For nearly 36 years, Theodore (Ted) Jaracz was one of the most powerful members of Jehovah’s Witnesses Governing Body until he died at age 85 on Wednesday, June 9, 2010.
Little is known of this man’s youth. In 1991, I was told by a Writing Department staff member that Ted Jaracz was raised by three maiden aunts. My informant didn’t know where, but it has been suggested recently on the Internet that he was raised in southern Illinois. The Memorial brochure dedicated to the life of Theodore Jaracz, and passed out before his funeral service began in Brooklyn, NY, stated he was born in Pike County, Kentucky. Other than his wife, Jaracz was said to be survived by a sister and nephews and nieces. It was news to me that he had a sister still alive. I wish I could locate her and sit down and talk about her enigma of a brother.
Why would I want to know more about this man? What did he do to deserve closer scrutiny? The fact is Ted Jaracz was directly responsible for an untold and immeasurable amount of grief or worse to an inestimable, but certainly, enormous number of people during his reign as a GB member, if not before. His steadfast and unwavering grip on certain Watch Tower notions or opinions he claimed were taken from scripture, resulted in harm to too many followers, and for compelling countless Witnesses to forsake their religion, and, for some, to even renounce their belief in God.