Delores Jean Huddleston Crum
Oct. 2, 1933 — Aug. 3, 2020
D. JEAN HUDDLESTON CRUM passed away peacefully in her sleep on August 3, 2020, in Irvine, Calif., after a ten-year battle with Dementia. Jean was born in Danville, West Virginia, to Loris and Eva Bowman Huddleston, on October 2, 1933. As a child Jean would help her father tend to the family’s garden, a necessity during the Depression years and World War II, thus establishing a lifelong passion for flowers and gardening. She excelled in school, skipping a grade and graduating from Scott High School in 1950 at the age of 16. Jean’s true calling and passion was teaching. Before enrolling at Marshall University in Huntington, W.Va., she taught school in rural West Virginia. At Marshall she was active in many clubs, honor societies and organizations and was named Miss Marshall in 1954. While at Marshall she met Francis “Frankie” Crum, a young basketball player from Betsy Layne, Ky. They were married on October 22, 1955, in Danville, W.Va. Upon graduation, Jean immediately began teaching elementary school. Jean and Frank moved numerous times in the early days: Fort Bragg, N.C., Cleveland, Ohio, Pittsburgh, Pa., Southern California, back to Pittsburgh and finally Fullerton, Calif. At all these stops, Jean continued her teaching career. In 1963, her son Jon was born, and in 1965, daughter Nancy. During this time Jean stayed home to raise her young children. When Nancy started school in 1971, Jean returned to the classroom. She taught primarily 1st, 2nd and 3rd grades at Fern Drive Elementary School, winning Teacher of the Year numerous times. She always said her inspiration was to ensure all her students were successful in the classroom. She would spend extra personalized time after school with those students requiring extra instruction. Jean was actively involved in all her own children’s school and sports activities, never missing an event. Even after she retired from teaching in 1994, she would volunteer at Fern Drive. In retirement Jean loved tending to her backyard gardening, volunteering at the Muckanthaler Center, starting a side flower business and loved caring for and spoiling her grandchildren, Emily and Grant Crum. She still never missed an event. She will be fondly remembered as the outgoing, energetic person by her family: son, Jon Crum and his wife Elizabeth (Lisa) Crum (Irvine, Calif.), daughter, Nancy Crum (Arlington, Va.), and grandchildren, Emily Crum (Irvine, Calif.) and Grant Crum (Irvine, Calif.), and her beloved dog, Holly. She was preceded in death by her parents, Loris and Eva Huddleston, sisters, Eva Watkins Bull and Shirley Jarrell, and husband, Frank Crum. Due to current restrictions, a memorial service will be held when possible both in Fullerton, Calif., and in Danville, W.Va. In lieu of flowers, please donate, in Jean’s honor, to the Dementia Society of America (www.dementiasociety.org) to help understand and cure this slow progressive disease.