- Jack Glen Ward, 66, left this world to be with the Lord on Dec. 6, 2012 at Kindred Hospital in Green Cove Springs, FL.
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Jack was born to Alice and Homer Ward in Muskogee, Oklahoma on May 16, 1946. The family moved to Lawndale, CA where he was raised and graduated from Lawndale High School. On July 1, 1966 Jack enlisted in the Armed Forces where he worked his way up to ATC Tower Operator during the Vietnam War. He was instrumental in coordinating Pachyderm Helicopters. In his civilian life, Jack was an Air Traffic Controller at Los Angeles International Airport. In 1981, he went on strike with his fellow workers and the Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization (PATCO). All strikers were fired by President Ronald Reagan for doing so. Out of pride, Jack refused to fly commercially. He often drove or traveled by train across the country. After a period of time, he was led to the Docks in Long Beach where he worked his way up to the position of crane operator. Jack was a proud member of International Longshoreman's Workers Union (ILWU), Local 13 for over 25 years. He relocated to Ormond Beach, Florida in 2011 due to health reasons and to be closer to his niece and family. Jack grew up with a passion for sprint cars and was an avid racer and race fan. On leave in 1969, Jack traveled to Sydney Showground Speedway in Australia where he met Don and Anne Reed and made lifelong friends. He, his brother Dave and sister-in-law Lois were well known among the racing circuit at Ascot Park Speedway. Jack enjoyed making rounds to speedways in California, Arizona, Oklahoma and Ohio. He frequented the Chili Bowl in Tulsa, OK regularly. Jack was preceded in death by his mother, father and two older brothers, Bud and Dave; and his nephew Ronnie Ward; He is survived by his uncle Orville Smith of Tulsa, OK; his sister-in-law, Lois Ward of Gardena, CA; his nieces, Debbie Auchard of Stockton, CA, Tonya Guillena and Tammie Scull of Ormond Beach, FL; his daughters, Michelle Ward of Tracy, CA; and Karen Mendoza of Manteca, CA and their families. He is survived by two grandnephews (Danny & Damon Auchard); two grandnieces (Mattie & Annie Scull); three grandchildren (Justine, Joseph, & John Mendoza); and various cousins and family in Muskogee, OK. Jack's friends and family will be received at Pinello Funeral Home in Holly Hill, FL on Saturday, December 15th at 4:00 pm. The family will receive guests with light refreshments and a service will be held. Jack will be escorted by family to Long Beach, CA where a viewing will be held from 6 to 8:00 pm on December 28th at McNerney's Mortuary in San Pedro, CA. A service will be held the following day at 1:00 pm. Jack will be laid to rest with honors at a private service to be held at Riverside National Cemetery on December 31st, 2012.
Published in Daytona Beach News-Journal on Dec. 14, 2012