Janeth Ream died peacefully on July 10, 2012 at Glacier Hills, Ann Arbor. Janeth was born Jan. 13, 1927 in Three Rivers to Gertrude and Karl Knapp. She graduated from Three Rivers High School in 1944 (as a part of what is often called “the Greatest Generation”). She met her husband, Walter Ream, when he cut in at a dance while he was in training in the Navy at Western Michigan University. Janeth and Walter were married in 1945 and had three children: Charles in 1946, Sally in 1949 and Ted in 1951. They started out living in Willow Run Village, Detroit, where she organized a parent-co-operative preschool which lived on for decades. The “GI Bill” helped Walter get his Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Michigan.
While living in Redford Township, Janeth organized the Citizens’ Advisory Committee to the School Board, which made sure the bond issues passed to build new schools for her children and others.
Janeth received her B.A. in Education with high distinction in 1975 from the University of Michigan and taught at a Head Start Preschool in Detroit. Later she became a Certified Financial Planner and worked six years for Raymond James Associates.
Janeth spent substantial parts of her life traveling and living abroad, including living for six years in both Melbourne, Australia and Buenos Aires, Argentina. In Argentina, Jan was active in the Ikebana Flower Arrangement Group. She loved to arrange flowers all her life.
Janeth Ream was an extraordinarily kind and ethical person. She was the best mom and grandma ever. She will live on in all who knew her due to the positive influence of the example that she set. Jan suffered her illness with great dignity and strength. All of her family are so very proud of her. Through the force of her will and wonderful hospice care, she avoided the last agonizing period of Parkinson’s Disease.
Janeth is survived by her loving sons, Charles David (Chuck) (Sally) of Ann Arbor and Theodore Walter (Ted) (Kathy) of Three Rivers and grandchildren Ian Ream (Erin) of Tucson, Gillian Ream of Ypsilanti, Evan Ream of Washington, D.C., Geoffrey Ream of New York City and Brian Ream (Priscilla) of Brazil. She was predeceased by husband Walter M. Ream; daughter, Sally Elizabeth Hart; sisters, Katherine Burkhold, Margaret Riggs and Barbra (Luegge) Barons.
A celebration of the Life of Janeth Ruth Ream will be held on Sept. 9 at 3 p.m. at the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Ann Arbor, 4001 Ann Arbor-Saline Road, Ann Arbor (Lodi Township). Donations in Jan’s name may be made to the charity of your choice.