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Jann T. Anderson, gem artist, Erik Jewelers co-owner

Feb. 17, 1937 – April 22, 2015

Jann T. Anderson, of Amherst, a fine jewelry artist who was co-owner of Erik Jewelers, died Wednesday at Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital after a brief illness. She was 78.

Born Jann Thompson in Normal, Ill., she earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in fine arts and education at Illinois State University.

In 1969, she and her husband, David E. Anderson, opened Erik Jewelers on Allen Street in Buffalo’s Allentown section.

The shop eventually moved to the City of Tonawanda, where it remains open for business. She worked six days a week until her recent illness.

Mrs. Anderson was an artist who created unique designs in jewelry that were known throughout the United States.

People would travel thousands of miles for her pieces. A number of famous sports and artistic personalities purchased special jewelry from her.

Mrs. Anderson had a nearly photographic memory for the jewelry that was made at Erik Jewelers. A customer could come back after 30 years and describe a piece and she would say, “I remember that,” and describe some of the design process she had used.

She worked closely with the customers and got to know many details of their lives. Her work was never halfway in making a piece of jewelry; it had to be just right.

Surviving in addition to her husband are a son, Erik R.; two daughters, Gretchen Kobylinski and Leslie S.; a brother, Frank Thompson; four grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday at Dengler Roberts Perna Funeral Home, 8630 Transit Road, East Amherst.

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