Obituaries » Jean C. Carl

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Jean C. Carl

February 27, 1926 - April 26, 2020

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On April 26, 2020, Jean Carl went to be with the Lord. Born on February 27, 1926, she was the daughter of the late Mamie Hardell Crane and William Lucius Crane. She was preceded in death by her parents and her two sisters, Alice Crane Hoen and Barbara Crane Arndt.

Jean is survived and was surrounded by the love of her life, her devoted husband of 72 years, Donald Kenneth Carl; as well as daughter, Donna Carl Henderson and husband, David Henderson of Bedford, VA;  son, Kenneth William Carl and wife, Delores Estes Carl of Mineral, VA and daughter, Marie Carl Lilly and husband, Ben R. Lilly of Dayton, VA.  She is also survived by her grandchildren:  William Owen Carl, Orange, VA; Kelly Henderson Dye, Mooresville, NC.; Zebulon Carl Lilly, Harrisonburg, VA; Whitney Carl King and husband, Keith King, Mineral, VA, William Boyd Lilly, and wife Whitney Lilly of Harrisonburg, VA.  She enjoyed and was delighted by her great grandchildren:  Colin King, Lauren King, Brody King,  Justin Dye and Finnegan Lilly.  The love of many devoted nieces and nephews filled her life with joy along with a special longtime friend, Fern Kauffman.

Jean was born and grew up in Washington, D.C.  She graduated from Woodrow Wilson High School, Class of 1944.  She lived most of her adult life in Kensington, MD.  In 2014, she and Don moved to Bedford, VA.  She was an RN nurse trained during WWII in the Cadet Nurse Program.  Her nurses’ training was at Garfield Memorial Hospital in Washington, DC.

As a homemaker and housewife, she enjoyed family camping, boating, ice skating and other water sports.  Jean, the First Mate, and Don, the Captain, cruised for years onboard their beloved vessel, DONJE, on the Chesapeake Bay.  They made two journeys on the “Great Loop” traveling north on the inland waterway from Maryland to the Great Lakes.  Then they continued these voyages down the Mississippi into the Gulf, to the Bahamas and up the inland waterway back to Solomons Island, MD.  She was an avid seamstress as well as a Bridge and Rummy player.  Jean was a member of Calvary Baptist Church in Washington, D.C. and then Bethesda First Baptist Church in Bethesda, Maryland.  She attended Bedford Baptist Church in Bedford, Virginia. She was a Brownie Scout Leader.  She volunteered with handicapped children.  She was a member of the Rockville United States Sail and Power Squadron in Maryland.

Jean’s family greatly appreciates the wonderful loving care that Jean received during her final years at the Bedford County Nursing Home. The family requests those wishing to make memorials consider:  Bedford Baptist Church, 1516 Oakwood Street, Bedford, VA  24523,  Alzheimer’s Association,  3739 National Drive, Raleigh, NC  27612 or a charity of your choice.

A memorial funeral service to celebrate her life with burial at Arlington National Cemetery will be held at a later date. Tharp Funeral Home & Crematory, Bedford, is assisting the family.  To send condolences online, please visit

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