Wanda Elaine Jones, 78, of Cedar Rapids, formerly of Canton, Mo., passed away surrounded by family on Friday, Aug. 19, 2016. She will be laid to rest next to the love of her life, Billy Jones, at Forest Grove Cemetery, Canton, at 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 27. Davis Funeral Home in Canton will provide a graveside service.
Wanda Elaine Jones was born Nov. 7, 1937, to Mary and Philip Stein, in Canton, Mo.
She is survived by her six children, Lorelei Maach (Larry Maach, deceased), Jeff Merrell (Debbie), John Merrell (Carrie), Tara Miller (Wade Weable), J Reese Jones, Jodi Jones Valenta (Chip) and Renee Erregragui, who was like a daughter to her. In addition, Wanda will be greatly missed by her 15 grandkids and many, many great-grandchildren.
Wanda had a zest for life, a fiery spirit and a quick wit. What people will remember most about her are the stories she told of her life experience, the people she'd met along the way and of those she loved and lost. She mastered the art of storytelling.
In her 78 lively years, Wanda had wide and varied careers ranging from painting the eye on the camel for nativity scenes in a factory to making history as the first female foreman at FMC in the 1970s. Whatever she did she poured herself into it and you would always be assured that the work would be done efficiently and to perfection.
She retired many times but never quit working. She found a great passion in working for Cedar Rapids schools as a lunch lady and later a para-teacher. Her paychecks didn't make it home as she invested it mostly in lunches for children whose lunch accounts were empty. Her spirit was always to give and to help.
In her own words, she leaves us with this advice that guided and defined her life, "If you ever ask yourself 'WHY ME? you already have the answer, because you are strong enough to handle it."
Posted on Tuesday, 23 August 2016