(December 9, 1930 - April 7, 2017)
My grandmother was born Willie Jane Moon. To me, she was Grandmother Jane. When I was about four or five years old, she worked at a restaurant. When we would go to see her there, I would burst in the door and shout "Willie Girls!" She was not fond of her first name and I found it hilarious at the time apparently. The only thing she liked about it was that she was named after her aunt Willie, who she loved very much.
For my whole life, Grandmother Jane was never married. She was a single mother who raised my father with the help of her own mother (my great grandmother). She was a strong willed, loving woman. I spent many nights and weekends at her house as a child. We would play cards and dominos. She always had ice cream and when I was old enough to walk and talk, she moved all the snack food into a lower kitchen cabinet so I could get them myself.
Her claim to fame in the family was her turkey conbread dressing that she made every Thanksgiving. We would have a huge combination Thanksgiving / birthday celebration for my great grandmother because her birtday was around the end of November. It was very common when making your plate to have someone lean over and whisper "Which one is Jane's dressing?" Everyone that has ever had it agrees it is the best dressing they have had in their entire life. Luckily my mother learned to make it before my grandmother passed away. And I have a video somewhere of her making it and describing each step.
She loved sending greeting cards for all occasions. She would buy assortment packs in bulk to ensure she would have them to send to friends and family. And more importantly, she would always underline or annotate the cards with the words in them that were important to her along with a hand written note. I always looked forward to getting a card from her on my birthday.