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Obituary: Greta Jensen Tomic

On July 27 Greta Tomic died peacefully in her sleep, with her three children at her bedside.  Greta lived in Carle Place and Westbury from 1960 through 1996 with her family. Her husband Fletcher predeceased her in 2000. Greta was born in 1931 and brought up on Cape Cod, and returned there for her retirement years. Greta was the daughter of Hjalmar and Betty Jensen, Swedish immigrants who owned a dairy farm. The home she built for her retirement is located on the old farmland.


Greta graduated from Lawrence High School on Cape Cod in 1949 and was proud to be class valedictorian. She attended Radcliffe College, graduating in 1953 with a BA in

English Literature. At Radcliffe she met her husband Fletcher Tomic, a student at Harvard, and they were married in 1952.  Greta obtained her MA in Education at CW Post and

Hofstra Universities, and taught fifth and sixth grade for 25 years in the Carle Place School District. Greta loved theatre and directed many plays at Rushmore. She loved her profession and excelled at it, earning a “Teacher of the Year” award and much praise from parents, students and colleagues. She had high regard for her fellow teachers at Rushmore, and the CPHS music and theatre teachers. Bill Westcott, a fellow teacher, once said, “I have never heard anyone say a negative word about Greta.”


In her early retirement years, Greta was a member of AAUW - North Shore Branch. (American Association of University Women). After her husband died in 2000, Greta went on to make a new life as a single woman on Cape Cod and contributed to the community in many ways. Always an advocate for women’s rights, she joined the AAUW of Cape Cod and became very active including serving as President from 2007 to 2011. Reading fiction was Greta’s passion, starting with Nancy Drew in third grade and ending with all the contemporary fiction authors of 2013. She was an active member and often the leader of three book groups. She worked for several years at a well-known children’s bookstore , combining her profession as a teacher and passion for reading. Lastly, Greta loved The New York Times which she read every day of her adult life, starting when she first saw it in the dormitory library at Radcliffe at the age of 18. She was an avid crossword puzzle enthusiast, and an accomplished home cook.


Greta is survived by her three children and their families: Betsy Tomic and her husband Ronald Phillips of Croton on Hudson, NY and their foster children Shaquan, Jaysee, Jeremy, Maalik;  Bill Tomic of New York, NY; Jim Tomic, Jessica Forbes and Greta’s grandchild Sierra Forbes Tomic, of Oakland, CA.  She is also survived by her brothers, Fred Jensen and his wife Sheila, and Henry Jensen, all of Cape Cod.


Donations may be made in Greta’s honor to AAUW of Cape Cod, care of Carol Carbaugh, PO Box 1127, Sagamore Beach, MA  02562.  For online condolences please visit