2006 Regular Session
By: Senator(s) Hyde-Smith, Lee (35th), Browning, Butler, Chaney, Dawkins, Dearing, Frazier, Gollott, Jackson (11th), Jordan, King, Morgan, Posey, Thames, Thomas, White
A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION COMMENDING THE LIFE AND PUBLIC SERVICE OF FORMER STATE SENATOR JACK ALFRED PACE OF MAGEE, MISSISSIPPI.
WHEREAS, former State Senator Jack Alfred Pace of Magee, Mississippi, founder of Pace Oil Company, died on Monday, January 9, 2006; and
WHEREAS, Mr. Pace was born March 9, 1917, in Conehatta, Mississippi, and grew up in Philadelphia, Mississippi. After graduating from Philadelphia High School, he attended East Central Community College on an athletic scholarship, later continuing his education at Southern Mississippi Veterans Administration School; and
WHEREAS, to begin his life as a businessman, Pace had bought a Sinclair service station in Hattiesburg, but World War II put his career on hold. He joined the U.S. Army on March 3, 1942, and served in the European Theater until January 21, 1946. He rose to the rank of Sergeant and saw duty in the Battle of the Bulge. World War II was the defining period of Jack's life, said son-in-law Al Gordy of Magee. It determined who he became; and
WHEREAS, after returning to Hattiesburg, Pace became a wholesale oil jobber for Sinclair Oil with Magee as his territory and started night classes at Mississippi Southern. He also married Mary Louise Barksdale, who would be his wife for 54 years, until her death in 2000. In 1946, he also founded Pace Oil Company, a Magee business which grew from two to 60 employees. In 1996, the company celebrated 50 years of a successful business, though Pace himself had retired in 1982, leaving the family business to the management of his son, Alfred Pace, and daughter, Jacqueline Gordy; and
WHEREAS, along the way, Pace was elected to two terms in the Mississippi State Senate, 1960-1964 and 1968-1972. He served on various committees, including Finance and Oil and Gas. He was actively involved in many state and local organizations. He was a Mason, a Shriner, State Commander of the American Legion, President of Mississippi Oil Jobbers for two years and a member of the VFW, Lions Club, Mississippi Economic Council, Southeast Division of the American Red Cross and the Magee Touchdown Club; and
WHEREAS, he organized the Magee Civic Club and was President of the Magee Chamber of Commerce for two years. He was named Magee's Outstanding Citizen by the Chamber in 1989 and was chosen for the Magee Hall of Fame in 2001. In 2003, he received a commendation for his public service and philanthropy from the Mississippi House of Representatives; and
WHEREAS, Jack Pace was a lifelong member of the First United Methodist Church, where he served on every committee in the church. He taught the Men's Bible Class for 57 years; and
WHEREAS, he was preceded in death by his wife, Mary Louise Pace. He is survived by his son, Alfred Pace and wife Kim of Magee; daughter, Jacqueline Pace Gordy and husband Al Gordy of Magee and grandchildren, Kyle Gordy, Kami Wert, Hugh Pace and Holly Pace; great-grandchildren, Mary Morgan Wert and Jack Thomas Gordy; and one brother, Joe Pace of Magee; and
WHEREAS, it is with great sadness that we note the passing of this former member of the Legislature, whose considerable civic and charitable contributions are a matter of record to his community and to his state:
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES CONCURRING THEREIN, That we do hereby commend the life and public service of former State Senator Jack Alfred Pace of Magee, Mississippi, and express to his surviving family the sympathy of the Legislature on his passing.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That this resolution be presented to Senator Pace's surviving family and be made available to the Capitol Press Corps.