Jack Townshend, geophysicist and dedicated public servant, died on 13 August 2012 in Fairbanks, Alaska. He was 85. Jack's career with the federal government, most of it with the national magnetic observatory program, spanned more than six solar cycles of time, and he retired only days before his death. The duration of Jack's career encompassed an important period in the history of the advancement of our understanding of the Earth. Jack's career of contributions, his life, and his personality are worthy of retrospective celebration.