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Jacobson, John 'Jack'

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John (Jack) Jacobson, a resident of Point Clear, Alabama, died on Thursday, April 13, 2017.

For the past four years, he has been actively working with Dr. Barry Booth at Veteran’s events, especially talking with school children about World War II. To him “every day is another day to be of service.”

Born on Oct. 29, 1910, in Worcester, Massachusetts, the sixth of eight children born to Lena (Hiatt) and Max Jacobson, Jack began working at the family business from an early age. He attended Worcester public schools and Boston University, where he was in the ROTC.

In 1940, he enlisted in the Army and went to Camp Lee, Petersburg, Virginia, where he married Georgia Schwanda in 1942. In 1944 he was sent to England to prepare for the invasion of France, and spent the next two years as quartermaster to Gen. Patton in France and Germany. He remained in the U.S. Army Reserve from 1946-1953.

He and Georgia moved to Massachusetts in 1946, where he rejoined the family company. In 1962, they moved to Kansas City, Missouri, to close a family-owned packing plant; instead he expanded it, moving the company to Liberal, Kansas.

Jack was chairman of the board of directors and chief executive officer of National Beef and chairman of the board of Idle Wild Foods, Inc. He was an innovator and outstanding leader in the meat packing industry. He was a member of the board of directors of the American Meat Institute, co-founder and board member of the Meat Importers Council of America, and in 1983 was elected as a lifetime board member. Under his leadership Idle Wild Foods became a Fortune 500 Company.

He served as vice president and director of the Kansas Association of Commerce and Industry for six years, chairman of the United Fund and Red Cross, and on the board of trustees of Southwest Medical Center in Liberal, Kansas. He was an active member of the Rotary Club for many years.

In 1986 he retired, moved to Florida, and became an avid golfer, spending winters in Cocoa Beach, Florida, and summers in their home in Auburn, Massachusetts. In 1999, he and Georgia moved to Point Clear, Alabama, where he played golf with the Mulligan Group at Lakewood until he was 101.

The family is deeply grateful to Barry Booth; he has been a true and devoted friend. We are also especially grateful to Jack’s wonderful caregivers, to his niece, Gail DalPian for her love and support, and to Margaret Tolley for her friendship and caring over the last few years.

Jack is preceded in death by his wife Georgia and son-in-law Richard Casey of Point Clear.

Jack is survived by his son John (Trudy) Jacobson of Leawood, Kansas; his daughter, Barbara Casey of Point Clear; three grandchildren: Sean (Emily) Casey of Brooklyn, New York, Erin (Jonathan) Bailey of Atlanta, Georgia, and Joseph Jacobson of Stilwell, Kansas; two great-grandchildren, Jackson and Elizabeth Bailey; his brother-in-law, Joseph (Ginny) Schwanda; and many nieces and nephews.

Graveside services were held Tuesday, April 18, 2017, at the Alabama State Veteran’s Cemetery, Spanish Fort.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you make a donation in John’s memory to Veterans Community Project by visiting veteranscommunityproject.org.