Janis Newell Profile Photo
1952 Janis 2024

Janis Newell

July 30, 1952 — March 12, 2024

Janis was born 7/30/1952 in San Jose, CA.  Shortly after birth she was adopted by the Newell family.  Unfortunately, they were a troubled family and Janis was not close to them nor did she stay in contact with them.  That is why I am writing her obituary.  If there are mistakes, I apologize.  I wrote it to the best of my knowledge.
During Janis' high school years, she had a good friend Betty Heath who introduced her to the Gospel and fellowshipped her in all Church activities.  
Janis graduated from Ricks College in Rexburg, ID.  She was there during the great flood of 1976.
She later graduated from Utah State in Logan, UT, in 1986, in Recreational Management.
She served a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in North Carolina 1973-1975.
Janis never married nor had a family.
She worked for the Forest Service and was a Park Ranger in California.  She told me about living in the mountains in a primitive cabin with no running water or electricity.  And she LOVED it!
When she moved to Utah she met Barbara Knight.  They were roommates for 32 years till Barbara passed away a year ago.  One of their favorite things to do was go eat at Empire Chinese Food in Centerville on New Years Eve.
I had the good fortune to meet Janis in June of 2018.  We worked together in the Bountiful Temple.  For several years we rode together to and from our shifts.  This was the perfect opportunity to get to know her better.  
Even though Janis had many challenges in her life, she was always upbeat and tried to have a positive attitude.  She had a keen mind and was a ferocious reader.  When we went to the library, she would check out tons of books at a time about animals, countries, and history.  She also LOVED getting DVDs and watching them.  She loved horror movies and comedies.
Janis was friendly and helpful to everyone.  If we were in the grocery store parking lot, and she would see someone putting their groceries in their car, she would just walk over and just start helping them.  
 She would talk to ANYBODY, no matter where we were. There wasn't a stranger she didn't like!  She would share she was 98% Irish and had a DNA test to prove it.  Or that she had taught cub scouts for 22 years, or that she had served in the Bountiful temple for that same amount of time, or how the Oakland RAIDERS were the best football team.  Her bedroom was filled with all possible Raider's paraphernalia.  On our trips she would gulp down her favorite drink of Diet Pepsi and then burb as loud as she could.  And she would just laugh out loud!
As her seizures got worse, she was not allowed to drive anymore.  That was like clipping her wings.  Then she took the bus everywhere.  Later her Centerville Ward all pitched in and got her a 3-wheel adult bike.  She loved it!  She had freedom again.  She rode that bike everywhere.  Even when she moved to Farmington, she still rode her bike to Dick's (her favorite store) in Centerville.
Her anti-seizure meds really made her hands shake.  But she tried to stay busy.  She made many plastic canvas needlepoint blocks to give to children at the Children's Justice Center.
About 4 years ago, Janis also invited me to come to Humanitarian Services with her in Centerville.  I think she needed a ride more than anything.  What a group of fabulous sisters who just loved and embraced her.  Janis helped us by rolling all the yarn into balls.
In the beginning of November 2023 Janis needed surgery to remove some cysts off her spinal cord.  Unfortunately, that left her paralyzed from the neck down.  She was on a ventilator and on a feeding tube.  She was such a trooper and never complained even though this was torture for her after living such an active lifestyle and riding her trike everywhere.  Thanks to the dedicated support from the RS president, friends from the temple and humanitarian and other leaders, she was able to get off the ventilator and move her left arm a little.  
About the end of February, she decided she was ready to go Home.  They stopped the tube feedings and she peacefully passed away on March 12,2024.
She was always valiant in the Gospel and had a true love for the Savior.  She loved all people without prejudice.  She was generous with what little she had.  She was funny and quick-witted.  She freely expressed appreciation.  She loved nature, cats, and Baskin Robbins, and she served wherever she could. She was a dear friend.
At her request there will be no service or memorial.


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