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Obituary: Harrod

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Jean Harrod

Jean Harrod: 1938 – 2024

Loa “Jean” Harrod, 86, passed away peacefully on Monday, May 13, 2024, at The Legacy Living & Rehabilitation Center in Gillette, Wyoming.

Visitation with the family will be on Friday, May 17 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at Gillette Memorial Chapel, 210 W. 5th Street in Gillette.

Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, May 18 at First Baptist Church, 501 S. Gillette Avenue with Pastor Donavon Voigt officiating. Graveside services will be held following the service at Mt. Pisgah Cemetery.

The youngest of six children, Jean was born on February 3, 1938, in Blue Springs, Nebraska, to Arthur and Katherine (Wiese) Wells. Her father worked for the Chicago, Burlington, and Quincy Railroad, with the family living in several Nebraska and Wyoming cities before eventually locating in Gillette during her early teen years. She married her high school sweetheart, Ralph Harrod, on August 1, 1953. Five children were born to this happy union of 62 years: Donald, David, Jeanette, William and Sharon.

As a young mother and homemaker she lovingly raised her children sewing clothing and costumes, cooking and baking tasty food, teaching and guiding in “correct” behavior, faithfully attending church services and activities, and unselfishly accepting the title of “golf widow” without much, if any, complaint. Her children and grandchildren especially enjoyed her sticky popcorn and peanut butter marshmallow fluff grilled sandwiches.

She also worked diligently in many jobs outside the home to support her growing family. She cleaned cabins, ironed laundry, distributed newspapers, kept books for local dentist, Dr. Jim Swenson, managed computer systems (and was an Officer) at Stockmen’s Bank, and administered billing and reimbursements at Pioneer Manor.

Jean was a faithful member of First Baptist Church in Gillette, and loved serving the lord for many years until her health declined in recent years and limited her activities. She enjoyed singing in the choir, attending women’s circle, serving as a deaconess and treasurer, and helping in any social or service-related activities. Jean was a wonderful example of a woman described in Proverbs 31: “She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children rise up and call her blessed.”

After retirement, she turned her full-time attention to doting on her grandchildren, attending quilting club, planting and nurturing beautiful flower and vegetable gardens with her husband, and taking on more volunteer activities. She especially enjoyed her time assisting at the hospital gift shop. She followed her grandchildren to numerous school and athletic events, college graduations, as well as regional and national gymnastics and dance competitions. Her closest companion in her final years was her sweet dog, Buster.

Jean is survived by her children: David Harrod (Margarita) of Limerick, Pennsylvania (grandsons Andrew Harrod and Alec Harrod of Limerick, Pennsylvania); granddaughter, Allison (Justin) Jasti of Gambrills, Maryland (great-grandchildren: Oliver, Claire and Celia); daughter, Jeanette Harrod Dunn of Phoenix, Arizona (grandson Steven Dunn (Danielle) of Phoenix, Arizona); son, Bill Harrod (Bobbi) of Gillette (granddaughter Jennifer Harrod of Denver, Colorado); grandson, Ryan Harrod (Parina) of Sylmar, California; grandson, Christopher Fogleman (Ana) of Denver Colorado; and grandson, Brandon Jurczewsky (Cheyenne and Hattie) of Granbury, Texas); daughter Sharon Harrod of Gillette (granddaughter, Jessica Mustin of Austin, Teas); and sister, Bettye Austin Griffiths of Glendale, Arizona.

Jean was preceded in death by her husband, Ralph Harrod; infant son, Donald Lynn; parents, Arthur and Katherine Wells; brothers: Doyle, Billy and Joe Wells; sisters, Juanita Cates and Marjery McAulay; and grandson, Stephen Fogleman.

In lieu of flowers, the family kindly requests memorial gifts be made in memory of Jean Harrod to First Baptist Church of Gillette, benefiting a planned prayer garden or the Shoebox Ministry.