Jessie M. Anders, 89, Tyrone, died unexpectedly Friday after being transported to Tyrone Hospital from her home.
She was born in Elmira, N.Y., daughter of Robert A. and Jessie L. (Wright) Lyvers. She lived in Williamsport, Harrisburg and the Allentown/Bethle-hem areas of Pennsylvania before relocating to Tyrone in 1987.
Surviving are three children from her marriage to John R. McHaffie: John R. McHaffie Jr. of Lafayette Hill, Susan M. Enck and husband, John, of Altoona and Amy V. Bennett of Rockport, Texas; a grandson, Christopher A. Zeien and wife, Lynn, of Boston, Mass.; a brother, Donald B. Lyvers of Rhinebeck, N.Y.; as well as numerous nieces and nephews.
When Jessie married James E. Anders in 1979, she welcomed three grown stepchildren into her family: James E. Anders Jr., Christine Paris and Elizabeth Daniels (now deceased); two step-grandchildren: Eric Daniels and Heather Fletcher; and eventually two step-great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by a beloved sister, Martha G. Wheat.
Jessie graduated from Elmira Free Academy in Elmira, N.Y. After studying voice at Eastman School of Music in Rochester, N.Y., she discovered a talent for nursing while caring for her aunt and graduated from the Cadet Nurse Corps at Rochester General Hospital in 1947. Taking a hiatus to raise her children, Jessie returned to her profession in her 40s, first as a private-duty nurse and later at Holy Family Manor and Cedarbrook Fountain Hill, both in Bethlehem. While married to Jim, she became a full partner in his business, Hydraulics Associates, editing his books, refining technical drawings and travelling the country with him as he taught seminars.
Throughout her life, Jessie shared her many talents with family and an ever-widening circle of friends. From her youth, she sang in various church choirs. In nursing school, she illustrated texts for her professors, and as a member of First Presbyterian Church of Allentown, she acted in amateur theatricals. With Jim, she enjoyed fishing and dancing. She gardened, canned vegetables, sewed everything from slipcovers to wedding dresses, and knitted hundreds of sweaters sent to children in need. As a member of the Tyrone Hospital Auxiliary, she raised funds and dressed in costume to cheer patients on holidays. With her devoted church family at First Presbyterian Church of Tyrone, she cooked for shut-ins, pieced quilts for raffles, taught Sunday school and served as a deacon.
In her last years, Alzheimer's began to rob Jessie of her memories, but never her zest for life. She embraced each and every day with a positive attitude, humor and a can-do determination that inspired everyone who met her.
A memorial service will be announced after the holidays by the Derman Funeral Home Inc., Tyrone.