On Friday, October 16, 2020, George Gee Jackson, beloved father, grandfather, uncle and friend, passed away just 11 days after celebrating his 100th birthday. George was born October 5, 1920 in Provo, Utah, to Elvon and Adelia (Gee) Jackson, the fifth of their six children.
George graduated from Brigham Young University in 1943 and from the University of Utah School of Medicine in 1945 before completing a residency in Internal Medicine and a fellowship in Infectious Diseases at Harvard University. His professional life spanned 5 decades in academic medicine and was dedicated to advancing the understanding and treatment of Infectious Diseases, including ground-breaking research and the mentoring of many trainees throughout the world. These professional collaborations led to life-long friendships with colleagues worldwide. After retirement, George and Amy returned to Salt Lake City where he continued to be professionally active as Professor of Medicine emeritus at his alma mater.
His formative years were during the Great Depression, which shaped his lifetime habits of thrift, frugality and industry. “Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without” was a perfect description of his philosophy.
George’s high regard for education came as an endowment from his parents. He believed it was the duty of the present generation to educate the next. He greatly influenced his own children who earned advanced degrees in social work, mathematics, medicine, law, and business. His vision and generosity included support for tuition and book expenses for his college-age grandchildren. He extended his generosity to the next generation, establishing 529 accounts for his great-grandchildren.
Music was an important part of family life. Mom was the musician, dad was the appreciator, lessons were provided, and practicing was a part of daily routines. Dad loved music of all kinds. Toward the end of his life, Alexa became a special friend, playing whatever music he wanted to hear at the time, buoying him up.
He was a gifted writer and often used rhyme to celebrate life events and special occasions. We created a family treasure entitled ‘Traditions of Poetry” which is primarily a collection of his writings.
George was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and served in various callings through his life. The church provided structure, guidance, stability and permanence to our family life. He loved his heritage and became familiar with many ancestral stories and events which he passed on to his posterity. He interest was especially focused on the first church member in each ancestral line. He wrote and distributed several books about his ancestors and his birth family, conscious of his responsibility as the last surviving member of his generation.
George was preceded in death by his beloved spouse, Amy Smith Cox Jackson. He is survived by 5 children, Janet Jackson Hendricks (Bruce), Sandra Jackson Davis (Kent), Christopher George Jackson (Rebecca Horne), Amy Adelia Jackson Leach (Joseph), and John Gee Jackson (Celinda Martineau), 17 grandchildren, and 32 great-grandchildren.
We love him, revere him, and will miss him, greatly.