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Resident Spotlight: John “Jack” O.

The year 1929 may have been an economic downturn in American History and the end of the Roaring Twenties, but the world still gained an angel: Jack O., born September 1929 in Blakely, PA, was the fourth of six children. He would grow up to be known for many wonderful attributes, including a deep and clear speaking voice as well as a strong singing voice! Jack’s accomplishments started at a young age and never stopped! He would go on to become the president of his Blakely High Senior Class of ’47! GO BEARS!

After high school, Jack attended the University of Scranton while working as a radio broadcaster to further help pay for his tuition, class of ’51! Jack then attended Georgetown Law School, graduating in 1954, during which time he married the love his life, Grace, in 1953. Grace and Jack would go on to live a fulfilling life with 8 children, 19 grandchildren and 4 great-grandchildren (5th on the way)! For more than 60 years, Grace and Jack enjoyed a wonderful marriage.

Jack would enlist in the Marines following law school. During his three-year tour, Jack earned the medal of honor for protecting his platoon by throwing himself on a grenade, that luckily for everyone was a dud, or so he eagerly told his grandchildren. It was not until they were older that Jack shared why he truly got the medal, which was for the best four corners when making his bed.

Jack would soon move Grace and their growing family to D.C., where he would begin his career at GEICO. Starting as an insurance adjuster, Jack quickly climbed up the corporate ladder to retire as the Corporate Secretary!

After retiring, Grace and Jack joined the Jesuit International Volunteer Corps. For two years, they worked on the island of Majuro in the Marshall Islands. The two of them would continue to volunteer with the JVC while Grace tutored in inner city schools and Jack performed administrative duties in the office.

Jack and Grace enjoyed traveling, including destinations such as Austria, El Salvador, Pacific Islands, Russia, Ireland, and Kazakhstan. Jack also enjoyed natural outdoor settings and for several summers would plan two-week family vacations. He dabbled in many hobbies like home renovations, carpentry, golf, and woodworking, but always put his family first.

When the love of his life Grace was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease around 2000, Jack became Grace’s dedicated caregiver for the next 14 years until her passing. Jack joined the Kensington Park family in 2018 and he has been a fan favorite. Jack has a great sense of humor and enjoys a good conversation. We are so glad that we are a part of Jack’s family.