MARYVILLE, Mo. - It is with great sadness to announce our beloved mother and nana, Jean Fuller of Maryville, Missouri, passed away on April 18, 2021, at Oak Pointe Assisted Living Facility in Maryville at the age of 81 years old. After months of failing health, she died peacefully due to complications from dementia.
Jean Eloise (Dodd) Fuller was born on May 22, 1939, to Harl Rolland "Jack" Dodd and Dortha (Travelute) Dodd in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Growing up she was active in 4-H and became a lifeguard. Jean attended schools in Alliance, Nebraska, and Clearmont HS in Clearmont, Missouri, and graduated in 1957. She attended University of Missouri-Columbia and was the first female student to receive a bachelor's degree in Civil Engineering in 1961. Also while at Mizzou, as a proud Tiger, she played the flute and was a member of the Marching Mizzou Band and had many cherished memories attending and performing during halftime football games, as well as the 1959 and 1960 Orange Bowls.
Jean married her high school sweetheart, Larry Fuller, in 1962 in Denver, Colorado. She was working at The Corp of Engineers at that time. She and Larry settled in Maryville, where she worked briefly for the Missouri Department of Transportation helping design and building bridges. They were very impressed with her work but women were not allowed to work if pregnant. She hid it as long as she could but was fired. Her and Larry's excitement of having their first baby overshadowed that job loss. Jean never looked back, always kept moving forward. Began her teaching career as a math teacher at Rosendale School District and while teaching she received two master's degrees in math and science. She also taught math and science at Mount Alverno, West Nodaway and Northwest Missouri State University. Larry and Jean started Pioneer Homes, a manufactured home business. During this time of teaching and keeping books for Pioneer Homes she became a new mother giving birth to daughters Deborah, Denise and son Jason. Jean was very proud of her children and involved with their school and activities, she was always there for them.
Jean loved sudoku puzzles, playing gin rummy, solitaire, cribbage, and bridge. She was a voracious reader, as she would read up to four books a month and enjoyed sharing her love of reading with her mother/daughter book club. Her love for travel she and Larry traveled the world with their family on many of his sale's trips he won to such places as Hawaii, Germany, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, as well as many cruises on the Caribbean and to Cayman Islands. Later in life, Jean was able to travel to Russia, China, India, Africa, Greece, Italy, cruise to Alaska to name a few. Jean was also actively involved in local charitable events such as 4-H, Women's Group for First United Methodist Church, St. Francis Hospital Foundation, and served on the Northwest Foundation Board of Directors.
Jean is survived by her daughters, Deborah (Tim) Hannon of Kansas City, Missouri, Dr. Denise (Dr. Brad) Freidel of Centralia, Missouri, and son Jason (Kimberly) Fuller of Smithville, Missouri; grandchildren, Zach (Jennifer) Hannon, Chase (Taylor Manes), Bayli, and Jake Freidel, Kayson and LJ Fuller; great-granddaughters, Harper and Charlie Hannon; brother, Thomas Dodd of Phoenix, Arizona; and sister, Janice (Larry) Dawson of Burlington Junction, Missouri; and companion, Paul Boedeker; as well as two nieces and several great nieces/nephews, cousins and friends.
She was predeceased by her husband, Larry (1998), parents and two nephews Darrin and Eric Dodd.
A private memorial service will be held at a later date. As published in the St. Joseph News-Press.