LYDON, Janice Lee (Howe)
passed away April 13, 2018. Jan was the quintessential animal lover. Whether the animal was a pet--or a member of her own family--she loved them completely and unconditionally. Those who loved Jan admired her determination, resilience and compassion. She left her imprint on the lives of all that she touched and gave far more to the world than she took from it.
Born in Alexandria, Kentucky August 5, 1955, she was the daughter of Nelson T. Howe, former head of the Science Department at Robinson High School in Tampa (deceased 2012); and Patricia Grace (Scott) Howe (deceased 2017). Her family moved to Tampa when she was 6 months old. Then at the age of 10, Jan was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes and spent a month in Tampa General Hospital. Despite what was, at the time, a grim diagnosis, she soon began her lifelong involvement with horses. She worked weekends and summers at B&R Ranch until starting high school, riding her horse every day.
She graduated with honors from Plant High School in 1973 and from the University of South Florida with a Bachelor of Arts in Education in 1977. She married and moved to Gainesville, taking a job at Lake Butler Elementary School. Upon her husband's graduation from college, they moved to Huntsville, Alabama. There, she taught at Whitesburg Middle School from 1978 through 1979. After bringing two wonderful children into the world, Jan expanded her love of horse riding into a business, which included her participation in local and regional riding competitions where she won dozens of ribbons. In 1987, the family moved to Seminole, Florida and, later that year, she received her first kidney transplant.
Jan served as a mentor to many young riders during her life. She trailered countless horses for others, both to horse shows and, sometimes, to their new homes. She freely shared her knowledge and let many young riders use her horses when they weren't able to have their own. Sadly, lower back problems ended her riding and involvement with horses.
She is survived by her brother, Allie Howe; her husband, Michael; son, Christopher; daughter, Sarah; and two grandchildren, Lillian and Oliver.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that contributions in Jan's name be made to one of the organizations that she supported: Horses for the Handicapped (www.pinellashforh.org
); the ASPCA (www.aspca.org
); Girl Scouts of America (www.gswcf.org
); or the World Wildlife Fund (www.worldwildlife.org
Published by Tampa Bay Times from Apr. 19 to Apr. 20, 2018.