“Law and Order” (not SVU, but the original) lost a loyal follower on June 28, 2023. Loretta Jean Elliott Yount (“Jeanne”), formerly of Licking, was born October 1, 1942, and passed away at her home in Rainbow City, Ala., at the age of 80. Contributing factors were absolutely not the decades of smoking (her favorite thing), the love of a great party, nor her proficiency in polishing off an entire birthday cake in under 24 hours while managing to stay thin. She wasn’t quite sure when it was that everyone else had gotten old, but she was only old when looking in the mirror.
Her memorial will take place at Pilot Knob Church, Rolla, Mo., on Saturday, August 26, at 11 a.m. Anyone wearing black will not be admitted. Just kidding: she appreciated that black was slimming.
Jeanne was a lover of reminiscing while driving a country road, a good swimming hole, a winding creek, a stocked pond, a breezy lake and the vast ocean. Mostly, she loved a white sand beach. Luckily, so did the love of her life, Ron Yount, husband number two, her forever number one, the often-nerdy engineer who couldn’t help but devise gadgets attempting to make her one-handed life easier. After originally pairing up at the Pub Mobile during the height of the disco era, he remained her kind-hearted, long-winded, handsome lover of all things nautical; he was her best friend, the Ying to her Yang that loved her as we all wish to be loved until his passing in 2006. Their twenty-nine years together consisted of moves to different states and new adventures; they allowed her to travel to far-off beaches, sail the Virgin Islands as first mate to her Captain Ron (always sporting her ski belt and whistle…because safety first), retire to Carrabelle, Fla., enjoy hundreds of sunsets along the Gulf of Mexico, sail to and stroll the beach of her beloved Dog Island, and save, rehome and adopt more than a few cats. She was truly blessed.
The woman who loved life, who couldn’t survive without her radio, who despised aging, and who endured entirely too much physical pain, wanted everyone to feel loved, find happiness and have a great time. She is now dancing with Ron on Heaven’s dance floor to the music of the rockers she mourned losing over the years. Thank you, Jesus, for not taking Barry Gibb or Mick Jagger while she was still here. She would have been genuinely inconsolable.
Jeanne was preceded in death by her parents, Joseph and Juanita Elliott; brothers, Don, Joe and Al Elliott; beautiful older sister, Ruby Elliott Crowell; chosen sister, Loretta Phelps Finley; and best friend and husband, Ron Yount (along with two of his children, Karie Yount Morris and Ronnie Yount, Jr.) She is survived by her children; Gary Phelps, Ron Mack Phelps, Katie Phelps Minner and Wendy Phelps (formerly of Licking); little sister, Patricia Elliott; chosen sister, Phyllis Phelps Phillips; brothers, Norman and Dale Elliott; cousin and childhood best friend, Carole Elliott Corzine; grandchildren, Ronny Mann, Dustin Phelps, Sara McAllister Landing, Andrew McAllister and Phillip DeMuro; and great-grandsons Anson Phelps and James Landing. Jeanne was also blessed with a second loving family through her marriage that includes son, Todd Yount; grandchildren, Johnny Ruddell, Ronnie Yount III, Josh Yount, Paris Yount Anderson and Michael Yount; and a host of great- and great-great-grandchildren!
Jeanne is not dead. She is whole again and very much alive with Jesus.