Theodore Pace was more than a great "go-to" guy — if someone needed help, he often went straight to them.
"Ted was a good brother-in-law. He was really good to my parents," said his sister-in-law, Deborah Starkey.
As a top notch claims litigator for the American States Insurance Company, he had the financial ability to help others, she said.
Theodore Pace, 77, of Hammond, died May 26.
"He loved his grandson, Aris," Starkey said, noting that he often visited Aris' school to join him for lunch.
Aris' classmates also loved his visits because he usually bought ice cream for the entire class, she said with a chuckle.
Starkey recalled a time of financial difficulties when her kids were little. They were walking out of Woodmar Shopping Center and ran into Pace. He asked to take the kids back into the mall for a few minutes.
"He must have seen the need" because her son walked back out with new shoes and her daughter had some perfume, Starkey said.
Another time, when her daughter was having trouble selling school candy to visit an art museum in New York, Pace bought all of her inventory and let her keep the candy, Starkey said.
She eventually sold all the candy to help another girl make the trip also.
Pace grew up during hard times in East Chicago and took care of his mother and brother after his father died, Starkey said.
He also took good care of his wife of 53 years, Dianne; and daughter, Dawn.
Pace further made sure that all his relatives had everything they needed, Starkey said, adding that he was the same way with his friends.
"He truly loved and cherished each and every one of his friends."