Jessie Lena (Gunn) Stephens(1943 - 2014)

SHERMAN – Jessie Lena Gunn Stephens, age 70, passed away at 8:35 p.m. Monday, March 10, 2014 at Texoma Medical Center.

Jessie was born April 17, 1943 in Colorado Springs, Colorado to Edwin Jay Gunn and Oeva Lois Gunn. She is survived by her husband Anthony E. (Tony) Stephens of Sherman and her twin brother Walter Richard Gunn of Hickory, North Carolina.

Jessie earned a Bachelor's degree in French and a Master's degree in English from North Texas State University and taught French and English at North Richland Hills High School near Fort Worth. She did technical writing and corporate training for Texas Instruments, did freelance reporting for Computer Dealer magazine, wrote a series of short stories for Woman's World magazine, and taught classes on business writing at corporations across the US. She edited book manuscripts for Brown Books and published three books of her own: Touring Texas Gardens, The Book Lover's Guide to Texas, and When to Do What in Your Texoma Yard and Garden.

She founded her own small business, The Backyard Nature Store, and later became a Master Gardener of Grayson County. She wrote the garden column "In Your Backyard" which has been published every Thursday in the Herald Democrat. She was an award winning member of the Texas Presswomen Association and a founding member of the Cuchara Writers Group.

A Memorial Service will be held for Jessie in the chapel at Waldo Funeral Home, 619 North Travis Street in Sherman at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 13. Her friends and associates are cordially invited to attend and participate. Jessie loved flowers, and those wishing to do so may have a small flower arrangement sent to Waldo Funeral Home prior to the Memorial Service. No family visitation or viewing will be held. Jessie's no-ceremony burial will be 2 p.m. Friday, March 14 at the Antelope Cemetery in Antelope, Texas, south of Wichita Falls.

The online guest book can be signed at

Funeral Home

619 N. TRAVIS ST.  Sherman, TX 75090
(903) 893-1101

Published in The Herald Democrat from Mar. 12 to Mar. 13, 2014