TOPEKA – Jessie Ruddle McCamon, 80, peacefully died Jan. 3, 2021, with her daughter by her side. Her two children Mike and Lea had been with her during the final days of her life after being admitted into the hospital on Dec. 30 for health issues (non-COVID related). No services are planned. More information about her life is available at

Born in Keota, Okla., “Jeannie” spent much of her childhood in and around Stigler and Keota, Okla. – the latter of which she proudly claimed as her hometown. As a teenager her family moved to Wichita where she graduated from Derby High School in 1958. After later graduating from Wesley Nursing School, she was a nurse for decades at Wesley Medical Center and the Sedgwick County Health Department in Wichita. Health challenges nudged her into early retirement, and about five years ago she moved to Topeka to be closer to her children and grandchildren.

Jessie’s passion was genealogy – a hobby she pursued for 50+ years. She was grateful for the help of her extended network of cousins and the communities in Stigler and Keota to help her with her research. One of her favorite weekends was Old Settlers’ Days in Keota where she often exhibited her research. Her final project was to inventory the early farmhouses in and around Derby, Kan.

She is survived by her half-brother Jackie Lee Norris of Searcy, Ark., and her children, Mike of Overland Park, Kan., and Lea of Topeka, Kan., along with their families with five grandchildren. Blessed are those with a loving family who find a hobby they truly enjoy.

In lieu of flowers, the family encourages donations in Jessie’s name to the Derby, Kansas Historical Society or the Haskell County, Oklahoma Historical Society.

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