Jane McGonigal Crispell

Obituary of Jane W. McGonigal Crispell

Jane W. McGonigal Crispell died peacefully July 10, 2018 at Kendal At Ithaca, surrounded by her loving family.

Jane was born April 18, 1929. She was the younger daughter of William and Gladys Wigsten. Raised with her sister, Nancy on the Wigsten family dairy farm in Horseheads, N.Y. Jane graduated Horseheads 1946, BA Cornell University 1950, MA Michigan State University 1971, Ph.D. Cornell University 1984. Jane began her career with Cornell Cooperative Extension in 1950 in Wayne County. Twenty years later, after raising two children, she returned to CCE working first in Schuyler and later Cortland counties. She was the assistant extension director for staff development at Cornell University, until her retirement in 1996. 

Jane was a visionary in distance learning, launching the use of satellite technology connecting CCE Associations with each other and the public. Jane supported the CCE Innovation Fund, many student internships, and the Protestant Cooperative Ministry Board at Cornell University. Jane was a founder of NY FarmNet, and former chair of the NY FarmNet steering committee. Jane was honored with the 1997 SUNY Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Professional Service, the 2009 NYS Friends of Extension Award and the 2014 Cornell University Outstanding Alumni Award. She was an active volunteer in her community. She was a member of the First Presbyterian church, where she served as a choir member, elder and Presbytery committee on ministry member. Education, Travel and Cornell were Jane's passions.

Jane is survived by her loving and devoted husband Carl A. Crispell, whom she married January 3, 1986. Jane and Carl built a home, lovingly blended their families, worked at their farm on Coddington Rd. and traveled the country and world together. Jane is survived by two children, George McGonigal (Cathy Emilian) of Ithaca, N.Y., Peggy Richardson (Tom) of Watkins Glen, NY. and stepdaughter Penny Rose (Mike) of Jacksonville, Fla.; grandchildren Jessica Franzese (Jim Stewart), Lorna McGonigal (Tyler Schott), Katie Richardson, Sam Richardson; great grandchildren Kirsten Franzese, Sean Franzese and Zora Jane Schott McGonigal; sister in law Carol Harding(Bill), brother in law Bill Poyer, nieces: Cathe, Maggie, Lisa, Susan, Laura, nephews: Paul, Bill, Larry, Jim and their families. Jane was predeceased by her parents, sister and brother in law Nancy and George Axinn, and sister in law Bev Poyer. Jane was a loving and devoted daughter, sister, wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, aunt; a loyal friend and a respected colleague to many. 

A memorial service will be held for Jane at the First Presbyterian Church, 315 N. Cayuga St., Ithaca, NY on Saturday, July 14, 2018 at 11:00 am.

The family will provide flowers. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to: Hospicare & Palliative Care Services - 172 East King Rd., Ithaca, N.Y. 14850 or CCE Director's Innovation Fund - Cornell University, Box 37334, Boone, Iowa 50037-0334

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