Jack Holmes “Doc” Voris, 80, of Indianapolis, passed away June 13, 2023.
He is survived by his daughter Jennyfer Marie Voris, son Jeffrey Russell (Victoria) Voris; grandchildren Malorie Ellen, Jack Theodore “J.T.”, and William Russell “Liam” Voris; his sister Linda (David) Straw; niece Cindy (Michael) Miner, nephew Brian Straw; and great-nieces Mackenzie, Natalie, and Marissa Miner. He is predeceased by his loving wife Judith Ellen Henry Voris, and parents Fremont Neal Voris and Ruth Marie Holmes Voris.
Jack was born and raised in Lebanon, Indiana, spending many of his formative summers with his grandparents in Linton, Indiana. A Class of 1961 graduate of Lebanon High School, he went on to graduate from Butler University with a B.S. in Physical Education in 1966, and then earned an M.S. in Education with endorsements in Botany and Zoology. Jack was an Athletic Trainer for over 5 years in the 1970’s for the Indianapolis Caps (Semiprofessional football team), traveling the world with the team. In his early teaching career, Jack was a teacher at New Market High School for two years, and then at Fulton Junior High School for two years, before his calling as the Advanced Biology and Zoology teacher at Ben Davis High School for 32 years. Doc also worked several years as a Coach for football, basketball, baseball and track, and as the Athletic Trainer, and continued to work with the Ben Davis Athletic Department after his retirement as the Events Manager through the 2023 school year, putting in 55 years of service with MSD Wayne Township.
His thousands of students and co-workers remember him fondly in his Coaching Staff t-shirt, with legendary classroom antics, including fake fingers in shark stomachs and eyeballs stuck to ceilings to name a few, he kept students on their toes. Doc helped students find dates to dances using a fishing pole in the cafeteria, and always heard about what trouble students caused over the weekend come Monday morning, all while perfecting candy sales in the hallways to raise thousands of dollars for school activities. There are plenty of pictures of student pranks, filling the Voris Family’s front yard with mattresses, “For Sale” signs, toilet paper in the trees, and so much more, which was always an entertaining sight for their neighbors. Many an after-school evening was spent in the Voris living room, with students working on bug and leaf collections. Doc inspired countless students to pursue careers as Veterinarians, Doctors, Nurses, Teachers, Research Scientists, careers in the Natural Resources fields, and anything else Biology related, as he truly gave students an appreciation for the subject and the ability to learn.
Jack was a loyal family man, and particularly proud of his children who followed in his footsteps of science-related careers, and fiercely protective of his grandchildren whom he loved very much; all of which drove him crazy, but he loved every minute of the chaos.
He will be remembered as a straight shooter, who wasn’t afraid to share his opinion. All who knew him will forever have a much better grasp on the Latin names for every species of plant, animal or insect, or chemical make-up of any number of compounds, since this was his every-day, life-long, conversational vocabulary.
Jack was a member of the Sigma Nu Fraternity, and Senior State Chair of the Conservation Committee from 1996-2005 for the Indiana State Society, Children of the American Revolution. Doc was invited to countless Senior Choice and Top 30 banquets, and National Honor Society Induction Ceremonies for graduating seniors who select their most influential teachers to join them for the honors.
Calling hours will be Monday, June 19, 2023, at Flanner & Buchanan in Speedway from 4:00pm-8:00pm, with funeral on Tuesday, June 20, 2023, 10:00am at St. Francis of the Fields Episcopal Church in Zionsville. Graveside service will be for his family at his final resting place by his wife Judy, in Crown Hill Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Ben Davis Athletics in honor of Jack “Doc” Voris and mailed to Ben Davis High School, c/o Athletic Department, 1200 N. Girls School Rd., Indianapolis, IN 46214.
His children would like to point out that they get the last word – their father, Jack, was the most stubborn member of the family.