Jane Elizabeth Nichols Steele, January 20, 1926~October 4, 2017

Jane Elizabeth Nichols Steele died October 4, 2017.  She was the daughter of Guerdon Nichols and Dorothy McLeod Nichols. She married and settled in Little Rock where she raised her four children.

She was the first female teaching assistant in Little Rock University’s History Department.  She was the leader of the first integrated Girl Scout troop in Little Rock, and an active member of the League of Women Voters.

She co-founded Wilderness Trails, a non-profit that took high school students on summer trips to the Appalachians, Colorado Rockies and Minnesota Boundary Waters.  These adventures were always memorable. She took many canoe trips down the Buffalo River, starting the trip with the warning “Don’t rush to Rush!”

Jane lived in Colorado and Arizona, engrossed in the culture and history of the west.  She rafted several western rivers, including the Colorado.  She drove her camper alone up the Alaska-Canada Highway and back.  She designed a cabin on Beaver Lake and built it with the help of family and friends.  Jane loved a good project or destination.  Finally, Jane returned to Fayetteville and the house she grew up in.

She is survived by John William Steele, Cynthia Steele Moss, Dr. Allison Moss Johnson, Dr. Jeff Johnson, Jack Johnson, Emily Moss Runyon, Brad Runyon, Isabella Runyon, Hannah Runyon, Karen Steele-Hart, Bill Hart, Jacquelyn Steele Lincoln, Ivy Lincoln, Naomi Mendel Stratton, Katie Stratton, Chloe Stratton, Sarah Mendel Johnson, Len Johnson, Julia Lincoln Sites, Matt Sites, Cassidy Sites, Harrison Sites, Barret Schein, Tanya Schein, Bishop Sites, Dr. Daniel Lincoln, Sarah Schwald, Ellery Lincoln, Becky Scott Roberts, Mark Roberts, Gordon Roberts, Tiffany Roberts, Megan Roberts, Marc Roberts and Chloe Roberts.

The family thanks all those who supported Jane during her life.  Memorials can be made to Buffalo River Watershed Alliance, Washington Regional Medical Center Hospice or Southern Poverty Law Center.

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Condolences (2)

    Susan Campbell Norton » 11. Oct, 2017

    My sister, Cyndy Campbell Ervin, and I were scouts in Jane’s troop during the late 60’s and early 70’s. The experiences we had with Jane as our leader to the Colorado Rockies, Minnesota Boundary Waters, and Buffalo River are some of the most extraordinary memories of our lives. Pushing a broken down yellow school bus through Loveland Colorado, hiking through aspens on trails without seeing another soul, washing our hair in frigid streams, camping above the timberline in bright sunshine, raging thunderstorms, and crazy snow (all in one day), are among the memories. Jane’s steel-blue eyes, bright smile, free spirit, and utter confidence in all she mentored helped mold many of us in the day. Our condolences to Jane’s family, friends, and all those scouts out there whose lives she touched.

    Peggy Ackerman » 11. Oct, 2017

    You have our sympathy. We are saddened to lose Jane. It was a privilege and a pleasure to know her.
    George and Peggy Ackerman