Mrs. Jennifer L. Sovanski, age 45, of Jefferson City, Mo., passed away Friday, November 24, 2023, in SSM Health St. Mary’s Hospital surrounded by her loving family.
Jennifer was born on April 18, 1978, in Springfield, Mo., a daughter of Dennis Dean and Sondra Sue (Jones) Scroggins.
She grew up in central Missouri and was a 1996 graduate of Cole R-1 High School in Russellville, Mo. Jennifer has always been gifted in and passionate about music and took vocal lessons from an early age. She was active in the high school music program where she competed in the state vocal competition. She also participated in the 1994 Missouri Baptist All-State Choir.
After high school, she attended Lincoln University, toured with the Lincoln University Vocal Ensemble (LUVE) and met the love of her life, Joel Damien Sovanski. They were married on October 28, 2000, in Columbia, Mo. and have been blessed with two children.
Jennifer loved serving and helping others and this resonated throughout her entire career. She began her professional career at Lincoln University helping in both their IT and Arts Department. She later assumed the role at Lincoln as the Dispatch Supervisor for the Public Safety Department. Jennifer expressed her creativity and desire to spread joy through multiple small businesses; Jenn Lynn Design, Oh Jenn Snaps, and Sovanski Handicrafts. As someone who easily connected with others, she began working at First United Methodist Church as the Communication Coordinator. She excelled in social media, helping many with ideas, impactful storytelling, and messaging. Jennifer was currently employed with the Missouri Department of Mental Health in their Disaster Recovery Services as a Media & Project Specialist driving their messaging as part of disaster response grants along with response training. She loved being part of a team that was as passionate about creating positive impacts in the area of mental health services as she was, especially regarding the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline and connecting victims of disasters to important resources to rebuild their lives.
She was an active member of First United Methodist Church and recently Missouri United Methodist Church in Columbia, Mo. Not only was she employed with the church for a few years, but she loved to volunteer to help their youth programs of all ages. Jennifer taught in the pre-school and was a board member with the Methodist Early Learning (MEL) program.
A nature enthusiast, Jennifer found solace in outdoor activities, fostering a deep love for hiking and camping with family from an early age. Her role as an Assistant Scoutmaster for Troop 3011G through BSA Scouts allowed her to share cherished moments at BSA campouts with her children and their friends. She made several family camping vacations across New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming and South Dakota and she had dreams of visiting all the U.S. National Parks with her family. Other vacations included trips to ocean beaches, where again she shared in incredible and fondly remembered moments with family.
Jennifer was an amazing wife and mother, wholeheartedly supporting her children in all their activities and recently relished the role of “Band Mom” with JC Jay Band. She was a constant volunteer presence at Moreau Heights Elementary and a passionate supporter of the PTO. She knew every teacher and every student in her children’s grades. Any time with her family was quality time and they will remember her for the constant love she showed them daily. Her joyous personality, characterized by a warm and welcoming smile, left an indelible mark on everyone fortunate enough to encounter her.
Jennifer was blessed with many diverse gifts and talents, not only being a talented singer, but also a website designer and jewelry designer. She enjoyed all opportunities to be creative and share her creativity with the world around her. She will probably most be remembered for her ability to never meet a stranger and make instant friends everywhere she goes. She taught those around her that life is about the journey, not the destination. She was truly a community servant, and her impact on those around her is immeasurable. The world is a better place because she was in it, and those that knew her are grateful she shared herself so fully with those around her.
Survivors include: her husband, Joel Sovanski of Jefferson City, Mo.; two children, Liam and Eva Sovanski, of the home; her parents, Dennis and Sondra Scroggins of Ashland, Mo.; maternal grandmother, Ina “Dusty” Jones of Poplar Bluff, Mo.; mother-in-law, Dawn Sovanski; two sisters-in-law, Mara Woody (Loren) and Kari Sovanski; two nieces, Alexys Sovanski (Tom Freitag) and Zoey Roberts; two uncles, Randy and Terry Scroggins; and one aunt, Betsy Jones Monaghan.
She was preceded in death by her maternal grandfather, George Bryon Jones and paternal grandparents, James and Margaret Scroggins.
Visitation will be at Freeman Mortuary from 4:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. Monday, December 4, 2023, with a prayer service and time of sharing held at 3:00 p.m. Monday in the Freeman Chapel.
Funeral services will be conducted at 11:00 a.m. Tuesday, December 5, 2023, at First United Methodist Church with the Reverend Daniel Hilty officiating. An informal visitation will follow her service at the church. Private graveside services will be held at a later date.
A webcast of Jennifer’s service will begin at 11:00 a.m. Tuesday for friends that are not able to attend by going to First Methodist Church’s website, www.jcfumc.org.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions are suggested to the Sovanski Children Educational Fund, P.O. Box 95, Jefferson City, MO 65102.
Funeral arrangements are under the care of Freeman Mortuary.
Published December 3, 2023