Jean Tardiff
Jean Tardiff
Jean Tardiff
Jean Tardiff

Obituary of Jean Elizabeth Tardiff

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Jean Elizabeth (Cook) Tardiff passed away peacefully with loved ones by her side on Friday, August 12, 2022 at Inglemoor Rehab & Care Center in Livingston, NJ. She had shared 95 years of unconditional love, infectious laughter, and unforgettable memories with family and friends.


Born and raised in Detroit, MI, to the late Chester Earl and Lulu Frances (Furtah) Cook, Jean was one of three children to bless their household. She was a part of the graduating class from Southeastern High School, Detroit, MI in 1946, returning from Kansas City, Missouri where she attended Paseo High School for a short time.


She married the love of her life, Howard J. Tardiff, in 1947 and after briefly living in Greenwich Village, East Orange, and Mountain Lakes, the happy couple eventually settled into the Lake Arrowhead section of Denville to raise a family of their own.


While being an attentive wife and caring and active Mom, Jean kept a sparkling house and tended garden and always had a delicious warm meal on the table. She sometimes joked she was the best "cook" in the neighborhood. She was able to accomplish all of this while working; she held many jobs throughout the years, including babysitting, bookkeeping, school office assistant work, and even as the local Avon representative. Her most notable career was with Sandoz Inc., in East Hanover as a Research Administrator. She worked so hard to allow her family the opportunity to enjoy life, even learning how to drive at a later age.


The family always had animals from dogs to cats, from parakeets and to the racoons and ducks filling their cottage home and magical yard with love and sometimes mischief and equally enjoyed frequent and lively jaunts down to the Jersey Shore to such spots as Cape May, Island Beach State Park, Seaside Heights, and Wildwood Crest. She treasured these ocean visits reminding her of the sailing days she had with her father on the Great Lakes. Jean also had a passion for reading solo and likewise aloud to her children and had a wonderful talent for drawing and painting, singing and dancing — all of which she shared with everyone and anyone almost right up until her last days. She would frequently break into song with the lyrics from the well-known early twentieth century tune and favorite of her mother's "Let Me Call You Sweetheart ..." without much coaxing.


Although we are deeply saddened by her passing, we take comfort in knowing she is now reunited with her beloved husband, Howard James Tardiff and their son, Bruce Alexander, her sons-in-law, Paul E. Kozlowski and Floyd Scheetz, her parents Chester Earl Cook and Lulu Frances Furtah, her brother Ralph Cook and his wife Sally and their daughter Sharon, her sister Dorothy Cook Avattaneo and her husband Phil, her aunts Belle and Irene, her grandniece, Cheryll Anne Lorentz (daughter of niece Joanne Avattaneo-Lorentz and husband Earl Lorentz), and finally her Phi Lambda Kappa (Detroit Chapter) high school sorority sisters, and best "Denville" friend Muriel Lyman.

She leaves only joyful memories to her adored daughters, Jill A. Tardiff-Kozlowski and Jayne Tardiff; her cherished grandchildren, Aimée Garcia-Lenihan (and her husband Dan), Kevin James Scheetz, and Michael Padgett, Jr.; nieces Joanne Avattaneo-Lorentz and Phyllis Anne Walters and their children and grandchildren.


Public Visitation will be held on Monday, August 22nd from 3 – 7 pm at Norman Dean Home for Services, 16 Righter Avenue, Denville. Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Tuesday, August 23rd at 10 am at St. Catherine of Siena Church, 10 N. Pocono Road, Mountain Lakes, NJ. Burial will follow at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in East Hanover. Memorial Donations are being accepted in Jean's memory to either the Resident Counsel Fund, Inglemoor Rehab and Care Center, Attn: Mr. Steve Izzo, Administrator, 311 South Livingston Avenue, Livingston, NJ 07039 (check made payable to Inglemoor Rehab and Care Center - memo Resident Counsel Donation) or Alzheimer's Association for Alzheimer's and Dementia by clicking here. Please leave a condolence, light a candle, and share your favorite memory of Jean here to continue to celebrate the incredible life she bestowed upon us.