MARY Elizabeth JONAS

May 1, 1920November 20, 2017

Jonas, Mary Elizabeth McGown, 97, died November 20, 2017. Born in Lauderdale County, Mississippi, on May 1, 1920, to Jesse Lawrence McGown and Josephine Hudnall McGown, Mary Elizabeth was the widow of Colonel Gordon E. Jonas, USAF, (Ret.) her adoring husband of 52 years. Mary Elizabeth earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Transylvania College in Lexington, Kentucky, and did graduate work in early childhood education at the Presbyterian School of Christian Education. She accompanied her husband to assignments in France, Morocco, and throughout the United States during their nearly 30 years of service. She taught in Fairfax County and in Chesterfield County where she was a lead teacher in the Pilot Kindergarten Program, Head Start, and Title I programs. Since 1964, Mary Elizabeth had been a member the Bellwood Woman’s Club, formerly the Bellwood Officer’s Wives Club. She was also a member of Chi Omega Sorority, Colonial Dames XVII Century Richmond Chapter, the James River Woman’s Club, a charter member of the Chesterfield Historical Society, and a member of both Second Presbyterian Church and Bon Air Christian Church. She was pre-deceased by her parents and brothers Arthur McGown, Harold McGown, and James McGown; her husband Colonel Gordon E. Jonas, USAF (Ret.); son Gordon Keith Jonas; and granddaughter Ann Randolph Jonas. Mary Elizabeth is survived by her son Dr. Richard Kirk Jonas and daughter-in-law, Evelyn Anne Jonas; daughter, Elizabeth Jonas Richardson and son-in law, Roger David Richardson; and daughter-in-law Shirley Ann Ostrander Jonas, all of Richmond, Virginia. She is survived by one grandson, Kevin Craig Jonas and his wife Blair Boone Jonas, of Richmond; five granddaughters: Wendy Jonas Imura and her husband Yusuke Imura of Edgewood, New Jersey; Kimberly Jonas Shumadine of Richmond; Dr. Mary Cabell Jonas-Lazerow and her husband Robert Nathan Lazerow of Bethesda, Maryland; Dr. Lauren Christine Richardson of Alexandria, Virginia; Erin Elizabeth Richardson of Richmond; and Mary Ryan Richardson Krieger and her husband Captain William Frederick Krieger, USMC of Port Royal, South Carolina; and six great-grandchildren: Autumn Grace Jonas, Taiga Alex Imura, Raigo Jonas Imura, John Miles Shumadine, Jr., Randolph Cabell Shumadine, and Charlie Gordon Jonas. She is survived also by dear friends Dr. Barry Kurzer and Dr. Lisa Syrop, Jacob Kurzer, Rita and John Boykin, Todd Boykin, Jenny Boykin Roe, and many, many other loyal friends. The funeral will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Monday November 27, 2017 at Bon Air Christian Church in Bon Air, Virginia. In lieu of flowers, Mary Elizabeth asked that memorial gifts be made to The Gordon Keith Jonas Memorial Fund at Chesterfield County Schools, Chesterfield, VA, 23831, or the Ann Randolph Jonas Memorial Fund, Trinity Episcopal School, Richmond, VA.


  • Memorial Service

    Monday, November 27, 2017


MARY Elizabeth JONAS

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ivelyn pincin

December 30, 2017

our hearts sank today when the Christmas card we sent to mrs Jonas was returned. we then found this on line. we were long time renters of her lovely little house, shellbent, in rodanthe, nc. we only knew mrs Jonas through the guestbook that was at the house and we began exchanging cards years ago. we were saddened to read that she is gone but were delighted to read that she lived such a full life and had wonderful family. a few years ago she sent a picture of herself and one of her great granddaughters, autumn, I believe. we are sure that the family will miss her but now heaven is one soul richer.

Cindy Norwood

December 3, 2017

I am so sorry for your loss. Mary Elizabeth was my second Mom and one of my best friends. She is the only one in my life whom I could call and go hang out that night laughing and talking for hours, which often also involved having fun working on a puzzle. She saved me after my parents went to Heaven. Now Heaven has a new wonderful angel. I loved you Mary Elizabeth.

Arthur Ritter

November 30, 2017

Dear Kirk--I saw the obituary for your mother and want to express my deep sympathies to you in your loss. I didn't know your mom but loved reading about her life and her many accomplishments. She remains a remarkable woman who lived a full, long life. I am sorry for you and also pleased that you had her for so many years. My mom died when she was but 60 and I often wish I could have had more of my adult years with her in them.

Art Ritter, GWHS, '67

John Whelan

November 27, 2017

Please accept our condolences for the loss of your mother. We remember you reminiscing about her. She is in our thoughts and prayers.
John Whelan and Linda Furlani

Linda Greer

November 27, 2017

Mary Elizabeth was such an interesting friend, whether in James River Woman's Club or when she invited Mark and me for a "happy hour" get together. I'm so sorry we haven't checked on her lately, but since his ALS diagnosis, we have been consumed with doctor appointments and infusion schedules. Please accept our sincere condolences. Mark & Linda Greer.

November 24, 2017

My condolences to the family. May the peace of God and the fond memories you cherish comfort and sustain you during this time. Ruth 2:12

Bernie Henderson

November 21, 2017

As President of Woody Funeral Home, I extend our deepest sympathy from all our staff for your loss. We are committed to providing the utmost care to you at this time and throughout the days to come. Our purpose is to assist and serve you in a manner that exceeds your expectations. We pledge to strive to merit the trust you have reposed in us.