Obituary of Jeanne Walker
Dr. Jeanne Eugenia Marani Walker
Dr. Jeanne Eugenia Marani Walker, an educator, counselor and psychologist passed away on Easter Sunday, April 1, 2018 in the loving environment of her home in Montclair, New Jersey.
Jeanne's life was one of grace, courage and kindness. A lifelong learner, Jeanne was an avid traveler and voracious reader. Her passion for art, music and culture led her to embrace and celebrate people -- without boundaries, judgment or barriers. An extraordinary woman with a vibrant zest for life, she brought joy into the lives of many; she accepted people where they were and as they were.
Born on October 25, 1934 in Astoria, Queens, Jeanne was the daughter of Mario and Suzie Marani who came to the United States by way of Ellis Island.
Jeanne enrolled in the University of Michigan in 1952 where she met her husband, Arthur Dewitt Walker, Jr. After graduation, they relocated to Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, where Art played professional football, winning two Grey Cups for the Edmonton Eskimos, and they raised their three daughters, Andrea, Leslie, and Melissa. Following Art’s football career, they both taught in the Edmonton Public School system for seven years before leaving Canada to obtain their master’s and doctorate degrees from Michigan State University and the University of Illinois in 1965 and 1970, respectively.
Jeanne and Art accepted teaching positions at Northern Michigan University in Marquette, Michigan, where they lived until Art passed away in 1973. Jeanne then returned to Edmonton where she led a distinguished career as a high school educator and counselor. Jeanne retired in 1990 and moved to Sidney, British Columbia. Jeanne was a member of the Holy Trinity Anglican Church in North Saanich, British Columbia.
Jeanne leaves to appreciate her memory her three daughters, Andrea Walker-Modu (Emmanuel), Leslie Dixon (Theodore) and Melissa Walker-McBride (Christian) and her three grandchildren, Nkem Modu, Amara Modu and Eugenia Naamon. She is survived by her brother, Robert Marani; her sister, Anne Plescia; her sister-in-law, Dr. Retia Walker and her niece, JaRee Walker. Jeanne’s extended family, Millie, Akosua and Samantha, her long-time friends, the Wilson family, as well as all of her Canadian friends, carry her memory forward.
A viewing will be held from 12:00 pm to 12:50 pm on Saturday, April 7th at The Presbyterian Church of Upper Montclair (53 Norwood Avenue, Montclair), followed by the funeral service at 1:00 pm. Jeanne will be interred in South Haven, Michigan alongside her husband, who loved her dearly.
Given Jeanne’s passion for education and music, the family invites contributions in lieu of flowers and in Jeanne’s memory, to the Arthur Walker Memorial Scholarship (www.nmu.edu) or Jazz House Kids (www.jazzhousekids.org).