Jean Liebenthal, 82, of Victor, passed away August 7, 2019, at home with her husband and oldest daughter by her side.
Jean was born the fifth of seven children on August 28, 1936, in Menan, Idaho, to William Davis Zundel and Margaret Dougan Zundel. She attended schools in Egin, Idaho, and graduated from South Fremont High School. She also attended Brigham Young University.
On December 4, 1959, Jean married John “Jack” Leslie Liebenthal in St. Anthony, Idaho. Together they had four children. Jean and Jack lived in Idaho Falls for 33 years and raised their family there. They later relocated to the Teton Valley. Jean worked as a freelance writer and was a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Jean was exceptionally selfless, devoting her life to others in many capacities. She was a dedicated daughter, sister, wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, and friend. She honored and served her LDS community. For more than four decades, she spent countless hours in 12-step groups, helping many women find and sustain recovery and spiritual growth.
Jean was a strong, highly principled woman who exemplified high character, kindness, and care. She always had a clear point of view, and fearlessly voiced her opinion. She had a charming sense of humor and wit.
A writer from her youth, Jean was published in more than 30 prestigious publications including Poetry, Redbook, Writer’s Digest, Country Woman, Denver Quarterly, Oh Idaho!, Dragonfly, The Christian Science Monitor, Signs of the Times, and The Ensign. Her story in Redbook, “Blessed to Receive,” was republished six times in the U.S. and elsewhere. She had four fiction books published by Bookcraft. She was a five-time winner in the Writer’s Digest poetry contest. She was named Poet of the Year by the Idaho Writers Club in 1985, and also received the Vardis Fisher award for humor. From 1989—1991, she was one of ten writers on the touring roster of the Idaho Commission on the Arts.
Jean is survived by her loving husband, Jack, of Victor, ID; children, Margaret Anne Liebenthal of Victor, ID, John William Liebenthal of Boise, ID, Steven Leslie Liebenthal of Boise, ID, and Christine Susanne (Kevin) Richert of Boise, ID; brothers, Steven (Sue) Zundel of St. Anthony, ID, Leland (Shiela) Zundel of Cambridge, ID, and Neil (Bonnie) Zundel of Parker, ID; nine grandchildren, and 16 great grandchildren.
Jean was preceded in death by her parents; sisters, Margaret “Peggy” Betty Chambers and Geraldine Zundel LaBarge; and brother, Brent Zundel.
Services will be held at 1 a.m. Tuesday, August 13, at the Victor 3rd Ward, 87 E. Center Street, with Bishop Ryan Nykamp officiating. The family will visit with friends from 6 to 8 p.m. Monday at Wood Funeral Home, 273 North Ridge Avenue, and 9:45 a.m. at the church prior to the services. Burial will be in the Annis Little Butte Cemetery.
Condolences may be sent tot the family online at www.woodfuneralhome.com.