Jack F. Fortes

March 20, 1924 ~ July 2, 2017 (age 93)


Jack F. Fortes, native Floridian and World War II Navy veteran, died July 2, 2017. Fortes was born March 20, 1924, in Miami, FL. At age 16, he and his family moved to Orlando, and he graduated from Orlando High School in 1942. His parents were Fred and Florence Fortes, and he had a brother and sister, all deceased.
He joined the Navy in 1942, and service locations included Espirito Santo in the New Hebrides Islands and DeLand Naval Air Station. After his discharge he attended the University of Florida, 1946-1950, receiving a degree in journalism.
Fortes worked for the Orlando Sentinel, the Daytona Beach News-Journal and, for eight years, was the public relations supervisor for Pan Am at Cape Canaveral.
In 1953 he married Irene King of Northport, AL, who died in 2008. They lived in New Smyrna Beach and Melbourne.
In 1965, he and his family came to DeLand as he joined Stetson University as Director of the Annual Fund. He retired in 1989. He became a consultant for the West Volusia Family YMCA and directed the campaign to build the Andy Powell Gymnasium and other facilities.
Volunteer activities included 11 years as Auxiliary messenger at Florida Hospital DeLand; Deacon and committees service at First Baptist Church of DeLand, Board member of YMCA, Board member and President of West Volusia Historical Society, Board member of DeLand Naval Station Museum, reading program at Freedom Elementary School, volunteer at area nursing homes and retirement homes presenting recorded big band music, and member of Glenn Miller Birthplace Society and Big Band Buddies in England.
Fortes was an active Christian, with membership at First Baptist Church of DeLand, and, since 2012, at First United Methodist Church. In addition to volunteer work, including the mentor program for a DeLand High School student, he had a life-long interest in big band music. He is the author of "The Band Leader", a novel of the big band era, and traveled on a number of big band cruises.
Having served as a parachute rigger in the Navy during World War II, he did tandem jumps at Skydive DeLand on his 70th birthday in March, 1994 and on his 90th birthday, in March 2014.
He is survived by daughter, Kee Fortes Strong, Durham, NC, and son Scott Fortes (Christy), Jasper, GA, granddaughter Madison, grandson Rhett and great-granddaughter, Peyton.
Funeral services will be held on Friday, July 7th at 11am at First United Methodist Church of DeLand. Burial will follow at Oakdale Cemetery in DeLand. Online condolences may be made at Allen-Summerhill DeLand is in charge.

Cemetery Details

Oakdale Cemetery
800 N. Clara Ave.
De Land, FL 32720


JUL 7. 11:00 AM (ET)

First United Methodist of DeLand

115 East Howry Avenue

DeLand, FL 32724

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