John Henry Nagel III
May 15, 1949 – November 21, 2023
Last updated 12/5/2023 at 10:29am
John Henry Nagel III, better known as Jack, died peacefully on Tuesday, November 21, at age 74.
Recent acquaintances of Jack would find him at his daily coffee post at Angeline's Bakery, taking tickets at The Belfry, or selling veggies at The Stand. But before arriving in Sisters at the tail-end of the 1970s, Jack had already lived a full and adventurous life.
Born and raised in suburban Philadelphia, Jack excelled in athletics, and helped with his father's heating oil business. Summers were spent in Ocean City, New Jersey, where as a teenager he started his first business renting beach chairs and umbrellas.
While a business student and football player at Bucknell University in the mid-1960s, Jack began his lifelong love of music. New sounds of The Rolling Stones and Jimi Hendrix helped direct him to the budding hippie counterculture, where he resonated with the ideals of freedom of expression and non-violence.
With a fresh outlook on life, Jack headed west after college. In a Kerouacian fashion, he traversed the U.S. numerous times before landing in Depoe Bay, Oregon. Seeking the wide-open space that the West promised, he and his then-wife, Shelley, lived rurally near The Dalles, and then in northeast Washington - each home far from civilization and lacking electricity and running water.
Having born two sons, the couple eventually landed in Sisters near 1980, where Jack took up work as a carpenter. Jack soon parted ways with Shelley, and later married Kathy Russell. Together, Jack and Kathy started a produce and natural foods store called Apple Jack's. The business would operate from around 1985-2000 in a building they constructed, which now houses Sisters Meat & Smokehouse.
The couple also introduced two more sons to the family.
Beyond the Apple Jack's years, Jack operated a short-lived antique store, and did odd jobs around town. Hanging doors, laying irrigation pipe, and unclogging drains were all in the wheelhouse of this genuine Jack-of-all-trades. After an amicable separation from Kathy in 2003, he was struck by the travel bug and began embarking on regular road trips and adventures abroad.
The final years of Jack's life were among his happiest. He lived a minimalistic life with his son and daughter-in-law, spending ample time with his youngest grandkids. Sipping his beloved tequila, Jack was always ready to lend a hand or an ear, and always had a story to tell.
Jack is survived by his four sons, Jason, Jered, Cooper, and Benji; sister Sacha (Forrest) Friedrich; ex-wife and friend Kathy Nagel Hood; and his five loving grandchildren.