Saturday, September 9, 2023
11:00 AM EDT
St. Thomas Episcopal Church
16 Van Burent Street East
Battle Creek, MI 49017
At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
Vivacious, loving, and a friend to all, Jenny Isaacs lived a life rich in family and friends. She welcomed each day as a gift and every person as a friend. With a million stories and a gift for conversation, she drew people in and kept them close. Jenny led with her heart, never hesitating to lend a hand where she could to ensure others felt safe, loved, and cherished. A devoted homemaker, Jenny's heart's delight was providing for her husband, children, grandchildren, and friends. Cherished by many, Jenny will long be remembered and so very missed.
As war gave way to peace becoming a dramatic force in U.S. history, 1952 marked a period of progress and optimism. With the Baby Boom generation, the focus was on hard work and affording our children a better life. The middle-class standard of living continued to grow and appeared to have no boundaries; it was a time of much hope. Nowhere was there greater cause to celebrate the possibilities of hope than in the hearts and home of H Hanly Hammel, Jr. and Laree Deihl as they welcomed their youngest daughter, Jenny, to their family on July 24th.
Growing up on a farm in Indiana, Jenny's early years were filled with activity and tradition. Her father was a WWII veteran who served in the Pacific with the 13th Army Air Corps. His unit’s symbol was the black cat, so the family always had black cats, a tradition Jenny carried through her entire life. Jenny was gifted with a beautiful voice and a love for singing. She participated in the school choir in junior high and high school, earning seven years of number-one ratings in the Indiana Solo Competition. She was also accomplished on the baritone saxophone. The band director often featured Jenny's singing of broadway musical solos in concerts.
Jenny first met her beloved, David Isaacs, as a young child when his mother was her babysitter. They reconnected years later in middle school, became friends, and eventually started dating in high school. Though she was seeing someone else, David stole her away. After graduating from William Henry Harrison High School in West Lafayette, Indiana, with the class of 1971, the couple happily married.
Jenny attended Purdue University and loved the Purdue Boilermakers, but her greatest joy was the family she and David were blessed to create. Jenny completely devoted herself to her family and joyfully worked hard to provide her six children with a loving and supportive home. A full-time homemaker, Jenny was an excellent provider, ensuring her kids' wonderful starts to their lives. She enjoyed baking cookies, cakes, brownies, and making her famous peanut brittle. Her family fondly called her brittle "Candy Crack" because once they took a bite, they couldn't stop eating it. Her "secret" ingredients were just lots and lots of butter and extra peanuts. Jenny often made the brittle at Christmas for everyone she knew; they all eagerly anticipated her special gift each year. Jenny also froze and canned fruits and vegetables for her family to enjoy throughout the year. If it could be canned or frozen, she preserved it, often amassing up to 800 pints or quarts per year.
Always eager to be of service, Jenny was a member of Rainbow Girls and a 51-year member of the Order of the Eastern Star, lately at Leo #278 in Leo, Indiana. A team mom for her kids' sports, Jenny also assisted her husband as a Cub Scout and Boy Scout Leader for 28 years. She was most proud of the fact that three of her sons are Eagle Scouts. She also volunteered as Cub Scout camp director at Hawk Mt. Scout Reservation in Summit, Pennsylvania. As a member of the Southwest Michigan Scottish Society, Jenny loved bagpipe music while showing off her and David's kilts. A special trip to Ireland and Scotland inspired Jenny's love for the countryside and appreciation for the town where her ancestors lived.
Jenny's black cats, Siberian Huskies, and Scottish Terriers were the luckiest pets to have her as their person. Her house was filled with many treasured animal companions. Jenny's love for singing never wavered. She sang in church choirs and around the house, even singing while planting flowers in her garden. She was especially proud of her son, Nathan, who also has a wonderful singing talent.
While our days with her were far too few, every moment we shared with Jenny is a gift we will long treasure. As we celebrate her life and mourn our loss, may we find comfort in our many beautiful memories. May we also find comfort in the honor of carrying her beautiful legacy forward. Whenever we greet a stranger as a friend, cheer on the Purdue Boilermakers, share our garden's bounty, lift our voices in song, curl up with our favorite four-legged companion, or explore the world with our beloved, we celebrate the many ways Jenny touched our lives. In this way, we keep her spirit alive and inspire others as she so inspired us.
Jenny Laree Isaacs, age 70, of Marshall, MI, formerly of West Lafayette, IN, crossed the Rainbow Bridge surrounded by her loving family on May 6th, 2023 after a short illness. She was met by Jesus and her many pets, especially Bonnie Jean and Kate The Bold, her beloved Scotties.
Jenny is survived by her high school sweetheart, David; her daughters: Sara (Mark) Hannum of Fleetwood, PA, and Laura (Samantha) Isaacs of Marshall, MI; sons: Matthew (Cindy) Isaacs of West Lafayette, IN, Nathan (Mark) Isaacs of Albion, MI, and Daniel (Angela) Isaacs of Portage, MI; grandson and adopted son, David Isaacs of Marshall, MI; grandsons: Jacob Hannum of Fleetwood, PA and Travis Isaacs of West Lafayette, IN; granddaughters: Grace Hannum of Minturn, CO and Hayley Isaacs of West Lafayette, IN; sisters: Becky McDonald of West Lafayette, IN and Molly Persinger of Vallonia, IN.
A private interment will take place on Sunday, June 11 in West Lafayette, IN at Grand View Cemetery. A celebration of life will be held Saturday, September 9 at St. Thomas Episcopal Church, 16 Van Buren St. E., Battle Creek, MI, 49017. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the St. Thomas Church Choir. Visit Jenny's webpage at BetzlerLifeStory.com to share favorite photos, memories, and sign her guestbook. Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes, 6080 Stadium Drive, Kalamazoo, MI (269) 375-2900.