Gainesville - John A. "Jack" Hughes, 67, died January 23, 2014, after a brief and courageous cancer battle. A Service of Remembrance will be held January 25 at 10am, St. Michael's Episcopal Church, 4315 N.W. 23rd Ave, Gainesville, FL 32605. A private burial service was held Friday January 24, 2014 at the Prairie Creek Conservation Cemetery (PCCC) in Gainesville, FL.

Jack was born in Corry, PA, to Charles F. and Clarice Capwell Hughes. He spent most of his life in Lakeland, FL, and Baton Rouge, LA. After graduating from Lakeland High School, Jack attended the University of Florida. He holds degrees from Polk Community College (AA, Botany and Zoology) and the University of South Florida (BA, Natural Sciences with studies in Political Science and Journalism). He was a Certified Sports Event Executive (CSEE).

For 29 years, Jack was the owner of Event Service and Organization Professionals (ESOP) and was a sports, festival, convention, and tourism consultant for cities and sports commissions throughout the United States. Jack's notable contributions were transferring the US and North American Hot Air Balloon Championships to Baton Rouge, LA; coordinating the US Olympic Festival Torch Run relays in Louisiana, Texas, and North Carolina; and the World University Games Torch Run in New York. He was also the venue director for archery and cycling at the US Paralympic games in Atlanta, GA.

In 1996, he moved to Gainesville, FL to accept the position of Executive Director with the Gainesville Sports Commission (GSC). Through his tireless efforts at the GSC, he increased tourism and brought $200 million in revenue to Gainesville and Alachua County. After his retirement in 2012, Jack became an Adjunct Lecturer at the University of Florida Department of Recreation, Tourism and Sport Management. He taught SPM 2000, Introduction to Sports Management.

Jack was an avid and lifelong Florida Gator fan and supporter of UF Athletics. He was a member of the Baton Rouge Jaycees, US JCI Senators, Gainesville Rotary Club, and Fightin' Gator Touchdown Club.

Jack will be remembered for his selfless service, great smile, and quick wit. He was a loving husband and father, and a friend and mentor to everyone that crossed his path. Through his dedicated leadership and generosity, he touched countless lives and will be greatly missed.

Jack was preceded in death by his mother Clarice Capwell Hughes, and his first wife, Teresa Snapp Hughes. Survivors include his new bride Janice Harper Hughes; father, Charles F. Hughes of Lakeland, FL; son, Steve Hughes (Kristine) of Leesburg, FL; daughter, Kelly H. Hall (Ronnie) of Kansas City, MO; brother, Ronald Hughes of Lakeland, FL; and sister, Elaine Sanders (Joe) of Lakeland, FL. He has five grandchildren and 21 nieces and nephews.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to The Fisher House PO Box 358296 Gainesville, FL 32635. Arrangements are under the care of MILAM FUNERAL AND CREMATION SERVICES, 311 South Main Street, Gainesville, FL 32601.


Funeral Home

Milam Funeral Home and Cremation Services, Inc. of Gainesville
311 South Main Street Gainesville, FL 32601-1803
(800) 433-5361

Published in Gainesville Sun from Jan. 25 to Jan. 26, 2014