Jack Growney peacefully departed this earth on July 16, 2022 surrounded by love. There aren’t enough words to describe him and his 89 years were not enough for those who loved him. Foremost, Jack was a free spirit, an independent thinker, and an entrepreneur. Like the jazz music he loved, Jack was innovative, complex and varied. Tough and tender- a man with high standards and deep compassion, Jack was brave enough to share his fears and failures as well as his successes with others so that they could benefit from his experiences. He was a visionary-seeing potential in properties and people. A free thinker, Jack passionately supported both republican and democratic political ideals during his lifetime. Jack was born on March 23, 1933 to John H. and Marguerite H. (Guinan) Growney in Geneva, New York. His family moved to the Detroit area when he was three and he began his work life at age 11 as a paperboy. Post college, Jack worked for one of the Big 3 automakers but quickly became disenchanted with big business and went to work for an insurance company. Insurance suited his value system of planning ahead, saving for a rainy day, and caring for those less fortunate. Within a short time, Jack founded and built an extremely successful independent insurance agency- John Thomas Mayfair-selling and servicing both commercial and personal lines. Jack enjoyed wealth but he never forgot those who were poor. Jack worked hard but he also loved to play. A great golfer- he won many tournaments at Oakland Hills Country Club and he taught his children to play and enjoy the game. Jack enjoyed gin rummy with friends and with his grandchildren. Jack shared his love of music, especially jazz, with everyone he loved -often loud and early in the morning. In retirement, Jack and his wife Lois enjoyed wintering in Naples, Florida- playing golf and bridge and enjoying dining and attending the Naples Philharmonic. In Naples, Jack enjoyed hosting his daughter and her family on their family vacations. Jack and Lois travelled extensively throughout Europe, Scandinavia, Russia and the Caribbean-savoring the sights and sounds. In keeping with Jack’s wishes there was no funeral, but an intimate memorial luncheon is planned this Fall. Those wishing to honor Jack’s legacy are encouraged to contribute in his name to Michiganjazzfestival.org or the Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries (drmm.org).
Posted online on September 21, 2022
Published in The Detroit News, Detroit Free Press