Jack's Story

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Jack H. Vollbrecht, 94, passed away November 11, 2015. He was born April 30, 1921 to Thelma (Bridge) and Charles Vollbrecht in Hamilton, Ohio. Both parents preceded him in death, as did his brother, Tom, loving wife, Helen and daughter-in-law, Karen G. Vollbrecht. Jack attended the University of Pittsburgh from where he received his Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics in 1943 prior to serving in the US Army as a 1st Lieutenant, from June of that year until May 1946. Following this, he entered Harvard Law School, receiving his LLB degree in 1949, and then spent the next decade practicing Tax and International Law with Dresser Industries, Dallas, Texas, and then Chief Council for Ling-Altec Electronics, Inc., also of Dallas. He returned to Dresser Industries in late 1960 as its operating vice-president until 1965 when he joined the International Telephone and Telegraph Corporation in New York City to serve as executive assistant to the president and vice-president and group executive of the ITT Defense-Space Group from 1965 to 1969. Vollbrecht was elected president and chief executive officer of Aerojet-General Corporation in 1969. Under his leadership, Aerojet powered many of the rockets used in the Gemini and Apollo programs, propelling American astronauts to the moon. Concurrently, as CEO, Vollbrecht was actively engaged in management of Frontier Airlines as the chairman of the executive committee. He also served as a director of Geosource Inc., For Better Living Inc., and U.S. West. Jack was a member of the Air Force Association, the National Space Club, the Navy league of the United States, the Associa-tion of the US Army, the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association, and the American Ordnance Association. In 1972, Vollbrecht was appointed by Governor Ronald Reagan to the California Commission for Economic Development. In 1980, Jack and Helen moved from California to live closer to family, in Edmond, Okla. During that time period, Vollbrecht served as director and chairman of the board of his family owned automotive parts re-manufacturing business, Unit Parts Company. Throughout his career, Jack was a champion of the “80/20” principle for business management and carried on his legacy of success alongside his sons until his retirement in 2005. Jack is survived by his three children, Tom Vollbrecht of Edmond, Jack D. Vollbrecht and his wife, Gwen of Edmond, Robin V. Constantine and her husband, Stephen of Purchase, N.Y., along with nine grandchildren and five great grandchildren. The family wishes to express our deepest appreciation to Visiting Angels and Mercy’s Palliative and Hospice teams for their compassionate care during the last season of our father’s life. Services will be at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church of Edmond at 2 p.m. Friday, Nov. 20th. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to St. Mary’s Episcopal Church Building Fund, 325 East First Street. Edmond, OK 73034.
Published on  November 17, 2015
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