Longtime BL Classics Department Chair John Bowling H'10, who in 2017 passed away after serving 50 years at BL, wrote this passionate letter below to the Baltimore Evening Sun shortly after Mr. Williams' passing:
Recently your paper noted the death of Jack Williams, headmaster of The Boys' Latin School. It has been my privilege to have worked with Mr. Williams and I have thought it unfortunate that so few others in education could not have been touched by this unique individual. Jack was the embodiment of humane values, a person who loved people as he found them, whose compassion for human weakness never faltered. His grasp of what was essential in life, his flexibility in meeting very trying situations, his warmth and penetrating humor, his informal and considerate manner, his strength of character and intellect, forged a family from an institution and a home out of buildings.
His philosophy that Boys' Latin was there to serve students and not the other way around prevented the kinds of chauvinistic appeals that make an idol of an institution at the expense of the individual. Each person was respected for what he was, and not merely for an athletic or academic prominence he happened to possess. He enjoyed the foibles of those around him and prized the individuality that flowers in any educational institution.
So it was, that within hours of his death, as the news was passed from student to student, the moving and spontaneous reaction of hurt and grief spoke fittingly of the loss of a good friend.
Chairman, Classics Department
Boys' Latin School