Ada Van Leuven Jones died August 25, 2017 at Teton Peaks Assisted Living Facility in Driggs, Idaho. She was 94 years young.
She was born January 1, 1923, in Felt, Idaho, to Lester James and Leona Vilate (Hall) Van Leuven and was welcomed home by her two year old brother, Edsel. The family soon moved to Hazelton, Idaho, where brothers Vail, Lee and Miles and sister Lita were born. When Ada was 12, the family moved to Roberts, Idaho, where they remained from then on. At 13, Ada was baptized a member of the LDS church, along with her Mother, brothers and sister. In 1938, another sister Ila, was born, bringing the total of children to 7.
In high school, Ada participated in ping pong tournaments, lettered in basketball, and received top grades. She had always dreamed of attending nursing school and began saving toward this goal early on. Her jobs consisted of picking and selling berries, raising chickens, cooking for the local hay crews, and tending the neighbor’s kids for $2.50 a week. She also worked on a ranch in Medicine Lodge, Idaho for two summers where she cooked, cleaned, and did laundry for her cousin, Bernice Diamond Hogan. When she graduated from high school in 1941, she had saved $250.00! That fall she enrolled in the LDS Nursing School in Idaho Falls, and she had enough money to pay her registration and buy her uniforms. Ada loved nursing and made many good friends while in school.
In 1942, she met Gordon Jones from Victor, Idaho, who was having a surgery in the hospital where she was training. They dated, fell in love and were married June 1, 1943, in Dubois, Idaho. They moved to Victor shortly after that and raised five girls and two boys; Irene Rose, Linda Ranae, Trina Joyce, Ava Jean, Betty Lee, Wayne Gordon, and James Nile.
Ada returned to nursing in 1958 when her sister in-law, Ellen Jones, told her the hospital in Driggs was looking for nurses. She drove to Driggs and was hired by Rhoda Bowen that very same day. She had to write her State Boards for her LPN degree, but passed on July 30, 1958. In 1966, she returned to school with her sister in-law, Fern Jones, and these ladies graduated from Ricks College School of Nursing with their RN Degrees in 1969.
In June of 1972, Ada, Gordon, Wayne and Jim, moved to Pleasanton, California, where Ada worked at Stanford Medical Children’s Hospital until her retirement in 1985. Missing Teton Valley, the family soon moved back to Victor, where they spent their summers and in the winter, they followed the wild geese south to Overton, Nevada.
Survivors include daughters Irene (Tom) Brandt, Linda Kramer, Trina Underhill, Ava (Kent) Hillman, Betty (Rich) Rasmussen, Wayne Jones (Missy Ryan), Jim (Tonya) Jones, 23 grandchildren, 56 great-grandchildren; brothers Vail Van Leuven, Miles Van Leuven, sisters Lita (Wes) Fisher, and Ila Pyrah. She is preceded in death by her husband, Gordon Jones, parents, and brothers Ed and Lee.