Jack Ritter

Jack Lawrence Ritter, Jr.

Sunday, May 15th, 1955 - Tuesday, November 19th, 2019
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Jack Lawrence Ritter, Jr., age 64, died peacefully on November 19, 2019 with his family surrounding him in love. Jack was born in Clarksdale, Mississippi, the son of Jack Ritter, Sr. and Judy Walters Ritter. He grew up in Jackson, MS and graduated from Murrah High School and then Millsaps College where he was member of Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity. After a brief time working as an oil and gas lease broker with his father, Jack moved to Chicago to pursue his master’s degree and doctorate in English composition and rhetoric at the University of Illinois – Chicago. Jack loved the written word. He was an avid reader and a gifted writer and teacher, and he used these skills during his career as a teacher and business trainer. Jack moved to Louisville in 1996 where he worked for several major companies including Vencor and Providian before becoming Director of Training for ResCare until his retirement in 2015.
Jack was a talented golfer from a young age and played on his school golf team. He loved fishing, especially with his family. He usually caught the most fish (or at least that’s what he said) and would turn fishing expeditions into a friendly competition, especially with his brother and cousin. Jack loved music and sang in the high school choir. He passed his life-long joy of guitar to his son and they enjoyed playing together. Jack had a quick wit and loved to party with his close friends and family. He was a life-long Ole Miss Rebel fan and adopted the University of Louisville Cardinals as his second team. College football season was his favorite time of year.
Jack was happiest when he was with his extended family, especially his wife of 16 years, Linda Gardner Ritter. Jack loved Linda dearly and she was his rock and constant caregiver during his long battle with Parkinson’s Disease. Jack’s son, Kyle Ritter, who is in pharmacy school at UNC, was Jack’s pride and joy. Jack is also survived by his mother, Judy Ritter of Jackson, Mississippi; sister Ann Ritter Walthall of Louisville; brother George Ritter (Betsy) of Jackson; step-daughter Julie Wheeler (Aaron) of Louisville; brothers-in-law Don Gardner of Covington, KY and Dennie Gardner of Tampa, FL; granddaughters Sophie Wheeler and Laurel Rogers (Jonathan); great-grandson Sullivan Rogers; nieces Jackie Walthall, Hannah Gardner, Rochelle Gardner and Sarah Love Crawford (Bentley); nephews Shawn Walthall, Andrew Ritter (Haleigh) and Zachary Gardner, and many close cousins and loyal friends.
Jack was predeceased by other men that he loved very much, his father Jack Ritter, Sr. and his brother-in-law Ralph Walthall and by his father-in-law, Mack Gardner who became Jack’s favorite fishing buddy during visits to Florida.
Jack was truly a bright presence in our life. We will miss his playful, loyal, caring nature and knowing he was always available for us, in good times and bad, whenever we needed him.
Visitation with the family will be at Highlands Funeral Home on Friday, November 22 from 3:00-7:00. A memorial service will be held at Anchorage Presbyterian Church on Saturday, November 23 at 11:00. Expressions of sympathy may be made to the Parkinson’s Support Center of Kentuckiana.
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Friday, November 22nd, 2019 | 3:00pm - 7:00pm
    Friday, November 22nd, 2019 3:00pm - 7:00pm
    Highlands Family-Owned Funeral Home
    3331 Taylorsville Rd.
    LOUISVILLE, KY 40205
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Service

    Saturday, November 23rd, 2019 | 11:00am
    Saturday, November 23rd, 2019 11:00am
    Anchorage Presbyterian Church
    11403 Park Rd
    Anchorage, KY 40223
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Angel and martha, KEVIN AND KAREN ROGERS, and other have sent flowers to the family of Jack Lawrence Ritter, Jr.
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Angel and martha

Posted at 11:39am
Have a good time fishing and farewell to one of the most gentle and kind friends we have ever had. Jack will be missed . We love you all !
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Angel and martha purchased flowers and planted a memorial tree for the family of Jack Lawrence Ritter, Jr.. Send Flowers



Posted at 09:19am
With heartfelt condolences,
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KEVIN AND KAREN ROGERS purchased flowers for the family of Jack Lawrence Ritter, Jr.. Send Flowers


Posted at 02:25pm
I remember Jack in 1980, working in the oil industry to honor his father but pulled to literature, academia, his heart. We used to meet for breakfast at the old Liberty Grill, a holdover from the 40s across from the Old Capitol on the main north-south drag in our hometown, Jackson, Mississippi. He struggled, and I am solid certain that I blabbed the cliches from our common background and the music we loved. I expect that I pulled out Neil Young and Mr. Faulkner and Hemingway/Fitzgerald because he honestly read and understood the message better than I did. He didn’t have a chance. He had to “follow his heart” as I can hear myself saying to him seriously. So he did.

So those of us that were lucky enough to know him well as a young and extremely talented boy/man, loved him and followed him, lost Jack in our adult lives. Chicago, somewhere else, finally Louisville, Kentucky, for Pete’s sak, where he will be buried. Now that I am a 64-year-old lawyer working hard to bring my children back home with precious little to recommend this place except for the people with whom I chose to cast my lot, I wonder if I gave Jack bad advice. For most of us who stayed would have preferred him here than that he realize the Dreams of young men ... especially the young men we were. It sounded so good at the time, but the hidden cost was that we lost Jack permanently without meaning to. We always missed him, and we always will. We wish Jack and his great family peace and love and togetherness because there is no substitute for it.

Heartfelt Sympathies Store

Posted at 06:10pm
Please accept my most heartfelt sympathies for your loss... My thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult time.
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Roger & Tim

Posted at 01:31pm
With heartfelt condolences,
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Roger & Tim purchased flowers and planted a memorial tree for the family of Jack Lawrence Ritter, Jr.. Send Flowers


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