John Kirk “J.K.” Jackson, 83, died peacefully at home in Tallahassee on June 25, 2023, after a brief illness. He was born on July 11, 1939, in Kansas City, Missouri, to Kirk V. Jackson and Helen Waller Jackson. He grew up in Camden, Missouri, where he was a 4-H Club member and, as a Boy Scout, earned the rank of Eagle Scout. He was a graduate of William Jewell College and received a Master’s degree in Physics from the University of Missouri.
J.K. worked for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in Alaska, Peru, and at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, during the 1960s. He subsequently came to Tallahassee to study for a doctorate in Physics at Florida State University.
For more than 40 years, J.K. owned and operated English Automotive Specialists in Tallahassee, specializing in Triumphs and Jaguars.
He was widely known in the British Car community and the sports car racing community, especially in the Southeast. It was recently said by a friend, fellow racer, and classic car magazine publisher that J.K. was one of the top Triumph marque experts in the world. Over the years he raced a Jaguar XK120 and an XKE, and since the 1970s a Triumph TR6 in Triumph car club events and Sports Car Club of America hillclimbs, auto crosses and track events, and a TR3 in vintage racing events. He set multiple class records at hillclimbs and tracks in the Southeast and was a charter member of the Solo I Hall of Fame. He was a true friend to many in these communities and was always there to help another racer fix a broken car, or to suggest what would help a car or driver run a bit faster or better.
Aside from cars and racing, J.K. loved reading and travel. He will be remembered for his wit, his mischievous smile, his kindness, his generosity, his modesty about his own accomplishments and his pride in his wife’s.
He is survived by his wife of 44 years, Christiana Moore of Tallahassee; his son, Kirk Jackson (wife Jenny), and granddaughter Giselle of Pembroke Pines; brothers-in-law Sean Moore of Ft. Lauderdale and Lewis Moore (wife Lina Manning) of Vancouver, Washington; sister-in-law Joy Moore of Tallahassee; niece Jessica Moore Harrison and husband Joey of Boca Raton; and nephews André Moore of Ft. Lauderdale and Trevor Moore of Portland, Oregon.
He was preceded in death by his brother-in-law Brian S. Moore of Tallahassee.
In accordance with his wishes, no services will be held. A gathering for family and friends will be scheduled at a later date.
Memorial donations may be made in his honor to Big Bend Hospice or a charity of your choice. Lifesong (lifesongfunerals.com) is assisting the family with arrangements.