Jeanette (Jan) MacKay Watkins Almquist Pickens of Riverside, CT, was born in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, NY on July 15, 1942. She moved to Riverside in 1949.
Jan was the daughter of the late Rebecca Lefferts Holmes Watkins and the late William Henry Watkins. She was predeceased by her brother, the late William Watkins and his wife Sharon Watkins.
Jan was the beloved mother of Philip David Almquist (Janet), Donald James Almquist (Robyn) grandmother of Amelia Daisy, and Annie Elizabeth Almquist Yardis (Mike) grandmother of Michael David and Lily Taylor. Jan was stepmother of Michael Pickens (Ellie) step-grandmother of Konstanze and Dan Pickens (Marie) step-grandmother of Amelie and Liam. She was also aunt to Jamie and Billy Watkins. Jan is survived by her husband James C. Pickens.
Jan graduated from Riverside School, Eastern Jr. High, Greenwich Academy, and Colorado Women's College in Denver, CO. She taught school in Denver and substitute taught in Greenwich. Jan was a member of the Junior League since 1963 and volunteered at Colorado General Hospital.
Jan moved to England in 1966 and returned stateside in 1969. She bred Champion American Cocker Spaniels in both the U.K. and U.S. Jan had a deep passion for animals. She had dogs, cats, ducks, rabbits, mice, gerbils, fish, and her very first pet was a chameleon.
Jan also volunteered at Greenwich Hospital, starting as a candy striper. She was a board member of the Christ Church Choir for years.
Jan loved her family, especially being a grandma. She was a skilled piano player and her children have fond memories of playing by her side. She loved traveling, boating, dancing, chocolate, playing cards particularly bridge and canasta. Jan loved walking Tod's Point in Greenwich and having picnics on the rocks. Jan was beautiful inside and out, she always had a smile on her face and a contagious laugh.
Private service will be held at Christ Church Greenwich.