Judy Jackson Henry Laidler, 79, daughter of Burr and Moneita Jackson of Lake Odessa, peacefully departed on the evening of August 20, 2021 at Appledorn Living Center in Holland, MI. She was born on August 13, 1942.
Judy was raised in Lake Odessa, MI with her older siblings, Burwayne and Janet. She often got into trouble for talking in class and remained an enthusiastic conversationalist throughout her life.
Judy was also voraciously curious and had a difficult time choosing which career path she wanted to take. True to form, she chose several over the years. She got her kindergarten teaching certificate by taking college courses at her alma mater, Lakewood High School. She later obtained a real estate license.
Later in life, Judy became a certified EMT and joined the Lake Odessa emergency response team. She could not watch scary movies, because they gave her nightmares, but she was compelled by the workings of the human body. Assisting with the patching up the injuries she encountered as an EMT not only didn’t bother her but filled her with wonder. She was fascinated with physiology.
Regarding movies, Judy was famous in the family for sleeping through them in the theater, especially Star Wars, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, and Rocky.
She also worked for the David Burnett & John P. Hemming optometry practice in Lake Odessa, then later in Grand Ledge, MI processing insurance claims and record keeping. She eventually retired from this position in the early aughts.
Most of her friends and acquaintances will remember her, too, as an energetic and buoyant volunteer. As her health became worse and mobility near impossible, her greatest fear was being of no use. When she could no longer help others, she decided her song had been sung and she left on her own terms in her favorite chair, just as she wanted.
Judy married John D. Henry in 1962 and they later divorced in 1983. John (Arlene) passed away in 2019 in Wayland, MI.
Judy had three children with John and is survived by her oldest son, Wesley D. Henry, who is currently living in Philadelphia but remains a loyal Michigander.
She was preceded in death by her second youngest son, Kyle J. Henry, who passed away unexpectedly in July of 2013. Kyle is survived by his only child, Thomas John “TJ” Henry of Hastings, MI.
Judy was also preceded in death by her youngest and only daughter, Angela B. Henry Palanca (Patrick), who passed unexpectedly in May of 2020 in Homewood, IL. Angela also left us from her favorite chair, at home, after closing her eyes one afternoon for a quick nap. She had three beautiful children: Nickalas, Isabella and Benjamin. All four of Judy’s grandchildren were the apple of her eye, and she loved having them visit every summer and at “ThanksChristmas” in November, her solution for celebrating both holidays at a time when the whole family could get together in Holland.
Judy married Methodist Pastor Donald “Keith” Laidler in 1992 in Lake Odessa. Keith passed away in July of 2020. Preceding him in death was his son, Joseph, from his first marriage. He was survived by Judy and the mother of his children, Jacqueline Symons-Laidler, and his four surviving children from his marriage to Jacqueline: Sheryl (Roger) Miller, Lynette (Steven) Keteyian, Brent Laidler, and Don (Darcy) Laidler, who all had a fond place in Judy’s heart.
Judy requested that there be no reception or service and that she be cremated. Referred to by her eldest son as “a little motor scooter,” her wishes will be respected.
The family would like to thank everyone who touched Judy with your kindness and provided a helping hand when she needed it. They appreciate it more than can be expressed by words.
Judy and her husband, Keith, volunteered for an organization called Mobility Worldwide West Michigan. Please visit their website. If you would like to volunteer, this organization needs accountable, exciting people who want to contribute. Please contact them if you are inspired by their mission. If you would like to make a donation to MWWM in Judy’s memory, send to: Mobility Worldwide West Michigan, 3365 John F. Donnelly Drive, Holland, MI 49424.
Online sympathies can be left at https://www.dignitymemorial.com/