Connie Sue Jones
My bride of 32 years.
Where do I begin? I want to share our story if you don’t mind. Connie and I really never adopted any nick names for each other, at least not ones that I am willing to share and to keep them rated “G”. We went out on a blind date on September 9th, 1984. Our date got delayed by one week due to my brother Billy and I was out of town on one of his get rich quick and easy money jobs with the semi he was driving. Boy that was a disaster, hence the delay by one week. Connie thought for sure I was bailing out on her. I met Connie, my brother Billy, and his wife Patty at my Grandma’s house. We double dated with Billy and Patty, oh… Patty happens to be Connie’s first cousin. Boy did I have a lot of fun with that one when we got married. I would tell people that my sister-in-law and cousin was married to my brother….. well, let’s just say eyebrows would raise.
We went to a movie and ate at Pizza Hut. The movie was terrible and I don’t like Pizza Hut. The only good thing about the movie is I was making my moves… ok, I held her hand…that was the only mov-E I had in mind. We went back to grandmas so I could go to work that night working third shift, so I definitely had her back in time. I didn’t call her at all on Monday, the after, but on Tuesday morning after work, I drove to a local florist in Hagerstown near her work and promptly sent six red roses with six white carnations and baby’s breath. I include a card asking her to go out to dinner that night. We never missed a day of seeing each other after that. I forgot to say, Connie does not date guys younger than her…. She is the class of 76 and I am the class of 79. Either she is older than me, or I had the best three years of my life as a senior in high school.
We got married December 22, 1984 after only dating since September 9, 1984. I couldn’t turn her down when she proposed to me…true story. She really did get down on one knee and proposed to me. She reminded me it was a package deal, with her, I got Brandy too. I told Connie that I wouldn’t have it any other way. Brandy needed a father, and thus I adopted her. After we were married a while, I confessed to Connie that all I wanted was to be Brandy’s father, but I had to marry her to get Brandy (lol). I was just kidding of course, or was I? After my dear friend Randy Reichenbach introduced us to the LDS church in 1989, we were baptized in 1990, and in 1991, we had our eternal marriage in the LDS Chicago Temple.
We were your somewhat typical couple that had spats and tiffs (maybe more) that tried us and nearly broke us multiple times over the years. Maybe not us, but maybe me more than Connie. I am not sure how I was so lucky to find someone that would forgive me for so much and on multiple times. I am a hard person to live with and Connie was up for the challenge or just crazy. Connie was the most loving, caring, sharing, and giving person I know. I didn’t deserve her love, but yet, she gave it to me willingly. Connie saw something in me that I still do not see. I really don’t know how she put up with me, but I’m glad she never gave up on me.
As you know, Connie was an organizer of family events and truly loved doing that. She tried so hard to pull the family together at one location and considered it a personal failure if everyone couldn’t show up. I always tried to comfort her to let her know that people can or cannot make it for various reasons and not to get upset about it.
Connie has followed me throughout my career which made her a master at packing up for moving (which she hated). But nonetheless, she fully supported me. My biggest regret, was asking her to follow me to Oklahoma because it just broke her heart to be gone so far from family. Connie would load up the car and make that drive back to Indiana on short notice anytime she was needed. That’s how she was. I only intended to stay gone from Indiana for two years until the economy recovered, needless to say, it took much longer for Indiana, so we stayed in Oklahoma four years until I got a job in Holland Michigan that lasted five years. We trimmed our drive to see family from eleven hours to four hours. Once Indiana started bouncing back economically, I finally got an offer even closer to family (only two hours).
Connie took full advantage of that closeness and so the frequent visiting started. She was so happy. Seeing the girls and the grandchildren was her greatest pleasure. Connie’s last moments was doing what she liked, serving and doing for others. I know without doubt, she passed away as a happy person because she was in the service of her children. After all, she was a mom, and that’s what moms do. Us guys don’t need to understand women, we just need to love them.
Heaven was in need of a great organizer and service driven woman, why else would she be called to go so early. There is no doubt she will be preparing the way for thousands to enter into the presence of our Lord. Heaven got one of the good ones.
As we cry watching her depart from the dock on her ship to the other side of the veil and saying there she goes, there is rejoicing on the other side saying, her she comes.
I love you Connie Sue.