Democrat John 'Jack' Flynt Jr.; Served 12 Terms in U.S. House

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

John "Jack" Flynt Jr., 92, a Georgia Democrat who served 12 terms in the U.S. House and in the 1970s twice beat political newcomer Newt Gingrich, died June 24 at his home in Griffin, Ga. He had cancer.

Rep. Flynt was also a cavalry officer, prosecutor and bank founder.

In Congress, he served as chairman of the House Ethics Committee. He defeated Gingrich in 1974 and 1976 before he retired and Gingrich took his seat. Gingrich went on to become speaker of the House.

John James Flynt Jr. was born in 1914 and grew up in Spalding County, Ga. He graduated from the Georgia Military Academy and the University of Georgia, and he received a law degree from George Washington University in 1940.

He joined the Army Reserve and, during World War II, served as aide-de-camp to Brig. Gen. Robert W. Grow in France. He was awarded the Bronze Star in 1944. He later retired as a colonel from the Reserve.

After the war, he was appointed assistant U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Georgia. He served in the Georgia House of Representatives from 1947 to 1949. He served as solicitor general of the Griffin Judicial Circuit in Georgia until 1954.

He was first elected to the U.S. House in 1954. He served on the Appropriations Committee and was a ranking member of the Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce.

After retiring from Congress in 1979, he practiced law in Griffin and became organizer and director of the Bank of Spalding County. The bank later merged with Premier Bank, now BB&T.

He was a longtime member of the National Rifle Association and made the keynote address at the group's annual meeting in 1958.

Survivors include his wife of 65 years, Patricia Irby Bradley Flynt of Griffin; three children, Susan Flynt Stirn of Arlington County, John J. Flynt III of Augusta, Ga., and Crisp B. Flynt of Griffin; four grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

-- From News Services and Staff Reports

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