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Mrs. Ila Stargel Sewell Jones

August 21, 1903 ~ November 10, 2017 (age 114)

At age 114, Mrs. Ila Arminda Stargel Sewell Jones, a resident of Cave Spring until the 1960s and a resident of Rome since the 1990s, passed away November 10, 2017. At the time of her death, Mrs. Jones was the second oldest person in America, and the tenth oldest in the world.

Mrs. Jones was born August 21, 1903, in a log cabin her father built in Cane Creek near Dahlonega. After completing the ninth grade, Mrs. Jones began teaching in a one-room Lumpkin County school in Cane Creek, arriving there on a mule. After graduating from North Georgia College in 1929 as valedictorian, she began teaching in Cave Spring. She married Paul C. Sewell, Sr., a farmer, and later taught at the Georgia School for the Deaf and the Cedartown High School.

After Paul Sr.’s death and her retirement, Mrs. Jones moved to Huntsville, AL, near a sister and taught at the Randolph Academy until mandatory retirement at age 70, later teaching in a rural school as a physical education teacher. During her time in Alabama, she met and married Orville U. Jones, moving with him to Pasadena, TX, where she served as a substitute teacher. At Orville’s retirement, the couple moved to their vacation home in Trinity Cove, TX, where Orville died. Mrs. Jones remained in Texas for five years, during which time she attended class at Texas A & M University to become the licensed operator of their community sewer treatment facility.

Besides gardening, church, and community activities, Mrs. Jones became grandmother to her neighborhood, aiding the ill, tutoring children and adults, lending toys and books to children on a check-out basis, life guarding, and conducting bingo at her community center. In her mid eighties, Mrs. Jones moved to San Diego, CA, living with a grand-daughter and caring for her infant children. The following two years Mrs. Jones spent in Plano, Texas, caring for two step great-grandsons.

Mrs. Jones always had an excellent outlook on life, and at age 89 she moved back to Rome, and became a member of the Vann’s Valley United Methodist Church.

Mrs. Jones is survived by two sons, Ike Sewell (Rebecca) of Knoxville, TN, and Paul C. Sewell, Jr. (Margaret) of Rome. Four grandchildren, Mary Blake (Mike), John Sewell (Stacy), Howard Sewell (Ann), and Leeann Denham (Bob); nine great-grandchildren; four great-great-grandchildren; three step children, Carolyn, Phyllis, and Diane; several step grandchildren, step great-grandchildren, and step great-great-grandchildren also survive. Mrs. Jones’ family is grateful to the staff of the Manor House Assisted Living and the Homestead Hospice for their excellent care.

A celebration of Mrs. Jones’ life was held Saturday, November 18, 2017, at 2:00 P.M. at John House’s Cave Spring Chapel with Rev. Bill Couey officiating. Interment followed in the Greenwood Cemetery in Cedartown. The family received friends at the funeral home Saturday from 1:00 P.M. until the funeral hour.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to Homestead Hospice, 162 West Main Street, Suite 104, Cartersville, 30120, or to the charity of your choice.

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