Jewel Stemple Wood

January 28, 2016

JewelJewel passed away on January 27, 2016 after a ten year journey with ovarian cancer. She had been doing great until December 24 when she became ill. Upon investigation of her symptoms it was discovered that she had a recurrence. Unfortunately, there was nothing that could be done to stop the course of her cancer. She spent the last four weeks under the wonderful care of the St. Mary’s Hospice House. She was never in pain. She died a peaceful death with her family by her side.

Jewel was born on October 25, 1951 in Morgantown, West Virginia to John and Helen Stemple. Her Dad passed away in the early 1990’s. Her mom is still with us at age 93. She also has a loving sister, Mary Beth, and a brother, Edward. She has one nephew, John, and his wife, Carla, and their daughter, Autumn.

She is survived by her devoted and heartbroken husband, Dr. Michael Szkotnicki, who she met on a blind date. They fell in love and were a pair for 24 years.

Jewel graduated WVU with a Masters in Speech Pathology. She was employed by the St. Mary’s School District as a Speech & Language Specialist. She loved her job and the children she helped. She spent most of her career at Leonardtown Elementary School. She retired in 2006 after her initial bout of cancer.

She loved WVU and was an avid fan of both football and basketball teams. She also loved animals of all shapes and sizes. But her favorites were her constant companions, Merken and Epper, her two Bengal cats. Over the years she developed many relationships but she had a special place in her heart for three, Kay, Joann and Karen, whom she first met when she started teaching in 1976. The quartet was inseparable. She also had a lasting bond of love and friendship with her first husband, Dr. Blair Wood.

We will miss Jewel very much – especially her sense of humor, her gift of gab, good heart, caring nature and presence that can never be replaced.

Funeral arrangements will be private and she will be interred at Arlington National Cemetery.

Condolences may be made to

Arrangements by the Brinsfield Funeral Home, P.A., Leonardtown, MD.