Jean Etsinger

02/27/1943 - 03/01/2024

Jean Etsinger passed away on March 1, 2024. An accomplished journalist, she was a lifelong believer in volunteerism and charity, with a particular fondness for arts and humanities. She was born to Walter Etsinger and Martha (Olinger) Etsinger in small town Bucyrus, Ohio, where she graduated from Bucyrus High School and spent a year as a foreign exchange student in Brazil. She went on to receive a bachelors in journalism from the University of Texas, then a masters degree from the Ohio State University.

Her career in journalism included working for some of the most well known newspapers, such as the Chicago Tribune, Miami Herald, Associated Press and the Brazil Herald.

Jean had a love for travel and had been to countries as diverse as Cuba, Italy and Brazil, where she taught English along with working for the aforementioned regional newspaper in Rio de Janeiro. She later navigated the Caribbean Sea as part of a sailboat crew, and later moved to St Thomas, US Virgin Islands. There she gave birth to her only son, Jared.

Along with writing and editing for local newspapers In the Virgin Islands, she taught journalism at the University of the Virgin Islands. In 1995, she joined FEMA to aid in disaster relief management after a series of devastating hurricanes made landfall.

In 2000, Jean moved to Sarasota with Jared and made it her home. She volunteered tens of thousands of hours at many local venues and organizations, including at the Ringling Museum of Art and as a docent at John and Mable Ringling’s house Ca d’Zan. She also was a docent at Selby Gardens’ The Payne Mansion, where she volunteered for many events, including Lights in Bloom. Additionally, she was a regular volunteer with Family Promise and in food banks, distributing food to those in need.

Jean founded the nonprofit Algonquin tour group, which opened doors to art and museums in the country. Her trips to multiple museums local, statewide and even international were enriching for participants.

She played piano and organ at church and loved attending concerts, musicals and the opera here in Sarasota, as well as in St Petersburg.

As the words of her friends attest, “Jean lived her life committed to serving others.”

She is predeceased by her parents and her brother, Timothy Etsinger. She now leaves behind her son, Jared Etsinger, a brother, Thomas Etsinger, and many dear friends.

A memorial service to celebrate her life will be held on Saturday, March 9th at 9:30 am at Gloria Dei church, located at 6608 Marina Dr, Holmes Beach, FL 34217

Service Information:

Venue for Service:Gloria Dei Lutheran Church
Address for Service:6608 Marina Dr, Holmes Beach, FL 34217
Phone number attendees can reach out to for service:(941) 778-1813
Pick one service type:Church
Service Date:2024-03-09
Service Start Time:9:30 am