OBITUARY

Harold Leon Hodges

July 19, 1932August 12, 2017
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Harold L. (Jack) Hodges

Jack Hodges lived large and loved large. He had a huge heart, loved the art of the game and loved a challenge.

He was generous with his family and happy to share his good fortune whether donating to philanthropic causes such as Myriad Botanical Gardens or OCU, political campaigns (purchasing the carpet for the Oval Office when Ronald Reagan was elected President), buying children toys at Sears on Christmas Eve, loaning his jet to friends in need or providing Thanksgiving dinner to the underserved. He taught his children by example to do the same – each child was responsible for buying Christmas for a family including new clothes, toys, Christmas dinner as well as a Christmas tree and all the trimmings. Beginning in 1983 his house was well-known for its Christmas decorations much to the delight of all who drove by.

There was nothing Jack couldn’t do and he loved a challenge, whether it was pitching pennies, playing cards, flipping coins, making food, playing golf or hauling a load. He made many BBQ meals on his cooker and he loved cooking for lots of people. In its heyday he loved gambling in Las Vegas, trips to Grand Lake and trips to Acapulco which continued throughout his life.

He often played in the Bob Hope Golf Tournament winning twice. He said he could beat the hell out of a ball but he wasn’t a good putter. When asked for his autograph, he said you don’t want my autograph I am just a truckdriver. He and Judy entertained Bob Hope in their home on several occasions as well as Telly Savalas, Bob Barker, Cary Grant and Charley Pride.

Jack, 85, died unexpectedly Saturday at home after working last week with his three grandsons at the trucking company they founded six years ago. He was born on July 19, 1932 and by the time he was 10 Jack had his first job selling peanuts at the Oklahoma City Zoo. By the time he was 14 he was working with Mrs. Eckroat at Eckroat Feed & Seed raising chickens.

Hodges Trucking Company was founded in 1932 in Oklahoma City by Bill W. Hodges who sold it to his sons Clarence, J.D. and Jack in 1964 on the condition Jack serve as president. After starting with four trucks, by 1964 it had grown to a fleet of 19 trucks including mobile cranes. By 1971 Jack was the sole owner of the oilfield and heavy haul transportation company which carried oilfield equipment and oversized machinery through its fleet of trucks, forklifts, trailers, and multi-axle lowboys. The company also provided lifting services for heavy equipment, such as bridges, compressors, drilling rig equipment, generators, storage tanks, transformers, vessels, wrecked trains, and computer products through its fleet of cranes. It served various industries and companies in the United States.

There were many occasions when the company was called on to put an airplane back on the runway in an ice storm, pull a truck out of the water after falling off a bridge or take apart missile silos for the government in Salina, Kansas.

During his tenure the company initiated an employee retirement plan and profit-sharing plan; added 20,000 square feet of maintenance and shop facilities and the ability to totally reconstruct a vehicle; acquired J.D. Hodges Trucking Company doubling the size of the company with assets worth $10 million and built 30 special trucks for Parker Drilling Company to send to Algeria. Between 1978 and 1985 Core Oil & Gas Corporation was incorporated and had a rig fleet of 13 and total revenue for the trucking company and drilling company of $131 million. Chesapeake purchased the business in 2006.

Survived by Mary Ann Burnham and his loyal dog Maggie; his children Jimmy and Sheri Hodges, Janna Jernigan and Chris Harwell, Joani Chambers and Stephen Olson, Joe and Kim Hodges; his grandchildren Justin (Jill), Jenny (Josh), Jake (Kristen) and Jodi Hodges; Jimmy (Candice), Jon (Brittany), Juliet (Dave) and Jessica Jernigan; Jill, Jack and Jared Chambers, Erin Zabloudil (Kevin), Alex and Michael Hodges. His great-grandchildren Prestyn, Keaton, Deacon, Emily, Parker, Avery, Everett, Hattie, Jasper, Judson, Wellesley Kate, Brooks, Pate and Hank; his brother J.D. and Miriam Hodges; his sister Joyce Weeks; and LaLa, his faithful caregiver.

He was preceded in death by Judy, his wife of 53 years; his parents W.W. and Euel Hodges; his brothers Lloyd Hodges and Clarence Hodges.

A Celebration of Life will be at 1 p.m. Wednesday at Crossings Community Church, 14600 N Portland, Oklahoma City; and there will be a viewing from 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, August 15th, at Hahn-Cook/Street & Draper.

Services

  • Formal Visitation

    Tuesday, August 15, 2017

  • Memorial Service

    Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Memories

Harold Leon Hodges

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Jack Janszen

October 3, 2017

Jack gave me my first real job after I graduated from the University of Texas in 1973. I met him when I audited his records for a regulatory agency. He was always fair and kind to me, and helped me with my career. I kept in touch with him from time to time until about 5 years ago...I looked him up on a whim/feeling today. I am so sad that he's passed...he was always a larger than life figure and someone I always looked up to. Please accept my heartfelt condolences. So long, Jack, see you on the other side...

Cindy -Rusch-Bookstore

August 19, 2017

Iam very sorry for the loss of your father Jack. He was a good man to my father Bud Rusch.

Brenda Hoefar

August 18, 2017

I worked in the office at the rock quarry Mr. Hodges owned in Weatherford for many years. When the quarry closed he told me he would find a job for me at his office in OKC if I wanted to move. I will never forget that kind gesture. Just shows what a super and kind man he was to everyone he was acquainted with, large and small. My prayers to the family.

Diane Devine

August 16, 2017

I am so sorry for your loss Joanie and family...sending prayers.

Steve Leverich

August 16, 2017

So sorry for your loss. Thoughts and prayers for the family.

Richard Calderon

August 16, 2017

Jack was an extraordinary man. There are many in the community, myself included, who will deeply mourn his passing as his was a life of service, excellence, compassion, loyalty and unmeasurable love for his family and friends.

Jack Hodges was a giant on everything he did...A man of his word. He had a voice of thunder, strong hands and a soft heart.

Men rise and fall like the winter wheat but Jack Hodges will never die. He will for ever live thru the great legacy he is leaving behind.

May he rest in peace.

Corby Fraley Verdoorn

August 16, 2017

Please know your family is in my heart and prayers. I think of all the fun we had together as families in the Wildwood and Quail Creek days as my dad, Dr. Tom Fraley and your sweet dad, Jack, were best of friends! My dad loved Jack and held him in great respect. Jack was always so welcoming with a huge heart. I can still hear his booming voice inviting us into dinner!! God bless each of you today and always!!

August 16, 2017

May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.

Marci Odor-Willis

August 15, 2017

May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.

bill brace

August 15, 2017

hi bill brace here jack and I grew up together from bath grade school and Webster jr high. we were the best friends in third grade on thru jr high I lef.t to join the navy at and early age but we staed in touch over the years. I would see him every time I came back to okc and we had lunch together at the cattelmans café. I loved jack like a brother from the very beginning. and I will have always faund memores of our life together and will miss him forever.may god bless you for having such great farther and mentor. I truly loved jack. mucho love too his famly always. bill brace

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