Claire Dickey Jones Jackson Plymel

Published 6:01 pm Tuesday, June 4, 2024

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Claire Dickey Jones Jackson Plymel, 93, died June 4, 2024 after several years of declining health. A long-time resident of LaGrange, she had lived since 2018 at Arbor Terrace of Athens. Born Oct. 25, 1930, at Emory Hospital in Atlanta, she was the youngest and last surviving of the four daughters of the Rev. Henry Hart Jones and Annie Dickey Jones, and the granddaughter of Emory President and Methodist Bishop James E. Dickey. Following her father’s clergy position in the North Georgia Conference of the Methodist Church, she grew up in parsonages at West Point First, Atlanta (Park Street, St. Paul and Grace), Dalton First, and the Augusta, Oxford and Griffin districts. She attended the Emory-at-Oxford Academy and Dalton High School, from which she graduated in 1947. She attended LaGrange College as a member of the class of 1951, but left school in 1950 to marry Harold Jackson of LaGrange, whom she met in the LaGrange First Methodist choir. Married October 7, 1950, at Griffin First Methodist Church, Claire and Harold raised three sons, providing a loving home as the family followed his career in textiles customer service from LaGrange to Manchester (1954), back to LaGrange (1960), then Columbus (1967), and again back to LaGrange (1969). Her core identity was being a Methodist preacher’s daughter and the youngest of four sisters, so it was God’s wry humor that made her the mother of three often boisterous sons, whom she and Harold raised in a loving home always filled with music, three wonderful meals each day, and an emphasis on striving to be one’s best. In 1979, Harold died unexpectedly at the young age of 55. Claire married Olen Plymel on April 11, 1981, at LaGrange First Methodist. They lived happily in Eufaula, Ala., where he owned men’s and women’s clothing stores, until Olen’s death in 1998. In 2000, Claire moved to LaGrange for a fourth time, enjoying the company of sister and next-door-neighbor, Laura Turner, and many long-time friends in the church and community. Active in LaGrange First Methodist for more than 50 years, Claire sang in the choir and served in many ways, doing the same when the family was at First Methodist, Manchester; St. Paul Methodist, Columbus; and First Baptist, Eufaula. Through the 1970s, she was director of LaGrange First Methodist kindergarten. Following the death of her sister Laura in 2018, Claire moved to Athens to be near family. She transferred membership to Athens First United Methodist Church and actively participated so long as able. In addition to her husbands and parents, she was preceded in death by an infant brother; sisters Jessie Whittemore, Elizabeth Rutland, Laura Turner; stepson Kenneth Plymel and great-grandson Landon Bruce Jackson. Survivors include sons Tom (Sharon) Jackson, Watkinsville; Henry (Gail) Jackson, Salem, Ala.; and James (Amy) Jackson, Traverse City, Mich.; grandchildren Hal (Brett) Jackson, Bishop; Stan (Angel) Jackson, Watkinsville; Buck Jackson, Flowery Branch; Lee (Kierney) Jackson, Jefferson; Annie (Blake) Morrow, Jasper, Ala.; Emma (Will) Brannon, Opelika, Ala..; stepson Ronald (D.J.) Plymel, Glen, Miss.; step-granddaughter LeAnne (Brian) Anglin, Iuka, Miss., eleven great-grandchildren, and eight nieces and nephews. A memorial service will be held Thursday, June 6 at 10 a.m. at Athens First United Methodist Church with Rev. Jeremy Lawson officiating. Interment will be beside her first husband in Shadowlawn Cemetery, LaGrange at 4 p.m. following the memorial service. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to LaGrange First United Methodist Church or to LaGrange College. Lord & Stephens Funeral Home, WEST, Watkinsville, GA in charge of arrangements.