Jane Wailes Derivaux

Published 11:52 am Monday, October 10, 2011

Jane Wailes Derivaux, 80, of Vicksburg, died Sunday, Oct. 9, 2011, at her home.

She was born July 2, 1931, in Vicksburg, to Marie and Robert Preston Wailes. Jane was a member of St. Paul Catholic Church. She grew up in Vicksburg, the third of eight children. When she was 5, her father died unexpectedly.

As a child, she loved to read. Jane was the salutatorian of the 1949 graduating class of Carr Central High School. While in high school, she was selected to attend Girls’ State and served as co-editor of the school newspaper, The Tattler. She attended Ole Miss, where she was a member of Delta Delta Delta sorority.

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In 1952, Jane married her longtime sweetheart, John A. “Jerry” Derivaux, and they lived at the University of Notre Dame for his final semester of college. After living in Gulfport and St. Louis in their early years of marriage, they settled in Vicksburg.

Jane was the ultimate devoted wife and mother. She and Jerry prospered, had seven children, and were married for 57 years until his death in March 2009. She provided invaluable support to Jerry in his State Farm Agency, and together they enjoyed a successful business.

Jane was a member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary and was the only sustaining member for many years. Although she had been ill for more than 50 years, Jane was an unparalleled role model for all who had the privilege of knowing her. One favorite memory of our mother was that she always looked her best. Affectionately known as “Mommother” to her grandchildren, Jane’s first thought every morning and her last thought every night was her family.

Preceding her in death were her parents; her husband, Jerry; her sisters, Marie Smith and Judy Kincannon; and her brother, Warren Lassiter.

She is survived by her sisters, Sally Wailes of Vicksburg, Ann Buchanan of Jackson; her brothers, Preston Wailes and Marion Lassiter, both of New Orleans; her seven children, Jane Derivaux Jones (Ken) of Ridgeland, John Allen Derivaux Jr. of Vicksburg, Mary Derivaux Bass (Mike) of Houston, Ann Derivaux Haden (Eddie) of Vicksburg, Robert Preston Derivaux (Nancy) of Jackson, Diane Derivaux Kemp (William) of Vicksburg and Jerry Noel Derivaux of Vicksburg; grandchildren, Cameron Jones, Jordan Jones Yerger (Adams), Townsend Derivaux, Mattie Carlyle Derivaux, Mollie Jo Derivaux, Stratton Derivaux, Hampton Derivaux, Heidi Haden, Kelly Haden Meeks (Nic), Rob Derivaux, Beth Derivaux, Caroline Kemp, Carter Kemp and Wailes Kemp; and one great-granddaughter, namesake Jane Ellen Yerger.

The children would especially like to thank the caregivers who treated their mother with such kindness and concern. These include Alma Moore, Ernestine Ross, Demetrius Armistead, Carolyn Tolliver and Stephanie Squire. They also appreciate the dedication of Carol Bonelli and Gilbert’s Home Health Care, the administration of Private Home Care, as well as Dr. Randy Easterling, and his nurse, Rhiannon Cannada.

Visitation with the family will be Tuesday evening, Oct. 11, from 5 until 7 at Fisher Funeral Home, 1830 Cherry St., Vicksburg. Funeral services will be at St. Paul Catholic Church, 713 Crawford St., Vicksburg, Wednesday morning at 10.

Memorials may be made to Vicksburg Catholic School, 1900 Grove St., Vicksburg, MS 39183.