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Jeffrey C. Olson, age 74, of Watertown, SD, passed away on Tuesday, February 26, 2019, at the local hospital. A funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Monday, March 4, 2019, at Cornerstone United Methodist Church in Watertown. Reverend Steve Anderson will officiate. The family is requested to meet at the church at 10:00 a.m. for a prayer service.
Visitation will be at the Crawford-Osthus Funeral Chapel in Watertown on Sunday, March 3, 2019, from 2:00–4:00 p.m. and prior to the service at the church on Monday.
Burial will be at Mt. Hope Cemetery in Watertown. Military graveside honors will be conducted by the Military Funeral Honors Team of the SD Army National Guard. Honorary pallbearers will be all of the coaches and athletes Jeff had the joy and privilege of transporting to and from their sporting events over the past several years. Active pallbearers will be Nate Davis, Reece Olson, Drew Norberg, Jake Olson, Gabe Norberg, and Nick Westphalen.
Jeff was born on March 20, 1944, in Sioux Falls, SD, to Carl and Ruth (Petersen) Olson. He graduated from Madison High School in 1962 and later graduated from South Dakota State University with a bachelor’s degree in economics. Jeff had a true love of music and enjoyed showcasing his passion by being a member of the Pride of the Dakota’s Marching Band.
On June 9, 1967, Jeff married the love of his life, Cheryl Pommer, in Castlewood, SD, and this coming June would have marked their 52nd wedding anniversary. Shortly after their wedding, Jeff and Cheryl traveled to Ft. Eustis, VA, where he served his country as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army. The couple returned to Watertown in 1970. For a brief time Jeff and his family also lived in Hot Springs, SD, where Jeff was on the board of the Miss South Dakota Pageant. He and his family eventually returned to Watertown where he worked for many years in Human Resources at Jenkins Living Center. Jeff also drove charter buses for various events and tours. His true joy, however, was transporting the Watertown Arrows athletes and coaches to all of their sporting events and competitions.
Jeff was a member of Cornerstone United Methodist Church in Watertown where he enjoyed being a part of the choir. He also directed several church Christmas cantatas over the years. In addition, he was a member of a barbershop quartet. Jeff was also an avid hunter and fisherman, and he loved the opportunity to get outdoors with his family and friends. One of his favorite pastimes was watching all of his grandkids participating in their sporting events. Whether it was basketball, volleyball, baseball, softball, football, soccer, swimming, golf or track, you can be sure Grandpa Jeff was there. In the event that he had some free time from all of the family activities, he loved to travel or spend time meeting up with friends to share a meal or a cup of coffee. And in case all of this didn’t keep him busy enough, he was the number one beloved sitter of all his granddogs!
Jeff is survived by his beloved wife, Cheryl, of Watertown; his children: Amy (Chip) Davis, Chad (Kathryn) Olson, Katie (Brian) Norberg, and Doug (Amber) Olson, all of Watertown; eleven grandchildren: Abby (Nick), Nate, Reece, Elizabeth, Emilie, Annie, Drew, Gabe, Jake, Andi, and Gabi; seven granddogs; and his sister, Pam (Dean) Larsen of Dell Rapids.
Jeff is preceded in death by his parents.