Jean McCann Obray

Honored by:Colleen Ryan
Brick location:D:14  map

I can think of no better dedication to my mother on her 90th birthday than having her name listed in the "Plaza of Heroines" at the Carrie Chapman Catt Center. Jean McCann Obray was born on a ranch in Wyoming on July 5, 1904. Her family moved to Utah when she was two years old. The rest of her life has been spent in different parts of Utah. She came from a family of musicians. It was a large family--four boys and four girls.

The family had an orchestra made up of most of the children. They played at dances throughout Utah, Idaho and Wyoming. Jean was having so much fun that she did not marry until she was 29 years old. She was never content to stop living a full life after marriage. She not only had five children but also raised two stepchildren.

At the same time she was active in church, civic, political and musical organizations. She was always in demand to play the violin at functions throughout the county. In 1948 she started working outside the home full time. For nearly 25 years she commuted 100 miles each day through mountain roads to a government job. This did not stop her from her many activities. Jean has been active in youth groups all her life. Children have always been drawn to her like a magnet. It is easy to understand why. She makes children feel special and genuinely likes them.

She was instrumental in setting up a bookmobile to cover Cache County in Utah. Since there was only one library in the whole county this enabled children from many different areas to have access to library books. Books have always been her great love and she saw the need to share this love with other children and adults. At the age of 75 when most people are slowing down Jean went on a two-year mission for her church. She spent those two years in the Houston, Texas area.

Jean is a talented artist, musician and writer. She loves the outdoors especially the mountains and water. Swimming was one of her favorite activities until she was over 80 years old. Jean McCann Obray is an inspiration not only to her family but to others who have had the privilege to know her.