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In Loving Memory of Jack "Jackie" Ferrell
On Thursday, January 04, 2024, our beloved Ferd Jackson Ferrell, 72, surrounded by family, good stories, and the tunes of his favorite songs, embarked on a cosmic adventure he couldn’t refuse and is now grooving through the galaxies, enjoying the ultimate reunion with his wife, family, and long-lost friends.
Born on September 10, 1951, in Harnett County to Thomas Jackson Ferrell and Rosalie Stone Ferrell, Jackie’s life was about love, laughter, good times, and a bit of adventure. Growing up, he had a special bond with his grandpa, the legendary Doc (Rock Stone), a bicycle repairman. According to Jackie, Doc didn’t just fix bikes; he taught life lessons.
Their adventures were the stuff of legends – hikes, fishing expeditions, and “hunting” (which was really “squirrel retrieval” for Jackie and his brothers, Tony and Mike). His sense of wonder and adventure came from his Doc, as did his love for two-wheeled rides.
Jack went mountain biking whenever he could; not even a collection of broken bones and concussions could keep him off the saddle. Jackie’s motto: “No guts, no glory.”
He was just as spirited when it came to his love affair with technology, which started when he tracked satellites in the Air Force in California. Since then, he has been inseparable from his gadgets, and we’ve got a museum of every computer he ever purchased to prove it. Parting with technology was simply not in his vocabulary.
Life post-Air Force took him on a cross-country road trip back to Buies Creek, then a new chapter at Campbell University, and eventually, a move to Pinehurst, where he met Beth, the love of his life. Their love story was a crazy, unconventional, “out of the box” roller coaster ride full of good times and fun.
Alongside falling in love with Beth, Jack also opened his heart to her five-year-old daughter Kelli, taking an instant role as a father figure. Two short years later, Jack and Beth welcomed their own little bundle of joy, Danielle Rose, whom he named after his mother. His two daughters, the apples of his eye, were a source of endless pride. They filled his house with laughter and plenty of accomplishments to brag about. In a house teeming with women (even the cat was female), it’s no wonder his once-dark hair made a strategic retreat, opting for a more distinguished snowy white.
One of his favorite pastimes was getting his family to endure the marathon movie Lonesome Dove, a six-hour epic that had them questioning the definition of “quality time.” Needless to say, the film didn’t secure a spot on their top 10 list of favorite movies.
His years at Boehringer Ingelheim were some of his favorites, including winning the president’s club several times and jet-setting to places like Bermuda and the Bahamas. Those who had the pleasure of working alongside Jack knew he worked hard and played harder! Some probably knew him by the nickname “Greyhound,” after his cocktail of choice: grapefruit juice and vodka. And you also know that if the clock disagreed on whether the day’s deeds were done, he’d raise an eyebrow, flash a grin, and declare, “Well, it’s 5 o’clock somewhere.”
Jack took extreme pride in his grandson, Chase, and, following in his grandpa’s footsteps, he proudly took on the title of “Doc.” He cherished the memories of teaching his grandson Chase how to swim. Seeing Chase flourish on a swimming scholarship in college filled his heart with joy. Being a grandpa was more than just a role for him; it was a source of everlasting happiness.
He was indeed a “Jack” of all trades, and with a journal in one hand and a camera in the other, he captured the magic of everyday moments, leaving behind a legacy of warmth and friendship. We know his family and the friendships he forged were the real treasure and that while he’s traveling the universe with a greyhound in hand, he’s “keeping the beers on ice until it’s time to do our thing once again.”
Jackie loved to tell stories about his life and the profound joy of becoming a dad; you could be sure at least 50% of every story was true. So, when you’re telling people of Jack’s passing, feel free to embellish, maybe share that he died having a good time in Ireland, surrounded by his friends and family, with a greyhound in hand, telling the best story you’ve ever heard while listening to his favorite tunes. We’re pretty sure that’s how he would tell it.
Please join us in his hometown of Buies Creek at the First Baptist Church on Saturday, January 13, 2024, at 2 p.m. to share in the stories, laughter, and memories that defined Jackie’s life. He was a free spirit who loved to keep things casual and was never a fan of suits, so we kindly ask that you come in something fitting to celebrate his life. Remembrances will continue in the Fellowship Hall from 3 – 4 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, the family would like you to share a story or fond memory of Jackie below, plant a tree in his memory through the Arbor Day Foundation, or send live plants to O’Quinn-Peebles-Phillips Funeral Home.
Jackie is survived by his daughters, Danielle Rose Ferrell and Kelli Davis of Wilmington; grandson, Chase Davis; brothers, Tony Ferrell and his wife Laura of Fayetteville and Mike Ferrell and his wife Susan of Indiana; nephews, Jackson Ferrell and his wife Kate, Trevor Ferrell and his wife Jennifer; and many cousins and extended family.
Jack is preceded in death by his parents, Thomas Jackson Ferrell and Rosalie Stone Ferrell, wife, Beth Black Ferrell, and nephew, Walston Ferrell.