John Martin “Jack” Bywater
June 18, 1933 ~ August 6, 2014
John Martin “Jack” Bywater, born June 18, 1933, passed away on August 6, 2014, after a brief battle with an aggressive cancer. Jack was the second of two twins, born on a farm near Lignite, ND to William and Elsie (Hovland) Bywater. He graduated from Lignite High School in 1952. He attended North Dakota State University from 1952 to 1953. He then enlisted in the U.S. Army and served from 1953 to 1955 and was stationed in Germany. After leaving the Army, he enrolled at the University of North Dakota (UND), where he graduated in 1959 with a Bachelors degree in Education. He received a Master’s Degree in Secondary Administration from UND in 1966. Jack began his teaching career in 1959 in Willow City, ND as a teacher, coach and administrator. On June 25, 1960, he married Mary V. Hanson, the love of his life, at United Lutheran Church in Grand Forks, ND. They moved to Petersburg, ND, where they were both employed as teachers. After a few years teaching at Unity, Jack was hired as the principal in Lakota, ND. He was then hired to be the Jr.-Sr. High principal in Warren, MN. In 1971, he accepted a position at the University of Minnesota Crookston as the Director of Admissions and Enrollment Management. He continued in that position, which he dearly loved, until his retirement in 1996. In 2003, they moved to Leavenworth, WA to be close to family.
Jack was a lifelong educator and student, who was committed to helping people achieve their potential. He made a point of knowing all the students by name, wherever he worked. He was always a fan of the underdog and helped countless people and students reach their potential through education. He was a kind and gentle man with a quick and easy smile and a twinkle in his eye. Jack was a welcoming presence and made every person he met feel like they mattered. Later in life, he took up piano, downhill skiing, and wine making. He was a woodcarver and his cottonwood face carvings are scattered across the globe. He was a wonderful husband, dad, and “Grampy”. He will be missed by many, but truly made this world a better place.
He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Mary; his daughters, Sue (David) Cole of Hurst, TX, and Nancy (Brett) Bywater-Johnson of Leavenworth, WA; son, Tim (Mary Beth) Scholand Bywater of Salt Lake City, UT; his five grandchildren, Finn and Stella Johnson, and William, Cormac and Colin Bywater; and sister, Jude Faught of Arvada, CO. He was preceded in death by his father, William; mother, Elsie; brother, Archie; and twin sister, Jean.
A Memorial Service and Celebration of Jack’s Life will be held at 2:00 p.m. on September 27, 2014, at Faith Lutheran Church in Leavenworth, WA. There will also be a Celebration of Jack’s Life at Maple Lake, MN in June or July 2015. Donations may be made to Faith Lutheran Church of Leavenworth, MEND (Meeting Each Need with Dignity), University of Minnesota Crookston, or University of North Dakota.