troy Burgh) Adams of Plymouth; and four great-grandchildren—Carson, Mayson, Adison, and Payson Burgh. Additionally, she is survived by four sisters—Ruth Barnhart, Alice Basham, Janice Kurz, and Ardith Mornout all of South Bend; and four brothers—Allen “Butch” (Sandy) Tetzlaff of Lakeville, Gene Tetzlaff and Bert (Debbie) Tetzlaff of South Bend and Jerry (Cherrie) Tetzlaff of Jacksonville, Illinois. Also surviving are several nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents; three sisters—Betty Johnson, Irene Uselman and Margaret Nimtz; and two brothers—Raymond Tetzlaff and John Tetzlaff.
Jackie was the 13th of the 14 children from the Tetzlaff farmhouse in Greene Township. There she learned the value of a hard day’s work, which turned her into a remarkably independent woman. After graduating from North Liberty High School in 1966, she started her first job at Cardinal Nursing Home before taking a position with Interstate Associates; however, most of her working life was spent at Qualex Photo Finishing, where she was employed for 28 years until their closing. She then transitioned to a role with Meijer for a few years. In September 2020, after working in building services at St. Mary’s College for the last 12 years, Jackie finally retired.
Throughout her adult life, Jackie was an avid bowler, softball, and volleyball player and had been awarded several trophies. Despite working nightshift, she generally managed to maintain a suntan so stunning it would make a Miss America envious. She could instantly light up a room with her smile or a joke, even if it was poorly executed. Card games are a favorite Tetzlaff past time and Jackie was always one of the fiercest competitors. She was notorious for her playful spirit and had a habit of creating several off-the-cuff nicknames for everyone she knew, so much that sometimes she forgot their actual name.
Jackie was only a casual gambler, but Lady Luck was a good friend, as it wasn’t uncommon for her to walk into a casino with a $20 bill and leave with $100 a half-hour later. Although she hated loud noise, no one would be surprised to see her wrapped in a blanket in the middle of July with Christmas music full blast because she was always cold and thought that Christmas music was acceptable year-round. And any time Jackie saw a good sale, she would have to buy at least five of said item to share with family, that way she had five opportunities to modestly brag about how good of a deal she got.
Jackie loved family the most. Her daughter, granddaughters and great-grandchildren were the light of her life. She wasn’t shy about sharing their accomplishments and how proud she was of them for being three strong women. Jackie was grateful for the distinctive bond she had with each of her many siblings, nieces, and nephews and she will forever hold a place in their hearts.
Selfless. Outgoing. Adventurous. Uncommonly genuine. Humble. Unwaveringly loyal. There are no words to truly describe how special Jackie was and how much she will be missed. Though we are saddened by her absence, we must look for her eternal presence in what remains.
As a safety precaution, A Celebration of Life Service will take place at a later date. Memorial donations in memory of Jackie can be made to American Heart Association- Go Red for Women Campaign:https://www.goredforwomen.org/en/get-involved/give or Riley Children's Hospital:https://www.rileykids.org/donate/how-donations-help.html
Palmer Funeral Home – Guisinger Chapel, 3718 South Michigan Street, South Bend, is assisting the family with arrangements.
Online condolences may be sent to the Tetzlaff family at www.palmerfuneralhomes.com.
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