John "Jack" O'Brien
John "Jack" O'Brien, 76, of Cedar Rapids, passed away peacefully on Sunday, Dec. 22, 2019, at the Dennis & Donna Oldorf Hospice House of Mercy in Hiawatha. Funeral Mass: 10:30 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 26, at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church by the Rev. Christopher Podhajsky. Arrangements by Stewart Baxter Funeral & Memorial Services, Cedar Rapids.
Survivors include his wife of 51 years, Dottie; children, Brendan (Christy) of Melbourne, Australia, and Kimberly (Pete) Knapp of Elk River, Minn.; grandchildren, Liam O'Brien and Elizabeth and Catherine Knapp; brothers, Jim (Diane) of Lenoir City, Tenn., and Kevin of Harpswell, Maine; and several extended family members and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents.
John W. O'Brien Jr. was born Jan. 28, 1943, in Boston, Mass., to John W. Sr. and Evelyn (Horne) O'Brien. He grew up in the suburbs and graduated from Needham High School in 1961. Jack attended Northeastern University, graduating in 1968 with a bachelor's in business administration. He married Dottie Thompson on Nov. 30 of that year. Jack served as a medic in the National Guard's Yankee Division. In 1975, he took a position to work for Cherry-Burrell (now Evergreen Packaging) until retiring in 2001 as director of marketing communications. Jack then formed ExecuTec Business Communications, specializing in publishing weekly Marketing Intelligence Reports and as the U.S. correspondent for foreign food industry trade magazines.
Jack served on the board of directors and as committee chairman for several food and packaging associations in Washington, D.C., as well as the Cedar Rapids Fellowship Club. He was an avid sports fan, rooting for the Hawkeyes, Patriots and Red Sox, and against the Yankees. Jack's love for his wife, children, and grandchildren knew no bounds.
Many thanks to Jack's children and grandchildren, Dottie, Bill, Bob, Pat and Dave, and many others for helping him overcome life's challenges. In his final days, he relied heavily on the Serenity Prayer and now that he no longer needs it, he leaves it to you for solace and courage. Sincere thanks go to Dr. Ann Stroh and the compassionate staffs at Hall-Perrine Cancer Center and Oldorf Hospice House of Mercy.
Memorials may be directed to the Cedar Rapids Fellowship Club.
Please share your support and memories with Jack's family on his tribute wall at www.stewartbaxter.com under obituaries.