Jan 30 2014
Jewell Reed Dancey
Our beloved mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and great-great-grandmother, Mrs. Jewell Reed Dancey, passed away peacefully on Saturday, January 18 in the home she loved and built with her husband, Mr. Buck Dancey.
Mrs. Dancey’s lifetime spans the entire course of Modern History. Born in 1920 with the Roaring 20’s, she saw 17 U.S. Presidents from Woodrow Wilson to President Obama today. The 18th amendment to the Constitution, which ushered in the 14-year Prohibition era and gangsters and speakeasies and moonshine, was passed just the year before she was born. And there was plenty of moonshine in her native Missouri, which gave her sheriff father a lot of grief. Her father delivered her, too. The country doctor simply didn’t get there in time. She was the youngest of four children and her dad misspelled her name on the birth certificate, making her forever uniquely Jewell.
More surprisingly, the 19th amendment was passed only three months after she was born. This finally gave women the right to vote and it’s not non-coincident that women’s rights took off the same year Jewell arrived on this Earth. She exemplified “liberation” her entire life.
She lived through the hardships of the Great Depression and learned the value of hard work and saving what she earned. She proudly served her country in the Marines during World War II, followed her Navy husband across the Pacific and became a mother in the Korean War. She loved Johnny Cash more than The Beatles and sat in shock with the rest of our country when the 35th President was assassinated right here in Texas. In spite of her proven patriotism, Mrs. Dancey was a very thankful mother when her only son was not drafted near the end of the Vietnam War.
Jewell was a little amazed by the counterculture of the 60’s, but she saw that mostly on our first color TV. Then there was Watergate and the healing aftermath, Carter and the hostage crisis, Reagan, whom she adored, the Gulf War, a naughty White House scandal, the tragedies of Iraq and Afghanistan and our first African American President, for whom she proudly voted.
She was married to Buck for 53 happy years. They settled in Port Isabel in 1961 and were well-known restaurateurs here for more than 35 years, where they also were both lifetime members of American Legion Post 498. Their absence in our lives is sadly immense and we will always keep them near in our hearts, our thoughts and our prayers. Jewell’s second blessed great-great-grandchild was just born on January 15.
The circle of life is precious and unbroken.
A memorial service in honor of Mrs. Dancey will be celebrated at Chapel By The Sea on South Padre Island
on Saturday, March 1st at 10:00 a.m.
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