Yes I said family members- plural! Starting with my Great Grandpa Jack, my Grandpa Jack, and my Uncle Jack. If you are from Gig Harbor, you might know my grandpa as Jake Bujacich but his real name is Jack, His friends began calling him Jake a long time ago- and it stuck (a little gig harbor trivia for you!) My uncle Jack was my grandparent's only son, and he had two beautiful girls- so no Jack's in that generation... And unfortunately no more Bujacichs.
I don't know a ton about my Great Grandpa Jack, he died before I was born. I do know that he sailed from Croatia around the horn to America when he was only 13... He never saw his parents again! So we know he was brave!!! He originally landed in San Francisco, and migrated over to Colorado where he worked in the coal mines. In 1917, Jack moved to Gig Harbor where he met and married Winnie Ross, whom I've been told was a complete angel. They had 5 children together. Jack was a carpenter and fisherman. He built his own boat; The Majestic and his home. He passed away in 1970, at the age of 76.
Now my Grandpa Jack (Jake): Born and raised in Gig Harbor, Washington. The 8th grade was as far as my grandpa made it in school and yet still, he is one of the wisest men I know. He was elected City Counsilman, Mayor of Gig Harbor and then went on to become the County Commissioner. What I love most about my all of my grandfather's impressive job titles was how he was elected. I think he was a shoe-in for mayor--everyone respected and loved Jake. He was told he was crazy to run for County Commissioner--that there was no way he could win, and not to waste his time. His opponent tried to convince Jake not to even try--that he himself had 2/3 of the votes. Jake believed he could make a difference in the community and bring justice and integrity to the county, which he did but it wasn't easy getting elected. He figured people just needed to meet him, so he decided to go door to door with family and friends, introducing himself. Starting in Renton and ending in Dupont, he knocked on all the doors and double backed on the important houses. He spent his days knocking on doors from February to September and working as a longshoreman at night to make money to put food on the table. He beat his opponent 2:1.
Jake's Determination, Work Ethic, and Integrity are what go him his jobs but his loyalty, generosity and caring nature is what wins everyone's hearts. He has always been my biggest cheerleader, alongside his beautiful bride Pat. They never missed a volleyball game, soccer game or track meet of their four grand-kids. I tease my grandparents because their house has a revolving door--EVERYONE drops by to visit them! They probably have at least 5 visitors a day. It doesn't hurt that my Jake is a fabulous cook, and Pat a fabulous baker! Grandpa learned to cook on the fishing boats, and loved it. He gets so much joy from cooking and has always cooked for our family--he is the MASTER! And if you cant find him in the kitchen, he is probably in his garden.
|Gpa Jake with his firstborn Kimi, my mom.|
My Uncle Jack also married extremely well. My Auntie Cindy is the sweetest lady you could ever meet. My uncle is his father's son... He was lucky enough to follow in his father's footsteps in so many ways. My uncle Jack studied for YEARS to become a Pilot. He is a Puget Sound pilot, one of the 54 elite mariners who guide vessels around the Sound because of their knowledge of local waters and skill in maneuvering big ships. It is a stressful job that requires continuous education. Jack worked tremendously hard studying for this job not to mention the years as a captain of Crowley tug boats. But my Uncle Jack has something that studying and education doesn't get you... Confidence and great instincts. Having been raised in a fishing family and worked his whole life in the Puget Sound, he is who you want on your boat.
My Uncle Jack is also a kid at heart, he loves buying toys for his cabin on Carney Lake. He loves to laugh and have fun--always the life of the party. He has been successful and with that is so generous. He doesn't just like to share his lake place--he genuinely loves it when people enjoy and use his house with him. Much like his father, Jack is a fabulous cook.
Thanks for reading