Jean Percy Highfill Dougherty

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Jean Dougherty, died on Tuesday, March 18, 2014. ""Mommee,"" to her family since the birth of her first granddaughter, was born in Coco Beach, Florida, on December 28, 1918, the second of two daughters of LeRoy Highfill of Missouri and May Collins Harelson Highfill of St. Francisville, Louisiana. Jean frequently recalled her years prior to college as filled with sunshine and sand, ocean swimming, and roller-skating everywhere in Coco. Water sports remained a staple throughout her life, logging miles of slalom skiing on False River, navigating the rivers of South Louisiana with the Boat Club, white water rafting, and swimming morning laps with friends at the ""Y."" Many years later, when Santa Claus brought the children and grandchildren roller skates one Christmas, Jean was the leader, skating forward and backward with ease! From Jean's earliest memories, on the day that school recessed for summer vacation, the Highfill ladies rode the train from Coco Beach to St. Francisville to spend their summers in the country at Rosale, with the Ellison Barrow cousins. Jean described dawns tiptoeing outside to ride Bob the horse before the heat of the day. And since those summers, Jean, her children and grandchildren have owned and ridden horses at Linwood, then the Dougherty home Jackson, Louisiana. Jean also described frequent trips during those country summers to May-May's and Uncle Wilson Rumble's home in Natchez, Rosalie, where Jean would hide in a closet or behind a curtain in Uncle Wills' library teaching herself to read from his extraordinary collection of books. Thus began a lifelong love of reading for a most voracious reader! Jean's husband John Edward Dougherty, ""Bitz"", talks of Jean reading aloud to him as they drove from Baton Rouge to Los Alamos, New Mexico, in the years just after their marriage in 2006. Jean attended Louisiana State University were she pledged Kappa Delta, and began dating a pre-med student, Cary McConnell Dougherty, (d. 1977), whom she knew from the summer dances in St, Francisville. Cary and Jean were married shortly after Jean graduated from LSU and just prior to his serving in the army overseas in (then) Burma, for four years. Jean supported the Woman's Medical Auxillary, volunteered with various non-profit groups, and served many years on the Alter Guild at St. James Episcopal Church. Cary and Jean's home on Reymond Avenue was the family gathering point for holiday festivities throughout the years. Those ""dinners"" were day-long celebrations, graced with Nora Basey's cooking and orchestrated by Jean with great vigor, a wonderful sense of humor, and a beautiful, radiant smile and presence. In 2008, Jean embarked on another adventure, falling in love and marrying John Edward Dougherty of Baton Rouge and Los Alamos, who survives her. Inseparable, John and Jean spent much of the time driving the unmapped roads of East and West Feliciana Parishes, even marking maps for the Parish. John and Jean were frequent visitors at the Magnolia Café in St. Francisville, and Sutterfields in New Roads after Sunday service at Grace Episcopal Church. Jean is preceded in death by her first husband, Cary McConnell Dougherty, their daughter Jeannette Harelson Dougherty, and Jean's sister Mary Rumble Highfill Marks. Jean is survived by her three children Cary McConnell Dougherty, Jr., and his wife, Nancy; Mary Lintot Dougherty and her husband Craig Murray; and Elizabeth Cary Dougherty; by seven grandchildren, spouses, and six great grandchildren. The Dougherty family is especially thankful with love and appreciation for Jean's caretakers Barbara Wilson, Patricia Holmes, and Yvonne Veals, the Baton Rouge Hospice, and the supportive staff at the Butterfly Wing of the Hospice in the Baton Rouge General Hospital. Funeral services will be held Tuesday, March 25, 2014, at Grace Church in St. Francisville, beginning with visitation at 10 a.m., the service commencing at 10:30, with the grave-side service to follow at the Grace Church Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be sent to Grace Church Cemetery Fund, P. O. Box 28, St. Francisville, Louisiana, 70775.
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Rabenhorst Funeral Homes Downtown
825 Government Street
Baton Rouge, LA 70802
(225) 383-6831
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Published in from Mar. 19 to Mar. 21, 2014
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