Mary Ida “Jari” Jackson

Oct 18th, 1934 - Dec 19th, 2016


Mitchell-Hughes Funeral Home

Tue, Dec. 27th, 2016 10 am - 12 pm


Mitchell-Hughes Funeral Home

Tue, Dec. 27th, 2016 12 pm


Rose Hill Cemetery

Mary Ida “Jari” Jackson

Mary Ida “Jari” Jackson, 82, of Marion, passed away on Monday, December 19, 2016 at 7:05 pm at Marion Rehab. 

Jari was born October 18, 1934 in St. Louis, Missouri the only child of William and Aurora Jackson.  

She graduated from Marion High School and received a Williamson County scholarship to attend the University of Illinois, graduating with a degree in Journalism.  She was very proud of her career, writing was the love of her life always going under the byline of “Jari’s Jottings”.  Jari worked as a writer/reporter/ editor for several newspapers including the St. Louis Globe-Democrat, Chicago Tribune, Evansville Courier, Champaign News-Gazette, Lincoln-Way Sun and New Lenox Community Reporter.   Her passion for journalism started as a teen when she worked summers for the Marion Daily Republican. While working for the Joliet Herald she wrote a book “A Dozen Knights and Griffins” in tribute to the Lincolnway High School District. She met and interviewed many celebrities, including presidents and their wives, political figures and many more.  This includes a close relationship and friendship with movie critic Roger Ebert whom she shared a special relationship with thru-out their careers. After a 53 year career spanning several states Jari returned to Marion where she was involved in many organizations.  She served as past vice- president for the Federated Woman’s Club of Marion and the Southern Illinois District 25 Women’s Club. She joined the Southern Illinois Writers Guild and her memberships included the Marion Cultural and Civic Center Foundation Board, Suzanne Stuckey Mission Circle, Deborah Circle of Zion Church and Marion First Baptist Church. 

Although Jari never married or had any children of her own she had close family members that she loved, cherished and enjoyed spending time with. Special caregiver and friend Joann Pearce and her childhood friends Ursula Richey, Claire Giles, Ann Schafle Trask, Betsy Hendrick and Esta Mae Fowler. 

Preceded by her Parents, Haskell Hunter who was like a second mother, cousins; Charlotte Hilliard, Janet Coats, Christine Mondus, Don Pearce and Debbie Clanahan. 

The family would like to thank the caring staff of Marion Nursing and Rehab for her care. 

Funeral services will be Tuesday, December 27, 2016 at 12 pm  at Mitchell-Hughes Funeral Home with Dr. Bob Dickerson officiating.  Visitation will be from 10 am until the time of service at the funeral home.  Entombment will be in Rose Hill Cemetery. 

For those who prefer memorials may be made to Hospice of Southern Illinois or the First Baptist Church.  Envelopes will be available and accepted at Mitchell-Hughes Funeral Home, 800 North Market Street, Marion, Illinois  62959.





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2 Guestbook Messages

  • Guest: Betsy Hendrick

    From: Champaign, Illinois

    Date: December 23, 2016

    I am so very sorry to hear of Jari’s passing. I knew she was not in good health but hoped she could hang on until early in 2017. However, I hope she is out of any pain now. She taught me so much working with her on The News-Gazette and Jari, my brother and I spent the summer of 1962 in Europe, three months, what a wonderful trip. She lived with my daughter and me for a few months in a Chicago suburb, a period of time we very much enjoyed. God bless her. Betsy

  • Guest: Lois Pauline Barnes Barrett

    From: Walnut Hill, Illinois

    Date: December 27, 2016

    Classmate, club member friends, fellow author, former reporter for news media. cherished the many times spent with her at class reunions, club meetings, and as a friend.