John Franklin Truex, William Jewell graduate and long-time member of the Board of Trustees, passed away Wed., Feb. 25.
While attending Jewell, Truex was a member of the Kappa Alpha Order, and he received the highest honor the fraternity has to offer, the Knight Commander’s Accolade, in 2004. Truex was also the student body president and was admitted into the honors fraternity AEONS in a year when there were only two members inducted. As a senior, he was selected as General Alexander Doniphan, the senior man with the most potential for great achievement. Truex received his bachelor of arts in 1947.
Truex continued to contribute to the College after graduation. Over the course of his lifetime, he served as National Alumni president, trustee and trustee emeritus, and staff member in fundraising. He was honored in 1969 with Jewell’s highest alumni honor, the Achievement Award. In 1996, the Truex Lifetime Service Award was created in his honor.
President David Sallee delivered the memorial service message for Truex.
“John’s experience at Jewell shaped much of his adult life. His love for the College and the fraternity, coupled with his tendency toward a full-bore commitment and focus on what he deemed important, led him to be a very unusual alumnus. His commitment to the College never wavered,” Sallee said.
Over his lifetime, Truex served in the military and earned a Bronze Star as a tank commander in World War II. Truex then worked for Trans World Airlines. He served as regional vice-president in Kansas City and St. Louis, and then as corporate vice president of the company in New York until his retirement in 1982. Truex was also a deacon in a Baptist church for over 55 years.
“John Truex was much admired. We don’t often hear the word ‘admiration’ today. A person may be liked or respected, but admired is a different thing. It says more than being well-liked; it says more than being respected; it says more than being appreciated. It is the combination of all those and that combination adds up to far more than any one of them. People admired John Truex,” Dr. Sallee said.
Photo c/o Liberty Tribune.