By Mike Hazlip—
Residents and community leaders attended a memorial for Jack Duncan, just two years after he held a similar event for his late wife, Jean Duncan.
More than 200 people filled the Citrus Heights Community Center on Tuesday, Nov. 28 to share memories of a man that many said shaped not only Citrus Heights, but the Community Center itself.
Duncan was born on May 28, 1935, and passed away on Nov. 17, 2023, according to his obituary. He married Jean Duncan in 1954 and the family moved to Citrus Heights in 1958 with two children. He became co-owner of J & W Auto Wreckers after taking possession of the business in 1981, according to the business’ website.
Former city councilman Al Fox emceed the event, describing Duncan and his wife as “a force, individually, personally, professionally, and in their civic service.”
Duncan was remembered for his service to the community through the Citrus Heights Rotary Club, an organization where he spent close to four decades. Fox described Duncan as a man without a filter, saying Duncan was the reason he joined the Rotary Club.
“Jack brought me into a time of friendship and sometimes a partnership in civic activities and service, because Jack was the epitome of that dedication to the City of Citrus Heights,” Fox said.
Duncan’s son, Mark Duncan, described his father as a man who loved his family.
“He loved my mom, me, my sister, and of course all his grand kids,” the younger Duncan said. “I could see it in his words, his actions, and his face, his great big smile.”
Mark Duncan learned how to fish and hunt as well as the value of hard work and community service from his father. The elder Duncan sponsored his son’s membership in Rotary, he said.
“He said we are the first father-son members of the club,” Duncan recalled. “Rotary is and always will be with him, dad was very proud. My dad gave me the greatest gift anyone could give another person, he believed in me.”
Pamala Groft recalled her father’s commitment to hard work and the Citrus Heights community.
“His heart was bigger than the world,” Groft said. “He always wanted to help others and to give back.”
Former Councilwoman Jeannie Bruins said she had known Duncan for decades, dating back to when she first met him at the Citrus Heights Chamber of Commerce in the 1980s. Bruins said Duncan had a lasting impact on the city, and on her son.
Sacramento County Supervisor Sue Frost called Duncan a “beautiful soul,” saying he was known for attending community events.
“He had that smile in that wink, just lit up the whole area and you could feel that connection, the soul connection with him,” Frost said.
Citrus Heights Police Chief Alex Turcotte remembered his time with Duncan as members of the Rotary Club, saying the family was present at many events.
The Sentinel previously reported the death of Duncan’s wife, Jean, in Sept. 2021. The outpouring of support at her memorial left Jack Duncan at an emotional loss for words.
“As you’ve all heard, I’m the luckiest person in the world,” he said.
By Mike Hazlip—
Residents and community leaders attended a memorial for Jack Duncan, just two years after he held a similar event for his late wife, Jean Duncan...
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