Jeanne Elizabeth (Berry) LesterApril 10, 2017
Jeanne Elizabeth Lester, 64
Jeanne Elizabeth Berry Lester, age 64, died Monday after a long and brave battle. Jeanne was born July 11, 1952 to Helen (Howell) and Robert Berry. She grew up in Berryville with her parents, two brothers and sister. She eventually built a home there after she married Paul Lester in 1971 (to whom she was married for 45 years). She graduated from Portsmouth West High School and Ohio University and was a teacher for the Washington Nile School District for 30 years. Her students would often stop her when they saw her out and about and tell her how much they loved her and the wonderful impact she made on them. She was a lifelong member of Friendship United Methodist Church, where she was a beloved Sunday School teacher for over 40 years, Missions Coordinator, VBS coordinator and friend to all.
Jeanne would tell you that her greatest accomplishment was her two daughters, Julie Hazelbaker (Jason) and Elizabeth Wickham (Byron). Granddaughters, Ella and Clara (Hazelbaker), & Jenna and Hanna (Wickham) were the loves of her life and provided constant joy and delight. They adored and loved their “Granny.” Jeanne’s best friends were her three siblings and their spouses, Dave Berry (Sally), Carolyn Pettit (George) and John Berry (Robin). She is also survived by a loving sister-in-law, Marilyn Thompson and loving brother and sister-in-law, David and Pam Lester. A special cousin and friend, Ann Berry Spriggs, was also loved deeply by Jeanne. Additionally, her heart was filled with love for her nieces, Missie, Sarah, Lejla, Ellen, Lori, Emma, Cinamon, Chrissy and their spouses; her nephews, David and Matt (Angie); her great nephews, Mason, Jase and Zachary and her great-nieces, Grace, Callie, Lila, Zoe, Paisley and Alaina. Jeanne and her family were also blessed to have the love and support of Nikki Strickland, who cared so lovingly for Jeanne in her last months of life.
God calls us to love extravagantly. Jeanne had that down. Her love was unconditional. Never short on hugs, she made everyone feel special. She was constantly thinking of others. She never complained, but worried until her last day about the well-being of those she loved. Even in her death, she continued to help others, by donating her brain to the Harvard Brain Bank so that more can be known about Huntington’s disease and other neurological disorders. To know Jeanne was to love and be loved.
A celebration of Jeanne’s life will take place 2:00 PM Saturday April 15, 2017 at Friendship United Methodist Church with Reverend Gary L. Hopkins and Reverend Matthew Brookes officiating. Friends may call at the church on Saturday starting at 10:00am. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Friendship United Methodist Church or to the Huntington’s Disease Society of America. Arrangements are under the direction of the Roger W. Davis Funeral Home in West Portsmouth. Condolences may be sent to www.rogerwdavisfuneralhome.com.