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Celebrating the life of

Janet Lee Oliver

June 05, 1938 - March 20, 2024

Janet Lee Oliver

Janet Lee Oliver, 85, of Savannah (Wilmington Island), Georgia passed away with her family by her side, on Wednesday, March 20, 2024, after a brief illness. She was born in Lexington, Kentucky on June 5, 1938 to Leonard Hudson Oliver and Pansy Hill Oliver, who preceded her in death.

Janet lived much of her life in Lexington and in nearby towns in Woodford County. The family lived on a small farm behind what is now the Blue Grass Airport in Lexington; and as a child she would ride horses with her friends across the farmland that is now part of the airport and Man O' War Blvd.

While attending Lafayette High School she met her high school sweetheart Gerald Ramsey, from nearby Jessamine County. She graduated with the class of 1956 and stayed close to classmates through reunions well into her 80s. Following high school she was accepted into Fugazzi Business College in Lexington and graduated with the class of 1958. She married Gerald in 1959 and together they raised two children, Jennifer and Zach. After Gerald’s death in 1989, she met and married Tom Harney, who also preceded her in death.

Janet worked at the University of Kentucky for over 30 years, only taking time away to be at home to raise her children. Upon retiring from UK in 2007, she started a new life chapter and moved to Wilmington Island to be closer to her daughter and the warmer climate that she loved. While in Savannah she joined a variety of social clubs and volunteered with many local organizations. Some of these included: the Telfair Academy Guild; the Savannah Newcomers Club; and the Savannah Chapter of the Victorian Society of America. She helped make and serve breakfast at Emmaus House; was one of the Mint Julep Queens; and was a devoted member of her Women on Wine club, and she often volunteered at events for the Savannah Jazz Festival. She also loved going to her part-time job at Islands Ace Hardware near her home to stay busy and meet new friends. Janet had so many great friends all over Savannah and made wonderful memories here in her adopted home.

Janet had a unique style and spirit, her energy was one of a kind. She was the oldest 35-year-old we knew, living life to the fullest, always ready to go and do things, and to be with people of all ages. She regularly drove from Savannah to Lexington on her own to visit family, would hop on a plane with friends to go to Mexico or to other places, and was always looking forward to the next social event. She reinvented herself in Savannah, dismissing any limitations of age and style. Her free-spiritedness and candor were constant and she will be dearly missed by all who knew her.

Janet is survived by her daughter Jennifer Ramsey (Elizabeth Schindo), son Zach Ramsey (Nellie Burks Ramsey), grandchildren Olivia Ramsey (Patrick O’Dell), Katherine “Kate” Ramsey, James “Hadden” Ramsey, Anna Burks Orschell (Graham Orschell), Emily Coleman (Zach Pohlman), and great-granddaughter Judy Claire Orschell.

A celebration of life will be held in April in Savannah with details to follow here and on social media; also, there will be a memorial service in Lexington with more details to follow. She will be interred in her final resting place at The Lexington Cemetery, next to her beloved father and mother. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation in her honor to: The University of Kentucky Sanders-Brown Center on Aging or DV8 Kitchen in Lexington, or Emmaus House or Renegade Paws in Savannah.



Jenn I am thinking about you and your family. Prayers to all.

- Susan Chamberlin, Athens, GA

A candle has been lit!

With energy, enthusiasm, and creativity Janet made life less stressful and more joyful for many people, especially me❤️ Deeply sharing the grief of your loss.

- Nan, Savannah, Georgia

It will be hard to replace someone with Janet's spirit and style. She was ready to have some fun and enjoy the many friendships she made while in Savannah. And as a friend said: Who will bake for us?

- Sylvia Severance, Savannah, GA

What a sudden and shocking loss for all of her family members and friends. Janet was one of THE COOLEST ladies in Savannah and anywhere she went. All of us at Savannah Jazz will miss her being in the audience and on the job as a volunteer. With deep sympathies, great love, and fond memories.

- Paula Fogarty, Savannah, Georgia

I am so very sorry for your loss and for this sudden passing of Dear Queen Janet.

- Erica Scales , Savannah , GA

Janet and I shared June as our birthday month. As Geminis we shared so many of the same likes and dislikes. We both so loved a good party. Janet always was the heart of any party, beautifully dressed and always ready to provide the best dishes. She enjoyed a toddy, loved being with the Divas of WOW and enjoyed working. So many holidays and good times spent together. She will always live in our hearts!

- Jan Vach, Savannah, Ga

I’m so very sorry to learn of your Mother passing away. She was the sweetest person and I so enjoyed seeing her at Savannah Newcomers events. She will be missed by all! SNC President, Connie Hiott

- Connie Hiott, SAVANNAH, Georgia

So very sorry for your loss. I knew and traveled with Janet through friends who live and lived in Savannah. She was an inspiration for everyone. So much fun, so lively and so loving. Each of us should try to be a Janet. I loved her and will miss her with a heavy heart.

- Susie Hunley , North Myrtle Beach, S C

Jennifer and Zachary, I always loved Janet. I wanted her to be my Mom. She radiated beauty and kindness. My heart aches for all of the family. I will cherish our childhood memories. May you fine Peace, and comfort during this difficult time. All my love and blessings. Mary Ellen

- Mary E Munro, Huntsville, AL

I will miss Janet tremendously. I loved our talks & she was a wonderful neighbor. She lived a great life. Praying for you & your family.

- Joe & Jackie Richardson , Savannah, GA

I met Janet years ago when she worked at Magnolias downtown and later at Norwood Plaza. She was without a doubt the kindest, funniest and most genuine person that I ever had the pleasure to know. Prayers for her family!!!

- Mary Ellen Corbell, Savannah, Georgia

Services under the direction of:

Fox & Weeks Funeral Directors, Hodgson Chapel