Joyce Lairmore Jackson, my mother, passed away yesterday evening. She was 95. She is survived by a sister, two children, three grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren . . . and the oldest will remember knowing their great-grandmother.
Mother taught me to read and write. A writer herself, she encouraged everything her children did in any creative field. When I developed a taste for science fiction, she took me to the library and checked out the books I wanted – they were in the adult section, of course!
She offered more than moral support, though. When I started Steve Jackson Games, she kept the books . . . fastidiously, longhand, on big sheets of lined green paper. Soon we had a business staff and she graduated to CFO and the Board of Directors. Eventually she retired, but until the last days of her life she read the Illuminator and took an interest in the company.
Mother grew up during the Great Depression, and went to college at a time few women did. She graduated with both her diploma and an actual "Putting Hubby Through" certificate – I've seen it! With my father Richard, she built a flat-roofed house in the country, raised three kids, and put them through school. Their first car was a war surplus Willys Jeep named "Folly."
She was a quiet person but an amazing one, who expected decency and compassion in others without ever making a show of her own. She was always learning and was good at whatever she set her hand to. I am privileged to be her son.