John Alva (Jack) Clarke passed away July 31, 2018 after being surrounded by his family. He was born November 27, 1935 to A. John and Xarissa Merkley Clarke in Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada, along with his twin sister, Jill. Jack and Jill joined two older sisters, Peg and Sybil, with Kathy coming along later to complete the family.
As a child, Jack moved to Provo, Utah, where he grew up and attended Brigham Young High School. He was a gifted athlete and recognized as an All-American football player. He attended BYU where he played football his freshman year. Then, Jack was called to serve in the Western States LDS Mission, where he labored faithfully for two years. Upon his return, he met his sweetheart, Marilyn Tuckett. They were married in the Salt Lake Temple, September 25, 1958. After they both graduated from BYU, life took them to Ogden, Cedar City, Salt Lake City and Rexburg, Idaho. They spent their retirement years in Orem, Utah, making dear friends amongst their neighbors and ward members. Jack and Marilyn were the devoted parents of seven children. As their father, Jack's hallmark was encouraging his children to reach beyond what they thought might be possible.
Jack worked for State Farm Insurance, Diet Center, Inc., and Ricks College. He also served his country in the National Guard.
He will be remembered for his faithful service in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He served as bishop in three wards: Cedar City 1st, Rexburg 10th and Ricks College 42nd and as a branch president at the Provo MTC. He was involved in mentoring young men through the Boy Scouts of America as Scoutmaster. He taught not only scouting skills, but also life lessons while sharing the gospel along the way. He saw many of his scouts advance to the rank of Eagle and Jack was later recognized with the Silver Beaver Award.
Jack was a true "people person." He loved getting to know people, forging friendships and then treasuring those relationships. When he talked to you there was always genuine interest. Strangers quickly became friends, usually from questions about where they were from, where they went to school, and making connections with the "Do you know . . .?" game. His teasing manner and warmth soon put people at ease. Jack was extremely generous with his time and with his means.
He is survived by his children, Jennifer Sorensen, Kristen (Spencer) Kirk, Colette, Drew (Adrienne), James (Andrea) and Scott; 15 grandchildren and 4 great-grandchildren; sisters, Jill Harris and Kathy Williams. He was preceded in death by his wife, Marilyn; his son, Bryan; his son-in-law, Christian Sorensen; his parents and his sisters, Peg Riley and Sybil Ferguson.
As a family, we express deep gratitude to his Good Shepherd caregivers who were angels in his time of need. We are also grateful Dad spent the past six months in the home of his daughter, Jennifer, and her daughter, Marissa, after the passing of our mother. We love you, Dad.
The funeral service will be held Monday, August 6th, at 11:00 a.m. at the Nelson Family Mortuary Chapel, 4780 N. University Avenue, Provo. Viewings will also be held at the mortuary Sunday, August 5th, from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. and Monday prior to the funeral service from 10:00 to 10:45 a.m. Interment at the American Fork Cemetery. To express condolences visit www.NelsonMortuary.com
Published by Rexburg Standard Journal on Aug. 3, 2018.