Obituary - Eleanor Jones

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Published Thursday, May 4, 2017

Eleanor Jones

(April 1, 1923 - May 2, 2017)

Antonia Eleanor Jones was born April 1, 1923, to immigrants Frank and Antonia Bratkovic in Kansas City, Kansas. She grew up in the Slovenian/Croatian community of Strawberry Hill and always loved the ethnic foods such as Kielbasa (sausage) and Povatica (a walnut bread), which her sister Marge still makes every year. She had two older brothers, Frank and Carl, both deceased, and a younger sister Margaret (Marge) who resides in Littleton, Colorado.

The Bratkovic family always struggled financially. Mom left school halfway through her junior year of high school to help with family expenses. Birthday parties generally did not happen, but very special to her was one teenage birthday. She had moved in with a neighbor family to care for their twins and the lady baked her a four-layer cake, each layer a different color. The cake and potato salad were her birthday dinner.

In December of 1944 she met a young GI named Ernest Jones at a USO Christmas dance in Kansas City. Four months later, she took the train to Savannah, Georgia, where they were married on April 8, 1945, in a small chapel near the Army base where he was stationed. Her maid of honor was a woman she had met on a street corner who offered her shelter under her umbrella during a rainstorm. Their wedding supper consisted of oranges and grapefruits which they had bought at a fruit stand. Upon Ernie's discharge from the military, the couple moved to the family homestead owned by Ernie's parents north of Kit Carson, Colorado. The farm was sold in 1946 and they moved into Kit Carson where they ran a restaurant. In 1949 they purchased the local drug store with a restaurant attached from W.E. Oxelson for $26,500 which they operated as the Jones Store for 35 years. Dad was very handy and often did remodeling jobs for townspeople so Mom was responsible for running the business. She kept meticulous records and made many trips into Denver to pick up inventory. The restaurant and later the coffee shop were known for Mom's great pies and sloppy joes. Her peach pies were legendary and she had the honorary title of "The Pie Queen" for the numerous blue ribbons she won at Kit Carson Day celebrations.

Ernie and Eleanor had three children, Toni (Steve) Schreivogel who lives in Westminster, Colorado; Mike (Ree) Jones who lives in Bigfork, Montana, and Cindy (Ed) Harold who lives on a farm near Weskan, Kansas. They were blessed with seven grandchildren: Justin (Stacy) Vogel of Las Vegas, Nevada; Tiffany (Kevin) Herron of Arvada, Colorado; Tatum (Tim) Parker of Holcomb, Kansas; Meagan (Gabe) Lewis of Daytona, Florida; Nate (Caroline) Harold of Los Angeles, California; Laith (Ashley) Jones of Whitefish, Montana; Brock (Ashley) Jones of Missoula, Montana. They were also blessed with six great-grandchildren:. Payton and Colton Herron, Evan Lewis, Eamon and Elowen Jones, Ella and Luke Parker. Mom was known as Aunt Ele to her sister Marge's children who were particularly attentive and supportive of her throughout her life.

Mom and Dad loved bowling and had many trophies to show for it. They also loved the Colorado Rockies and followed their progress religiously. Ernie passed away in August of 2003 and Mom continued to live in Kit Carson until she went to Cheyenne Manor in Cheyenne Wells, Colorado, in September 2013. She was very happy in the Manor and loved playing pitch, bingo, and whatever games were on at the time. Mom left this earth on May 2, 2017. She was extremely grateful to the staff at the Manor for their excellent care and concern for her. Her last years were happy and content thanks to these dedicated and marvelous people.

Funeral services for Eleanor Jones were held on Saturday May 6, 2017 at the United Methodist Church in Kit Carson.  Rev. Burry Bessee officiated.  Burial followed in the Kit Carson Cemetery.  Memorial contributions can be made to the Cheyenne Manor in Cheyenne Wells.  Friends and family can sign the guestbook and register online condolences at www.brownfuneraldirectors.com.  Visitation and funeral services were entrusted to the care of the Brown Funeral Home.