Jean Marie Mott, 68
July 15, 1950 — August 28, 2018
Jean Marie Mott was born on July 15th, 1950 in Denver, CO to Henry Valentine Mott II and Margie Marie Mott (Slingsby). As a child Jean adored Elvis Presley, enjoyed walking barefoot in dewy morning grass and riding her bike all over town, and reveled in reading Little House on the Prairie books. You could often find her singing along with her sister Judy playing The Sound of Music on the family piano or singing in her middle- and high-school choirs. She graduated from Theodore F. Riggs High School in Pierre, SD in 1968 before spending a semester studying Art and Painting at Northern State University (Aberdeen). When that just wasn’t for her, she hopped on a bus and moved to Denver, CO all by herself at 19 years old; what an adventure! She married Kenny Belcher in Lakewood in the mid 70’s but had no children from that marriage.
Going back to school at Metropolitan State College of Denver, she found she excelled in accounting and business management. She moved between Denver and Fargo several times, eventually earning her Master of Business Administration from North Dakota State University (Fargo). Jean also student-taught accounting at NDSU where she met the love of her life Stanley J. McDougall, who was working as a campus security officer at the time. Together, they moved back to Denver where they were married. Jean began her career with the United States Internal Revenue Service in Denver, CO in 1986 and by mid-August of ‘88 (at the age of 38) had their only child: Virginia Rose McDougall. When Jean and Stan divorced in 1990, Jean and Virginia moved to Spokane, WA to be closer to Jean’s younger sister Jane. Jean bought her first house in 1994 and continued working for the IRS in Spokane.
In 1997, she suffered medical trauma due to (undiagnosed at the time) epilepsy that ended her career and forced her into early retirement. Just before her 50th birthday (2000), Jean suffered a minor stroke that affected her speech and she was forced to work through speech therapy to learn to speak again (mostly to be able to say NO to a teenage daughter, as she would put it). Jean and Virginia moved to Pierre, SD in early 2002. The following year, Jean was diagnosed with early-stage Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma and began aggressive chemotherapy and radiation treatments. in 2004, Jean BEAT THE ILLNESS. She was cancer free for the rest of her life!! It was around this time that Jean’s seizure activity spiked noticeably, and the diagnosis of Epilepsy was finally properly realized so it could be controlled. Because of this and thyroid help, Jean was able to live a very full life despite these few medical setbacks.
Jean enjoyed daily morning walks around the neighborhood with a Methodist women’s group, loved attending and volunteering at her childhood family church of First Congregational United Church of Christ (Pierre, SD), participating and helping out at the Pierre Area Senior Center and Hospice Thrift Store, serving on the board of Habitat for Humanity, and volunteering at the Ambulatory Care Unit. 2010 saw Jean selling her Yankton/Capitol house and she & Virginia moving to Rapid City, SD to be closer to her brother Henry for a time, then on to Denver again in 2012. Jean was very socially and politically active, remaining in contact with countless friends all over the country through Facebook.
Jean has always been an avid participant and supporter of the arts and has been Virginia’s biggest fan in every audience throughout the years. She was a fierce warrior for social justice, always befriending the oppressed and undervalued members of society and advocating on their behalf, even at a young age. Shy but outspoken when it matters, Jean fought hard to provide the absolute best she could in any situation and always put others before herself. She will be greatly missed by countless souls.
Jean suffered a fall and head injury outside her and Virginia’s Denver condominium on April 21st, 2018 due to negligible maintenance of a common area. Jean was admitted to Swedish Medical Center (Englewood) for a temporal bone fracture and subdural hematoma (brain bleed), and she presented with immediate left side weakness, was unable to walk or use her left arm. She was recovering slowly at Swedish in their excellent care but (as insurance sometimes dictates), she had to leave the acute rehab on May 15th. Unfortunately, Jean suffered MANY more falls and injury in the care of sub-acute rehab center Orchard Park (Centennial) and was re-admitted to Aurora Medical Center (Aurora) to undergo EMERGENCY brain surgery on May 23rd, 2018. Jean worked SO hard with physical therapists, occupational therapists, and speech therapists but was unable to recover from her head injury and passed peacefully at home surrounded by friends and song, midday on August 28th, 2018.
Jean is survived by only child Virginia R. McDougall, brother Henry V. Mott III, sisters Judy A. Feldman and Jane L. Mott-Corcoran. Nieces: Christina Bernard, Natalie Feldman-Ozga, Aubrey Feldman, Sarah Prentice-Mott. Nephews: Harrison Prentice-Mott, John Gosselin, Jesse Gosselin, Graeme Prentice-Mott, Joe Feldman. Jean was preceded in death by (ex)husband Stanley J. McDougall (2015) as well as both her parents.