Welcome to the memorial page for

Max Leo Jackson

April 19, 1929 ~ July 31, 2017 (age 88)

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Max Leo Jackson was a man of action.  Whether an entrepreneur, philanthropist, or expressing himself in music, he put passion into everything he did.  He was a positive thinker and never short on ideas and energy.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Mr. Jackson was born April 19, 1929 on a farm in Keystone, Indiana and raised in nearby Muncie, Indiana.  In 1944, he joined the Navy Air Transport Service as a radio man.  After the war, he attended Ball State University on the G.I. bill graduating with a degree in English.  While at Ball State, he earned 5 athletic letters excelling in swimming and diving.                                  His first job after college was as Director of Special Education for the Plymouth schools in Plymouth, Indiana.  He then started Education Consultants Associates; helping kids with learning disabilities get an education.  He soon found a calling in oil starting with an Indiana firm called Wake Up Gasoline.  After two years, he attended the 6 month course at the Phillips Petroleum marketing school in Oklahoma.  In 1970, he moved to Charlotte to run the Independent Oil Marketers Association.  He also started a 10 million gallon oil tank terminal in Charlotte’s Paw Creek community as well as truck stops and convenience stores.  His companies included Bonanza Tank Lines, National Terminal Corp., and Jaxon Petroleum.  Max eventually ventured into real estate buying and selling apartment and condo complexes and investing in developments under the name of MaxJac Corp.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Looking back, Max considered swimming and writing music as his two true gifts.  He wrote two rhapsodies and 70 pop, swing, country, and classical songs, collaborating with Sammy Cahn and others.  His “Rhapsody of Love” and “Rhapsody of Time” were performed by the Charlotte Symphony and Winston-Salem Symphony.  Max was also quite a collector of original art, including works by the famed fresco artist Ben Long.  He donated much of his art to Queens College which graciously named their art gallery the Max L. Jackson Art Gallery.  His other activities included serving with the American Cancer Society and playing in national squash tournaments while living in Indianapolis.  He was active with WTVI public television and Johnson C. Smith University and a long time member of Myers Park Country Club while living in Charlotte.                                                                                                                           Max is survived by two children – Julie Baxter Jackson of Aix en Provence, France and Kurt John Penney and his wife Nancy of Lexington, SC., two grandchildren - Adam Penney and his wife Theresa of Columbia, SC, and Luke Penney and his wife Carson of Greenwood, SC, three great grandchildren – Calvin David Penney and Alice Claire Penney (Adam’s children) and Anne Baxter Penney (Luke’s daughter), Max’s brother Thomas Jackson and his wife Nancy of Charlotte, NC.  Max is predeceased by his first wife and mother of his 3 children Jill Baxter Penney and his son David William Penney.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    A memorial service will be held in Belk Chapel at Queens University at 3:00 pm on Monday August 7, 2017.  The family will receive friends in the Rotunda after the service.  Please take time to enjoy the Max Jackson Gallery which will be open after the service. Please park in the Harris Welcome Center lot on Radcliffe Avenue.                                                                       A gift in Mr. Jackson’s honor can be made to Max Jackson Art Gallery at Queens University of Charlotte, 1900 Selwyn Avenue, Charlotte, NC 28274.
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