Tiho means “quiet peace.” In 45 years of service to Gilmour Academy, Mr. Tiho Teisl has meant beloved dean, soccer coach, Spanish teacher, leader of the Honduras mission trip, friend, colleague, and role model. “Tiho was important to me because he was a part of my family, not just by blood, but also by being part of my Gilmour family,” said Mr. Teisl’s niece, Danielle Porter (`18). After his passing in December, so many in the Gilmour Community continue to think of Mr. Teisl as family.
Mr. Teisl was a positive influence around Gilmour Academy in showing what care, option for the poor, hospitality, and love, truly is. Ryan Zarrinmakan (`18) attended one of the many Honduras mission trips. Zarrinmakan now describes him as “loving and unselfish.” He said Mr. Teisl’s kind acts of mercy never went unnoticed, and his love was always appreciated by others.
Faculty, alumni, students, and family have been personally moved by Tiho Teisl in many ways. Mrs. Linda Wheeler, Administrative Assistant to the Dean of Student Life, worked with Mr. Teisl for 15 years and was able to get to know him personally and professionally. She said, “He always challenged me to do my best from his example, but he really showed me what humble discipleship means without being overly religious.” Deeply saddened by his passing, Mrs. Wheeler continues to honor him by living with his legacy in mind each and every day.
Mr. Teisl was known to be brave and generous, never scared to show people his true self, and always willing to reach a hand out to those in need. He has personally impacted the Honduran children’s lives by his large generosity and energetic personality. Ms. Ligas, Instructor in Religious Studies said, “Mr. Teisl impacted the children in Nuevo Paraiso the most. The children really came alive when they saw Mr. Teisl.” As Mr. Teisl would walk the neighborhood of Honduras, the children would surround him with hugs and be eager to talk with him. Zarrinmakan (`18) said, “It was like seeing a different side of him. His heart was truly there.” While feeling at home in Honduras, Mr. Teisl would often tell his students that he wanted to retire in Nuevo Paraiso as he was truly happy there.
The Gilmour Community continues to honor Mr. Teisl by sharing memories, offering prayers, and honoring him publicly or privately at Mass. Fr. John Blazek (`58) has been close friends with Mr. Teisl since 1979. He said, “Besides saying Masses for Mr. Teisl regularly, I have a cross in my room that he gave me one year when I couldn’t go to Honduras. I also have one of the two relics that Mr. Teisl had during his illness.” Special keepsakes like these belongings also keep his memory alive. Mrs. Linda Monitello, Instructor in Religion, shared that she sometimes wears a medallion that belonged to Mr. Teisl.
While the Gilmour community continues to mourn and heal from his passing, Mr. Tiho Teisl means “live authentically.”
“Gilmour has many legends walking our halls… Mr. Teisl is one of them,” Blazek said.
“I will be honoring Tiho for the rest of my life by trying to be more like him,” said Porter.