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Judith Kay (Craig) Hess

August 2, 1943 ~ June 28, 2022 (age 78)


Judith “Big Jude” Kay Hess, age 78, of Witmer Lake in Wolcottville, IN passed away on Tuesday, June 28, 2022 at Parkview Noble Hospital in Kendallville, IN surrounded by her loving family.  Mrs. Hess was born on August 2, 1943 in Muncie, IN to Paul and Maxine (Rufenbarger) Craig.  In 1961, she graduated from Yorktown High School in Yorktown, IN where she was voted “Most Beautiful Hair.”  Upon completion of her education, she married the love of her life and husband of 60 years, Ronald Roma Hess, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Muncie, IN.  Judy wore many hats in her lifetime.  She was a wife, mother, grandmother, homemaker, caretaker for the elderly and taskmaster, where she conjured up the next task for her husband, Ron, to accomplish.  Judy was an avid fan of the lake life.  She enjoyed spending countless hours on the lake boating, fishing, and watching her grandchildren and their friends swim at her home.  She was highly skilled at interior decorating, especially when using the colors black and white.  Judy loved being outside sitting in her rocking chair with a Camel cigarette and diet caffeine-free Pepsi, working in her yard, landscaping, and riding her golf cart with her dogs.  She enjoyed traveling to Florida and hosting her friends at her home on Witmer Lake during the summer months.  Often when those would visit her, they would be put to work moving furniture, painting, or pulling weeds.  Judy was honest and not afraid to let you know what was on her mind.  Whether she thought your hair looked bad, you needed to lose weight, or needed to improve on something, she would let you know what she was pondering.  Though she was brutally bold, her loving heart was unmatchable.  She would go beyond limits to make sure someone in need was taken care of.  Judy was proud of her family and was not shy about bragging about them to anyone who would listen at the Twin Six or another local establishment when she was out.  Her family was her focal point and she loved them all dearly.  Judy’s love for her family trickled in her family’s friend’s lives as well.  Most of her grandchildren’s friends and neighborhood kids all referred to her as “Grandma Judy.”  Grandma Judy, or as some of us know her as “Big Jude,” was a one-of-a-kind woman.  Anyone who knew her had his or her own unique relationship and story with her.  Though we won’t be hearing her yelling at Grandpa Ronnie to get that dog or about her opinions on how we should be doing something, we will always have her love and memories in our hearts.  Judy Hess was a true icon and local legend and will be missed by all those who loved her. 


Survivors include:

Husband, Ronald Hess of Wolcottville, IN.

Daughter, Kathy and Robert Krock of Wolcottville, IN.

Son, Dr. James and Abigail Hess of Wolcottville, IN.

Granddaughter Heather and Brandon Heal of Wolcottville, IN.

Grandson, Ryne and Claudia Krock of Fort Wayne, IN.

Grandson, Craig Hess of Rome City, IN.

Great-grandchildren, Caroline, Rowan, and Annie Heal of Wolcottville, IN.

Brother, Jim and Vicki Craig of Wolcottville, IN.

Brother-in-law, Denny and Karen Hess of Fort Wayne, IN.

Sister-in-law, Marilyn and Robert Delagrange of Carmel, IN. 

Canine companion, Miah Hess of Wolcottville, IN.


Judy was preceded in death by her parents.


Visitation will be held on Tuesday, July 5, 2022 from 3:00pm-7:00pm at Hess Funeral Home and Cremation Services, 603 South Detroit Street, LaGrange, IN 46761.

Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Wednesday, July 6, 2022 at 11:00am at St. Gaspar’s del Bufalo Catholic Church, 10871 IN-9, Wolcottville, IN 46795.

Burial will take place following the Mass at Woodland Cemetery in Wolcottville, IN.

Officiating the services will be Father Louis Fowoyo.

Memorial donations may be directed to Ark Animal Rescue in LaGrange, IN.

To sign the online guestbook or to leave your favorite memory of Judy, please visit or find us on

Arrangements and care trusted to Hess Funeral Home and Cremation Services of LaGrange, IN. 

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Judith Kay (Craig) Hess, please visit our floral store.

Memorial Tree
A Memorial Tree was planted for Judith

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July 5, 2022

3:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Hess Funeral Home and Cremation Services
603 S Detroit St
LaGrange, IN 46761

Mass of Christian Burial
July 6, 2022

11:00 AM
St. Gaspar del Bufalo Catholic Church
10871 IN-9
Wolcottville, IN 46795

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