It is with great sorrow we announce Donald Charles Van Tieghem, age 90, a long time resident of El Cajon, has passed away peacefully at home on April 27, 2022
Donald was the oldest son of Camiel and Mary Coopman Van Tieghem. He was born in Moline, IL on February 26, 1932.
After graduating from Coal Valley High School, Don joined the Navy and served from 1951-1954.
In 1957 he met Georgia Ann “Jody“ Ashworth Lively and they were married a few weeks later. They were married for an amazing 63 years. He is preceded in death by his wife, and brother, Danny.
He is survived by his sister, Mary(&Dale) Stuffel, brothers Camiel(&Pam) and Mike(&Bev) Van Tieghem, sister-in-law Jane Van Tieghem, and his 3 children: Robin Anderson, Don(&Kim) Van Tieghem and Vana(&Curt) Elwell.
He was blessed with 8 grandchildren: Jennifer(&Dustin) Lothspeich, Joshua(&Elizabeth) Elwell, Barrett Van Tieghem, Justin(&Jennifer) Elwell, Breanna(&Brett) Faber, Riley Elwell, Nicholas and Neal Anderson, and recently blessed with 6 great grandchildren: Georgia, Simon, Julian, Gage, Joseph and Harrison. He and Jody devoted their lives to their children and grandchildren. Packing up a truck and camper and exploring North America with their young children was the highlight of every summer.. Packing up a truck and camper and exploring North America with their young children was the highlight of every summer.
Don and Jody traveled all over Europe in the 80’s and 90’s, and never missed an opportunity to go to Hawaii.
Don was an outstanding and very loved coach at Western Little League and North El Cajon Bobby Sox. Later he and Jody became sideline fans at swim meets and water polo matches, followed by soccer, tennis, basketball and lacrosse cheerleaders for his grandchildren. He also enjoyed car racing, and served as the Pit Boss for his son-in-law at El Cajon Speedway in the 80’s.
Don was a parishioner of nearly 60 years at Our Lady of Grace. A mass will be held at Our Lady of Grace in El Cajon on June 2 at 10:30am.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to San Diego Hospice.