Jewell Johnston Lawson
October 14, 1929 - October 24, 2020 (age 91)
Jewell Johnston Lawson, of Kissimmee, passed away October 24, 2020. A member of a Pioneer Osceola County family, Jewell was born in St. Cloud, FL. She was the daughter of John J Johnston and Charlotte E Bartlett. She was the last of her generation of Johnston's to be at peace in the arms of the Lord.
Jewell graduated from St. Cloud High School, playing on the basketball team, and she was the Majorette in the St. Cloud High School marching band. She met the love of her life, "Sonny" (James F.) Lawson. She went on to attend Stetson University and then, because Sonny was at University of Florida, she moved there to be near him. They were married on July 22, 1950, in what their friends lovingly referred to as "when the "Cowboy" met and caught the "Bulldog". From that day forward, every year when that rival game was coming up, there was a lot of kind-hearted banter around the house.
Always cheerful and smiling, Jewell gladly put others’ needs before hers. She lived her life following her beliefs that we should always look for the good in people rather than nit-picking and dwelling on the negatives, and never holding grudges. She had the biggest, caring heart and helped others in any way she could. All her friends, of which there were MANY, gravitated toward her when she entered the room. She was a joy to be around and whomever met her was left with a positive, lasting impression.
She had such a love of music - singing, dancing around the house, and playing the piano. Jewell was a stay-at-home Mom to be with her children while Sonny was often away as an airline pilot with Eastern Air Lines. Jewell encouraged family outings and gatherings, spending weekends boating in the Florida Keys; fishing; visiting Washington D.C. on numerous occasions because of its patriotic and historical significance -- wanting her children to appreciate the history of those who came before us, as her grandparents immigrated from Ireland. Raising Thoroughbred horses on a family farm in South Florida was a highlight for Jewell and the family. She and Sonny built their final home on the Lawson Family homestead in Kissimmee. Jewell looked forward to playing canasta with her beloved friends, spent countless hours creating beautiful crewel artwork, and thoroughly enjoyed spending time at their condo on Cocoa Beach with her grandchildren around her. She and Sonny loved and looked forward to their yearly cruises.
Jewell led an active life. She was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Kissimmee, Cub Scout Den Mother for her son's scout troop, the Florida Thoroughbred Breeders Assn, the Silver Spurs Club, the Cowbelles Assn, UF "Bull" Gators, Kissimmee Jr. Women's Club, Honorary member of the Florida Sheriffs Assn, Supporter of the Florida Sheriffs Youth Ranches, participated in the Osceola County Sheriffs Citizens Academy, supporter of the E.P. Kayo Murphy Golf Classic, Honorary member of the Houston Astros Boosters Club, devoted supporter of the Orlando Magic, devoted Miami Dolphin season ticket holders and went to every home game in 1972 (the year they won every game AND the Super Bowl), and a member of the OCARC in honor of her nephew, Brian Colmer, volunteering on a daily basis at the Opportunity Center. Sometimes picking her grandchildren up from school to take them to the Opportunity Center with her to show them the importance of helping others less fortunate by volunteering in any way to make their lives more meaningful. That quality remains in them to this day.
Jewell was cherished and loved by all her children, grandchildren, and anyone that knew her and will be greatly missed by all. She cared and did so much for others, living a full life – it is time for a much-deserved rest. She has more than earned it and I know she is at peace in the arms of the Lord, AND she gets to hold Sonny's hand again-they were always holding hands. She gets to hold and hug her beloved son Marc again. His passing devastated her, Sonny, and everyone else. She gets to see her family and friends again. What a welcome party she had waiting for her! I have often thought over the years, that her Mother and Daddy knew on the day she was born what a “Jewel” she was then and would be her entire life. God bless her - our Mom, grandmother, and friend. We will see her again – to hold her hand forever.
Jewell had three children, Catherine Elizabeth, Marcus Glenn, and Stacy Lynn. She has seven grandchildren: Jennifer Ashley Diehl, Kimberly Ann Baxter, Christopher Ryan Snyder, Matthew Blayne Penn, Danielle Jewell Penn, William D. Lawson, and Cathy Lynn Heyde. She had ten great-grandchildren; Jordyn Alexys Gladd, Kayleigh Jewell Baxter, Avery Blayne Penn, Keller Warren Penn, Woody Preston Straub, Paizley Blayne Straub, Rafe Lawson, Rylie Lawson, Aimee Otterbein, and Cole Heyde. She had numerous nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, "Sonny" Lawson, her son, Marc Lawson, her brother, Jay Johnston, and her sisters, June Griffin, Doris Colmer, and Marilyn McWhorter.
Private family visitation will be followed by a private family graveside service with the Reverend Cathy Thacker, First United Methodist Church, St. Cloud, Officiating.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Jewell's name can be made to the Florida Sheriffs Youth Ranches, 9291 US-90, Live Oak, FL 32060.
The Lawson family is being cared for by CONRAD & THOMPSON FUNERAL HOME, 511 EMMETT STREET, KISSIMMEE, FLORIDA 34741 (407)847-3188
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