Jan Johnston Dixon, 72, of Franklin, TN, went home to be with the Lord on Dec. 24, 2023. Born on Dec. 9, 1951, to Robert Bruce Johnston and Alice Bailey Johnston in Paducah, KY, she left her small town with her handmade dresses and headed to the big city to attend Lipscomb University in Nashville, TN, where she met her treasured husband, John H. Dixon, Jr., of Donelson, TN. They married June 5, 1971, at Benton Chapel on the campus of Vanderbilt University. Together with her husband, she raised two sons, John David Dixon and Adam Daniel Dixon, the apples of her eye.
Mrs. Dixon graduated from David Lipscomb University in 1972. She earned her master’s degree in education for guidance counseling from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill in 1977, while her husband was completing his cardiology fellowship at Duke University.
She worked as a guidance counselor at McGavock High School and Harpeth Hall School before dedicating her life to being a homemaker and supporting her husband in his career as a cardiologist for more than 40 years. She knew her role as a doctor’s wife was a holy assignment, and she would never hesitate to help her husband’s patients, who would frequently call their home seeking medical advice.
Mrs. Dixon volunteered for more than a decade with the Hospital Hospitality House of Nashville. She founded Matters of the Heart, an organization that supports medical students, residents, and young faculty who are facing the demands of rigorous medical training. The penultimate hostess, she opened her home to doctors and mentored their wives for over 20 years. A true sanctuary for those seeking shelter from the world, she served all who entered through her door. Many described her as a second mother. Everything she did was accomplished with utmost care and thought. She labored as though unto the Lord. While still keeping her husband and sons first, Jan counseled and ministered to countless people.
Jan and her husband have been members of Belmont Church, Abounding Grace, and Grace Chapel in Leipers Fork. She was never more at home and at peace than when she was physically able to attend church and worship fully. She adored all her friends and fellow worshipers, and for many years was faithfully involved in weekly Bible studies in her Christian sisters’ homes. She was a frequent visitor to her mother-in-law’s nursing home and also fostered relationships with many of the elderly residents there. Every aspect of her relationships, conversations, and daily life revealed the true strength of her faith. Along life’s journey, she lost significant friends to illness and accidents, and though she suffered greatly and privately with those realities, her faith never faded. Along with her immediate family, her beloved husband benefited massively from the authenticity of her faith and thorough knowledge of God’s Word.
Jan was a woman with many deep loves and interests. Some of her favorite memories were multiple Caribbean scuba diving vacations with her beloved sons and husband, and she personally supervised the details of the scuba certification process in the family pool. She was an excellent water skier in her teenage years, which translated perfectly when she and her family began snow-skiing trips to Snowmass, CO, and New Mexico. She found a special love for the western U.S. culture, loved visiting northern New Mexico and Wyoming, and encouraged the family to own horses and adopt that culture. She decorated her home with western trappings and maintained great respect for what became in her life “The Cowboy Way.” She embraced hunting and fishing, and when unable to participate personally, she always enjoyed the audience of friends who would visit her after the community dove hunts. Her love of sports extended from her college varsity cheerleading to a proficiency in watching and understanding collegiate athletics, always rooting for her favorite teams in season. Jan also loved and encouraged multiple friends’ children and her nieces and nephews by organizing wonderful summer vacations for the extended family at the Dixon farm, “Canandaigua.”
She loved to sing praises to God with her beautiful voice and soothing guitar playing. She was a lifelong student of God’s Word; she would read the Bible every single day in her living room and intercede in prayer for anyone God put on her heart. She reveled in God’s creation and often walked her property in search of wildflowers. Despite her own struggles with chronic pain, Mrs. Dixon radiated joy and shared the love of Jesus. Because Christ lived in her heart, all who knew her are forever changed.
She is survived by her devoted husband of 53 years, Dr. John H. Dixon, Jr.; sons, John David (Stephanie) of Franklin, TN, and Adam Daniel (Stephanie) of Eagleville, TN; 5 grandchildren, Levi, Ben, Caleb, Jesse, and Caroline; uncle Wendell Melvin of Franklin; brothers, David (Doreen) Johnston of Murray, KY, and Micheal (Dolly) Johnston of Paducah, KY; nephews, Trent Johnston and Micheal Johnston; niece, Jennifer Johnston Greene; and great nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Bruce Johnston; her parents-in-law, John H. Dixon Sr. and Juanita Craddock Dixon; and her beloved aunt, Norma Craddock Melvin.
Visitation will be January 3, 2024, from 1:00 pm until the Celebration of Life 2:30 pm all held at One Church Home located at 1091 Highway 96 North Fairview, TN 37062.
She will have a private interment on Saturday January 6, 2024.