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Obituary: Janet Mumm 'Grandma Ladybug'

Sat, Aug 5th 2023 07:00 am

On Thursday, July 27, 2023, Janet (nee Radder) Mumm reached out her hand and took her beloved husband, Fred Mumm's, hand and joined him across the rainbow bridge to heaven, as the many wagging tails of her critters welcomed her.

Jan is survived by her beloved daughter, Heidi Sue (Mumm) McCormick; by her kitties: Lillie, Rosey and Violet; and her granddoggies: Baymax, Riley and Raven – all of Grand Island. She is also survived by her sisters: Carole Murphy and Sue Radder of Franklin, North Carolina; and by a sister-in-law, Dorothy Seville, of Camden. In addition, she is survived by her many "ladybug" grandchildren and great-grandchildren. 

Janet grew up with her sisters, Marilyn and Carole, in the area of Buffalo known as Riverside. She often told stories of walking to the corner store with her sisters to get penny candy, and of the time she placed a tack on the nun's chair in Catholic elementary school. 

During her early childhood, Janet was very ill with the rheumatic fever, which caused heart issues throughout her life. When Janet was in fifth grade, her parents, Rollie and Helen (Hy) Radder, moved the family to the newly booming town of Grand Island. It was when Janet was in eighth grade at Sidway School that her sister, Susan, was born. She talked of the times of being bused to high school in Tonawanda, because Grand Island didn't have a high school, and of hanging out at Ceil & Chuck's and the Idle Hour Inn. 

After high school, Janet worked at M&T Bank, at the Grand Island Plaza, and Birge Wallpaper. She returned to school with her sister, Carole, and learned how to be a key-punch operator in the early days of computers. She then went on to work at Dunlop Tire and Rubber. It was there that she met her soulmate. 

In 1966, Janet married Fred Mumm and celebrated their marriage at the Grand Island Firehall. They started their lives together on Staley Road. 

Janet prided herself on being a devoted homemaker. About a year later, Janet gave birth to her only child, Heidi Sue. From that time on, Jan was the mom of moms: the room mother, the Girl Scout Leader, the baseball coach's wife, and even the Teddy's Islettes parent coordinator (she never missed a parade). 

As Heidi grew older, Jan and Fred became Sonlight Singer's parents and chaperones to many teens continuing even after Heidi graduated. In 1987, her daughter Heidi became the director of The Islettes' Elite Baton Team and she became the honored grandmother to hundreds of ladybug twirlers and percussionists. She saw them all as her grandkids, even attending Grandparents Day at Sidway School with special little ladybugs like Beth Wynne. 

One of her most recent joys was the birth of her "great-grandaughter," ladybug Emma Jayne, to Islettes' Elite assistant director Molly Wynne (Kyle Mortek). She attended her last parade, Williamsville Old Home Day's Parade, this past July 11. Her time with The Islettes' Elite families was priceless to her. 

Also during this time, Janet took on the job of delivering newspapers (Buffalo News) to more than 200 Grand Island families. She made it a point to get to know each and every one of her customers personally, often stopping to check on them and do special tasks for them. Every dog along her paper route received biscuits every day, and special treats at Christmas. 

Janet was also an active animal rights activist and member of PETA. She was a truly caring and compassionate woman. 

In the early 1990s, her husband, Fred, became progressively ill. He suffered from diabetes, Parkinson's and Alzheimer’s. This caused him to be blind and deaf. Janet became his devoted and dedicated caregiver for over 30 years. Her unconditional love for him shined through in everything she did and everything she gave up to be by his side. He passed away in 2013. 

It was after the passing of her husband that Janet had the opportunity to give some focus to her own health. During these past 10 years, she conquered cigarette addition, fought pneumonia twice, lost most of her hearing, and even developed cataracts. She was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2018 and beat it. Most recently, she developed several heart issues, which affected her ability to breathe comfortably. 

Her last few weeks were spent with the wonderful nurses at Kenmore Mercy Hospital, where she was known as "Miss Janet.” It was there that she peacefully passed holding her daughter's hand. 

There will be a celebration of life for both Janet and Fred Mumm on their anniversary, Sunday, Oct. 22, 2023. 

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial donations be made to the Pet Emergency Fund (PO Box 2846, Buffalo, NY 14240). Share condolences at kaiserfuneral.com.

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