You'll never guess how he became a scout
Wednesday, December 12, 2012 9:00 PM
Have you ever been involved in Scouts? Seen a play at the Vanity Theater? Been to a Kiwanis meeting in the last 50 years? Then, chances are you've been in contact with Jack Wyatt.
Jack grew-up in our fair Athens of Indiana and much enjoyed its culture, having been in several high school plays, including senior year, "Tiger House" and "Terror at Black Oaks." In fact, Jack has remained an active member of the local theatre world, playing in several Vanity productions even having portrayed Chet, the Bartender, twice in "Deadwood Dick" and Murray the Cop, in "The Odd Couple."
Jack's story about how he became involved in Boy Scouts made me giggle. One wintery day Jack had gone to a Kiwanis meeting in Frankfort with Bud Groves and John Woodward. Kiwanis sponsored a Boy Scout troop and needed a Scoutmaster and Jack, in the back seat was being recruited for the job.
There seemed to be no heat in the back and it became more frigid and the car was driven so slow that it got to a snail's pace. Continual benefits spouted by the men in front and the cold, slow vehicle finally convinced Jack. "Okay, I'll do it!" brought forth warmth and speed.
Even with the coercion, Jack has never been sorry in his decades of work with the Scouts, spending ¼ of a century with Troop 342 (First Christian Church) alone.
At CHS, Jack played the bass drum which served him well in college and beyond. At Wabash, he was a member of the Sitting Sixteen and during his stint in the Navy, he was a member of the Naval Aviation Cadet marching band. As a result of this involvement, Jack was fortunate enough to serve as an escort to Ursula Howard, 1958 Miss U.S.A. at the Miss Universe Contest.
Jack grew-up knowing, simply, that his father sold insurance, but it wasn't until Jack's return from the Navy that his father suggested Jack might like the work. As Jack learned more, he joined Northwestern Mutual which was 53 years ago. Adding that to his father's 51 years with the company totals an impressive century plus four!
Jack met Beverly Campbell, Waynetown High School graduate, through a fellow Scout volunteer, Bob Tinsley, who suggested the two might make a grand couple. It worked as they are looking forward to their 50th anniversary in a couple of years. Jack noted, too that he and Beverly just clicked when they met and still do. "As a Registered Nurse, she takes good care of me!" They have two children, Marabeth Gonczarow, a teacher at New Market and John of Los Angeles, whose work is making television commercials. Marabeth's husband, Tony is a high school Science teacher and their two sons, John and Andrew make up Jack's dear hearts.
The Wyatts have gone to Chautauqua, New York several times, enjoying the multitude of programs and entertainment, but Jack felt that the Nile trip was his ultimate vacation.
In closing, I hope you enjoyed reading as I loved writing about Jack Wyatt in "Around the County!"
Karen Zach's column, Around The County, will appear each Thursday in The Paper.