Jane Norton, 82, of Lorain, passed away April 6, 2023, with her family by her side.
Sara Jane Stocker was born on September 18, 1940, in Lorain, the middle daughter of C. Paul and Beth K. Stocker. She graduated from Lorain High School in 1958 Class B and attended Miami University, receiving her BS in Dietetics in 1962. She started work as a dietitian at Elyria Memorial Hospital and later became a Nutrition Instructor at Lorain County Adult Education and then at LCCC. She served as the first Executive Director of The Stocker Foundation from 1980 until her retirement in 1999.
Growing up in Lorain, she loved Lake Erie, horses, sports, Scouting, her friends, and her trips with her parents and her sisters, Nancy and Mary Ann. Jane married her high school sweetheart, Benjamin G. Norton, in 1964. They lived in Lorain where they raised their three sons, Ben, Brad, and Brent.
Jane was a lifelong Girl Scout. She was a Girl Scout summer camp counselor for many years, served on the board of Girl Scouts of Northeast Ohio and co-chaired, with her husband, Ben, the GSNEO (Western Division) Capital Campaign to renovate Camp Timberlane. Many skills she learned as a Girl Scout she shared with her boys and grandkids.
A proud Lorainite, Jane served on the boards of many organizations in the community, always striving to improve the quality of life in Lorain and Lorain County. Some of the many institutions that benefited from her wise counsel are Lorain County Community College, First Congregational Church, Community Congregational UCC, Kendal at Oberlin, Community Foundation of Lorain County, Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Lorain County, Lorain County Historical Society, Lorain Public Library, Ohio Grantmakers Forum, and Lorain Lighthouse Foundation. At the time of her death, she was serving on the boards of the LCCC Foundation, Lorain Historical Society, The Stocker Foundation and The Norton Family Foundation.
Jane earned many honors and accolades, including the Lorain YWCA Woman of Achievement, Erie Shores Girl Scouts Woman of Distinction, Heart of Ohio Boy Scout Council Distinguished Citizen, and, with Ben, the Leadership Lorain County Distinguished Citizens Award (Best Class of 1993) and the Lake Ridge Academy Hall of Fame.
As much as she loved living in Lorain, Jane took great pleasure in traveling the world. She and Ben visited all seven continents, completing this feat in Antarctica in 2013. Jane and Ben also spent time in Mexico every winter since their retirement.
Jane’s greatest love was for her family. Raising three sons with Ben and watching them thrive as adults and become fathers was a source of great pride for her. She loved supporting her sons’ and grandchildren’s activities and cheering them on from the sidelines. Jane loved to garden, and her favorite flowers were daisies and sunflowers. She enjoyed hosting her family for holidays and birthdays, crafting, and collecting Lake Erie beach glass. She and Ben especially enjoyed their close relationship with their friends in the Rags to Riches Investment Club.
Jane is survived by her beloved husband of 58 years, Benjamin G. Norton, her sons Ben P. (Brenda) of Avon, Brad (Debbie) of Westlake, and Brent of Seattle, WA, and sisters Nancy Woodling and Mary Ann Dobras (Darryl), both of Tucson, AZ. She is also survived by ten grandchildren: Gus, Gretchen, Anna, Sydney, Taylor, Katie, Olivia, Benjy, Lucas, and Sean Norton, nieces, great- and great-great nieces and nephews, and dear cousins. She is preceded in death by her parents, C. Paul and Beth K. Stocker, her in-laws, Benjamin F. and Beth Norton, her infant grandson, Sammy Norton, her nephew, Dave Woodling, and her brother-in-law, Reese Woodling.
There will be a Celebration of Life at Lorain County Community College Stocker Center on Saturday, April 29, 2023 at 10 a.m. Please consider wearing turquoise, her favorite color, or any bright shade of blue, to honor her. Her family would appreciate contributions in Jane’s memory to Lorain Historical Society, 329 W. 10th St., Lorain, OH 44052 or LCCC Foundation, 1005 N. Abbe Road #CC220, Elyria, OH 44035.