Amherst Magazine

Theodore J. Boluch '50

Deceased July 11, 2010

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In Memory

Our father, Ted Boluch ’50, died on July 11, 2010. He had been ill with cancer for several months prior to his death and he died at home with no medical intervention. This was the way Dad always said he wished to go and, while it was hard to see him fade away, his last days were with his family, in the house in upstate New York where he had lived with our mother, June Carstens Boluch, for more than 36 years. Mom was at dad’s side when he died, and she had been his constant companion and caregiver in the many months and days up to his death.

As his classmates know, Amherst was in Dad’s blood from birth. He was born to Ukrainian immigrants in a house not far from Pratt Field and came up through the Amherst regional schools prior to being admitted to Amherst College. These days, it is not so unusual for an immigrant’s child to win admission and a scholarship to an elite college or university. In 1946, it was extremely rare and the generosity of Amherst College in admitting Dad and supporting him and Dad’s accomplishment in achieving a place in the Class of 1950 were an amazing source of joy and pride to his parents.

We grew up going to Amherst football games while visiting our uncle, aunt and cousins who continued to live in Amherst. Ironically, Dad opposed co-education when Amherst decided to admit women. This position softened somewhat when both of his daughters decided to follow in his footsteps in attending the College. We got a lot of mileage out of reminding him of this over the years. 

Dad served in the air force after graduating from Amherst and left only to attend business school at Harvard. From all of his stories, it was clear that flying was one of the great joys of his life. Neither of us has met anyone with the athletic ability and reflexes of our father; he drove and did most other tasks with the determination, vehemence, and ease of a fighter pilot.

After business school, Dad worked for General Electric, then SS Pierce in Boston, but he spent most of his career in government jobs, working for states and municipalities. He was extremely well read and knew a little about almost everything. It was very difficult to win an argument with him.

Dad passed on to his children a strong work ethic and the ability to value education above all else.

Dad was not an overbearing parent, but when we were struggling, he would provide support and an occasional word of advice. One comment from particularly rough patches was this: “No matter what happens, just be yourself. You will be fine.” Dad was very uniquely himself throughout his life and in every circumstance. We miss him. 

Elizabeth Boluch Wood ’84
Kristin J. Boluch ’88

 

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