Jack Ellis Cox, 96 - Pine Knoll Shores, NC

Jack Ellis Cox, 96, of Pine Knoll Shores, NC died November 6, 2018 at Carteret Landing, Morehead City, NC.

Jack Ellis Cox was born 5 August, 1922 in Travelers Rest, SC.  He was the son of Ford Chastain Cox and Mollie Coleman Cox of West Asheville, NC.  He is preceded in death by his loving parents, and by his older sister Mildred McGill and his younger brother Robert F. Cox.  Jack was married to the love of his life, Margery June Monson Cox for 64 years.  Jack and Margery had three children, Bruce Ellis Cox, Crista Lee Cox Shaw, and Rear Admiral (Ret) Robert Justin Cox.  Jack and Margery’s family grew to three grandchildren and four great grandchildren.

At an early age, Jack was a dedicated Boy Scout, an avid Boxer, and an apprentice in a local pharmacy.  Enlisting in the Navy in 1940, Jack became an Aviation Machinist Mate with VP 73 operating out of Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and Reykjavik, Iceland.  With a significant knack for everything mechanical, Jack quickly became recognized as a leader and a mechanical whiz kid.  He was promoted to Chief Petty Officer in just three and a half years and was in charge of all maintenance and upkeep of all aircraft assigned to VP 73, fighting the German U-boat Wolfpack in the Northern Atlantic.

As a result of a hearing loss suffered in his service in PBY’s in Iceland, he received a medical discharge from the Navy and in 1949 began a career in the lubricants development program with Shell Oil Company.  After twenty-three years, Jack was eager to return with his family to his roots in Asheville, NC.  The family purchased a small home heating oil company in Arden, NC called Lamplighter Oil Co.  Lamplighter became the very first Mobil Oil Distributorship in Western, NC.  Eventually, Jack became the president of the North Carolina Oil Jobbers Association.

He continued his charitable work through their church and community.  Jack was a founding force behind the Kiwanis Club and the creation and construction of the Senior Center in Palm Harbor.  Jack and Margery both made possible the restoration of the original deteriorating Methodist Chapel, and the move of the Palm Harbor United Methodist Church from the chapel into a church property which allowed for the growth of the congregation and its expansive ministry.

As a devoted Christian, Jack Cox believed fervently in a life of service, dedication to family and the nation.  The love and blessings he bestowed on his family, and extensive friendships, is a gift many will continue to cherish.

Donations can be made to the Alzheimer’s Research Foundation, or local charity of your choice.

Online condolences may be expressed here.