Eight Bells: Jim Titgemeyer

Published on October 11th, 2020

James ‘Jim’ / ‘Bubba’ Titgemeyer, 81, died peacefully on October 5 at St. Anthony’s Hospital in St. Petersburg, Florida.

If you raced sailboats on Lake Erie, you knew / heard him racing Thistles-PHRF-IOR boats during the 1960s thru the mid 1990s. He introduced sailing to many ‘recruited crew’ on his own boats and influenced many who sailed with him to grow an appreciate for his passion of sailboat racing. He owned numerous Thistles and then a fleet of C&Cs (33, 40 & 42) named Night Train on Lake Erie.

After the Night Train era, he discovered race management and it became his passion. He spent the next 20 years running races throughout the Great Lakes, Chesapeake Bay, and South Florida. He led race management teams at the local, regional, and national level, including Thistle, Highlander, J/22, J/24, T10, and Mumm 30 east coast / regional / national events and Cleveland Race Week-the original CRW.

He was fortunate to serve on many top-notch race committee teams at Olympic Trials, SORC, Key West, Charleston, and ORC Miami. His open communication style and ‘racer’s mentality’ meant that his races were fair, and his lines were square. His commentary on the radio or in person were just an added bonus to most.

If you knew him, you know he was strongly opinionated and always lent his expert advice, solicited or not, to any situation…eager to help share his expertise over the given topic.

He was known by many; loved by some; tolerated by others.

He and his wife Claire (Mimsie) were famous for their antics on and off the racecourse. Their children, Connie and Mike, and granddaughters Caitlin, Margot, and Emma continue their legacy today, sharing the sport with others and supporting local junior sailing programs on Lake Erie and the Chesapeake Bay.

He survived 8 long years without Claire, his greatest love. They are finally re-united and we ALL can be comforted in that knowledge.

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