Dr. Pamela Ann Bechtel, Ph.D.


Pamela Ann Bechtel passed away on March 24, 2023. She was born on May 22, 1956 in Sandusky, OH to Jessie (Eichhorn) Bechtel and Paul Edwin Bechtel. She was the oldest of their three children. Pam attended K-12 schools in Sandusky, OH, Perrysburg, OH and Tipp City, OH. She was a 1974 graduate of Tippecanoe H.S. in Tipp City, OH. She was a 1978 graduate of BGSU and received her Masters’ degree from BGSU in 1981. Pam earned her Ph.D. from The Ohio State University in August 2001 in Sport and Exercise Education.

Pam was a teacher at heart and teaching was her passion. She taught from Aug. 1978- July 1997 at Oak Harbor High School. Her teaching areas were physical education, health education, and anatomy & physiology. She was the head volleyball coach for 19 years. She coached the 1989 team to their first appearance in the regional semi-finals. She was the Assistant Athletic Director for 10 years and the Athletic Director for three years.

Pam left OHHS in 1997 to begin her path towards teaching in higher education by working at the University of Toledo, as a Visiting Instructor. She then began her doctoral work in August 1998 at The Ohio State University. She taught at Grand Valley State University in Allendale, MI from 2001-2003, the University of Toledo from 2003-2005, and at her dream job -Bowling Green State University in the Physical Education Health Education (PEHE) program from 2005-2015; Retiring as an Emeritus Associate Professor. She continued to teach for the PEHE program until Fall 2020. Her passion was helping to grow teachers in physical education and health education for the K-12 setting. She mentored many student teachers who are in teaching fields and other careers today.

Pam was an active member of the Ohio Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance (OAHPERD) since 1978. She served in various offices and received many awards from OAHPERD. She served as the President from 2013-2015. She currently was serving as a Trustee for the organization. She was a member of the Society for Health and Physical Educators (SHAPE America) since 1978. She served as the Midwest District President from 2018-2019. She made various presentations at state and national conventions. She was a member of the Bowling Green Chapter of AAUW, serving as the recording secretary from 2019-2023. She was a member of St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church in Bowling Green, OH where she served on the vestry and was a reader for services.

Pam will be inducted into the Oak Harbor High School Athletic Hall of Fame class of 2023.

Pam participated on the first three girls’ sports teams while attending Tippecanoe High School -track, volleyball and girls’ basketball. She liked to stay active and enjoyed playing pickleball, golf, and a good game of volleyball. Fishing on Lake Erie was a favorite past time when the fish were biting.

Pam was preceded in death by her parents, grandparents, and brother-in-law, David Evans. Pam is survived by her brother James (Shawna) Bechtel, Oak Harbor, OH, her sister Paula (Larry) Evans, The Villages, FL, her nephew Lucas (Dana) Bechtel, nieces Kathleen Bechtel, Stacy (Chris) Bury, Stephanie (Kristina, Josh) Evans and Grandnephew Christopher Bury. Also, her beloved pet, Buster.

There will be visitation with the family present at the Robinson-Walker Funeral Home & Crematory, 165 E. Water St., Oak Harbor, OH on Friday, April 14th from 4-8 PM. There will be a Celebration of Life for Pam on Saturday, April 15th at St. John Lutheran Church, 122 W. Ottawa St., Oak Harbor, OH at 11AM. In lieu of flowers memorials for Pam can be made to the Todd Hablitzel Cancer Treatment Fund, 147 West Water St, Oak Harbor, OH 43449. Online condolences for the family may be shared at www.walkerfuneralhomes.com.

Pam will always be remembered for her saying, “It is Physical Education, NOT gym class!” Carry on! I had a great life!

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