John's Story

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John William (Jay) Gardner, a resident of Bandon, Oregon, died peacefully in his sleep at the age of eighty on January 2, 2016. Born October 21, 1935, in Taloga, Oklahoma, to Ila Roberts Gardner and Charles Edward Gardner, Jay grew up working on his father’s cattle ranch in western Oklahoma. He graduated from Oklahoma State University in 1959 with a baccalaureate degree in Political Science. Mid-way through his university program, he joined the U.S. Marines and was posted to Japan. He entered the U. S. Naval Air Cadet Program, and then completed his university degree, serving as Arts and Sciences Senator on the Student Council. He married Peggy Cox in Love County, Oklahoma, June 6, 1959, and completed Bank of America’s five-year management program in California in 1964, including 15 America Institute of Banking courses. His commercial banking career included top management positions in: Bank of America; the First National Bank, Stillwater, Oklahoma; the First National Bank, Ft. Collins, Colorado; and the Federal Intermediate Credit Bank, Wichita, Kansas. He was a former Rotary Club president and active in the Episcopal Church in Stillwater, Oklahoma. As an international banking consultant beginning in 1984 until he retired, he worked in the Gambia, Malaysia, Uganda, Zambia, Egypt, Swaziland, Jordan, the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Tanzania, and Japan. He spoke and read French at a general professional level. Jay is survived by: his wife, Peggy Cox Gardner; his daughter, Morgan Gardner; his son Wade (Nick) Gardner, all living in Bandon; his sisters, Charleen Brand, Silver Spring, Maryland; Shirley Gardner, Albuquerque, New Mexico; and, Darla Haynes, Mustang, Oklahoma; five brothers-in-law; two sisters-in-law; 21 nieces and nephews, and two goddaughters. His brother, Charles Edward Gardner, and his parents preceded Jay in death. After a Northwest Coast trip in 2007, Jay discovered Bandon, wanted to live in no other place, and retired in the lovely seaside town. Jay’s favorite poet, T.S. Eliot, holds his friends and family fast in the words that Jay loved: “We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.”
Published on  January 27, 2016
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