As many of you are aware, Jack McNaughton, the executive vice president of the PMPA, passed away on Good Friday, April 13. Jack came to us in 1992, bringing with him a servant's heart and a dedication to his job and profession that made him unique. He set a high standard for those of us who had the chance to work along side of him. I have had the opportunity to travel throughout North America with Jack over the past 2 years visiting our member companies. He loved these tours and in many ways this was the heart of his work—letting members know they were important and hearing in person their ideas and concerns. Being on the road more than 100 days per year couldn't have been easy, but he always saw it as a differentiator from other associations.
Keeping up with Jack on these trips was a challenge, as Jack set schedules that left little time for rest or recreation. We would leave the hotel early, make from three to six company visits, and then head for the President's Round Table meeting or dinner with local members. Jack was never late and always seemed to know the routes around the city, getting us from place to place per the schedule. By the time the trip was over, I was a tired survivor.
Jack left behind a wonderful wife, Denise, and two sons, David and Daniel. Daniel is a sophomore in high school, and David is working in Cincinnati for Golf America. Both look very much like Jack and are a tribute to their mom and dad. Jack's real concern in his last weeks was to make sure Denise had the finances structured in such a way to provide for Daniel's college education.
During Jack's last month, I was able to visit him weekly to get his thoughts on the management of the office and discuss what was going on within the association. In early March, Jack was told he had 1 to 3 weeks to live, and although he never looked forward to dying, he faced it head on and never lost his sense of humor. The week he died he told one of our colleagues that he was no longer a "reliable source" of information due to the heavier doses of morphine, which left him rather incoherent at times. The prior week he joked about surprising the doctors and hanging around till our next Strategic Planning meeting at the end of May. He made it very easy for me (and others) to say good-bye and to tell him how much we cared. He never asked or looked for sympathy and taught many of us how to die with dignity.
He finally found a schedule he didn't want to keep—squeezing out several extra weeks of life. Thanks for everything Jack—we'll never forget you.