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Jack W. Liddle ’56

Jack W. Liddle was born in Pineville, Kentucky in 1938 to James Jackson Liddle and Katherine Miracle Liddle. Brother Liddle entered the University of Kentucky with the class of 1959 and was in the spring 1956 pledge class of the Beta Nu chapter of Kappa Sigma Fraternity. Jack was elected as Steward in his sophomore year and was later Grand Procurator. Jack and his future wife, Joan Fister of Lexington, were active in Beta Nu events throughout their college days. During their senior year, Joan was elected Kappa Sigma Sweetheart.

Upon graduation Jack was awarded a Bachelor of Science degree and an Army ROTC commission as a second lieutenant of Armor. Jack and Joan got married just before he entered Active Duty in the U. S. Army. They then set off for Fort Knox and a marital union that is in its fifty-eighth year. They have three sons and seven grandchildren.

Following the basic officer course at Fort Knox, Jack’s first assignment was with an Armored Cavalry squadron at Fort Hood, Texas. During service as a platoon leader and troop commander, Jack’s commanders recommended him for a Regular Army commission. After integrating into the Regular Army, Jack’s assignments took him to armored cavalry and tank units in the Republic of Korea, Kansas, Viet Nam, Germany, and Washington state. Along the way, he attended service schools at Fort Benning, Fort Knox and the Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth. Jack was selected from his Army contemporaries for advanced civilian schooling and ordered to The University of Alabama where he earned a Master of Business Administration degree. The next duty station was Washington, D. C. where he spent the last three of nearly twenty-one years of Active Duty as a Congressional Liaison officer on the Army General Staff. At his retirement ceremony in the Pentagon, he was awarded the Legion of Merit to go with earlier awards of the Bronze Star Medal, four Meritorious Service Medals, two Air Medals, and the Army Commendation Medal.

After retiring from the U. S. Army, Jack joined the Washington, D. C. office of San Diego-based Cubic Corporation, the first of what would become two civilian firms where his experience with the Legislative branch of government was valuable to business objectives of companies engaged in the Defense industry. Jack left Cubic to be Director of Legislative Liaison for the Washington, D. C. office of McDonnell Douglas Corporation, which at the time was the largest defense company in the United States. After a dozen years with McDonnell Douglas working successfully on major programs such as: C-17, F-15, F/A-18, Apache helicopter, Harrier jet fighter, and Tomahawk missiles. Jack was invited to return to Cubic for a newly established post in the Washington, D. C. office. Jack’s success during the ensuing sixteen years can be measured by the corporate recognition he received including being made an officer of the company and a direct report of the founder who was chairman, president and CEO.

During the many years that Jack lived in the National Capital area, both while in the Army and civilian life, he held on to his Kentucky roots mainly through the University of Kentucky Alumni D. C. club. He was elected to several offices within the club and was president for two years. Additionally, he was elected and served for seven years on the UK Alumni Association Board of Directors. He and Joan are also very proud that one of their sons and one of his daughters and his son are UK graduates and that his other daughter will soon enter the UK class of 2021. Another son is a proud member of the Delta Sigma chapter of Kappa Sigma at the University of Utah.

Since retirement to Florida, Jack has been deeply involved in community activities being elected twice to the Indian River Club Community Association Board of Directors and serving four years as a director and president. To further a continuing awareness of national and international issues, Jack has recently organized a weekly discussion group composed of other members who are interested in political and military affairs both contemporary and historical. Jack is a volunteer driver for the Indian River County Volunteer Ambulance Squad; providing free, door-to-door transportation to and from medical and dental appointments for county residents. Every Friday, Jack is on hand at the local elementary school greeting students upon their arrival for the school day.

The Beta-Nu chapter of Kappa Sigma was home to Jack for seven semesters of college at the University of Kentucky. “The friendships made with Kappa Sigma brothers during those important early years endure to this day and provided a solid foundation of trust and honesty in dealing with others successfully applied to experiences and situations in locations literally throughout the world.”