Keith McCord ReportingA retired Tooele High School history teacher and his wife were killed yesterday in an auto accident.
Holger and Mary Tychsen were riding in a white pickup truck on State Road 36, the main road into Tooele, when they apparently ran a red light and crashed into a semi. They died at the scene.
It has been a somber day at Tooele High School, especially for those in the history department. But along with the sadness, there were fond memories of a man who many called "Mr. T".
Larry Sandberg, History Teacher: “He was a great example as far as history teachers go.”
Jeff Wyatt, History Teacher: “There’s no way to tell you how many kids would say that he was their favorite teacher. It was amazing.”
Holger Tychsen was a fixture at Tooele High School for 35 years. He retired six years ago, but dropped by from time to time to say hello.
John Olsen was one of Tychsen's students back in 1976. Olsen says Tychsen was a mentor to him, and is the reason that he now teaches history.
John Olson, History Teacher: “He told a lot of stories. He knew facts about everything. And he was just excited and just made history come alive. And he loved kids.”
And when Tychsen retired, John Olsen acquired much of his incredible book collection; Tychsen had hundreds of history books.
Larry Sandberg worked with Tychsen for several years. He adopted a few of his teaching ideas for his current students.
Larry Sandberg, History Teacher: “I kind of wanted his classroom when he retired, but John had seniority and got it. But I took over some things he did, put pictures on my ceiling just like he did.”
Jeff Wyatt was also a student of Tychsen's. He along with Larry Sandberg and John Olson say the man had an incredible way with students-- he made learning history fun and easy.
Jeff Wyatt, History Teacher: “I think the biggest thing about him is he always was saying, ‘I love to be here. I’m happy to be here.’ And that really perked your interest.”
Many of Mr. Tychsen's books were donated to the high school library, in their very own bookcase, called the "Tychsen Historical Collection".
Funeral services for Holger and Mary Tychsen will be held next Wednesday at the Tooele Stake Center.