November 1, 1935 - October 2, 2019
Marvin Tatum, beloved husband, father, grandfather, uncle, and friend was born in Dublin, Texas on November 1, 1935. He was one of five sons and one daughter born to James Thad Tatum and Irene Baird Tatum. He grew up on a farm learning to work hard, planting, hoeing and harvesting peanuts, as well as, play hard with his four brothers on the rugged, rocky baseball field created on the family farm.
Marv put himself through college at Texas Wesleyan University in Fort Worth, Texas by working nights at General Dynamics Aerospace and attending classes during the day. He received a Master’s Degree from Texas Christian University.
He married Carolyn Mitchell in 1958 while they were both Seniors at Texas Wesleyan University. They were blessed with one son Scott (Michele), two granddaughters, Kyleigh and Skyler Tatum, and two special nieces, Donna Riley and Terri Greenway of Dublin, TX After graduating from college, they moved to Big Spring, Texas and started their teaching careers. Marvin was a Biology teacher, and he received the Young Educator of the Year award his first year of teaching.
They remained in Big Spring, Texas for eight years until a friend offered jobs in California at a private training program for American Indians. It sounded like a great adventure, and they took it. That lasted for four years, and then it was time to return to the public school system.
They moved to Manteca in 1972 when he became principal of Lathrop Elementary School. Marvin was there for three years, and he was moved to the Manteca Unified School District office. He served in various capacities over the years as Director of Elementary Education, Director of Special Education, Personnel Director, Assistant Superintendent, and Superintendent until he retired in 2000 after 42 years of service in public and private schools.
Marvin served in numerous organizations throughout the years. He was a member of Manteca Noon Rotary for many years until his health declined, Manteca Ambulance Board, Manteca CAPS, Stockton YMCA, St. Dominic’s Hospital, and a 45 year member of St. Paul’s United Methodist Church.
He was a patient, kind, caring, and witty man. He was understanding and generous to those in need in a quiet and unassuming way. His long relationship with friends was special going back 47 years. A place of great joy was in Lake Tahoe at the cabin sharing many happy times with family and friends talking, playing games, sharing meals and spirited but friendly conversations that brought much laughter and fun.
Over the years Marvin and Carolyn made many trips both long and short. A number of trips to Europe to enjoy the scenery, the people, the food, and the culture, or just a short day trip to a winery to share a picnic with friends were equally enjoyed He was preceded in death by his parents, two brothers, James Tatum and Max Tatum and his sister Ruth Fleming. He is survived by two brothers, Richard Tatum of Paris, TX and Dennis Tatum of Burleson, TX and five nephews and one niece.
Marvin and Carolyn had a long happy marriage. Many times they discussed how fortunate they were to be married for 60+ years. Their marriage was a long, loving and enduring partnership in every way.
A Celebration of Life Service will be held at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, 910 North Street on October 14, 2019 at 11:00 AM followed by a reception in Fellowship Hall.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Memorial Committee of St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, 910 North Street, Manteca, CA 95336
To send flowers to Marvin's family, please visit our floral section.