PASSAGES: H. DAIL RANKIN, 1944-2017, INSURANCE AGENT AND LINCOLN HIGH REUNION ORGANIZER

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East County News Service

July 25, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) -- H. Dail Rankin succumbed to a heart attack on June 14, 2017 after a lengthy battle with non-Hodgkins lymphoma and complications caused by chemotherapy.  Born January 24,1944, he attended local schools and became known to many in East County through the years as an Allstate Insurance agent, a Standard Brands Paints manager, and the organizer of multi-class reunions for Lincoln High School.

Throughout high school, Dail always worked hard and played hard and loved to dance. After graduating from Lincoln High in 1961, Dail attended Grossmont College but landed a job he loved with Standard Brand Paints. Dail’s 1st successful career of 12 years with Standard Brands Paint eventually earned him trust and respect as New Store Opening Manager. Few California stores opened those years that Dail did not build, organize, stock and prepare for the grand opening.

Later recruited by Allstate, Dail spent 24 years as an El Cajon/La Mesa agent, originally working from the Sears El Cajon store, then his own La Mesa office.

Yet organizing Lincoln High multi-class Reunions gave Dail a real sense of purpose. Lincoln graduates will fondly remember Dail for the renewal of friendships and memories his efforts created. Dail had many friends and will be missed.

Five Rankin children were born in Point Loma/San Diego’s Frontier Housing to Dail’s parents, Hope Jackson (of Cheyenne, Wyoming and Dickens, Nebraska) and Eugene C. Rankin (New Orleans, Louisiana.)  E.C. “Gene” Rankin, Dail’s dad, arrived in San Diego in 1938 to serve on USS Enterprise CV6 while Hope was attending college. Gene hailed from a family deeply entrenched in Louisiana politics; his grandfather James Diamond Rankin, Sr. was Clerk of New Orleans Courts for thirty years and his two uncles were Louisiana State Director of Taxes and Louisiana State Director of Labor.  “Gene” learned to fly planes at age 16 which was his ticket out of New Orleans and his life’s work.

Hope Jackson, Dail’s mom, migrated to San Diego with parents Ernest and Myrtle Jackson and seven sons in 1936 to open an electric refrigerator sales/service business. Electric refrigerators were the microwaves of the 1930s making ice boxes, ice men, and ice trucks virtually extinct. Myrtle Jackson attended Teachers College and was the town teacher in Dickens and Cheyenne, Wyoming several years until coming to San Diego.

With seven sons and a daughter, the Jackson clan grew to approximately 80 members. Myrtle and Ernest settled eventually in Harbinson Canyon. Jackson family members spread out all over East County, all the way to Tierrasanta.  If you met a Jackson from East County, they likely could be related to Myrtle and Ernest. Stan Jackson was Captain of El Cajon Fire Department, Ted Jackson was a Detective for the El Cajon Police Department, Dale Jackson a USN Commander, Duane Jackson a house mover, Ernest Jackson, Jr. President of Independent Building Contractors Association and Robert Jackson worked for Cal Fire. 

Daniel, Dail’s only son, pre-deceased him in 2004.  Dail is survived by his brother Jim, sisters JoAnne & Susan, uncles Ted Jackson and Robert Jackson, as well as 80 Rankins and Jacksons throughout East County, Reno, Nevada; Arizona; Pueblo, Colorado and Montana.

A celebration of life will be held at a date to be announced.