Jane Mary Pfann Maske suddenly passed away on May 20. Born in Great Neck, NY, she grew up an only child who beat polio. She graduated from George Washington University, was active in Civil Rights, and made a career serving others in social work. Early in their relationship, she and husband Gary created all kinds of great mischief, like teaching people in impoverished Florida counties to read well enough so they could fill out registrations and vote for the first time. She changed the lives of countless families through the years, facilitating dozens of adoptions. It was difficult to go anywhere in Orange County without bumping into happy adoptive parents or their kids. In the 90’s, she traveled by herself to Vietnam in order to escort two children to their new home in the US.
In times of leisure and appreciation of simple pleasures, she loved planning epic family vacations, gem prospecting in the North Carolina mountains, Little Feat concerts, fishing on the Outer Banks or any local pond, and Sunday Brunch at Nomad in Hillsborough. There was also no such thing as too many viewings of “Schitt’s Creek.”
She is survived by daughter Buffy Nell-Marie Maske and son Fredrick Jacques Maske.
In lieu of flowers, look up a song called “Learning to Smile All Over Again” by John Hartford and give it a listen. It was a long-time, meaningful favorite.
A memorial will be held on July 9th, 11am, at Binkley Memorial Baptist Church in Chapel Hill. Guests may bring an item which has meaning in their relationship with Jane.
Walker’s Funeral Home in Hillsborough is assisting the family.