On Wednesday June 10, 2020 we said goodbye to the most wonderful Mother, Grandmother, Wife and friend to all.
Jelean Skeen Montgomery had a dark cloud lifted and passed from this life after a courageous battle with Alzheimer’s disease and pancreatic cancer. She was 85 years old at the time of her passing.
Jelean was born on September 26, 1934 to Jack and Ruby Skeen in Taylor, Utah on the family kitchen table, due in part to the fact that her Mother had lost a baby boy at birth a few years earlier in the hospital.
She had a happy and full childhood working the family farm in Taylor. Her first job was at the Hooper tomato factory earning 50 cents for each pan of tomatoes she peeled for canning. This began a pattern of never shying away from hard work and long hours without complaint.
She attended Weber High School and was her sophomore class secretary, student-body Secretary as a junior, senior class Vice President, as well as being chosen FFA queen, “Princess Print” and “Miss Weber”.
Jelean was very popular in High School, but those who knew her best say she had a social smoothness about her and was always a friend to the friendless. She would seek out those who struggled to fit in. At a very early age she demonstrated Christ like love, kindness and grace. Qualities she maintained until her last breath.
On June 24th 1953, Jelean married her high school sweetheart, Robert Montgomery of North Ogden. The couple was sealed in the Salt Lake City Temple. They were married less than 6 months when Robert was shipped off to basic training in California for the U.S. Army, and subsequently the Korean War. Following his return from the Korean War in 1955, the couple began schooling at BYU in Provo.
In the fall of 1957 Robert entered his first year of Medical School at the University of Utah and the couple settled in Salt Lake City. Following graduation from Medical School in 1961, Robert and Jelean lived in Boston, New York City and back to Salt Lake City before setting up a surgical practice in Anaheim California in 1966.
During those years of schooling, residency and a growing family, Jelean was always able to find meaningful work. She helped the family financially while at the same time encouraging her husband during his long hours of study and work.
After 23 years of living in Anaheim and eventually Laguna Beach, California, Robert and Jelean returned to North Ogden, Utah to retire and be closer to family. Jelean supported Robert in his many post-medical practice endeavors, which included: The American Cancer Society, Weber County Republican Party Chairman and the Utah State Senate, representing District 19. She wore many hats happily and was the greatest support to her husband, while at the same time helping out with her growing list of Grandchildren.
For someone who considered herself a, “simple farm girl from Taylor, Utah”, Jelean and her husband had a passion for world travel. Throughout nearly 67 years marriage, they visited more than 175 countries around the world, plus, hundreds of World Heritage sites. However, after each journey she would always say, “ It was a wonderful trip, but it is so nice to be home!”
Despite her many accomplishments and talents, Jelean’s greatest joy came from her family. She was not only a devoted wife, but also her children’s greatest ally and champion. If it was important to I her kids, she was there for them unconditionally. As grandchildren began to arrive, she poured herself into their happiness, and would drop everything to be there for them. It has often been said about Jelean Montgomery, that she was truly a women without guile.
She was a lifelong active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. She served as Primary President, Relief Society President, Seminary teacher and advisor for the Weber State University chapter of Lambda Delta Sigma.
Emily Dickinson once said, “Hold dear to your parents for it is a scary and confusing world without them.” Jelean spent her life preparing her family not to be scared or confused but to serve others and love them unconditionally, just as she did.
Jelean is survived by her husband of 66 years, Robert Montgomery. Her children: Son; Lance (Dawna) Montgomery, of Laguna Beach, CA.
Daughter; Dana (Steve) Donahoo, of San Clemente, CA. Daughter; Kristen (Jeff) Sumsion, of Park City, UT. Daughter; Keri (Todd) Harris, of North Ogden, UT. Daughter; Tanya (Ken) Tarlton, of Valley Center, CA.
She leaves a legacy of 20 grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren.
“Those we love never truly leave us. There are things that death cannot touch” Jack Thorne.
Jelean Montgomery has left an indelible mark that death cannot erase. Her angelic attributes will be remembered for generations. Her goodness will never be forgotten.
“And is she dead, whose glorious mind lifts thine on high? To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.” Thomas Campbell
In this era of the Covid-19 pandemic, a formal funeral is being postponed. A memorial service will be held at a later date
Life Story Info
Jelean was the sweetest most kind, soft, gentle, loving, happy, talented woman of many more traits. I had the privilege of attending Book Review with her, we would have our potluck in her gorgeous white dining room. She was so inviting and sweet, I always felt welcome and loved in her home!! She radiated the true light of Christ!! God be with you til we meet again.❤️
Dearest mom I miss you every day! I am so grateful that I was lucky enough to be one of your daughters...I am thankful for that every day. You taught and lived beautiful life lessons and I can only hope to be the kind of example were to everyone who was privileged to know you. I am at peace knowing that you are out of your pain that you mind and body are now in their perfected state and that you are will our Savior and those loved ones that have gone before you. May you rest in peace sweet mom until we can all be reunited again.
Jelean is one of the classiest women I have ever met. She was interested in others and always thoughtful. She always had a smile and some sweet compliment. My husband Dave was her home teacher for several years. She frequently told me how she and Robert enjoyed his visits. We will never forget your wonderful example of unconditional love and charity. We will miss seeing for a time and look forward to meeting you again someday.