Jack Connell

Obituary
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AUGUSTA, Ga. - Entered into rest on Wednesday, February 6, 2013, Mr. Atticus Jerome Jack Connell Jr., husband of 45 years to Nannette Anderson Connell. The funeral service will be held Saturday, February 9, 2013 at 2:00 p.m. at St. Paul's Episcopal Church with Rev. George Muir officiating. Burial will be at Summerville Cemetery. Jack was born at the Margaret Wright Hospital in Augusta to Atticus Jerome Connell and Annie Mae Eubanks Connell in 1919. Jack was ten years old when he began his first business selling the Saturday Evening Post, Country Gentleman and Ladies Home Journal Magazines; he made $12.00 a month. He was a 1936 graduate of the Academy of Richmond County. He attended North Georgia College for 2 years. Jack returned to Augusta to work for his father's car sales business. While test driving a vehicle with 3 customers, he was taken at gunpoint to a remote location where the three men considered killing him. His intellect and skill of persuasion saved his life, but lost the car. In 1942, he enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps during WWII and flew 79 missions as a bombardier over Europe, the last of which he and his crew volunteered to bomb a German gun emplacement in the Battle of Normandy on D-day. He was awarded the Air Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster and the Distinguished Flying Cross. After the war, Jack worked as a traveling salesman until he started another business as owner of the Augusta Rams baseball team. Eventually he owned several businesses in downtown Augusta, the most notable of which is Sandwich City, where many a political discussion was held. He was first elected to the Augusta City Council in 1959 and served two terms. He was elected to the Georgia House of Representatives in 1969 and served 34 years. During that time he was chosen as majority whip in the House and in 1977 elected speaker pro tempore of the House; a position he held for 26 years, making him the longest serving Speaker Pro Tem in Georgia and the United States. During his service to Augusta, he was a major force in projects that benefited Augusta including assisting in securing the funds needed to build Riverwatch Parkway, the Georgia Golf Hall of Fame, Children's Medical Center, Georgia Radiation Therapy Center and the Research Center at the Medical College of Georgia; Allgood Hall, the Science Center and University Hall at Augusta State University. He also supported Forrest Hills Golf Course for ASU students. He assisted Walton Rehabilitation Hospital in obtaining a tax exempt status. He was a friend of the VA Hospital and Blue Goose in adding a physical therapy room and courtyard. Gracewood State School and Hospital was also special to Jack, he always made sure they got what they needed. He also assisted in making Augusta College a four year university; He was a friend of Augusta Technical College and protected the interests of Augusta and the CSRA through the many projects at the Savannah River Site. He was also an advocate of the arts in Augusta, including the Augusta Symphony and the Augusta Players. He sponsored a bill that allowed churches to buy church organs tax free. He was awarded the Paul Harris Award from the Augusta Rotary Club and the Vessel of Life Award from the Medical College of Georgia. From Augusta State University a scholarship endowment was established in his name. He received the President's Award in 1997 and the Distinguished Service Award from the ASU Alumni Association in 2001. Other awards include the Legislature of the Year in 1988 and 1994 by the Georgia Alliance for the Mentally Ill; Legislature of the Year by the Girl Scouts; Georgia Port Development by the citizens of Coastal Georgia; Georgia Chamber of Commerce Award; Outstanding Support Person Award by the Foster Grandparent Senior Companion Program; The Courageous Legislator Award for Strength and Commitment to improve Gracewood State School and Hospital and Conditions of all state employees.; Georgia State Fireman's Association for Outstanding Contributions Award; Recognized by Child Care Directors Association for support and concern on behalf of the children of Georgia; Flying Colonel Award for support of Delta Airlines; Augusta Area Psychological Association Appreciation Award; Legislative Award for Support for the Georgia Gerontology Society. He was a member of the Rotary Club, Grid Iron Club, 100 Men Club, the American Legion and the Elks Club. He was a longtime member of the Citizens for Good Government and the B-26 Marauder Historical Society. He was also a member and past president of the Augusta Golf Association and a member of the Augusta Country Club, his best score being a 67. The family would like to express sincere gratitude to Dr. Harold Chubby Engler, Robert Williams, Gary Daitch, Nicole Williams, Lois Tierney and Rhonda Vann for the kindness and thoughtful care given; and to the aides, nurses and staff of Georgia War Veteran's Nursing Home. Family members include his wife Nanette Anderson Nan Connell, wife of 42 years; daughters: Andrea Connell Collier (Tilden) of Augusta; Deborah Debbie Connell Glisson of Lebec, CA., Jacquelyn Lyne Connell Gordon of Augusta; son: Atticus Jerome Connell III of Smyrna, Ga; grandchildren: Mary Eubanks Collier, Atticus Connell Collier, Jennifer Denise Bell, Whitney Shaye Bell, Aleesha Alee Hope Gordon, Julian North Williamson, III; great-grandson: Griffin North Williamson; niece: Jacquelyn F. Adams and nephew: Joe Florence. He was preceded in death by his sister: Ann Florence Kelly as well as his parents. Pallbearers will be the Georgia State Patrol Honor Guard. Honorary pallbearers will be the Augusta Golf Association. In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to St. Paul's Episcopal Church, 605 Reynolds St., Augusta, GA 30901; the Symphony Orchestra Augusta, 1301 Greene St., Suite 200, Augusta, GA 30901, or the Jack Connell Scholarship Endowment @ Augusta State University: 2500 Walton Way, Augusta, GA 30904-4354. The family will receive friends Friday evening from 5:00 to 7:00 at Thomas Poteet & Son Funeral Directors: 214 Davis Rd. Augusta, Ga. 30907 The Augusta Chronicle-February 8, 2013
Funeral Home
Thomas Poteet & Son Funeral Directors
214 Davis Road Augusta, GA 30907
(706) 364-8484
Published in The Augusta Chronicle from Feb. 7 to Feb. 8, 2013
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