HORNELL - John R. “Jack” Spellecy, 60, of 9
McDougall Ave.., died unexpectedly early Friday morning (March 3, 2006)
at his home.
Born May 29, 1945, in Hornell, he was the son of the late Francis W. and
M. Elizabeth (McKernan) Spellecy.
Jack was a graduate of St. Ann's School and attended Divine Heart
Seminary in Donaldson, Ind. during 9th and 10th grade. He returned to
Hornell and graduated from Hornell High School (class of 1964). In 1968,
he graduated from Boston College, earning his bachelor of science degree
in business administration. In high school, he played football,
basketball, baseball and ran track. At Boston College, he played
football and baseball.
In 1969 he joined the Peace Corps and was stationed in the Fiji Islands
for three years, the Solomon Islands for two years and returned to the
Fiji Islands 1974. While residing in the Fiji Islands, Jack was the
loans officer for the Fiji Development Bank, helping to establish small
businesses. He also developed and coached the Fiji national basketball
team and served as director and primary fund-raiser', raising money to
finance the team's participation in the South Pacific Games in Tahiti.
In one such fund-raising' event, Jack walked 156 miles across Fiji.
While residing in Fiji, jack met Talaite Lomani “Mani” Vakaotia, whom he
married March 22, 1975. In 1976 they moved to Hawaii and later Chicago,
returning to Hornell in the late 1970's. For a time, Jack served as a
substitute teacher at the Hornell High School. He purchased the
Pappalardo Accounting Office in 1979, changing the name to John R.
Spellecy Accounting and Tax Service, which he owned and operated since
Jack was a member of Our Lady of the Valley Parish and a communicant of
St. Ann's Church, where he was an active participant of the Perpetual
Adoration. He was a third-degree member of the Hornell Knights of
Columbus, enjoyed talking long walks, playing golf, dancing, was a
patron of the arts, and was an avid fan of HHS sports, especially track
and field. Jack was a truly devoted, encouraging and loving husband and
father, with a great sense of humor. His true joy in life was spending
as much time as possible with his loving family.
He was preceded in death by his sister, Peggy Walsh, who died in 2002.
Surviving are his wife, Lomani “Mani” Spellecy; a daughter, Yvonne
(Steve) Crowley of Calera, Ala.; three sons, Owen (Nicole) Spellecy, of
Middletown, Del., Francis Spellecy, a student at SUNY-Delhi and Andrew
Spellecy, a student at the University of Buffalo; three grandchildren,
Mia Crowley, Kirra Crowley and Orion Spellecy; two brothers, William
(Rosalie) Spellecy, of Troy and Mack (Colleen) Spellecy, of Waterloo; a
sister, Betty Fletcher, of Hawaii; a brother-in-law, Mike Walsh, of
Minneapolis, Minn.; five sisters-in-law, Tui (Joe) Nakeke, Mariana
Manuel, Tema Vakaotia, and Kesaia Vakoatia, all of Fiji and Eleanoa (Navtej)
Singh, of Winnipeg, Ontario, Canada; as well as many nieces, nephews and
The family of John R. “Jack” Spellecy will receive friends from 2-4 p.m.
and 7-9 p.m. Monday, March 6, at the Dagon Funeral Home, 38 Church St.,
Hornell. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m.
Tuesday, March 7, at St. Ann's Church, with burial in St. Mary's
Jack's family requests in lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in his
name be made to the Jack Spellecy Scholarship Fund, c/o the Hornell
Alumni Association, P.O. Box 135, Hornell, NY 14843. Memorial forms will
be available at the Dagon Funeral Home.