Jennifer Lee Pratt McCorkle was born in Knoxville, Tenn., on Dec. 14, 1942, and after a lengthy illness, died in Austin, Texas, on Nov. 10. Jennifer was surrounded by her loving sister Edwina Carrington Knapp and other family members at her death. Jennifer was the first-born daughter of William Edward Pratt and Mary Lee Trew Pratt. Jennifer received her formal education in Knoxville, where she graduated from high school and attended the University of Tennessee and secretarial school. Her parents believed music and the arts were an important part of their children’s education and development, and she was introduced to piano, the symphony, and dance lessons at an early age. Additional education during her adult years included horticultural classes at Austin Peay State College in Clarksville, Tenn., and Master Gardener classes in Knoxville and Clarksville.
For the past 22 years, Jennifer lived in the Vail Valley in Colorado. Her work life included providing exemplary child care to many families who came to the Vail Valley to ski. Many families would “reserve” Jennifer months in advance because of her loving, caring nature and her connection with their children. During her time in the valley, Jennifer also worked for the School House Gift Shop at the Betty Ford Alpine Gardens, the town of Vail, City Market and Vail Resorts. Her work at the School House Gift Shop brought her many hours of great pleasure because of the lovely flowers and beautiful mountains. Many times she could be found walking through the gardens after closing the gift shop and could identify every plant, tree, shrub and flower in the gardens.
Jennifer served as a volunteer for the Bravo! Vail Guild for 16 years and was an early member of the Guild. Her cheerful, smiling, helpful face could be seen ushering in the summer at the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater during the Bravo! Vail musical performances. Later in the summer, Jennifer ushered and attended as many of the Vail International Dance Festival performances as possible. As a member of the Bravo! Vail Guild, Jennifer also ushered for a variety of performances at the Vilar Performing Arts Center in Beaver Creek in the winter. She loved and appreciated the opportunity to experience the arts and the beautiful surroundings available to her by living in the Vail Valley.
Jennifer found a church home and many friends at the Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration in Vail and had a deep and abiding faith. She attended Bible study regularly and enjoyed the company and camaraderie at the Wednesday and Thursday night community suppers.
Jennifer was a compassionate, supportive, loving friend and sister. She possessed an inquiring mind and spirit, a kind heart and was loyal to her friends and family. Her cheerful voice uplifted and celebrated happiness and accomplishments with those she knew. She was thoughtful and remembered to send cards for encouragement and special occasions. Her cards always contained a personal note that affirmed the receiver and exemplified her feelings. There will always be a void for those in whose life she was a part.
Jennifer leaves her devoted sister Edwina Carrington Knapp, of Austin, her dear friend Martha Stooksbury, of Morristown, Tenn., with whom she shared many enjoyable Sunday afternoon conversations, her faithful companion of 17 years, Smokie the cat, and numerous cousins in Nashville, Tenn.
Jennifer’s family and friends wish to thank Dr. Richard Helmer of Texas Oncology, the many health care providers in the Vail Valley including Dr. Kent Petrie, Dr. Alexander Urquhart and Katie, at the Shaw Regional Cancer Center, and the caring and compassionate staff in the infusion room at the Shaw Regional Cancer Center.
A memorial service will be held for Jennifer at the Vail Interfaith Chapel in Vail, Colorado on Dec. 2 at 2:30 p.m. A reception and celebration of Jennifer’s life will follow the service in the Terrace Room at the Sonnenalp Hotel in Vail.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions in Jennifer’s name be made to the Youth Ministry at the Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration, P.O. Box 1000, Vail, CO 81658, or online at www.episcopalvail.com; the Community Engagement and Education Programs at the Bravo! Vail Guild, 2271 N. Frontage Road, W, Suite C, Vail, CO 81657 or online at www.bravovail.org; the Betty Ford Alpine Gardens, 183 Gore Creek Drive, Suite 7, Vail, CO 81657, or online at www.bettyford alpinegarderns.org; or the charity of your choice.
Arrangements have been made by Weed-Corley-Fish Funeral Home, 512-452-8811. Her obituary and a memorial guestbook are available online at www.wcfish.com.