Terry Anne (Jefferson) Locke, 67, passed away early on the morning of Sunday, Oct. 6, 2019, from complications of early onset Alzheimer’s disease.
Terry was born in West Lafayette, IN, to Thomas Bradley and Carolyn Jefferson, on September 30, 1952. Her two older brothers, Tom and Rick, aged 4 and 2 respectively, got to chime in on the name of their younger sister, which is how she came to have the name “Terry” spelled with a “y.” In 1958, when Terry was 6 years old, the family moved to Fayetteville, AR. Terry struggled at first with her teachers’ strong accents, but quickly came into her own and by high school was performing in musicals like “The Music Man” (as Marian the Librarian) and in the singing troupe “The Choralettes.” In 1969, when her parents moved to Carbondale, IL, Terry was allowed to stay in Fayetteville with the family of a friend to finish her senior year of high school.
Terry was independent and adventurous. In 1978, after finishing her Bachelors in Science at the University of Northern Colorado and student teaching for a year in Milwaukee, WI, she moved across the ocean to Germany to help her oldest brother care for her niece and nephew. She went on to manage a child care center and then teach at the Department of Defense Dependents Schools (DODDS) for American military families stationed in Germany. She ended up spending nearly ten years abroad, during which time she traveled across Europe and the world and made friendships and memories that lasted her a lifetime.
She came back to the United States in 1987 to marry W. A. Locke III, with whom she had their son William Alexander Locke IV in 1988. They lived for a time in Alexandria, VA, where she taught at the Islamic Saudi Academy, teaching science to bright young students from all over the Middle East. After a divorce, she and Alex moved to Carbondale, IL where they stayed with her parents while she earned a Masters of Arts in Microbiology at Southern Illinois University. Shortly afterwards she and Alex moved to St. Charles, MO, where she taught Biology and AP Biology at St. Charles West High School until her retirement in 2010. In 2017, Terry moved back to Carbondale, IL, to Century Assisted Living, near her brother Rick and sister-in-law Dori Jefferson, and where she could also enjoy regular visits from her nephew Thomas Jefferson.
The common thread in talking to family and friends is that Terry was always down for anything, always ready for an adventure. Her courage emboldened others; her belief in people brought out the best in those around her. She was independent, strong, considerate, fun-loving, and kind. She loved her life, and loved the people she shared it with.
Terry is survived by her two older brothers, Tom Jefferson and Rick Jefferson; sisters-in-law Valerie (Reese) Jefferson and Dori (Keck) Jefferson; and nieces and nephews: Dale, Mary and Tij of Tom’s family and Ethen, Delaney, and Thomas of Rick’s. She is also survived by former husband W. A. Locke III, their son William Locke, and W. A.’s daughter Laura Locke-Strauser and her three children Olivia, Charlotte, and Mavis, all of whom knew and loved their “Grandma Terry.”
The family is holding a memorial service on Saturday, October 19 at 2 pm at the First Presbyterian Church of Carbondale, 310 S. University Avenue in Carbondale, IL, with a reception afterwards.
In lieu of flowers, any who wish may donate to the Alzheimer’s Association, either through the following web address, http://act.alz.org/goto/TerryLocke, or by mailing a donation to:
9370 Olive Blvd
St. Louis, MO 63132
Memo: On behalf of Terry Locke