Deceased professor remembered for dedication - Purdue Exponent: Features

Deceased professor remembered for dedication

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Posted: Thursday, September 6, 2012 10:00 pm


Assistant Features Editor

When he was a professor at Purdue, Jack Marchand could often be seen on campus putting in extra hours over the weekend.

Marchand died Saturday, at the age of 79. He graduated from Purdue with a degree in aeronautical engineering and then joined the Air Force. While serving in the Air Force, Marchand decided he wanted to teach, so he came back to his alma mater to be a professor in the department of aviation technology until his retirement in 2003.

Colleagues described him as being a man whose love of teaching was apparent through his dedication to work.

David Stanley, an assistant professor in the College of Technology, said Marchand always put his students first.

“He taught because he wanted to teach,” Stanley said. “That’s how I would think of him and that’s how I’ll remember him.”

Tom Eismin, also a professor in the College of Technology, worked closely with Marchand before Marchand retired. Eismin said his colleague’s work ethic was admirable.

“His passion for teaching would bring him to the airport, which is where his labs were, over the weekend,” Eismin said. “I’d often ask, ‘Why were you here on Saturday or Sunday?’ and he would say, ‘Well, this is my job. This is what I’m supposed to do. I’m supposed to teach.’”

Eismin remembered Marchand reading a lot, always studying up on the subjects he taught.

“He knew the aircraft circuitry, the electronic circuitry to a point where he understood it like the back of his hand,” he said, “He could relay that in a lab situation to students quite well.”

Outside of the work setting, Eismin knew Marchand to be a kind and peaceful man who enjoyed spending time in his country home with family.

Marchand is survived by his wife, Juanita; a sister, three children and seven grandchildren.

The passion he had for his work has prompted Marchand’s family to start setting up a scholarship fund for aviation technology students. Eismin said this reflects Marchand’s purpose perfectly.

“He strongly believed that education was the road to success,” Eismin said. “I know that if his family is pursuing a scholarship of some sort toward education, this is what Jack would want.”

A celebration of life will be held at 4 p.m. Sept. 12 at Rest Haven Cemetery Chapel in Lafayette and online condolences can be made at

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