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Jack Odell Jr. '62 October 21, 2019 9:27 AM updated: October 21, 2019 9:30 AM

Ted Dickey West Funeral Home obituary
7990 President George Bush
Dallas, TX

Jack Denton Odell Jr.
MARCH 7, 1940 – OCTOBER 15, 2019

Captain (USNR-R) Jack Denton Odell, Jr. passed away in Plano, TX on October 15, 2019. He was born in Waco, TX on March 7, 1940 to Lucy Downer Odell and Jack D. Odell, Sr. He was a 1958 graduate of Waco High School and was a member of the Corps of Cadets (F-2 outfit) and Texas A&M’s 1962 class, the final class to graduate from Agricultural & Mechanical College of Texas prior to its becoming Texas A&M University. Upon graduation, he was admitted to the U. S. Navy’s Aviation Officer Candidate School in Pensacola, FL where he was commissioned as an Ensign. After he received his wings at Naval Air Station (NAS) Corpus Christi, TX, he was assigned to VP-48 at NAS North Island, CA for aviation training in the P-5 before the patrol squadron moved to Moffett Field, CA when they switched aircraft to the Lockheed P-3 Orion, an anti-submarine and maritime surveillance aircraft. While on active duty, he received the Air Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, and National Defense Service Medal. In the late 60s, Jack made the difficult decision to transition from activity duty to reserve status, drilling monthly at NAS Dallas, TX. Jack continued to serve his country for an additional 20 years in this capacity and achieved the positions of Executive Officer and Commanding Officer of VR-59 (The Lone Star Express) before retiring as a Navy Captain in 1990.

When his full-time Navy career came to an end, Jack’s life-long passion for flying aircraft never wavered. He was able to transition the skills he honed in the Navy to become a commercial airline pilot. While he enjoyed deploying to Naval bases around the world, it was time to establish roots back in Texas for his growing family. For the next 30+ years, Jack flew all over the world escorting passengers to their destinations via Braniff International, Muse Air, and Continental Airlines (now United). After retiring as a captain at Continental Airlines in 2000, he continued to fly for several years for the US Marshals Service. When Jack wasn’t soaring with the eagles, he was a dedicated husband, a coach and father to his two boys, a lifelong fisherman, neighborhood cribbage champion, a dog’s best friend, and a true Aggie. Outside of his family and dogs, his most beloved possession was his 1976 fire engine red F-250 Ford Ranger SuperCab. He spent his golden years donating his time to anyone he could help. He especially enjoyed serving his neighbors as a Neighborhood Block Captain, an annual host for Richardson’s National Night Out, and as a member of Richardson’s Crime Watch Patrol, patrolling the streets of Canyon Creek with his dog at his side.

Jack is survived by his wife, Sharon McCarthy Odell, his sons, Jack (Jay) D. Odell, III and his wife, Kristen, and Michael Christopher Odell, and grandsons, Jason James (JJ) Odell and Dylan Travis Odell. In addition, he is survived by his sister, Janet Odell Zsohar, brother, James R. Odell, and many cousins, nieces, and nephews. A service to celebrate Jack’s life will be held on Friday, October 25, at 2:30pm in the sanctuary of First United Methodist Church Richardson; a reception will be held following the service at the church’s Shawver Welcome Center. Graveside services will be held at 1:00pm on Saturday, October 26, at Oakwood Cemetery in Waco, TX. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project ( or Patriot Paws (


Memorial Service
2:30 pm

503 North Central Expressway
Richardson, Texas

Reception at Church following Service

1:00 pm

2124 S. 5th Street
Waco, Texas

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