Jeanne Blanton, real estate investor, benefactor to local musicians and artists, master party planner, accomplished traveler, friend to many and stranger to no one, entered eternal life on Monday, Oct. 2.
She began this world as Jeanne Gayle Crook, the second daughter of three children to Joseph Donaldson Crook Sr. and Peggy Mackey Crook in Gonzales, Texas.
Jeanne excelled at education which included earning a bachelor degree in business education, a masters degree in international business, a handful of various insurance and commercial real estate certifications, as well as a ship captain’s license.
She had a life-long love affair with golfing, cruising, photography, home decorating, cooking and hosting fabulous dinner parties. Not necessarily in that order.
Jeanne traveled extensively and collected new friends on her adventures. As a point of pride, she visited every continent on earth… except Antarctica because it was too cold.
She was extremely proud of her son, Andreas, whom she loved with all her heart. One of her favorite memories was watching her son, who was a former marine, stand to attention as he met Colonel Oliver North many years after his service completion. This moment made Jeanne’s grateful heart overflow with love and pride for a son who understood honor, service and sacrifice.
As a young adult, Jeanne moved to Dallas to start her accounting career for Casey & Wolff, a commercial lines insurance firm. She burst through the glass ceiling and made named partner of her thriving insurance company – Casey, Wolff and Martin – for Jeanne Martin.
Jeanne met Don Blanton, a Deep Ellum real estate pioneer who in the 80s and 90s helped shape the district for artists and musicians. Don hotly pursued her – winning both her respect and heart. They married soon after. Jeanne sold the insurance firm at 45-years-old to travel the world and help with Don’s commercial real estate interests in Deep Ellum.
One day, after hosting friends at their second home in Fort Lauderdale, Don returned to Dallas for cancer treatment but he never came home. Jeanne’s heart shattered and she never truly recovered from this great loss. She and Don had been equals in so many ways – married many years, splitting their time between their homes in Dallas and Ft. Lauderdale, traveling and making friends around the world.
After Don’s passing, Jeanne was known for her generosity – funded numerous music and art projects and supported the people behind them as their friend and cheerleader. A friend of hers once said, “She helped keep the music in Dallas alive. She gave me more opportunities than anyone else in my life ever has.”
In 2015, she met and married cruise ship entertainer, Bubba Feathers of the Bubba Feathers Band, from Memphis, TN.
Jeanne is survived by her husband, Bubba Feathers; son, Andreas Rhiese and granddaughter, Katie Doggett; mother, Peggy Crook; siblings, Cathy Crook Neidert and Don (Donnie) Crook Jr., their spouses Gary Neidert and Linda Crook; nieces and nephews; as well as extended family and friends from every walk of life, too numerous to list, but not forgotten.
We were blessed to learn many things from Jeanne during her time on this earth, among them, one can never have sets of china and décor for impromptu entertaining; a woman’s self-esteem is directly related to the size of her earrings and/or height of her platform shoes; generosity and kindness are gifts to be given freely; and invite new friends to Thanksgiving dinner or on a vacation - whichever comes first.
Jeanne has reunited with her late dad, Don Crook, her husband, Don Blanton, grandparents and a host of other family and friends in heaven. It would be fair to say that she “Danced like no one was watching. Sang like no one was listening. Loved like she had never been hurt. And lived like it was heaven on earth.”
The family is hosting a celebration of her life on Saturday, October 21, at City Point Church, 15 Prestige Cir., Allen, TX 75002 at 11 a.m.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the American Cancer Society in the name of Jeanne Blanton at http://main.acsevents.org/goto/jeanneb. The family would like to thank the staff at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas as well as the T. Boone Pickens Hospice and Palliative Care Center who took great care of Jeanne during her final weeks on this earth.