Jeanne Maxwell Williams
August 25, 1924 – February 17, 2021
Jeanne Maxwell Williams, 96, of Las Vegas, Nevada, passed away peacefully on February 17th with her family and loved ones by her side.
Jeanne was predeceased by her father, Silvester Williams, mother, Jane Dalgliesh and sister Helen. She is survived by her loving daughter, Christine Curtis Wilson (John Burke) and her grandchildren, Phoenix Calabro (Leo), Alexis Jorge (Carlos) and Jeauxie Escalante (Jared). After Jeanne attended Scarsdale High School, she went on to study at the Syracuse University, College of Fine Arts. After college, she moved to New York City where, to support herself as a struggling artist, she worked as a fashion model, a nightclub singer and even had her own weather show on television. Always the adventurer, Jeanne also learned to fly planes.
Escaping the New York winter one February, she traveled to Florida where she met her future husband, Ed Wilson. After a whirlwind romance, the two were married and she moved to Ed’s home, in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. It was there that Jeanne had her daughter and lifelong best friend, Christine. Ed also had a large farm and it was there she developed a love of horseback riding. Never one to sit still, she returned to her painting and sculpture as well as continuing her acting career in New York City. Sadly, the couple grew apart and Jeanne decided her next adventure would be to move to Las Vegas and get a divorce.
Jeanne flourished in Las Vegas. She moved into the Desert Inn Country Club where her next door neighbor was a minister. She joined his church, The Center for Spiritual Living, which she and Christine have attended to this day. Las Vegas was a much smaller town then and she got to make many friends and paint many of the City’s most prestigious residents. She also got a job as the activities director for the Sands Hotel and enjoyed the town’s vibrancy and night life. She also pursued her love of golf and tennis. It was then she met her next husband-to-be, Jack Kent Cooke. After four years of dating, he finally whisked her off to Virginia, where he had a large estate, to get married. Unfortunately, before too long, she couldn’t just be Mrs. Jack Kent Cooke and had to return to being Jeanne Maxwell Williams. She returned to Las Vegas and the life she loved - painting, creating sculptures, teaching clay modeling and being athletic. She developed a love of figure skating which she did well into her 80’s. Jeanne was in innumerable professional societies – the Las Vegas Arts Commission, the Desert Sculpture Association, the National Portrait Institute, the Nevada Watercolor Society, to name a few. She had many exhibitions and juried art shows in those days – from one woman shows at the First Western Savings Gallery and the Flamingo Library to competitions at the Las Vegas Art Museum.
Jeanne and Christine would go on to travel the world. They rode the Orient Express across Europe, rode a helicopter to the Juneau ice fields, stayed in the penthouse of an island hotel on the Grand Canal of Venice and sailed on many cruises to just name a few. Jeanne was a spark of life to all that encountered her. This world is a dimmer place without her and she will be dearly missed by the many whose lives she touched.
The family asks that donations be made to the Mal de Débarquement Syndrome (MdDS) Foundation. The link is www.mddsfoundation.org. MdDS is a disease that affects a person’s balance and she battled against it for many years. One day, we hope they will find a cure.
- The MdDS Foundation
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Jeanne Maxwell Williams
February 24, 2021
Sorry for your loss. Sorry Cy And I never made it to meet you all! Maybe when all is normal we can make it. We are not that far from Vegas.
February 23, 2021
Good bye beautiful lady. I will never forget your kindness toward me...knew you since I was 14 years old, and you were in and out of my life for many years until we finally lost touch. However, we were fated to meet again and we did thanks to your daughters artwork and at beautiful Red Rock Canyon no less...a perfect setting for a woman (artist) that walked in beauty.