Funeral services for Jack Rafferty, 85 year old long time Buffalo resident who passed away Wednesday morning at the Wyoming Retirement Center in Basin, Wyoming will be held Tuesday, May 19th at 11:00 from the Harness Funeral Home Chapel with Pastor Don Paulson officiating. Visitation will be at the funeral home Chapel on Monday from 1:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. Interment will be in Willow Grove Cemetery with graveside services to follow the funeral. Donations in Jack’s memory may be made to the Shrine Children’s Hospital or St. Jude’s Hospital in care of the Harness Funeral Home at 351 N. Adams in Buffalo. Online condolences may be made at www.harnessfuneralhome.com Due to Pandemic issues the funeral will be limited to 25 including family members and those presenting eulogies for Jack. The funeral will be Live Streamed for all on our website.
Jack Milton Rafferty Jr. was born on September 16, 1934 in Stansbury, Wyoming to Jack M. and Ethel M. “Portwood” Rafferty. He grew up and went to school in Reliance, Wyoming where he played football, basketball and ran track. He graduated from Reliance High School with the class of 1952. After high school he attended the University of Wyoming for one year and transferred to Arkansas State Teacher’s College in Conway, Arkansas. While at Arkansas he played basketball, baseball and coached college J.V. basketball. He earned a B.S. in Education from Arkansas State Teacher’s College in 1956. He was married on August 12, 1956 in Lake Village, Arkansas to Mary Isabel McHan and they made their home in Tillar, Arkansas where they both taught school. Iz taught Home Economics and Jack coached Junior High and High School girls and boys basketball and Jack taught Social Studies. Jack was a member of the National Guard and spent active duty in a medical unit. They lived in Lake Village, Arkansas for a short time where Jack was a Curtis Candy Salesman. In August of 1959 they moved to Sunrise, Wyoming and lived and taught and Jack coached in the Sunrise, Gurnsey area until 1968. Jack took a job in Buffalo with School District # 1 where he taught and coached basketball and was assistant in both football and track. Buffalo started a golf program and Jack was the head golf coach for several years. While coaching in Buffalo Jack was the first coach to lead Buffalo to State Champion Basketball teams. He actually won back to back championships in 1972 and 1973. Jack retired in 1987 and he and Iz continued living in Buffalo until his death.
He was a member of the Wyoming Coaches Association, and was inducted into the Wyoming State Coaches Hall of Fame. He was also a member of the WEA, the Big Horn Baptist Church, Buffalo Golf Club and the Wyoming Quarter Horse Association. He was a brand inspector for a short time and enjoyed helping local ranches gather cows. He enjoyed horses, golf the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Wyoming Cowboys.
He is survived by his wife Iz of Buffalo; two sons Pat Rafferty and his wife Toni of Midland, Texas and Jeff Rafferty and his wife Melissa of Sheridan, Wyoming; one brother Jim Rafferty of Reliance, Wyoming and two granddaughters Riley and Callie Rafferty of Sheridan. He was preceded in death by his parents.