Troy loses a local masterpiece

Published 5:24 pm Wednesday, November 2, 2022

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No one lives forever. But Mack Gibson should have.

Mack Gibson had a merry heart and everywhere he went, he did good, like a medicine.

Mack Gibson

Gibson was at the center of so many things and his heart was in every one of them, said Brenda Campbell, director of the Johnson Center for the Arts.

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“Mack was the busiest bee in the bunch,” she said. “The last thing he said to me was, ‘If you need anything, just ask.’ But Mack didn’t wait to be asked. When he saw a need, he saw that it was met.”

Mack Gibson’s death on Wednesday, November 2, 2022, was felt in so many places and in so many ways. He was involved with his church, with the arts, with the community, the business sector and in untold places of need.

Two decades ago, when the idea of a local arts center was being considered, Gibson recognized the value of, and the need for, an arts center and he put his name on the dotted line.

Actually, Mack Gibson was the only name on the USDA note to purchase the old Troy Post Officer that is now the Johnson Center for the Arts.

Bill Hopper, past chair of the Troy Arts Council, laughingly said, other than his God and his family, the JCA was next to Gibson’s heart.

“I have known Mack since my college days, when I worked for him at Kirk, Gibson and Grant Accountants,” Hopper said. “Not only did I learn a lot about accounting from Mack, I gained valuable knowledge about people skills. Mack was approachable and personable and just fun to be around.”

In later years, Hopper said he and Gibson became close friends as members of First Baptist Church.

“Mack was a friend and a mentor,” Hopper said. “We both had a great appreciation for the arts and Mack was a great contributor to the arts. He had a deep love for Mary and their children and grandchildren and he devoted his time and talents to them… his treasures.

“This is a sad time for those who loved Mack, but we can be happy to know he is with God,” Hopper said. “He is missed and loved and will continue to be.”

Ross Jinright, a partner at Gibson & Carden, worked with Gibson for 28 years.

“So, I have known Mack for a long time, as a mentor and a friend,” Jinright said. “My wife, Taylor’s family and Mack and Mary were friends so I got to know him out of the office. Mack enjoyed people and he enjoyed life. He volunteered all over the place. He was always glad to help others in any way he could.”
Jinright said after Gibson retired, he didn’t have as many opportunities to enjoy his company.

“But, I’m going to miss him,” Jinright said. “He was a positive influence in life and I will be always be appreciative of that and the 28 years he was a part of my life.”

Shelia Jackson, City of Troy Tourism director, said “Mr. Mack” was a lover of life.

“He was a lover of everything,” Jackson said. “He loved the Lord.  He loved his family. He loved people, his community, his country. He loved art and music. He loved to laugh; he loved food; he loved Christmas and Easter.  Mister Mack was a lover of everything that was good. And, we all loved him. We will miss him…so very much.”