On September 17, 1936, Jean Hughes McMillian - (Beatty) arrived in Houston, Texas as the youngest of seven children to Homer and Brady McMillian. Jean, at 83 years young, exited the world on February 5, 2020 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana to join her children, Russel David Duke, and Cynthia Duke Brinton, her great granddaughter, Sadie Murata, and her parents. Having lived through the Great Depression and seeing her older brothers off to World War II, Jean learned and embodied discipline, work ethic and integrity. She passed those principles along to her five children as well. A favorite saying of hers that she embraced from her father was "You are never better than anyone until it becomes necessary to be so". Jean was known for her fierce independence, no nonsense attitude and love for her close family. In her final years, she took great comfort living in her "little blue house" enjoying visits from family and friends. She will be missed and remembered by her surviving children: Stephanie Duke Honeycutt (David) of Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Tina Duke VanHeeswijk (Dave) of Houma, Louisiana; Carol Wade Pellecchia (Tony) of Williamsburg, Virginia. Special recognition to her cousin, Ben Carter, of San Antonio, Texas. Her memory will, also, carry on in thirteen grandchildren, twelve great grandchildren and a few grand dogs. All of Jean's siblings predeceased her. A private ceremony will be held by the family. Donations in Jean's name may be made to the charity of your choice.
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Published in The Advocate from Feb. 9 to Feb. 14, 2020.