Mary Jane Vermillion Church, 89, died Dec. 6 at Moab Regional Hospital. She was born April 21, 1923 to Garland and Ida Vermillion in Jellico, Ky. She was the third of seven children.
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After graduating from Jellico High School in Jellico, Jane worked as a telephone switchboard operator for Jellico Telephone Company. In the late 1940s she met the man who would be the love of her life, Ralph Church. They were married Jan. 21, 1949. They lived in Petersburg, Ind., Ralph's hometown for several years and Jane worked for a few years for Petersburg Telephone Company. In the late 1950s they returned to Jellico. They raised two children, a son, Michael, and a daughter, Lisa. In 1963, the family moved back to Petersburg, and they lived there until returning to Jellico in 1990 after Ralph's retirement from Old Ben Coal Company. Ralph passed away in 2001 and Jane moved to Moab, Utah, in 2009 to live with her daughter, Lisa, and Kelly Thornton, whom Jane also thought of as a daughter.
A deeply religious woman, Jane was a devout Methodist and a member of the Jellico United Methodist Church. In Moab, she attended the Community Church. Wherever she lived, Jane was known for her gracious spirit and her kindness and generosity to friends, family and others, especially those in need. She volunteered for many charitable organizations throughout her life as well as volunteering at nursing homes in Petersburg and Jellico.
Jane is survived by her son, Michael Church (Janice), of Novi, Mich.; and daughter, Lisa Church, of Moab, Utah; and three grandchildren, Amanda Kalinowsky (Peter), of South Lyon, Mich., Daniel Church of New York, N.Y., and Jeremy Church of Mount Pleasant, Mich. She is also survived by many nieces, nephews and cousins.
Published in LaFollette Press on Dec. 13, 2012