|Birth: ||Oct. 20, 1923|
|Death: ||Jan. 13, 2009|
Kenai Peninsula Borough
Jean was the daughter of James Oscar Hodgdon Jr and Florence E St. John. She was the eldest of four children all of whom were born in Minnesota. Jean grew up on a dairy farm and in her early years worked as a horse trainer and trick rider for the Red River Rodeo. It was during one of her trick rides that she was seriously injured and would not perform again. Later, she would work as a pet groomer, veterinary assistant, professional truck driver and cafe owner. She arrived in Alaska in 1977 in her motorhome. She got a job at a seafood cannery and camped on Homer Spit as a full-time resident. During her first winter she began feeding the small flock of resident bald eagles with fish scraps from the cannery; an advocation that would last 30 years. Over time, the flock of eagles that came for the winter feeding grew to an estimated 300 birds. As the flock grew so did her reputation. Photographers and nature lovers descended on the Homer Spit, and winter tourism spiked. Jean became an informal ambassador for Homer, the bald eagles and Alaska. Magazine and newspaper including People, Life, The National Examiner, Reader's Digest, USA Today and many foreign publications wrote articles featuring Jean and her eagles. Although her efforts with the eagles brought economic benefits to Homer and the surrounding community, it also generated controversy. Ultimately, the Homer City Council passed an ordinance banning the feeding of eagles and other birds - but exempting Jean. By late 2008 Jean's health had declined but not her determination to feed her eagles. She began feeding in mid-December but succumbed on January 13, 2009 while in home health care at her residence on the Homer Spit. Jean is survived by her son, Lonnie; granddaughter, Chelsea Keene; and sister, Gloria, all of Minneapolis.
Bio by G47.
A book written about Jean can be found at:http://www.eaglelady.com/
Another obituary: http://homernews.com/stories/011409/news_1_002.shtml
Jean's remains were cremated. Some of her ashes were scattered in the bay in front of her home on the Homer Spit, some in Minnesota, and on the Pribilof Islands of Alaska, and some in places special to memories of Jean by friends and family. This information provided to me and used with permission of Jean's son, Lonnie Keene.
Florence G Hodgdon (1897 - 1973)
Jean Hodgdon Keene (1923 - 2009)
Virginia Fern Hodgdon Anderson (1929 - 1993)*
Specifically: see detailes in bio.
Created by: G47
Record added: May 24, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 70342225