Janet Ruth Sledge January 24, 1950 - July 13, 2018

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Janet Ruth Sledge died on July 13, 2018 at the age of 68 in Houston, Texas.
She is survived by her sister, Linda Sledge McGlasson of Houston; her brother Wayne Sledge and his wife Debra of Baton Rouge; her brother Ronnie Sledge of Houston, and many beloved cousins, nephews, nieces, and their children. She was preceded in death by her parents, Guy P. Sledge, Jr. and Hazel McGhee Sledge; her spouse, David L. Hawkins, and her sister-in-law, Ann Stewart Sledge.
Janet was born in Freeport, Texas, on January 24, 1950, as her father (and for a while, her mom as well) worked at the Freeport Dow Chemical Plant. At age 6, the family moved to Baton Rouge, LA, where her father “poked a shovel in the mud” to help start the Plaquemine Dow Chemical Plant in the midst of the sugar cane fields. She graduated from Broadmoor High School in 1968. After attending Louisiana Tech for one year, she transferred to the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, where she obtained degrees in Sociology and Psychology in 1972.
Her career began as a Coordinator for the East Tennessee Health Council, helping to provide doctors, nurses, and midwives to the underserved areas of Appalachian-Tennessee. This early start “hooked her” on the concept of health care delivery for most of her career, and sent her searching for relevant graduate school programs. She obtained a Master’s degree in Public Administration – Health Care Administration from Cornell University in 1977.
Her career roles as a Hospital Administrator, Medical Practice Administrator, Medical School Planner, and Physician Management Specialist, led her to call many places “home” – most of them far, far away from her adopted state of Louisiana, including Birmingham, England; Newark, NJ; Manhattan; White Plains, NY; Albuquerque, NM; Stamford CT; and finally to Houston. Her passionate ties to Louisiana and its culture, swamps, music, marshlands, and food remained strong all of her days. She chose Nottoway Plantation in White Castle, LA for her wedding in 1996, and was married wearing her Grandmother Sledge’s dress, which dated to 1901.
Janet loved Contra dancing, English Country dancing, folk music, hiking, gardening, butterflies and hummingbirds, picnics, and making new friends. Her empathy for others was “off-the-charts.”
The family would like to thank Janet’s niece, Elena McGlasson, for her creative and compassionate help as Janet’s Personal Social Director and Partner-in-Crime in recent years. They were a heart-warming team.
The family will host an informal time of remembrance to greet friends and relatives on Saturday July 28, at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church Parish Hall, at 11:00 am. 1819 Heights Blvd. Houston, Texas 77008. All are welcome to attend and celebrate Janet’s life. In lieu of flowers the family requests memorial donations to Houston Public Media, 4343 Elgin, Houston, TX 77204.

Condolences(8)

  1. Mary Jane says

    What a lovely description of Janet’s life. Thank you so much fir it. Mary Jane Victor

  2. Sandra Miller says

    Please accept my deepest condolences for your family’s loss.

  3. Bob Townsend says

    This, indeed, brought back a lot of memories. Her picture was particularly painful for me, as I remember the bright, energetic and caring person she was. Didn’t realize she had lived in so many places, though. Thanks for sending this. Cuz Bob(by)

  4. George Harvey says

    Janet and I were ‘boy friends/girl friends’ my senior year in high school at Broadmoor High School, Baton Rouge Louisiana. We stayed in touch with each other for the forty years. As many others who knew Janet, I was very aware of Janet’s gift of empathy for others. She has always inspired me to live up to her special gift in caring for others so sincerely. I’ve always felt Janet was a quiet angel among us. While I have never been able to give as much as she did to and for others,I will continue to try. I hope that I can be more like Janet the rest of my days here in this space. God bless her.

  5. Jill Scheel says

    What a beautiful tribute to a beautiful soul. She was a true example of being the hands and feet of God.

  6. Kristy G says

    I met Janet about a decade ago and at that point she was already retired. So I like hearing about her career and all the places she’s lived. Thank you for mentioning it in this tribute. Janet was a sweet soul, was always very kind and considerate. It is a shame that she did not get to enjoy more years of her life with her friends and family, but it sounds like she lived the years that were given to her fully.

  7. Ki Addison says

    This is a beautiful tribute to Janet. So sorry we will miss the memorial. Prayers to all.
    Ki and David Addison

  8. Larry Sistrunk says

    I had known Janet for over fifty years.We were close friends. I have never known a more compassionate and genuine person.
    Larry Sistrunk

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