Jacqueline E. Devener, age 95, of 216 Woodsedge Dr., Lansing, passed away Wednesday, May 5, 2010, at the Hospicare Residence.


Born in Richmond Hill, NY, on April 7, 1915, her defining moment came at age four when she received 3rd degree burns over half her body from picking up fireworks on July 4th that exploded and severely burned her. Soon thereafter, she contacted Polio and spent the next 12 years in and out of hospitals and foster care with little or no family life. From these ordeals, she learned not only about pain and suffering but became a compassionate ‘mother’ to many individuals giving them a sense of family, something she never had.    For many years Jackie, “Mrs D,” ran a rooming house on Stewart Avenue in Ithaca for hundreds of Cornell students. She opened her boarding house doors with generous assistance to students, construction workers, single mothers, and local store employees who were in need of lodging and she provided a family environment. She was a gourmet cook who could be found in the kitchen at all hours providing wholesome home cooked meals to all who stopped by. She rarely turned anyone away. She also was a devoted mother to her two sons and raised them in the rooming house environment while constantly cheerleading them in all of their activities.

She then moved to Geneva St. in the mid sixties and operated a children’s day care center, now tending after toddlers and young children. There she developed meaningful relationships with many of the parents such as Hazel and Gary Garrett of Lansing who became a second family for her since her sons had migrated to California. It was at her day care center that she established a special relationship with the Garrett family that bonded them for the past 35 years. After running another rooming house at N. Albany St., she relocated to Lansing.  An avid reader and knitter, she knitted many beautiful sweaters for all her friends, family and strangers.


Jackie is survived by her sons, Dean (Diana) Devener of Penngrove, Ca;  Stephen (Beth) Devener of San Francisco Ca., and granddaughters: Haley Devener, Julien Dubrow, and Meagan McGinity  of  San Francisco, and a nephew, Richard Ingrassia, of Florida.

She is also survived by the Garrett family of Lansing: Hazel, Gary and their children-Aaron, Andy, Adam and Aimee - will miss her dearly.


 Jackie was preceded in death by her husband, Stephen Devener and her sisters: Jean Wilson, Lily Ingrassia, and Ella Giesel; and brother, George Wilson.


In keeping with Jackie’s wishes, no public services are scheduled.


For those who wish, please consider a memorial contribution to Hospicare, 172 E. King Rd., Ithaca, NY 14850.


The family is being assisted by Lansing Funeral Home.