Former retailer, John “Jack” Byrne Code Rose, passed away at his home in San Francisco on Friday at the age of 83.
Born John Byrne Code in San Francisco in 1931, he adopted his stepfather’s name, Rose, when he was a teenager. He started his retail career in 1951 as a stock boy at Roos Brothers in San Francisco and had worked himself up to department manager before joining the U.S. Army in 1952. After completing his military service in 1954, he returned to Roos where he was named a buyer, then store manager and merchandise manager.
In 1961, he joined competitor, Grodins, as vice president and general manager. But a decade later, he rejoined Roos, which had been renamed Roos-Atkins after a merger with Robert Atkins, as president. Three years after that, Rose went back to Grodins as a partner and president.
This back-and-forth career jumping prompted the local San Francisco columnist Herb Caen to pen a column titled “The Big Jaywalk.”
Rose, who was known as a dapper dresser, retired as president of Grodins in 1986 and he and his wife Nancy traveled extensively, particularly to the British Isles where they bought prints and engravings that they had framed and mounted in London and brought back to San Francisco to sell.
He was a connoisseur of Bordeaux wines, chamber music lover and an avid tennis player.
Rose is survived by Nancy, his wife of 34 years; as well as daughters Lisa Bowers and Suzanne Asbury; stepdaughters Casey McGrath Giarman and Molly McGrath, and five grandchildren.
A private service is planned for next week in Tallahasee, Fla., and there will be a memorial concert in Reno, Nev., in the fall.
In lieu of flowers, the family asked for contributions to the Jack Rose Fund, Nevada Chamber Music Festival c/o Reno Chamber Orchestra, 925 Riverside Drive, Set 5, Reno, Nev., 89503.