Former State Legislator and Carrollton Mayor
In 1955, Jack Blanton graduated from Southern
Methodist University with a bachelor's degree in history and government - 17
years after he started.
His understanding of the importance of higher
education led him as a state representative to propose a bill in 1969 that
established the University of Texas in Dallas.
"That was his greatest love," said his wife, Marian
Blanton, of Carrollton. "He just felt a need for it."
Mr. Blanton, 81, died Saturday at Medical City Dallas
Hospital after battling several illnesses.
Burial will be at 2:30 p.m. Monday at
Cemetery in Carrollton. A memorial service will follow at 3:30 p.m. at Holy
Covenant United Methodist Church, 1901 E. Peters Colony Road, Carrollton.
A world war, a stint in journalism and two years as
mayor of Carrollton kept Mr. Blanton from finishing college on time. But he
"When you dig down into your jeans and pay for it
yourself, it's surprising how much more you get out of it," Mr. Blanton told The
Dallas Morning News in 1955.
He was born Jan. 29, 1921, in Shawnee, Kan.; his
family moved to Carrollton in 1931. He graduated from Carrollton High School in
1938 before starting at SMU.
World War II took Mr. Blanton from school and into
the workforce. He built airstrips for the war effort. He married his childhood
sweetheart, Marian Good, in 1942.
A lifelong Democrat, Mr. Blanton's political career
began as Carrollton's mayor for two terms from 1946-48. He ran unsuccessfully in
1964 for Dallas County commissioner. Two years later, he was elected to the
Texas Legislature for Place 13 for Dallas County, where he served three terms.
In 1972 and 1973, he lost races for the Legislature.
He worked for many years in the family business, the
Blanton Grain Co., as well as on the family farm. He worked for Lone Star Gas
while he finished college. He served as editor for the Carrollton Chronicle, a
weekly newspaper and later for the Carrollton Star. He helped found the First
National Bank in Carrollton, where he served as chairman of the board.
The couple lived for a time in Blanco, Texas, before
moving back to Carrollton in 1992.
Mr. Blanton was an active member of Holy Covenant
United Methodist Church, and the Carrollton and James A. Smith Masonic lodges.
He was a Boy Scout leader, member of the Red Cross and president of the
Carrollton/Farmers Branch Rotary club.
Besides his wife, Mr. Blanton is survived by his
daughters Joan Wood of Houston and Mary Watts of Carrollton; sister Betty Sumner
of Carrollton; brother Bill Blanton of Carrollton; and six grandchildren.
Memorials may be made to Scottish Rite Hospital for
Children, P.O. Box 199300, Dallas, TX 75219-9842; or Holy Covenant United
Methodist Church, 1901 E. Peters Colony Road, Carrollton, TX 75007.
The Dallas Morning News, - October 14, 2002
Author: HOLLY WARREN, Staff Writer
Submitted by Edward Lynn Williams