Official Obituary of

James Dye

January 18, 2024

James Dye Obituary

James Dye, 57, of New Lenox, IL passed away at his Florida vacation home on January 18, 2024 due to
sudden complications from leukemia.
A loving son, brother, uncle, teacher, mentor, and friend to many, James is survived by his father Jack
Dye (Astrid), sister Jill Ruschak (Mark) and niece Catherine Ruschak (Michael). He was preceded in death
by his mother Judy Dye and his grandparents Catherine and Harold Korth.
James was an alumni from the University of Michigan, where he had a storied career as a collegiate
wrestler alongside his roommate and best friend Mike Amine. Upon graduating from Michigan he
became a high school teacher, spending most of his 35-year career at Thornwood High School where he
himself had graduated in 1984. Throughout his tenure he was heavily involved in Thornwood Athletics,
coaching wrestling and eventually becoming Athletic Director, a position he withdrew from in 2019 in
order to care for his ailing mother.
That was the kind of man James was – someone who would put his friends and family ahead of himself.
He could always be counted on to bring everyone together, holding annual picnics for friends and family
at his New Lenox home. He served as a lynchpin for his family, keeping in touch with more distant
relatives and traveling often to visit with them. He assumed responsibility for his mother’s dog, Baby,
upon her death and cared for her with kindness and compassion. While he never married and had no
children, he treated his niece Catherine as if she were his own daughter and was set to walk her down
the aisle at her wedding this April.
Nothing can mend the heartache his friends and family feel from his untimely and sudden death, but his
legacy lives on in the form of his family and many friends, colleagues, and students whose lives he
impacted in an immensely positive way. A Celebration of Life will be held on Friday, February 23 at
Glenwoodie Banquets in Glenwood, Illinois. In lieu of flowers, the family would ask you to make a
donation to your local animal shelter in his name.

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