BAXTER, James Bruce "Jack" 90, passed away peacefully Sunday, September 20, 2020. Jack was born June 8, 1930 in Tampa, the only child of the late Nara and Tolbert Baxter. Raised in South Tampa, Jack graduated from Plant High School, class of 1948. He attended Emory University where he pledged Phi Delta Theta. Jack served in the US Army as a Second Lieutenant and Medic, stationed in Germany. In the army, he developed a love for all things German, but while the other GI's spent their leave at the biergarten, Jack and a buddy traveled throughout Europe. Jack finished his education at the University of Florida where the love of his life, Allison Wallof, was a Chi-O. They had met years earlier when a friend accidentally got him a date with the wrong blonde. She turned out to be the exactly right one! They were married one year and four months before their graduation in 1956. Jack earned his degree in agriculture. The Baxters were one of the original families in Culbreath Bayou where they raised three children. The family moved to Albany, GA in 1969 where their fourth child was born. They returned to Florida in 1984, making their home in Saddle Brook, followed by Ocala and eventually settling on Lake Rousseau North of Crystal River in 2012. Jack was a member of First Presbyterian Church of Tampa, Palma Ceia Golf and Country Club, and the Merrymakers. He worked 26 years for AC Delco, parts division of GM before his retirement in 1984. His true passion was always agriculture. He was a rancher, timber man, peanut man, landowner, and orange grove owner. His musical tastes spanned many genres from heavy metal to mariachi to classical. He was a mentor to many a young cattleman and farmer. He was a sharp businessman, a bird hunter with a dead aim, a bass fisherman, an excellent golfer, and, above all, a die-hard University of Alabama Crimson Tide football fan! Jack was preceded by his wife of 62 years, Allison and his oldest son, James "Jim" B. Baxter Jr. He is survived by his children, Leslie Ann Marshburn (Kevin), Dr. TR Baxter (Lisa), and John "Jackie" S. Baxter; his daughter-in-law, Lynn Baxter; his grandchildren, Leslie Allison, Kevin Jr., Macrae, Jennifer, Jessica, Austin, and Samantha; five great-grandchildren; his sister-in-law, Dianne O'Neal (Bob); niece and nephew, Allison Ann Reemsnyder and Robert O'Neal. Jack will be truly missed by his family, friends, and dogs, Buster and Ella. Due to Covid, the family held a graveside service Wednesday, September 23, in Tampa.
Published in Tampa Bay Times from Sep. 27 to Oct. 6, 2020.