SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

September 10, 2013

Jean Jacobs Conant, 92


Marblehead — Jean Jacobs Conant, 92, has died at her home in Marblehead. Born on March 19, 1921, she was the youngest daughter of Attorney Earl Cleveland Jacobs and Maude Goodwin Jacobs. Jean grew up in Lynn, Mass., graduating from Lynn English High School in 1939. She received a Bachelor of Science from Boston University. After service in the Coast Guard during World War II, Jean returned to Marblehead, where, with her sisters, she assisted their parents who owned the Adams House restaurant on Front Street. In 1946, she married Harding Sortevik of Boston. Their marriage ended in divorce.

After the death of her father in 1959, and the subsequent closing of the Adams House restaurant, Jean taught at what was then Endicott Junior College, while completing a master's degree in psychology, which she received from Boston University. She spent the rest of her professional career in educational counseling, working in high schools in both Ossining, N.Y., and Danbury, Conn., where she was highly respected as a colleague and a mentor to students.

Upon her retirement in 1979, she returned to the North Shore, and lived for a number of years in Salem, where she restored her 18th century residence on Derby Street with great care and attention to historical detail. She also obtained a license as a real estate broker, and worked for various agencies selling property throughout the area.

In 1990, she married George M. Conant and they made their home in Marblehead. In her later years, she exercised her intellectual curiosity by taking many courses at the Explorers Lifelong Learning Institute of Salem State University.

Mrs. Conant was predeceased by her husband, George, and by her sisters, Beth J. Downes and Ruth J. Farwell, both of Marblehead. She is survived by her niece, Dr. Susan J. White of Norwich, Vt., and London, England; her grandnephew, Todd A.H. Waller and his wife, Dr. Kimberly Waller of Salem; and great-grandniece, 6-year-old Zoe.

ARRANGEMENTS: Burial will be in Waterside Cemetery, Marblehead, but at her request there will be no service. Gifts in her memory may be made to the Hospice of the North Shore, or Perkins School for the Blind. Arrangements by Eustis and Cornell Funeral Home of Marblehead.