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Longtime children’s advocate Jody Reynolds dies


Jody Reynolds, whose devotion for children was expressed through decades of work with Variety — The Children’s Charity, died Tuesday at the age of 78. 

Reynolds, who was honored in 2017 as a Sage Over 70 by dsm Magazine, was the first female president of Variety International, and over more than four decades helped to raise some $109 million for the children’s organization. A Des Moines native, she married Stanley J. Reynolds in 1968. 

“Jody’s passion is to give each child the opportunity to have a better life,” said Sherri McMichael, executive director of Variety— The Children’s Charity of Iowa, when Reynolds was honored as a Sage. 

Reynolds was also the first female president of Variety Club of Iowa, now Variety — The Children’s Charity of Iowa. She was a recipient of the YWCA Women of Achievement Award and worked for the American Red Cross in Vietnam and South Korea. 

“We are truly overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and affection that people had for her,” said one of her two sons, Stan W. Reynolds. “She definitely left the world a better place.” 

Visitation will be from 4 to 7 p.m. Sunday at Dunn’s Chapel. A funeral service will be held Monday at 10 a.m. at St. Augustin Catholic Church in Des Moines, with burial immediately following at Glendale Cemetery. 

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