BLOOMINGTON — When the Secord-Jones Wealth Management Group needed to make a connection in the community, there was no debate as to who would best handle the job.
They turned to Jason Jones, a partner in the group with Jack Secord, Brad Secord and Stacey Hoffman.
“He was our outside guy,” Jack Secord said. “He loved people and people loved him. He made friends and the friends became clients.”
A Lincoln native and former Illinois Wesleyan basketball and baseball player, Jones was among seven people who died early Tuesday in a plane crash east of Bloomington.
Jones was a point guard on highly successful basketball teams at Lincoln High School, graduating in 1987, and at IWU, where he was a senior co-captain on a 1991 conference championship team.
Jack Secord first encountered him as a player at IWU, calling Jones “a feisty scrapper” who “made things happen.”
“He brought a positive attitude and disposition to business,” Secord said. “This has been one of the very worst days of my life. It leaves a permanent hole in my heart. My heart breaks for his family.”
Jones joined Secord’s group in 2006 and was a senior vice president investment officer. He maintained his love of sports and frequently played basketball at IWU.
“He was here three or four days a week playing noon ball. He played yesterday (Monday),” said Titans’ athletic director Dennie Bridges, who coached Jones in basketball. “Jason wasn’t a starter here, but he was a great team player. He had really remained loyal to Illinois Wesleyan.”
In baseball, Jones had a career batting average of .360 and played center field at IWU. Jeff Nelson played baseball and basketball with him while growing up in Lincoln.
“He was absolutely the best,” Nelson said. “We would tease each other and joke with each other in class all the time. We roomed together at an ISU basketball camp one year. You talk about belly laughter and giggling. He was just a great, great person.”
Jones is survived by his wife, Lyndsey, and their children Jack, 9, and Kate, 7.