Jean Mehaffey, born August 1, 1942, in Atlantic, Iowa, also known as “the Sawyer” or “Bones” passed away Wednesday, August 21, 2019, at the age of 77, in Homosassa, FL. Jean’s early years were spent in Advance, Missouri, and Bellevue and Omaha, Nebraska, before returning to Atlantic, Iowa. She attended school through 8th grade in one of the last one room country schoolhouses in Iowa, before going on to Atlantic High School.
While growing up on the farm west of Atlantic, Iowa, she played softball with the Marne Girls Softball team. She took her love of softball everywhere from nursing training, to Omaha where her team participated in the 1964 Nationals, to the hospital team in America Samoa that qualified for the South Pacific Games. She would continue to play softball until age 35 when she started coaching the sport.
Jean graduated from Jennie Edmundson Hospital School of Nursing in Council Bluffs, Iowa, in 1963. In 1966, she completed her nurse anesthesia course, earning her CRNA certificate. She continued her career as a CRNA in several states as well as in Pongo Pongo, American Samoa, and the Lake Hospital in Yellowstone Park. At age 65 she retired from anesthesiology and worked part time as an RN before fully retiring. Her love of travel took her to 33 countries as well as most of the USA.
Her passion for Bluegrass music led to expertise in playing the Bones and the Saw. She placed third in the World’s Bones competition in 1996. She traveled to the Winfield, KS, Bluegrass Festival where she was a member of the Carp Camp Jammers, and played with the Just In Time Old Time Band in FL.
Other hobbies she enjoyed were orchids, quilting, and genealogy.
Jean was predeceased by her parents, Rita and Raymond Mehaffey of Atlantic, IA.
Jean is survived by her brother and sister-in-law, Ron and Marva Mehaffey, Raleigh, NC; niece, Kathy Mehaffey, Plantation, FL; nephew and wife, Russ and Patti Mehaffey, Raleigh, NC; grand-nieces, Kasey and Shannon Mehaffey, Raleigh, NC; and grand-nephews, Nathan, Orlando, FL, and Matthew Hasselbring, Plantation, FL; as well as cousins and their families.
A graveside service will be held Saturday, October 5, 2019, at 11:00 AM, at the Atlantic Cemetery . In her memory, she would be so pleased if you would pick up an instrument, attend a music festival, or make a donation to a musical youth organization.
Hockenberry Family Care in Atlantic, Iowa, is in charge of the arrangements.