Jeanne Marie Kain Kelly, 86, of Lincoln, Nebraska, former Lexington resident, died Wednesday, October 5, 2016, at Independence House Memory Care on Coddington in Lincoln.
Jeanne was born December 25, 1929 at the Lexington City Hospital to Lloyd and Dorothy (Rosenberg) Kain. She was a 1948 graduate of Lexington High School. She attended the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, where she was initiated into Rho Chapter of Kappa Alpha Theta Sorority and served as house manager.
She married James C. Kelly on June 22, 1951 at the home of her grandmother, Mildred Crane Rosenberg. Reverend Lawrence Davis of the Methodist Church officiating. Attendants were the late William L. Kelly, brother of Jim, and his wife, the late Mary Kelly, who had been married a few years earlier on June 22.
Jim and Jeanne were members of the First Presbyterian Church, as was Jim’s mother, Clethal B. Kelly.
Jeanne was on the board of the Dawson County Historical Society and was secretary to the museum’s executive board for several years. She was a Cub Scout Den mother for many years. Jeanne was the past secretary of the Lexington Community Foundation Board. Later, she was a member of the Advisory Board of the Foundation.
She was initiated into Chapter AN, P.E.O. She later became a charter member of Chapter GR, P.E.O. She served in all the offices and was chapter president for two terms. Jeanne served on the board of the Lexington Library for nine years. She was a member and two-term president of the Lexington Investor’s Club. She was a lifetime member of the American Legion Auxiliary, Lanning Post 111. She volunteered several years for Mid-Nebraska Community Services in Lexington. Jim and Jeanne were Guardians of Job’s Daughters.
Jeanne moved from Lexington to Lincoln to be closer to her sons in 2010 and lived at Legacy Estates. In early 2015 she moved to Independence House on Coddington, where she lived until her death.
Jeanne enjoyed reading, writing, and editing. She was an avid reader of newspapers. Her father, Lloyd Kain, was publisher of the Lexington Clipper and when Jeanne was in high school he assigned her to make phone calls around town for social news. She soon developed a list of regulars who were excited to take her calls each week. They volunteered names of friends they had visited for dinner, of guests they had hosted in their homes, and told her of family news and recent trips out of town.
Jeanne read several newspapers and always had a pen handy to make edits and corrections. When family members picked up a newspaper, it was easy to tell if she had read it yet by whether or not she had worked the crossword puzzle or had written notes and corrections on news articles.
She was a regular letter-writer, staying in touch with friends and family through the mail. She often clipped and included newspaper and magazine articles she thought would be of interest to the letter recipient.
Jeanne loved to host friends for coffee, or go to their houses. She enjoyed people of all ages. As she and her circle of friends in Lexington grew older and many stopped driving, she picked them up.
She kept scrapbooks for her sons. She compiled a family history of notes, journals, and photos. Jeanne enjoyed visits from grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. During the last year and a half of her life, she grew close to the staff and residents at Independence House.
Jeanne is survived by her three sons: Tom and Michelle of Elkhorn; Jim of Lincoln; and Joe and Susie of Lincoln. Her 7 Grandchildren are: Ben (Robin), Andrew (Gina), John (Jill), Alex, Mike (Lindsay), Shannon, and Tom. Nine Great-grandchildren are: Ben, Isaac, Parker, Sienna, Rylan, Brooklyn, and Jack; Evan and Austin.
Preceding Jeanne in death were her parents and husband, Jim.
Celebration of Life Memorial Service will be held Monday, October 10, 2016, at 3:00 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church in Lexington with Reverend Polly Deppen-Williams officiating.
There will be no visitation. Interment will be held prior to the memorial service at 1:00 p.m. at Greenwood Cemetery in Lexington.
Memorials are suggested to the Lexington Community Foundation or First Presbyterian Church.
Reynolds-Love Funeral Home in Lexington is honored to be assisting the family with arrangements. Please share online condolences with the family by visiting: reynoldslovefuneralhome.com.