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Charles “Jack” Shontz

Wednesday, October 9, 2019 @ 06:10 AM

Posted by Aly Delp

ThumbnailCharles “Jack” Shontz, formerly of Clarion, passed away peacefully at home in Apollo on the evening of October 7, 2019. He was 93 years of age.

Born in Coraopolis on January 2, 1926, he was the son of the late Charles E. and Anna K. Shontz. Jack graduated from Coraopolis High School in 1944 and then served in the US Army Air Corp from March 1944 through April 1946. Under the G.I. Bill, he attended Duquesne University for one year and then graduated from Indiana State Teachers College in 1949.

He was employed as a sciences teacher at Washington Twp. High School near Apollo from 1949 through 1957. During the summers of 1950-53, he pursued graduate studies at the Pymatuming Laboratory of Field Biology of the University of Pittsburgh.

Jack married the former Gladys S. Snively in June, 1952. She preceded him in death in June, 2007.

He was awarded a scholarship to study ecology at the University of Minnesota’s Summer Field Station on Lake Itasca in 1954. During school year 1955-56, was a Fulbright Scholar studying and teaching in the Union of Burma (now Myanmar). Slides and films taken during this time are housed in the Smithsonian Human Studies Film Archive.

He was appointed Assistant Professor of Biology at Clarion State Teachers College in 1957, being named department chair in 1958. He accepted a Fellowship from the National Science Foundation during 1961-62 and completed studies and research in zoology at the University of Pittsburgh for which he received the Ph.D. in 1962.

During his tenure at Clarion State, he was named an editorial consultant in the field of biology for UNESCO, was an advisor to American Express for their educational travel programs, and served a term as President of the PA branch of the American Overseas Educators Association.

In 1964, he moved to the academic administrative staff at Clarion State and remained there in various capacities until his retirement from Clarion University in 1983 as Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of Summer Sessions.

Jack moved to Delmont in 2007 to be near several nieces and nephews and his dear friend and significant other, Rebecca Hill, who survives. In subsequent years, they have traveled extensively throughout the United States and Canada.

Memorial donations may be made to either the Clarion Free Library, 644 Main Street, Clarion PA 16214, ( or to a charity of the donor’s choosing.

Arrangements are under the care of the Goble Funeral Home and Crematory in Clarion. As per Jack’s expressed wishes, there will be no viewing. A memorial celebration of his life will be held at a later date to be determined.

Friends and family may send online condolences, order memorials and obtain additional information by visiting

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