Jack D. McMullen
October 31, 1930 - December 17, 2017
NORTHWOOD | Jack D. McMullen, a former teacher and athletic director at Northwood-Kensett schools, passed away in Northwood, Iowa December 17, 2017 at age 87.
Visitation will be Friday, December 22 at Conner Colonial Chapel in Northwood from 5:00 to 6:30 with Masonic rites at 5:30. The funeral will be held at 11:00 on Saturday, December 23 at the Northwood United Methodist Church.
Jack was born on Halloween, 1930 in Spencer and lived for four years in May City with his parents G. Howard and Lefie McMullen before moving to Burt, Iowa. He grew up in Burt, where his dad ran a grocery store and worked at the local bank. Jack played baseball and basketball in high school and dated a classmate, Jane Keith. After graduating from Burt High School in 1948, Jack went to Buena Vista College for three semesters prior to enlisting in the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War. He served for four years and traveled to Bermuda, the Azores, and Morocco on readiness deployments. In 1952 he married Jane Keith and, after his enlistment was up, enrolled at Iowa State Teachers College (now UNI) to complete his college degree. Daughter Cheryl was born in Salina, Kansas and son Ron in Cedar Falls.
After graduating from college Jack took a job teaching and coaching at Havelock-Plover schools, where he worked from 1956 to 1960. During these four years, Jack earned his Masters Degree from the University of South Dakota. The McMullens moved to Northwood in 1960 and Jack taught physical education, social studies, and drivers education at Northwood-Kensett schools until his retirement in 1992. He also coached and served as Athletic Director -- upon retirement he was inducted into the Iowa High School Athletic Directors Association Hall of Fame.
He enjoyed being with family, including his 13 first cousins, brothers Jim and Jerry (now both deceased), nieces & nephews, and grandsons Owen, Wyatt, and Alek.
Jack, besides being an active member of the United Methodist Church, was a Mason, gardener, a sports fan, a card player, a scoutmaster, a trapper, a traveler, and delivered meals-on-wheels. While dedicated to Northwood, he and Jane enjoyed spending winter months in the Rio Grande valley, where they were socially active. Among many other travels, they visited Ron and his family in the Dominican Republic, South Africa, and Fiji. With Cheryl and Alek they traveled to the Black Hills and the Appalachian Mountains.
'Family, faith, and friends are the most important things in life,' according to Jack. Many can attest to the fact that he lived by those words. While occasionally gruff in manner, Jack was generous of heart and was quick to share a joke and a laugh.
Left to cherish his memory is his wife, Jane McMullen of Northwood; two children, Cheryl McMullen-Cheng of Sioux City, and Ron (Jane) McMullen of Iowa City; three grandsons, Owen McMullen of Khartoum, Sudan, Wyatt McMullen, Golden Valley, MN, Alek McMullen-Cheng of Des Moines.
Preceding him in death are his parents.
He will be missed by all.
Conner Colonial Chapel: 641-324-1543, ColonialChapels.com.