Joanne Alice Kohler
Joanne Alice Kohler, age 84, of Nevis, Minnesota, passed away on January 25 at her residence at The Cottages in Park Rapids.
Funeral Services will be 11:00 am Tuesday, January 29 at the First English Church of Dorset, with visitation beginning one hour prior. Cease Family Funeral Home of Park Rapids is assisting the family. www.ceasefuneralhome.com
Joanne was born July 1, 1934, and baptized August 5 of that year in Frazee, Minnesota, the daughter of John and Alvina (Wothe) Daubenspeck. The family moved to Detroit Lakes when Joanne was in third grade. She was confirmed in her Christian faith at Zion Lutheran Church in Detroit Lakes and, in 1952, she graduated from the Detroit Lakes High School.
Joanne graduated from Moorhead State College in 1954 with an Associate of Arts degree. She worked for Northwest Bell; first in Minneapolis and later in the district office in Detroit Lakes.
Joanne married Kenneth Duane Kohler on June 15, 1956, in Detroit Lakes and as a young family they moved to Thief River Falls in 1957. Joanne often lamented she was an "only child," but with Ken she grew her own family with children Kathy, Kristi and Jim. Joanne was always surrounded by family and good friends.
Joanne enjoyed being among young children, serving as a long-time teacher's aide for Mark Twain and Challenger elementary schools in Thief River Falls from 1969-1998. Joanne was also a long-time member of St. John Lutheran Church in Thief River Falls where she served our Lord in LWML and Circle, sang in the choir and taught Sunday School and Vacation Bible School. She served as the church secretary at St. John for many years. At the time of her death, Joanne was a member of First English Lutheran Church in Dorset, Minnesota and Eternal Life Lutheran Church in Mesa, Arizona.
Joanne was an avid knitter, especially touching family and friends with her wonderful personalized Christmas stockings and jackets. Her passion was to be outdoors in the sun, whether at the family cabin on Lake Belle Taine or as a snowbird with Ken each winter in Arizona. She enjoyed card games and other activities with friends and held a soft spot for Jim's dog she called "Sadiegirl," who was her summer companion for many years at the lake.
She is survived by her husband "Kenny" of 63 years; children, Kathy (Bruce) Levi, Kristi (David) Mclain, and Jim(special friend, Marie Wiseth) Kohler; Kathy's children, Andrew (Clarissa) Levi, Grant (fiance Molly Hannigan) Levi; Emily (Saul) Helgeson ; Sarah (partner, Rory Kerwin) Levi; Krisiti's children, Derek (Tina) Erickson and Jared (Kathy) Erickson; great-grandchildren on Kathy's side, Sienna, Sage, Connor and Logan; great-grandchildren on Kristi's side, Everett & Hazel; step great-grandchildren, Lukasz, Mikolaj and Grarzyna.
Joanne was preceded in death by her parents.
Even though stricken with vascular dementia resulting from a stroke five years ago, Joanne continued to express her faith in Christ and knew God had a plan for her life despite the difficulties she confronted every day. Her life was a living example of the kind of faith expressed by Proverbs 3:5: "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding."
A special thanks to Dad for the daily care he provided Mom these past several years, and a special thanks to the wonderful staff at The Cottages and St. Joseph's Health Hospice Care who provided invaluable care to Mom during her last days.