Jack E. Megela passed away unexpectantly on September 24, 2021 at Mercy Hospital, Canton, OH. He was with his wife Marianne, daughter Mary Frances, sister and Brother-in-Law, Donna and Bernie Tunno. His son Shawn, a resident of Hawaii, was also present in heart and spirit.
Born to June and Mike Houk Megela (both deceased) on September 30, 1941, Jack began his worldly journey to become a man of great character and creativity. Jack graduated from Boardman High School in 1959 where he was involved in football and track. Describing himself as a ‘greaser’ with a pack of camels rolled in his t-shirt sleeve, he played electric guitar with a band at local high schools, skating rinks and any other gig they could find. Later his playing skills allowed him to become quite an accomplished classical guitarist.
Jack began his service to country and community in 1960 when he enlisted in the United States Marine Corp, embarking on a personal growth experience that shaped him into the man he became. He lived with a true sense of purpose that comes from knowing he was part of something larger than himself. Words like teamwork, patience, improvise, adapt, and overcome became his mantra for life. In 1962 he and thousands of other military personnel protected our shores from the threat of nuclear war during the Cuban Missile Crisis.
After four years with the Marines, Jack returned to his Ohio roots to begin his service to his community. He was a graduate of the 1966 Ohio State Highway Patrol Academy. He logged many miles in his cruiser but was also called for duty during the 1968 Ohio Penitentiary riot and the Kent State University riot in May 1970.
Jack left the OSHP to work with the Stark County Sheriff’s Dept (OH). Motivated by his experience of the Penitentiary and Kent State riots, he took courses in Prevention and Control of Mobs and Riots, Domestic Violence, Arrest Issues, etc. In 1975 he earned an Associate Degree in Law Enforcement and in 1978 he received a Bachelor of Science Degree at Kent State. He was promoted to Detective Sergeant in 1980. Because of his investigative skills and ability to access facts, he was tasked with the investigation of the Jackson Township PD and government office. While his law enforcement career was filled with many accomplishments, it was also riddled with injuries on the job. He retired in 1986 and returned to Kent State to study photography.
Jack’s career as a Fine Art Photographer evolved from his career in law enforcement. During that time his camera was a tool used to record everything from traffic fatalities to homicides. He spent 23 years investigating, documenting, and photographing the tragedy of human crisis and violence. When finished with his studies at Kent, he and his wife Marianne traveled the United States photographing the quiet magnificence of nature. Jack transitioned from photographing a world of violence, chaos, and tragedy to photographing a world of peace and tranquility. Jack’s award-winning Photographic Art is hanging in corporate, public, and private collections all over the world.
So it is, this kind, creative, talented man has left us, but not without leaving us with one of his greatest gifts – humor! Jack lived with laughter and happiness in his heart and shared it with everyone who knew him. So, our dear Jack, fly high and rest easy with the angels above. They are lucky to have you. The Wackerly Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements. Personal condolences are invited on line at: www.wackerlyfuneralhome.com
(Wackerly 330 455-5235
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