Joanne Harper Jones, 80, passed away on Dec. 7, 2022, in her home in Blacksburg. Joanne was born on March 20, 1942 (befittingly the first day of Spring), in Westboro, Mass. Born a minute apart was her sister, Barbara, during a time when twins were rare, so the Harper twins were quite the pair in town. Joanne was the daughter of the town funeral director and spent her childhood raised in the funeral home. Her mother passed away when she was seven when she was then cared for her by her older sister, Gini, who was the rock of the family. During her formative years in Westboro, her report cards often read “talks a lot.”
Joanne attended the University of Maine where she met the love of her life, Jerry, on a blind date at the Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity house. Their love affair lasted 60 beautiful years and produced three surviving children, Jere of Blacksburg, Timothy (Lynn) of Indianapolis, and Michelle (Robert) of Charlotte; and five grandchildren, Evan, Ellie, Tanner, Ryan, and Brady. She is also survived by sisters-in-law Sharon and Nancy who she considered to be sisters; brothers-in-law, and many nieces and nephews she adored. Lastly, she is survived by the sweetest fur baby, Lottie, who her children said she loved more than them at times.
She was preceded in death by her father, Irving Harper; mother, Dorothy Conant; and sisters Barbara Minardi and Virginia Cox. Joanne loved to laugh and make others laugh. It was not often you would find her sad or angry. She never met a stranger, was always surrounded by friends, and would give you the shirt off her back. She will be dearly missed but she would not want us to be sad and prefer we smile and laugh at the “good times.”
The family will receive friends at McCoy Funeral Home in Blacksburg on Friday, Dec. 16 from 5 to 7 p.m. Joanne will be laid to rest finally at peace on Saturday, Dec. 17 at 2 p.m. followed by a graveside service. Details will be provided later for an afterlife celebration toasting our funny, caring, beautiful JoJo. We feel comfort knowing she is reunited with her family and peace that she had a life well lived.