Tedd Walter Olkowski born September 13, 1944, in Watsonville California passed away May 7, 2023.
He was preceded in death by his father, Thaddeus Olkowski, his mother Irene Olkowski. and his two brothers Stephen Olkowski and Lance Olkowski all of Cocoa Beach, FL.
He attended Brevard Junior College where he obtained a degree of Associate of Arts. He furthered his education by attending Florida Technological University where he obtained a degree of Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. He also took several courses at Duke University, NC.
Early in his career he was on emergency standby for the launch countdown of Apollo 11. Tedd’s regular job was working with the pad’s closed-circuit TV system. He was a skinny 24-year-old from Cocoa Beach, FL, but stood 6 foot 3 and jumped at the chance to be on the emergency team since he was already out there keeping tabs on the cameras. His job was to help Collins – should the unlikely need arise before lift-off – escape from the Saturn V rocket, descend 32 stories in a high-speed elevator and then slide down a 200 ft. tube into a bunker deep beneath the pad.
As a teenager Tedd was a lifeguard on the beach at Cocoa Beach FL during the time the first seven Astronauts would drive their corvettes on the beach.
Tedd’s career was spent with General Telephone and Electronics Corporation beginning in North Carolina then transferring to Georgia and finally Texas. He retired from GTE in 1997 as VP General Manager of the Texas Operation. In 1999 Tedd was instrumental in establishing Galveston County Economic Development.
While in Georgia he was a member of Sertoma Inc. – a non-profit community service organization – and served as District Manager. In League City he was active in the community: he served on the Board of Directors for the University of Houston and Vice Chairman of Mainland Medical Hospital. He was a member of the Rotary Club and Chamber of Commerce. Tedd served on several boards for League City, the latest being the Planning and Zoning Board.
He was an active member of the South Shore Harbour County Club, serving on the Board of Directors and also serving as Chairman. He was also an active member of the club’s MGA include being President for a couple of terms.
Tedd is survived by his wife of 47 years Claudette Olkowski, two daughters and their spouses Kelly and John Seivers of Johnson City, Tn, Kristen and Todd Blankenbecler of Atlanta, GA, and four granddaughters – Hannah Seivers and Kelby Seivers Newsome and her husband Emerson, Caroline, and Charlotte Blankenbecler – all four being the joy of his life.
A Celebration of Life will be held August 5, 2023 from 3:00 – 6:00 pm at South Shore Harbour Country Club, League City Texas.
In lieu of flowers, a memorial can be made in Tedd’s honor. If you are interested in donating to this fund, you can do so through Venmo @TeddOlkowskiMemorial.