Pictured left to right, Marabeth Gonczarow, Tony Gonczarow, Beverly Wyatt, Jack Wyatt and Sen. Phil Boots
Pictured left to right, Marabeth Gonczarow, Tony Gonczarow, Beverly Wyatt, Jack Wyatt and Sen. Phil Boots
Jack Wyatt wears many coats of many colors. The community of Crawfordsville is all the better for it and Governor Holcomb has paid tribute to Wyatt and his many coats by bestowing on him the honor of becoming a Sagamore of The Wabash.
Jack Wyatt was born in Crawfordsville in 1936, attended CHS (where he played bass drum) and was active in numerous school activities. He attended Wabash College where he became a member of the Beta Theta Pi Fraternity and the Sitting Sixteen pep band. Wyatt served in the Navy as a Naval Aviation Cadet and was stationed on the supercarrier, U.S.S. Forrestal.
1960 brought Jack back to Crawfordsville, joining his father selling life insurance and to this day continues to operate the insurance business his father started in 1932.
Wyatt’s life-long involvement in both the Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts elevated him to become, in 1961, Scoutmaster of Troup 342 at First Christian Church. Wyatt was instrumental in establishing the James E. Biggs Explorer Camp to be used by the youth of Montgomery County. He was also a founding member and first President of Montgomery County Youth Camps Inc., which leased the area known as Camp Rotary and established it as a premier scout camp in Central Indiana. Troop 342’s enrollment grew to 88 boys and over the next 25 years produced a total of 55 Eagle scouts including Jack’s son, John. Through his work in scouting Wyatt has had a tremendous impact on the youth of Indiana.
He told this tale about becoming a Scoutmaster. “We were on our way back from up north, dead of winter, with me in the back seat without any heat. My friends were hammering me to become a Scoutmaster; I was hesitant about the responsibility. The longer we traveled the colder it got in the back and they never gave up their quest. I finally relented, agreeing to serve and, miraculously, heat started pouring into the back seat.
Wyatt’s coats of many colors would take up a huge closet space as he has been active in various community activities and the political arena for nearly sixty years, including, in part:
An active member in our local Vanity Theater as an Actor, Producer, and President of the Sugar Creek Players; Vice President and President of the Indiana Association of Life Underwriters; the Crawfordsville Boys Club Board of Directors; chapter advisor for the Wabash College Beta Theta Pi fraternity; the Alumni Advisory Committee at Wabash College; served for 25 years on the Indiana State Committee for Employer Support of the National Guard and Reserve (ESGR); as Commissioner of the Crawfordsville Police Department; Board of Directors of Lincoln Federal Bank; the Board of Directors and President on the Montgomery County Tourism Board; served as a member of the Board of Zoning Appeals; Board Member of the Montgomery County Community Foundation; the Board of the Montgomery County Cultural Foundation. He is a member and former President of the Montgomery County Kiwanis Club and has served as a Deacon and Elder at Wabash Avenue Presbyterian Church.
A few of his many awards and honors include: The Distinguished Service Medal from the State of Indiana; the Silver Beaver Award for Adult Leadership in Scouting; ESGR Lifetime Achievement Award and a Lifetime Achievement Award in Scouting.
Needless to say, Wyatt is one of the most recognized and respected citizens residing in Montgomery County. His contributions and service to our county over the past sixty years have improved the quality of life for all of our citizens. Jack and his wife, Beverly, still reside in Crawfordsville. Wyatt has reduced his time at the office but still continues to sell life insurance and be involved in community activities.
When asked about receiving his award--which he knew nothing about ahead of time--at the Thursday Kiwanis Club meeting, he said, “I am completely overwhelmed and so honored to be a part of all this.” On his involvement with Kiwanis, “One of the great things of being involved with Kiwanis all these years is that they have taught me how to make the perfect pancake!”