Cover photo for Dorothy Jean Akin Jens's Obituary
Dorothy Jean Akin Jens Profile Photo
1923 Dorothy Jean 2020

Dorothy Jean Akin Jens

February 28, 1923 — December 29, 2020

Dr. Dorothy Jean Akin Jens passed away at her home at Brandon Wilde, Evans, Georgia on December 29, 2020. Dr. Jens was born February 28, 1923 in Evanston, Illinois, the only child of Howard James Akin and Dorothy Johanna Smart Akin. She attended Evanston Schools, Beloit College and received degrees from Northwestern University, Purdue University and Wayne State University. She was a member of Pi Beta Phi and Phi Lambda Theta, an educational honorary fraternity. Dorothy was a licensed psychologist in the State of Michigan and practiced as a school psychologist in St. Clair Shores. She was a university instructor and authored and administrated a program to identify and remediate preschool children entitled Project Genesis. She worked tirelessly to have the area of “learning disabilities” recognized and inserted into the Michigan Special Education law even before it was recognized by the federal government. She received awards from both the National and Michigan Association for Children with Learning Disabilities, was a charter member of the National Association of School Psychologists and presented workshops at NASP and the national ACLD.
While serving as a Red Cross Grey Lady at the Great Lakes Naval Hospital in Illinois, Dorothy met her husband Lt. jg Wayne Henry Jens and they were married January 26, 1946 at Northminster Presbyterian Church in Evanston, Illinois. They lived in West Lafayette, Indiana; Elmhurst, Illinois; Tarrytown and Briarcliff Manor, New York; Grosse Pointe Park and Presque Isle, Michigan and on Lake Keowee near Seneca, South Carolina before moving to Brandon Wilde in 2003. Dorothy and Wayne celebrated their 71st anniversary prior to Wayne’s death in January 2018. The couple had four children: Dr. Kathryn Sue Jens of Denver, Colorado, Mrs. Martha Jens Bale (Dr. James F.) of Salt Lake City, Utah; Mrs. Emily Jens (Walker) Doubler (Jerry) of Plymouth, Michigan and Andrew Akin Jens (Amber) of Herndon, Virginia. Dorothy has ten grandchildren: Amy Lee Jens Edwards Lane (deceased), Joseph Byeon Jens Edwards, Bryan Yuri Jens, Lisa Olga Jens, Zachary James Bale (Julia Jacobs), Jeffrey Michael Bale (Katie), Margaret Jean Bale (Ben Jones), Alexander James Walker (Jordan), Samuel Ault Jens and Evelyn Marie Jens. She also has 5 great grandchildren.
While professionally accomplished, Dorothy's greatest pride and enjoyment was her family. She loved visits from her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. She organized parties for her and Wayne's birthdays and their wedding anniversaries. In retirement, Dorothy and her husband enjoyed genealogy. She was proud of her British Isles heritage and had her children wear kilts to her birthday celebrations. Dorothy, an extravert, loved people and conversation. During her 17 years at Brandon Wilde she made many friends, including many younger residents. She will be greatly missed by her friends and staff at Brandon Wilde. The staff loved our mom and her sweet, kind personality. The family is especially thankful for the compassionate care of Paula Parker who became part of our family as Wayne and Dorothy’s Personal Care Provider.
Interment will be at Arlington National Cemetery where she will be reunited with her husband who was buried there in February 2019. Memorial gifts can be made in Dorothy’s name to the American Red Cross, Learning Disabilities Association of Michigan or Brandon Wilde Scholarship Fund through Community Foundation for the CSRA, PO Box 31358, Augusta, Georgia 30903.
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