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Jack Ryan


1939 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Jack Ryan Obituary
Long time family entertainment publicist and public relations professor Jack Ryan passed away on August 25, 2016. Jack was 77. He died in Pensacola, Florida where he and his husband Ken Young have lived for the past 10 years. Jack was born June 26, 1939 in the small town of Summit, Mississippi. But his career began in New York City in the '60s when he became a publicist for Ringling Bros. Barnum and Bailey Circus, eventually becoming Director of National Publicity. Jack was always linked to the Circus and in 2011 he was inducted into the International Circus Hall of Fame. Jack created the iconic phrase "May All Your Days Be Circus Days" and he continued to host a popular Facebook page with the same name until his death. In the '70s Jack moved to Los Angeles where he charted a "second" career as Director of Marketing & Public Relations at Magic Mountain and later as a PR consultant, editor and writer. In 1983, while providing advice and counsel to family entertainment venues and PR firms, Jack began teaching public relations at the USC Annenberg School for Communication. Thousands of young PR professionals learned their craft while students in Jack's classes. In 1993, he received one of the school's most prestigious awards, honoring him as its most effective adjunct professor. Jack served as a valued consultant to numerous PR firms handling family entertainment clients and advised virtually every major LA family entertainment venue. If a local PR firm picked up a family entertainment client, you can bet that one of the first calls was to Jack. While consulting and advising, Jack never stopped teaching. In the '90s he brought his renowned course "The Art & Craft of Public Relations Writing" to the offices of many of the area's top PR firms. It's safe to say that there was a Jack Ryan influence on thousands of releases and press kits written during that period. Jack always carried a joyous spirit of love and affection for the iconic touring attractions and family entertainment venues he worked with. All who had the pleasure to know Jack will remember him fondly. Donations in Jack's memory may be made to Circus World in Baraboo, Wisconsin www.circusworldbaraboo.org.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from Aug. 29 to Aug. 30, 2016
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