Derbyshire legend Jack Reynolds dies surrounded by family aged 108

Derbyshire legend Jack Reynolds has died at the age of 108.

By Michael Broomhead
Sunday, 26th April 2020, 12:30 pm
Updated Sunday, 26th April 2020, 4:28 pm

Jack, who was one of the UK’s oldest men, had been ill since a fall in December and passed away surrounded by family on Saturday.

He was adored by millions of people not just here in the UK but right across the globe.

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Jack celebrated his 108th birthday earlier this month.

Jack, of Hollingwood, went viral and captured hearts when he completed the charity ice bucket challenge dressed in nothing but a pair of Union Jack boxer shorts aged 102.

That’s when he was bitten by the fundraising bug.

He went on to raise many thousands of pounds for several different charities with various challenges – and notched up four Guinness World Records.

Aged 104, he became the planet’s oldest person to get a tattoo – this was, of course, his nickname ‘Jacko’ – and a year later he was declared the oldest person to ride a rollercoaster when he enjoyed a day out at Flamingo Land.

At the age of 106 he achieved the title of the world’s oldest person to ride a zip wire – a 60-metre-high, 400-metre-long challenge at Go Ape which was broadcast live on breakfast TV – and he became the oldest person to be a supporting artist in a TV show at 107 when he appeared on the Channel 4 soap Hollyoaks.

Jack was still fundraising right up to the end.

For his 108th birthday – which he celebrated on April 6 – Jack raised more than £1,600 on an online JustGiving page for Derbyshire charity Helen’s Trust, which had been helping to care for him at his home in recent weeks.

Jack was born on April 6, 1912, just days before the Titanic sank when it hit an iceberg in the Atlantic Ocean.

At the age of 14, he left school to become a butcher’s boy and from there went on to work as a foreman platelayer at the steelworks in Staveley. He worked there for 40 years before retiring in 1975.

He was also in the Territorial Army.

Jack married his wife Kathleen in 1939 and they had four children together.

He leaves behind his children, eight grandchildren, 20 great-grandchildren and three great-great grandchildren.

Speaking to the Derbyshire Times earlier this month, Jack’s daughter Jayne Goodwin described her father as her ‘hero’.

She said: “My dad is one of the bravest, selfless and inspirational men ever.

“He takes everything in his stride and fights each hurdle without complaining.

“He has been my hero for as long as I can ever remember.”

Derbyshire Times’ editor Nancy Fielder said: “Our condolences go to Jack’s loved ones at this sad time.

“Jack was a legend and he will never be forgotten.”

Giving the secret to a long and happy life, Jack once famously said: “Work hard, always smile, get plenty of fresh air and last but not least have a tot of Grouse whisky in your tea in the morning and a tot before bed.”