In Memory of Jo Ann Blanchard

Jo Ann  Blanchard
Jo Ann Blanchard
Born: December 14, 1938
Died: May 22, 2018
Age: 79
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Jo Ann Blanchard
December 14, 1938 - May 22, 2018
From: Nevada, IA

Jo Ann Blanchard, age 79, of Nevada, Iowa, went to be with the Lord our Savior on Tuesday, May 22, 2018. 

Jo Ann was born on December 14, 1938, in Popejoy, Iowa, to Earnest and Josephine (Evans) LaRue. After graduating from high school, Jo Ann moved to Nevada where she met her husband, Leedrue Blanchard.  She married Lee on May 3, 1959, and recently celebrated their 59th wedding anniversary.  Together they lived on an acreage south of Nevada where they raised their three children.  

Jo Ann was employed at Nevada National Bank, Farm Bureau Land Bank and Story County Extension Service where she served as the 4-H Youth Leader Coordinator until she retired. 

After retirement, Jo Ann remained active in 4-H, serving on the Historical Society.  Her other spare time after retirement was spent with her grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and being involved with the First United Methodist Church. 

Jo Ann’s involvement with the First United Methodist Church included teaching Sunday school and Vacation Bible School while raising her children; and later participating in the Bithiah Circle. 

Jo Ann’s role in 4-H was extensive.  As a youth, she was a member of the Oakland Happy Go Luckies 4-H Club in Franklin County.  As an adult, Jo Ann was a Club Leader for Shipley Sunny Servers, assisting her husband lead the Grant Toppers and then leading the newly formed combined Club, Grant Guys and Gals.  At the Story County Extension Service, Jo Ann served as the 4-H Youth Coordinator for Story County from 1985-2002.  After retirement she served on the 4-H Historical Board from 2005 to present.  Jo Ann participated in the development and appeared in the video “Bridges from Past to Future 4-H,” was a 2007 Honoree, along with her husband, for the Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame, and was chosen as a Story County 4-H Alumni Member in 1980.  In 1998, she received the Diversity Achievement award.  

In addition to her husband Lee, Jo Ann is survived by her daughters and sons-in-law, Shari and Mike Caruth of Nevada, IA and Marcy and Andres Juarez of San Antonio, TX; her son and daughter-in-law, Jason and Shelly Blanchard of Mayfield Heights, OH; grandchildren Miranda Blanchard, Kassandra Blanchard, Kristen Blanchard, Alison Caruth, and Kelsey Blanchard; and great-grandchildren Gavin Blanchard and Jackson Blanchard. 

She was preceded in death by her sisters, Mary Lou and Betty; her brother, Maclyn; and her parents, Earnest and Josephine LaRue. 

Memorial visitation to remember Jo Ann Blanchard will take place on Saturday, May 26, 2018, from 10:00 AM to 12:00 Noon at Ryan Funeral Home, 708 5th Street, Nevada.  A luncheon will follow  at the community room at Regency Independent Living, 418 West 3rd Street, Nevada.  All are welcome to attend and celebrate JoAnn’s life.  

At Jo Ann's request, memorials in lieu of flowers may be directed to: Nevada First United Methodist Church, 1036 7th Street, Nevada, IA 50201, 515-382-6536; or to Story County 4-H Endowment Fund, Story County Extension, 220 H Avenue, P.O. Box 118, Nevada, IA 50201-0118, 515-382-6551. 

As it is mentioned in Luke 1:46 “My soul doth magnify the Lord,” Jo Ann Blanchard’s soul magnified the Lord in all that she did and said. 

Ryan Funeral Home of Nevada has been entrusted with the care of Jo Ann and her family.


Sunday, May 27, 2018 at 2:04 PM
“Jo Ann was a very fun woman! Enjoyed working with her thriugh 4-H. God bless. ”
- Mary Kay Litzel
Friday, May 25, 2018 at 2:40 PM
“I was saddened to read of Jo Ann's passing. We worked together in the Story County Extension Office in the 1990's. I was the Central Iowa Extension Crop Specialist. We have kept in touch over the past 15 years by sharing Christmas messages. My condolences are to her family and many friends.”
- John Creswell
Friday, May 25, 2018 at 11:25 AM
“Jo Ann was a great lady whom had a positive impact on so many. Her work developing children's skills through 4H is imeasureable as those she served now are helping others. You can be proud of all of the lives positively impacted be the generosity of Jo Ann.”
- Jeremie Ruble
Friday, May 25, 2018 at 9:44 AM
“So sorry for your loss, our deepest condolences. The Virongos Motorcycle Club of San Antonio, Texas.”
- Mike Lund
Thursday, May 24, 2018 at 9:53 AM
“I'm so sorry for your loss. I have many fond memories of my time in the Shipley Sunny Servers and having you all as our neighbors.”
- Annette Thompson
Thursday, May 24, 2018 at 9:53 AM
“Deepest sympathies, Marcy. You and your family are in our thoughts and prayers. ~Becky”
- Rebecca Shickell Funke
Thursday, May 24, 2018 at 9:53 AM
“To the family, friends and Story Co 4-H Cohorts of Jo Ann Blanchard,
I am sorry to read of her passing and certainly extend my deepest condolences to each of you at this difficult time of closer, Jo Ann and Lee have certainly been a big part of the Story Co 4-H Program for the last half century, including the importance of the restoration of the historical record. She was always so pleasant and very helpful and knowledgeable. May a green candle remind you of the many wonderful memories you share and how blessed we are to have been a part of her life. God's Peace to all til we met again. 4 4-H 4 EVER! Jurine Borton Moore, Milford Twp”
- Jurine Borton Moore
Thursday, May 24, 2018 at 9:52 AM
Our thoughts and prayers from the entire XPO/Barilla Team are going out to you and your family. We are saddened by your loss and stand behind you. Now is the time to celebrate your mother's life and to be with family. We will take care of things here so you can do what you need to do.”
- Tom McGory
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Jason Blanchard
Michael Caruth
Andres Juarez
Gavin Blanchard
Jackson Blanchard


Memorial Visitation
10 a.m.-Noon
Saturday, May 26, 2018
Ryan Funeral Home
Nevada, IA