With great sadness, we say goodbye to Jan, beloved wife of Joe Jenkins of Waxahachie, Texas.
After 81 years of living, loving, giving, laughing and enjoying every aspect of life as a Daughter, a Sister, a Wife, a Mother, a Grandmother, a Great-Grandmother, an Aunt, a Good Friend, and an active member of her community, Jan Jenkins went to be with the Lord on January 18, 2018.
Janet Gay Garske entered this world with a smile on October 25, 1936. She was the firstborn daughter of John and Norma Garske of Wausau, Wisconsin. Jan was the proud and caring big sister to her younger sisters who survive her: Gloria Jean Bouris of Pleasanton, CA and Sandra Leigh Henriksen of Portland, OR.
After graduating from Wausau West High School in 1954, Jan attended Marquette University, School of Dental Hygiene in Milwaukee, WI graduating in 1956.
In 1957 Jan married Gordon A. Long, moved to Palatine, IL and together they raised three wonderful children who survive her along with six very special grandchildren and one great-grandchild: Craig Long (1960) of Franklin, TN and children Cal and Courtney; Brent Long (1963) (Sheryl) of Scottsdale, AZ and children Anna and Maegan Robinson(Brian) and their daughter Malia; Amy Jan Long of Reno, NV and children Ava and Leo.
Jan’s greatest joy was her children, and she spent many happy years enjoying each of them, their friends, their activities, and their community.
On August 26, 1995, Jan became the loving wife of Joe M. Jenkins and moved to Waxahachie, TX, Joe’s beloved hometown. Jan quickly came to love Waxahachie and was an active member of the community. She and Joe have cherished being members of the First United Methodist Church and Jan served as an officer, volunteer, and member of many local organizations including Mother’s Club, Garden Club, Century Club, Friday Book Club, Shakespeare Club, Heirloom Club, City Federation, and Builders Class at First United Methodist Church.
One of the highlights of her time in Waxahachie was the year 2000, when she proudly served as First Lady of Waxahachie, TX alongside her husband Joe, the Mayor.
Beginning in 2000 Jan wrote her monthly column for the Waxahachie Daily Light entitled “Warm Fuzzies.” Jan saw this column as a love letter to her community and enjoyed sharing stories of family and friends, life experiences, reflections on the past, and hope of the present with her readers. “Warm Fuzzies” was just that, stories that gave the reader the “warm fuzzy” feeling of home and love.
Jan pursued her dream of earning a college degree, and at age 71, graduated in 2008 with honors from the University of North Texas with a Bachelors Degree in Applied Arts and Science. This was an academic journey she truly loved and was so proud to have accomplished.
Jan is survived by her husband of 22 years Joe Jenkins and his loving family which became her family: Dian Barns-Jenkins (Peter) of Australia and children Kieran (Katrina) and Caitlin; Merrimac Jenkins of Austin, TX; Timothy (Karen) of Atlanta, GA and children Phoebe and Mitchell; and daughter-in-law Liz O’Connor (Gerry) of St. Charles, IL and children Meghan Jenkins (Levi Morales) and Iain O’Connor.
Jan is also survived by many nieces and nephews, and grand nieces and nephews who loved her and enjoyed their time with her. Jan always made time to visit family and welcome family visits to her home. Jan also had many loving friends that she cherished and cherished her, all enjoying many hours spent together.
Jan Jenkins touched many lives with her gentle spirit, giving nature, and positive outlook on life. She leaves behind a space in all of our lives that cannot be filled, but the memory of Jan and the light she shined on us all will continue to make each of us better and more joyous people.
Services to celebrate Jan’s life and love will be Saturday, January 27, 2018, at 2 PM at The First United Methodist Church, 505 W. Marvin, Waxahachie, TX. A Visitation for family and friends will be held at Wayne Boze Funeral Home from 6 pm to 8 pm on Friday, January 26, 2018.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to the First United Methodist Church in Waxahachie, TX.
Funeral Arrangements are under the direction of Wayne Boze Funeral Home.