Jane Hartzell Bates

Jane Hartzell Bates

Monday, August 20th, 1934 - Friday, August 7th, 2020
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Mary Jane Hartzell Bates, 85, passed away peacefully on Friday, August 7, 2020 in Virginia Beach, VA just shy of her 86th birthday. Jane is survived by her loving husband of 64 years, Arthur and her 3 children: Elaine (Bates) and James Jones of Cromwell, CT, James and Claudia of Berryville, VA, and Kenneth and Mara of Chesapeake, VA along with her 3 grandchildren McKenna, Kaden and Makayda. Close family also includes her brother-in-law Albert and his wife Barbara of Chelmsford, MA.

Jane was born in Harrisburg, PA and grew up in Lancaster, PA. During high school in Lancaster, she performed as a clarinet soloist with the Knights of Malta Band, the New Holland Band, and Doris Nock and her Dreamlanders, an all-girl dance band. She graduated from the Pennsylvania State University in 1957 and was listed in the 1957 edition of “Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities.” While at Penn State she was a member of the Concert Blue Band, Kappa Delta Sorority, and served on Mademoiselle magazine’s College Board. She was also a charter member of Angel Flight (the Air Force ROTC Auxiliary).

Jane and Art settled in Connecticut in 1957 where she was initially employed as a Home Economist with Northeast Utilities. She obtained a teaching certificate from St. Joseph’s College and served as a substitute teacher in schools within the Farmington Valley. She subsequently worked as a Legal Assistant at Pease and Main LLC, in Simsbury, retiring in 1995.

Jane was a member of First Church of Christ Simsbury, for 31 years where she served as an Elder and was a charter member of the Choral Bells handbell choir. A life-long music enthusiast, she learned to play the organ in mid-life and played at the church’s chapel services from 1995-1996. Following retirement, she moved to Wethersfield and became a member of the Chancel and handbell choirs at Church of Christ, Congregational, Newington. She co-directed the handbell choir for one year and served on the Music Board for six years. She continued to study classical organ and substituted at the church’s Moller organ on several occasions. She was a past president of both the Naval Academy Parents’ Club of Connecticut and the Connecticut Valley Theatre Organ Society. She served as Concert Chairman for the latter group for ten years and also as chapter correspondent for the society’s Theatre Organ magazine. She was also passionate about environmental issues and active in several environmental groups.

Moving to Chesapeake, VA in 2007 to be closer to her beloved grandchildren, Jane joined Great Bridge Presbyterian Church and played handbells with the Alleluia Ringers.

Jane and her husband Art enjoyed traveling and visited many states and National parks in the U.S. Their foreign travel included tours of Scotland, Wales, and England, Germany, Vienna and Switzerland, Ireland and Northern Ireland, Israel, Bermuda, Hawai’i, and a river cruise in Russia from Moscow to St. Petersburg. They also visited Alaska, the Yukon Territory, the Canadian Rockies, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Campobello Island.

Viewings will be held at Graham Funeral Home, 1112 Kempsville Rd. Chesapeake on Monday, August 10, 2020 from 4-7pm and Thursday, August 13, 2020 from 4-7pm at Vincent Funeral Home, 880 Hopmeadow St, Simsbury, CT with burial to follow Friday morning at 10:30am in Simsbury Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Connecticut Fund for the Environment, the Connecticut Humane Society, or the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Monday, August 10th, 2020 | 4:00pm - 7:00pm
    Monday, August 10th, 2020 4:00pm - 7:00pm
    Graham Funeral Home
    1112 Kempsville Road
    Chesapeake, VA 23320
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Interment

    Simsbury Cemetery
    16 Plank Hill Rd
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Kathryn Gardow

Posted at 07:38pm
Sending my love to Art, Elaine, Jimmy & Kenny & your families on the loss of your Mom... Jane. So many memories of your Mom. Sending love. Kathryn Gardow

Cynthia Franklin

Posted at 01:11pm
Miss and Love my lil 🐞 Ladybug , Birthday Twin. With a heavy ❤ i will let my Ladybug fly. Our Memories i will never forget so sorry i didn't get w polish your nails 1 more time i will hold all those special moments in my ❤. Love n miss u Ladybug fly on.

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