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Jack Hill, a San Bernardino community leader, dies at 92

By in Press Enterprise on November 25, 2017

By Brian Whitehead

Jack Hill, the first African American president of the San Bernardino Area Chamber of Commerce, died Thursday morning of complications from a heart attack, a son, Jimmy Hill, confirmed Friday.

He was 92.

Jack Hill, a longtime San Bernardino community leader, was a war veteran and a successful caterer. A learning center at the San Bernardino public library for those wishing to burnish basic life skills is named in his honor.

“All I can say for me and my siblings is that we were very fortunate to have him as a father,” Jimmy Hill said in a phone interview Friday. “He taught us character, values, and helped us to go in a direction in life that would be most beneficial to us.”

Tributes to Jack Hill were shared on social media.

“I’m terribly saddened to hear this news,” wrote Travis Walker, a former deputy police chief in San Bernardino who recently was promoted to chief in Cathedral City. “Jack Hill was one of the kindest men I’ve known, and I have always admired his commitment and selfless service to the community he called home. #RIPJack”

Judi Penman, Chamber of Commerce president, called Jack Hill “the kindest, most gentle, wonderful man I ever met. He was a leader, and a great leader.”

“He was the type of person that people listened to and learned from,” Penman said. “He was not a prejudiced man. He brought people together.”

Jimmy Hill said services for his father will likely be held the first week of December.

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