Jean Kelchner

Jean Candlish Kelchner

Friday December 23, 1932 - Thursday October 10, 2019
Recommend this to your friends.
Share via:

Sign in to the Family Interactive Login

The Family Interactive feature enhances An Amazing Life. Authorized family members can securely access their loved one's memorial website settings at any time.

Share Book of Memories with a Friend

Please enter the name and email details so that we can send your friend a link to the online tribute. No names or addresses will be collected by using this service.

Email Sent

Your email has been sent.

To share your memory on the wall of Jean Kelchner, sign in using one of the following options:

Sign in with Facebook


Or sign in with your email address

Your condolence has been posted successfully

Provide comfort for the family of Jean Kelchner with a meaningful gesture of sympathy.

No Thanks

Contact Funeral Home

Please enter your question / comment below:

Email Sent

Your email has been sent.


Loving Wife, Mother, Grandmother & Great-Grandmother

Jean Candlish Kelchner of Woodland Park, NJ passed away in her sleep early on the morning of October 10, 2019 at the age of 86. Born in Augusta, AR on December 23, 1932, she obtained both Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Kean University in NJ, where she also went on to teach English and Humanities. She was a church leader for several decades as an organist and choir director, and was most recently a parishioner of Saint Philip the Apostle Church in Woodland Park.

Jean dedicated her life to empowering women. From her days as an educator at girls’ schools early in her career, to her work with the American Association of University Women, she was always a strong advocate for women’s education. A lover of words and member of the International Women's Writing Guild, she was the author of four books, all helmed by strong female protagonists. Most recently, she founded and led a Women’s Film Club in her local community, which she grew to 160 monthly attendees over the past 12 years.

Jean was a force of nature who was deeply loved. She will be missed by many, but especially by her adoring surviving family members: her husband of 67 years, Charles Joseph Kelchner; her children Linda (Bill Lenihan) Kosnik, Elizabeth “Betsy” (Michael) Goor, and Charles (Gina) Kelchner; her grandchildren Michelle, John, Tim, Rachel, Matthew, CJ, Dakota, and Luke; as well as her great-grandchildren Jaxson, Brody, Ford, and Georgia. She is also survived by a brother, Steven Faircloth. She is preceded in death by two beloved daughters, Cathy and Sharon Kelchner.
Jean considered herself a late bloomer, and her work to support fellow "sleeping beauties" will live on through her writing; although her spirit is resting now, her words will continue to help women break free of expectations to fulfill their true potential.

Visitors will be received at the funeral home on Sunday from 2-6 p.m.

The funeral will be Monday, October 14, 2019 from the S.W. Brown & Son Funeral Home, 267 Centre St., Nutley at 8:45 a.m.

The Funeral Mass will be celebrated at St. Philip the Apostle Church located at 797 Valley Road, Clifton, NJ at 10:00 a.m Monday, October 14, 2019.

Her cremation services will be private.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions to American Cancer Society, ( would be preferred.
Read Less

To plant a memorial tree in honor of Jean Candlish Kelchner, please visit our Heartfelt Sympathies Store.

Service Details

  • Visitation

    Sunday, October 13th, 2019 | 2:00pm - 6:00pm
    Sunday, October 13th, 2019 2:00pm - 6:00pm
    S.W. Brown & Son Funeral Home
    267 Centre Street
    NUTLEY, NJ 07110
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Service

    Monday, October 14th, 2019 | 10:00am
    Monday, October 14th, 2019 10:00am
    St. Philip the Apostle Church
    797 Valley Road
    CLIFTON, NJ 07013
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Interment

    Private Cremation


We encourage you to share your most beloved memories of Jean here, so that the family and other loved ones can always see it. You can upload cherished photographs, or share your favorite stories, and can even comment on those shared by others.

Private Condolence

The Gibson Family

Posted at 12:23pm
Aunt Jean was a special lady that was well loved and will be greatly missed.
Tree Image
A memorial tree was planted in the memory of Jean Kelchner — Plant a Tree Now

Nancy Gifford-Humphreys

Posted at 02:12pm
My heart is heavy over this loss. Jean was my mother’s best friend and became a dear friend of mine! She was a strong woman who overcame many life challenges and came out on the other side, demonstrating strength, wisdom and spunk. She was a steel magnolia, and one who I am so glad moved north so that I could get to know her. She laughed and wept with me, shared her life story, and now will be in the next chapter of hers. God’s grace and peace be with Charles, Linda, Betsy, Charlie and your families. ♥️


Posted at 04:20pm
My mother's best friend... a loving, laughing, tough, strong woman. A role model for so many of us. The first person I knew with a Southern accent. I thought she had more time.... I had hoped to see her again. Rest in peace, dear Jean, and have fun with my mom. You two have been separated for too many years. With love to my childhood friends, Linda, (Sharon - she's yours now), Betsy, and Charlie. We had great mothers. To Big Charlie, may your heart heal. Love, Barbara Reale

Terry Stek

Posted at 01:09pm
Jean was such a wonderful woman. From the first moment you met her you felt the warmth and kindness she possessed and you loved her immediately. You knew as soon as you saw her the arms would open for a hug and a kiss. She will be remembered dearly and greatly missed.
Terry Stek

Photos & Videos

Photo Album

Share by: