Jean E. (Taylor) Rodgers, 74, Westfield, passed away Friday, May 2, 2014, at Columbia St. Mary’s Hospital in Mequon, Wisconsin. She was born Aug. 11, 1939 in Russiaville. She was the daughter of the late Paul Emil Taylor and Elizabeth Irene (Kanable) Taylor. Jean married her first-grade sweetheart, William “Bill” Rodgers, late in life after meeting at an all-grade, school reunion in 2001; he preceded her in death April, 29, 2007.
Jean was a graduate of Wendell L. Willkie High School, Elwood, in 1957. She attended Ball State University on a state scholarship and graduated on the dean’s list in 1961. Jean furthered her education at Kent State University, where she was awarded a scholarship to earn her master’s of library science at Kent State University and graduated from there in 1970. Jean was present on May 4, 1970, the day of the tragic shootings at Kent State.
Jean worked for 17 years at Western High School, Russiaville, before retiring in 2005. Jean also worked for 12 years at MSAD 24 in Van Buren, Maine, three years at the Frankfurt (Germany) International School, and at the universities of Kent, Indiana and Ohio State. She began her career in education at Alexandria-Monroe High School, Alexandria, in 1961.
Jean was a member of Writers Center of Indiana, Westfield in Bloom, Kent State University Alumni Association, Ball State Alumni Association, MENSA Life Member, American Library Association, AIME (Indiana Media Educators), UUI, and other social groups.
Highlights of Jean’s life include walking on the Great Wall of China, seeing Halley’s Comet in 1986, and voting for JFK in 1960. She loved to garden and to travel. She enjoyed writing articles on her experiences. Jean was interested in politics and news. She was kind, generous, optimistic and loved all people.
Jean is survived by her son, Richard Paul Miller; nephew, John D. P. Connors; cousin, Susan Duncan; and several relatives in the Kokomo and Russiaville area.
Jean was preceded in death by her parents, husband and sister, Janice Connors.
Funeral service will be at 1 p.m. today at Dunnichay Funeral Home, Elwood, with the Rev. Roger Garner officiating. Burial will follow in the Elwood Cemetery. Visitation will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. today at the funeral home.
Online condolences can be given to Jean’s family at www.dunnichayfuneralhome.com.