Jack E. Rees

Jack E. Rees, 77, died at his home December 31, 2020. He was born June 1, 1943 in Topeka, Kans.

Jack graduated from Perry High School in 1961, where he played football and basketball and was Homecoming Candidate his senior year. Jack fell in love with Marilyn J. Ross in high school, and they were married in 1962.

After graduating from Kansas State University in 1966 with a horticulture degree, Jack returned to help his father in the family orchard business (Rees Fruit Farm), where he had worked as a young man. In 1979, Jack made the difficult decision to leave the family business and grow in a new direction when he took a job managing Skinner Garden Store. Jack and Marilyn purchased half-interest in the business in 1990, and Jack operated the business until his retirement in 2009. After retirement, Jack stayed active in the business, serving on the Board of Directors and as a business and horticulture advisor to his son Cam, who took over management of Skinner’s.

After Marilyn’s death in 2009, Jack found a second chance at love when he married Effie M. Reynolds in 2011. In addition to loving wife and companion, Effie was Jack’s devoted caregiver, providing love, support, encouragement and physical care throughout many health issues.

Horticulture was Jack’s life work, but it was also his passion. He loved nature and spent much time tending his vegetable garden and yard. He also loved history — seeking knowledge everywhere from roadside historical plaques to museums and the History channel. He was a lifelong member of Grantville United Methodist Church, where he gave freely of his time and resources. He served on and chaired numerous church committees over the years. Jack was a long-time member of the board of trustees for Grantville Cemetery. He also belonged to the Masonic Lodge, receiving his 50-year pin in September of 2017 as a member of Perry Lodge No. 415.

Jack was a devoted husband, father, grandfather and friend. He was loved and respected by family, friends, employees and customers alike. He is survived by his wife Effie; children Curtis (Clare), Cameron (Kim) and Jennifer Day (David); siblings Richard, Jean Cassell and Rex; grandchildren Catelyn, Kendall, Allison, Cooper and Evan; and stepsons Scott, Stewart and Shawn Reynolds and their families. He was preceded in death by his wife Marilyn, his mother Ellen Lucile Rees and his father Norris.

Memorial service arrangements are pending. Check back here for information.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions in Jack’s name to Midland Care Topeka (200 S.W. Frazier Cir., Topeka, KS 66606) or the Grantville United Methodist Church (3724 South St, Grantville, KS 66429).

Due to coronavirus health and safety concerns, the family invites friends and the community to join a livestream online memorial service on Saturday, January 9 at 1 p.m. (central). Go to https://grantvilleksumc.org and click on “Live Church Service.” Or, view the livestream on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/grantvillechurch.

A recording of the service can be viewed later on YouTube at https://tinyurl.com/JackRees.  

18 “Jack E. Rees

  1. Dear Effie and families of Jack,
    So sad to hear about Jack. Wayne and I really enjoyed our breakfast time with you both. Prayers and good memories

  2. What a joy it was to meet Jack and Effie in recent years. I recall a delightful Sunday afternoon when we walked in the yard and he gave me the names of the all the many trees. I loved his love of nature. For Effie and all the family, May the Lord bless you and keep you and make His face shine upon you and give you peace.

  3. Dear Rex and Shannon and all of the family.We are so sorry to of the death in your family. May God reach His arms around you with strength and comfort and may the peace that passes all understanding fill your hearts and help you remember the happy, loving times with Jack.

  4. Curtis and Cameron, my sincere sympathy to hear of the loss of your dad, Jack. His legacy lives on through you and your children.

    You are in my prayers and thoughts.

  5. Way back when, the local Grantville 4-H Club toured his home and projects. He had a huge wooden ice cream cone on the wall as one of his woodwork projects. I asked Jack if he could make me one of those. He said Yes. After every church service I would ask him it was done yet… after what seemed like a long time (for a child) he delivered it. I was so grateful.
    So sorry for the loss. May the Lord wrap his arms around all of you.

  6. Sounds like a great person, I am sorry I didn’t have the chance to know him better. Cam and family you are in our thoughts and prayers and if we can help in any way let us know.

  7. January 6, 2021 Dear Effie, Curtis, Cameron, Jennifer, and families: I am saddened to read about Jack’s passing. I am a Rees relative through Percy and Anna Rees of Marion, KS. Mary Alice Rees Parmley was my mother. I recall wonderful stories about the Rees families and Jack’s love for the Rees horticulture business. This is such a Rees trait…love of the land and hard, honest work. The obituary is beautifully written to share his immense stature in the life of so many people and his community. What a good man he was. His legacy will live on. God’s blessings to you. Mary Ann Parmley Siller of Texas

  8. My sincere condolences on your loss. My Dad always shared such nice memories from his childhood about Jack and antics around the Apple House when they were kids. I always enjoyed our encounters at Skinner’s. I remember what a worker Jack was and because of that I always appreciated the few minutes he would take to visit with me when I stopped in. I’ll always remember his smile. Hold on to your cherished memories to help you through your time of loss and the knowledge that he is with his Lord and Savior and in no more pain. God Bless. Debbi (Rees) Childers (Roy Rees’ daughter)

  9. Effie. Curtis, Cameron. Jennifer and families,
    We are so sorry for your loss.
    You’re all in our thoughts and prayers.

    Travis, Jaye, Caleb, Canaan and Chloe Daniels

  10. Curt, Cam , Jennifer, and rest of the family, Ernie and I are sorry to read of Jack’s passing. We hope all of you are doing Ok.

  11. I feel so fortunate to have been welcomed into Jack’s family with open arms. He was truly a kind and generous man of great character. I even came to grudgingly accept and cheer for the KSU Wildcats because of Jack! He will be dearly missed by family, friends and the entire community.

  12. I am so sorry to hear about Jack passing. He was a very caring person and always had time to answer questions about gardening. I used to work at his dental office and it was a delight when he came in. Condolences to the family.

  13. I worked with Jack in my early 20s for only about eight months. However he was a very hard worker and a very good boss. I admired his work ethic. I am so sorry to hear that he has passed on. My condolences are with his family. Praying for peace of heart for all your admired and loved him. He will be sorely missed.

  14. Dear Effie and Jacks family i am so sorry to hear of your loss.Jack was a good respectful man Gene and i thought a lot of him an always enjoyed seeing him. I Pray you all will find peace,and comfort in knowing he’s with the lord now. Sincerely with the lords blessings Patti Essman

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