Devout christian, family matriarch, and benevolent humanitarian, Jean Chesner, was called upon by the Lord on Weds., Nov. 16, 2022, lifted high by her loved ones in Pensacola, Fla. Born on Jan. 12, 1927 in Woodbridge, NJ, Jean was the eldest of two daughters and blessed the world with four beautiful children with her first husband Harry Holland: son Christian Holland (predeceased), daughters Susan Holland (predeceased), Christine Cirou, and Kathleen Williams (Robert, sp.). Jean would open her heart to a new and loving family in her union with Harold Chesner (predeceased) in 1983, relocating to Heavenly Acres in Bangor, Pa., before eventually returning to Somerset, NJ, to live in continued celebration of her kinship with sister Nancy, brother-in-law Arnold, and her cherished nieces and nephews. God would call Jean back to “The Sunshine State” in 2019 where she would continue his faithful service until summoned on Nov. 16.
There are not enough words to accurately describe the impact Jean had on her family, her community, and her church, or to articulate her willingness to not only accept, but embrace burdens that would crumble the common man. Jean set a new standard for the care and advancement of special needs children, committing herself to her beloved Susan, who walked into the light in late 2021. There was no obstacle too insurmountable to pass; no hurdle too high to clear. No pastor to hold service at Richmond United Methodist Church in Bangor? No problem! Jean stepped up and delivered a slam-dunk sermon in front of a packed house when the resident minister was felled by flu. That didn’t stop Jean from returning home to cook a complete Thanksgiving dinner for a whopping 12 guests — soup to nuts — before sending her loved ones home with a few extra homemade pies to “hold us over ‘til Christmas.”
Jean was a role model to her children and a fierce champion of women’s empowerment, but also a tender and compassionate soul who conveyed to her grandchildren Rebecca Szabo (Joe, sp.), Jesse Holland (Wendy, sp.), Melissa Krehley (John, sp.), Robert Williams (Margaret, sp.), Kristin Robinson (Phil, sp.), Andrew Cirou (Kristin, sp.) Cale Cirou (Katina Hopkins, sp.), as well as her 12 great grandchildren, Zachary and Rhiannon Szabo, Lexie Holland, Sean and Ossie Barton, Ryker and River Cirou, Tessa, Annabelle, and Cole Krehley, Robert III and Poppy Mae Williams, the gift of an open heart (along with a few boxes of holiday fruit). Humble, gracious, and forever beholden for her place among the Shepherd’s flock, Jean spent most of her life giving away her bounty to those who needed it. Now it’s time for Jean to rest in her rightful place. Friends and family wishing to celebrate her ascension can join us on Tues., Nov. 29, 2022 from 10am to 12pm at Bronson & Guthlein Funeral Home in Milltown, NJ, with burial to follow. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to help children in need at www.smiletrain.org.
Hope is the thing with feathers,
That perches in the soul.
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops - at all.
And sweetest - in the Gale - is heard,
And sore must be the storm.
That could abash the little Bird,
That kept so many warm.
I’ve heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest Sea.
Yet - never - in Extremity,
It asked a crumb - of me.
—Hope is the Thing with Feathers, Emily Dickinson, 1861
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