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Jane Mclane

February 11, 1939 — May 27, 2023

Jane Campbell Bennet McLane, 84, of Valdosta died on Saturday, May 27, 2023 at Fellowship Home in Brooks County. Jane was born on February 11, 1939 in Quitman GA to the late Paul and Mary Rebecca (MaeBec) Bennet. She is preceded in death by one sister, Mary Ann (Bennet) Watson, and her husband of 62 years H. Arthur “Mac” McLane. She was raised on a working dairy farm, BenBow Dairy in Brooks County. Painfully shy as a child, she would barely speak in elementary school (much to the dismay of her mother). Her father, Paul was a Baptist while her mother MaeBec, was a Methodist (and a gifted organist at Quitman UMC as well). Since both parents did not want to "give up" their respective churches, each faithfully took a daughter to "their church.” As a little girl, Jane would sit at her mother's feet as she played each Sunday.

In addition to the beloved guernsey cows, the farm was filled with many other animals. Jane loved animals her entire life, especially cats. She told the story that people would leave unwanted cats in their huge mailbox where she (or her mother) would find them. It would infuriate Mae Bec, but she would bring that once "unlucky" kitty into their family and give it a wonderful life. Jane was exactly the same! BenBow had a clay tennis court adjacent to the house and Jane played growing up (even into her 40s). In fact, she played so well she was a state doubles champion.

At Quitman High School, she blossomed. She not only was an athlete, and an excellent student, she was a beauty queen-Miss QHS! She even drove a circa WW2 jeep to high school. After graduation, she attended Agnes Scott College, where she received her teaching degree. Jane and Mac would have several dates scheduled over their college years, but Jane cancelled a few times before giving Mac a chance. Once she did, though, there was no turning back for either of them-they were both smitten.

Mac almost didn't have the opportunity for a life with Jane, though…One 4th of July, while they were dating, Mac thought it would be fun to put on a fireworks show for Jane and the family at the farm. During the show, the cows got more and more agitated. After the show, the cows refused to give milk for several days. This both threatened the livelihood of the farm and made Mac’s potential father-in-law very agitated himself.

Thankfully, Paul forgave him [over time] and Mac asked for Jane's hand in marriage. They decided to have their wedding in the beautiful home where Jane grew up, but little did Paul know MaeBec was going to spend a hefty amount of money to prepare the house for such an event. They were married June 17, 1961, and began their life in Athens, where Jane taught school while Mac attended UGA Law school. Eventually, Jane became a wonderful cook, but one of her first dinners for her new in-laws, Carson & Philena, she made biscuits that, according to Mac, were "hard as hockey pucks."

Once they finished law school (and it WAS a team effort), the young couple decided to move back to South Georgia to be near family. Mac would set up law practice, and they would start their family in 1964, with a daughter and a son would follow in 1970. Jane was not only an amazing wife to Mac and mother to Mary Cam and Paul, but very active in the community (Valdosta Junior Service League, Readers Forum, Cabaret Club, Park Avenue Church & Grace Dennis Sunday school, Couples Bridge Club, Silver Sneakers, and many other organizations).

She was a well-loved educator, having taught preschool in Valdosta for over 20 years. Jane was somewhat revolutionary for her time. Rather than using "old school discipline" of facing a corner with your nose to the wall when ill behaved, Miss Jane would seat the student under Mr. Sunshine, a large smiling sun decal on the wall, giving the student an opportunity (without embarrassment) to adjust his or her attitude. Parents and students absolutely loved her kind but appropriate teaching methods. Her fame made her well known to former students and their families and until Mac's passing, he used to say he was simply known as "Miss Jane's husband". Jane was a faithful friend to many and had a truly wide circle of close friends. She was the definition of a genteel southern lady. Her life, just as her precious Mac's life, was certainly a life well-lived.

Survivors include her daughter and son in law, Mary Cam & Dana Harding of Tifton, a son, Paul McLane of Valdosta; two grandchildren, McLane (& Cam) Gibson of Canton, and Brantley Harding of Valdosta. Also surviving is a brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Tyson & Mary Sue McLane and a sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Millie & Charles Adams, all of Lake Park; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.

The funeral for Jane will be held at 10 am on Thursday, June 1, 2023 at Park Avenue Church. Rev. Jimmy Towson and Rev. Charles Adams will officiate. Burial will follow at McLane Riverview Memorial Gardens. The family will receive friends at Carson McLane Funeral Home on Wednesday evening from 5 until 7 pm. Donations may be made to the charity of your choice. Condolences to the family may be conveyed at Carson McLane Funeral Home

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Wednesday, May 31, 2023

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Thursday, June 1, 2023

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