Thursday, October 3, 2013

In memory of John Greene

A friend just sent us this beautiful eulogy of John Greene, who passed away Tuesday night. 

By Jim Buster

As you know, we all lost a true friend on Wednesday morning, in John Greene. Some of us have known him for many years and others not quite as long.  I think we would all agree, however, that not only was John a brilliant, talented and successful professional, he was much, much more as a man.

Professionally John was an incredibly great legislator.  If you are legally "packing heat" it was because John was a true pioneer in the concealed carry movement. Arizona was among the first states to adopt a concealed carry law and it was due primarily to John's leadership.

As senate president from 1993-1997 John proved to be a successful leader. It wasn't because he was a media hog and a bloviator . . . he was a capable public speaker, but that was not his forte.  He was successful because he was a true team player and someone who wanted his fellow caucus members to get the accolades.  John was the embodiment of the Reagan maxim, "Much can be accomplished provided nobody cares who gets the credit."

So John led his caucus to be successful in tax and regulatory reform in the 90's as Arizona consistently led the way in economic growth. These things don't happen by accident.  John was also a champion in tort reform and presided over the biggest revolution in public education the country had ever seen up to that time.  There is a reason Arizona leads the nation in charter schools per capita.  With John's leadership he and other caucus members as well as House members showed the nation what could be done with educational choice.

I could go on, but space will not permit.  You may not have heard about this, because the press doesn't typically heap praise on Republicans, but then again, you didn't hear it from John either.  You didn't hear it from John because he was the most humble, self-effacing, team playing public servant I ever met.  He was kind, generous and had a servant's heart.

John was a very successful tax attorney, but those who knew him also knew that he didn't really love practicing law. What he loved was public service and not only did he serve as president of the senate, but he served as the director of the Arizona Department of Insurance and most recently as the director of the Arizona Department of Revenue.  He also served as the director of Arizona Board of Equalization and as deputy treasurer for Maricopa County.

In the last few years I watched John grow spiritually. He carried the same zeal he had for everything else in wanting to understand the Bible and the claims of Jesus Christ.  John never did anything halfway and in his spare time studied extensively while getting a theology degree over the internet!

John was always a busy guy, but he loved his wife and doted and bragged on his kids.  Those who knew John will miss him greatly.  He was a rock and a loyal friend. We can take great comfort in knowing that for the believer when we are absent from the body we are present 
with The Lord.  (II Cor. 5:8)

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