Great Barracuda - Sphyraena barracuda

Great Barracuda - Sphyraena barracuda

June 25, 2019

Jessie Grove: A Tribute to a Great Lady

Jessie dressed to the nines for the most casual of family gatherings. 
Jessie Grove was born over 103 years ago. On June 22, 2019, Jessie left this world for another. Her life was extraordinary, exemplary, and full of joy, love, kindness, and laughter.

Jessie was known affectionately as "Grandmom" by her three grandchildren, her six great grandchildren, and her sons- and daughters-in-law––myself included. She was raised in Kansas and attended a one-room school house. Details of her childhood are, unfortunately, sparse. Jessie had one daughter––Betty––at a very young age. Times were economically challenging for Jessie. She was fortunate to have the support of a family in Detroit, Michigan, who offered to raise her daughter. Despite the distance, Jessie was devoted to her daughter and traveled extensively to see her. They remained very close for the duration of her life.

Jessie met and married Bob Grove and together they traveled the world. Their stops and journeys were marked with pins and threads on an antiqued plastic globe of the Earth. Bob was an entrepreneur, a military man who traveled in service, and a sheer wizard with tools. Bob and Jessie settled in Fort Meyers, Florida, and enjoyed a life full of work, friends, and fishing. Some time around 1986, Bob and Jessie retired from Florida and moved into a country house surrounded by gardens in White Hall, Virginia. This location suited them well, as they were able to host and partake of regular lunches, dinners, and holidays with their growing family of great grandchildren.
Bob and Jessie Gove in their Fort Meyers heyday!

Jessie and Bob downsized again in a move to University Village, in Charlottesville, Virginia. Bob and Jessie were not deterred by condo living and continued with their outdoor pursuits. They built a water feature complete with plants and goldfish for all the residents to enjoy. They also built a garden below their balcony, fed the hummingbirds, made many many friends. Bob also built –– by hand! –– a fanciful playhouse out in Free Union, VA, for family friends. It stands today as a fine remembrance of his handiwork.

Granddaddy Grove and Grandmom with their second great grandchild, Drew.
Granddaddy Grove and Grandmom with their fourth great grandchild, Dave.
Bob passed away around 20 years ago. Jessie, in her characteristic way, lived on always with a cheerful, positive, and kind manner. She often talked of and joked about Bob as if he were sitting next to her. Her stories flew from her memory with clarity and warmth. Jessie was not one for regret, sorrow, or remorse. Jessie did not have a mean, spiteful, angry, or bitter bone in her body. Jessie was always kind, loving, gentle, sweet, and super funny. She never, ever complained, and she never left the house without lipstick on! Jessie was cheerful to her core and always quick to laugh.
Grandmon at Grandparent's Day with her great grandson, Dave (and me).

Jessie eventually fell and wound up in the hospital. Although she longed to live independently as she alway had, she moved into assisted living without complaint. She continued to share in family dinners and was visited often by her clan of grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Jessie Grove was a fine lady full of grace, charm, warmth, and kindness. She lived a long, prosperous, and full life. Jessie loved well and was well loved in return.

Godspeed, Grandmom!
Jessie's 101 birthday celebration with all her adoring friends and family.

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