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Mrs. Jane Ellis Tracy

HARLEM, Ga. - Mrs. Jane Ellis Tracy, 95, entered into eternity Sunday, January 03, 2010. Funeral Services were conducted by Pastor Philip Vestal at the Harlem Baptist Church, 2 p.m., Monday, January 4, 2010 with interment in the Harlem Memorial Cemetery following. She is survived by her beloved and loving husband of almost 69 years, Francis Williams Tracy; her son, Richard Tracy of Atlanta; and her daughter, Fran Tracy-Walls and her husband, Joseph Louis Walls, and granddaughters, Katherine and Christine Walls, all of Raleigh, N.C. Additionally, she is survived by granddaughter, Ruth Tracy Blackburn, and her husband Jay Blackburn, and greatgrandson son, Will Blackburn, of Harlem; granddaughter Mary Tracy of Charlotte, N.C.; and granddaughter, Katrina Langdon and her husband Michael Langdon, and greatgrandson, Jack Langdon, of Glendale, Arizona; and a sisterin- law, Louise Tracy of Thomson. She was preceded in death by her parents, her brother Dr. Samuel Laird Ellis, her sisters, Elizabeth Cody Ellis Bachman, Angela Ellis Smith, Francenia Ellis Herd; and her son, Lee Lamkin Tracy. Jane was born on May 12, 1914 at home in Knoxville, Tennessee, the youngest of six children of Francenia Laird and Joseph N. Ellis, M.D. Around the age of three, she began playing her mother's piano and soon played by ear all the hymns she had heard at the First Baptist Church. In those early years, she began singing in the clear, lovely soprano that she retained until her very last days. Receiving her secondary school education at Knoxville High, Jane went on to the University of Tennessee where she studied history, German and French, and sang in the Glee Club. Earning her bachelor's degree in 1937, Jane took with her a life-long love of learning and an abiding loyalty to the U.T. football team. Though Jane had prepared for teaching, she yearned for another kind of adventure, and explored her options while working at an insurance company. Her sisters thought her too sophisticated for Knoxville, and envisioned her as the family member most likely to launch a career in a big city. Her dreams and the shape of her future were altered forever on the night that Jane, acting out of character, accepted a blind date with a young man from a small Georgia town. Within two years Jane and Francis Tracy were married on a lovely spring morning, March 22, 1941 at her church in Knoxville. Settling in Francis's home town of Harlem, the newlyweds' life together was cut short when he was called to active duty as a first lieutenant in the United States Army. Three months before the birth of their first child, he was assigned to duty in the South Pacific where he spent over three years. Jane returned to her parents' home where she gave birth and waited out the years fraught with uncertainty. Near the close of World War II in 1945, Francis was reassigned stateside and joyfully reunited with his family. Back once again in Harlem, Jane embraced the life of a small town, and two more children were born to the union before the end of the 1940s. Characteristically, she excelled as a homemaker and loving mother in its many and varied facets. She also supported her husband and assisted him in many ways as he worked in the family business, Tracy Pecan Products, later the Tracy-Luckey Co., Inc. Throughout her life, Jane lent her talents, her gracious, warm manner, and sense of humor to numerous clubs and organizations. These included the Girl Scouts; the Harlem Woman's Club; the Young Mother's Bridge Club (that evolved into The Bridge Club); the Harlem Woman's Club; the Harlem Garden Club; the Parent Teachers Association; the Daughters of the American Revolution, James Wilson Chapter; and the Augusta Country Club and its women's golf, bridge and duplicate bridge groups. A committed Christian, Jane was devoted to the Harlem Baptist Church, and its Sunday schools, including the Fidelis Class, and its missions and other outreach programs. Jane was a strong woman of faith, who gladly served her Lord and her church. Always an avid reader, she read the Bible from cover to cover several times over the course of her adulthood. At her core, Jane was a beautiful Southern lady with a distinctive radiance who loved unconditionally and gave and received joy from her family and friends. She will be remembered for her elegance and style; her keen powers of observation and insight; her quickness to laugh; her kindness, compassion, and generosity; her affection and love for the family pets; her lyrical voice and graceful dance movements; and her zest for travel. She will also be remembered for her spirit, strength of will, and the grace and courage with which she approached life's hardships, including her own declining health. Even in her last years, she shared with family the joy of music making - singing and harmonizing with them - in church, in the car, in the kitchen - wherever and whenever the spirit moved. Her love, her special radiance, and indomitable spirit will remain with those who had the opportunity to know and love her. The family would like to thank a faithful caregiver of several years, Claudie M. Benning If so desired, memorials may be made to the Harlem Baptist Church, Generation Fund, PO Box 790, Harlem, GA 30814. Starling Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.

Web posted on Thursday, January 07, 2010

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