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Jan Oliver Alms

Jan Oliver Alms, 71, of Morganton, North Carolina, passed away Friday, September 17, 2021 at CHS- Blue Ridge in Morganton.

He was born in Sparta, Illinois on November 05, 1949 to the late Oliver and Ruth Alms.

Jan worked for 28 years as a professor at McDowell Technical Community College where he touched the lives of many students over the years. He was a very talented man. Most of the artwork that can be seen in downtown Morganton was Jan’s. He was well loved by all.

In addition to his parents, he is preceded in death by two brothers, Jeff Alms and Danny Alms.

Survivors include his daughter, Keri Frisbee (Jesse); two grandchildren, Jesse Frisbee and Andrew Frisbee, and one on the way; three brothers, Brian Alms (Sandy), Neal Alms, and Mike Alms (Mary); a sister, Cindy Morgan; and many nieces and nephews.

The family will hold a private service at a later date.

To plant memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Jan Alms, please visit our flower store.


Just learned of Jan's passing. Even though we didn't stay in touch after I graduated in 1986, a loss is still felt. Jan was a great teacher and artist. His absence will be felt for many years.

Elway Morgan May 30 2022 9:40 PM

I met him in 1986/87 when I joined the MTCC commercial graphics program. I thought he was another student before he stood up in front of the class to teach it. We bought our very first MAC graphics computer when I was there. His enthusiasm was contagious and inspiring, and I'm so happy he had a long career doing what he loved.

Kenn Mundy Jan 26 2022 4:30 AM

A loving person great artist wonderful mentor. You will be missed by the hearts you touched.

Teresa Litzenberger Nov 2 2021 5:30 PM

A candle was lit in memory of Jan Alms

Teresa Litzenberger Nov 2 2021 5:27 PM

Jan was one of a.kind and that made him an excellent artist and professor. I am deeply saddened to learn of his passing...Prayers for him family.

Mimi Sep 25 2021 10:51 PM

I met Jan when he had an art exhibit downtown, and our mutual interest in art was the start of a lovely friendship. We discussed art and art materials shops, and I bought stuff at a yard sale at his house, with subsequent visits to talk about painting. We lost touch after communicating on Facebook until 2915, and I was saddened to hear of his passing.

Lucille Hartmann Sep 25 2021 10:59 AM

Jan was my coworker at MTCC for many years, and I will remember him as a soft-spoken, gentle and kind man. I was deeply saddened to learn of his passing.

Julia Nunnally Duncan Sep 22 2021 4:12 PM

A candle was lit in memory of Jan Alms

Heather wheeler Sep 22 2021 11:12 AM

A candle was lit in memory of Jan Alms

Ed Walsh Sep 22 2021 10:57 AM

Jan was my first contact at MTCC, and made a gigantic difference in my future at the time, as he continues to do now. What impressed me most is that he treated me as an equal. Soon after that initial meeting, I enrolled in the Advertising and Graphic Arts program.

The most profound lesson I learned from Jan was to see life differently, even when it is difficult, and to keep a positive attitude. Jan was my mentor, and friend, and always pushed me to be a better student and designer. As with most artists, we usually think our designs are the best. Jan taught me to look critically at my work, and to never accept mediocrity.

Jan was forthright in dealing with people, which made me a better human being. I appreciate knowing Jan, but regret not knowing him even better, since he always nudged me to grow in all areas of my life. The lessons I learned from Jan continue to speak to me daily in my thoughts, and they will continue to impact me for the rest of my life. I will miss my friend.

jorge T valentino Sep 22 2021 10:53 AM

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