Clara Jane Parsons, 92, passed away June 6, 2019. Clara Jane was born in Beaver Township, Noble County, Ohio on May 23,1927 to the late Clyde and Ada (Knox) Anderson.
She was preceded in death by her husband James Homer Parsons in 2005, with whom she celebrated 57 years of marriage, daughter Julia Ann Dye 2007, and brothers Harold (Martha) Graham 1983, Clyde “Junior” (June) Anderson 1970, George “Dick” (Vera) Anderson 2008, John “Gene” (Barbara) Anderson 1992, Edgar “Ed“ (Miriam) Anderson 2014, and Joe Anderson 1991.
She is survived by her sisters Sally (Herb) Schreffler of Malvern, OH and Virginia “Jenny” Snyder of Massillon, OH; children James “Jim” (Sharon) Parsons of Berthoud, CO and Betty Parsons of Canton, OH; grandchildren Tina (Mike) Nelson of House Springs, MO; Tim (Barb) Dye of St. Clair, MO; great grandchildren Cody Dye, Garrett Dye, Harrison Dye, Colton Dye, Eric (Kayla) Nelson, Leah Nelson and many nieces and nephews.
Clara Jane lived most of her young life in or near Quaker City, Ohio. Her parents were tenant farmers going farm to farm to get them back into working condition which was hard work for a family with 8 children. In her mid-teens, Clara Jane left home to live with the English family and help on their farm while going to high school. Her friend Vera (who later married Clara Jane’s brother Dick) introduced Clara Jane to her cousin Jim who lived in Canton, Ohio the summer of 1946. They were quick sweethearts with Jim visiting on his Indian motorcycle and sending many letters back and forth. On one of his early visits he brought a large box of chocolates which were tucked in his saddle bag. When he arrived to see Clara Jane, the chocolates had melted into one large chocolate from the heat. They enjoyed them together anyway.
Following Jim’s adventurous personality, they decided to elope, marrying March 10, 1947 in Hiawassee, Georgia. They settled in Canton, Ohio away from farming where Clara Jane took up a new role in life as housewife to which a daughter, Julia Ann quickly entered the family. Betty Jane soon followed. With the adventure streak coming out again and looking for a better life, they packed up the car when the girls were small planning to move to Florida. They had heard the winter weather was warm and jobs were plentiful. Their arrival in the Sunshine State coincided with a hurricane. They rode the storm out in a hotel and as soon as it was clear, headed straight back to Canton.
When the girls were in school, Clara Jane got a job at Timken Roller Bearing Factory. Soon after however, they were expecting another addition to the family, so she chose to stay home once again taking care of the kids and their newest baby - Jimmie.
Once the kids were out of the home, she and Jim filled their time with visiting family and participating in their favorite clubs. They were active in the local CB club where her CB handle was “Queen Bee” (Jim was The Hornet Man), she was a member of the Daughters of Rebekah (Jim was a member of the Odd Fellows) and the Daughters of America. They were members of Central Baptist Church.
Jim’s favorite thing to do was drive and they traveled out west many times - newlywed trips, family vacations, and retirement rambles. Clara Jane happily rode along in the front seat and even tracking down a hubcap when a tire would blow out. Her favorite place to go was Colorado and Rocky Mountain National Park.
After Jim passed in 2005, Clara Jane moved to Kirkwood, Missouri to be near family. She joined Kirkwood Baptist Church actively participating in the community. In the fall she volunteered at Hands on Kirkwood and Wednesdays were spent in the nursery at the Third Baptist Church in downtown St. Louis caring for infants of refugee families while their mothers learned English and studied to become US citizens. She enjoyed their graduation celebrations and pot luck luncheons - experiencing food from different cultures was the topic of conversation for the next few weeks. She was known to bring a cherry delight or pumpkin pie.
Clara Jane lived the last ten years of her life at the Kirkwood House making many friends. Her favorite activities were Bingo, Bunco, and Rummikub, she also was a participant in monthly birthday clubs and made sandwiches for the children in the community and treats to sell for fundraisers on voting days. She was a huge St. Louis Cardinal’s fan, never missing a game on TV or the radio. She knew all the players, their positions, had lots of advice for the coaches, and had a jacket just like Tony La Russa.
Clara Jane will be remembered by many for her sweet personality and kindness to others. In lieu of flowers, the family asks for donations to FamilyForward, 3309 S. Kingshighway Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63139, familyforwardmo.org/get-involved/donate/ or Kirkwood Baptist Church 211 N Woodlawn Ave, Kirkwood, MO 63122.
Visitation from 6:00pm - 8:00pm on Thursday, June 13,at BOPP CHAPEL, 10610 Manchester Rd., Kirkwood. Funeral 11:00am on Friday, June 14, at Kirkwood Baptist Church, 211 N. Woodlawn, Kirkwood.
A graveside service will be held on Saturday, June 29, 2019 at 11 AM at Somerton Southern Cemetery in Somerton, Ohio. Local arrangements are entrusted to Campbell-Plumly-Milburn Funeral Home, 319 North Chestnut Street, Barnesville, Ohio.
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