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Obituaries » Carolyn J. Jackson

Carolyn J. Jackson

September 4, 1910 - October 3, 2017

Service Date: October 14, 2017

Carolyn J. Jackson, 107, born September 4, 1910, passed away October 3, 2017. Born Carolyn Symonds to Alfred and Clementine (nee Forsyth) Symonds in East St. Louis, Illinois, she graduated East St. Louis High School in 1928. Later, she married developer Earl W. Jackson, and after a brief clerical carrier, devoted her time to being a mother and homemaker. She was a past member of the Wednesday Club and ladies Masonic organizations.

Carolyn witnessed the awful events of the First World War, her family hiding African American employees in the family basement for three days during the shameful East St. Louis race riot of 1917, the fall of the Tsar, the beginning of Communism, the Spanish Flu, the Jazz Age/The Roaring Twenties with its gangsters, speak easies, Prohibition and soaring stock market. She won a Charleston dance contest at the St. Clair Country Club in 1923. She saw the Great Depression, the rise of Fascism, WW II, the fall of Fascism, the introduction of TV, antibiotics, polio vaccines and the clumsy contraption of the Wright brothers become travel to the Moon. She saw the Korean War, the Atomic Age, the Cold War, Vietnam, the Sixties (did not approve), the fall of Communism (approved). She saw the crystal radio set evolve into the internet and the crank party line telephone become the cell phone. Although she only remembered riding in a car, Carolyn did remark that as a small child she remembered the family horse that used to pull the buggy, living in the back, a retired beloved family pet.

She was a gracious hostess, opening her home to others. She was always concerned that her guests should always feel welcome and at ease. If anyone left her home hungry it was not from her lack of offering. Family holiday parties were always open to friends who had no close relatives or who did not generally celebrate traditional holidays. It was her concern that no one should feel left out or lonely…ever…She opened her home and heart to two Peruvian students who, for years, lived at her home as guests of the family. Carolyn Jackson was a passionate bridge player and an excellent Scrabble player.

Carolyn loved, enjoyed and interacted with her grandchildren. Her husband died in 1990 and she lived alone and independent to age 103. Her first 107 years were good. Her eternity with Christ will be wonderful.

She was preceded in death by her:

  • Father and mother
  • Sisters:
    • Olive Cox
    • Lucille Dillard
    • Grace Metcalf
  • Brother: Robert “Bud” Symonds

She is survived by her:

  • Son: Gary Jackson and daughter-in-law, Judith “Judie” Jackson
  • Grandchildren:
    • Amanda Jackson Piernik (husband Radaslav)
    • Clayton Jackson
  • Great-grandson: Nicholas Piernik
  • Great-nieces:
    • Carolyn Tippett (William)
    • Sheron Meyer
  • Numerous great-great nieces and nephews

Funeral: A funeral procession will leave from Kurrus Funeral Home in Belleville, Illinois, at 10:15 a.m. Saturday, October 14, 2017, for a 10:30 a.m. graveside service at Valhalla Gardens of Memory, Belleville, Illinois.