Joanna Belle Barber
Published: Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012
Joanna Belle Barber was born Feb. 16, 1938, in Omaha, Neb., to Melvin and Jessie (Burke) Hanson. Her family lived on a ranch near Argyle, S.D., and later in Hot Springs, S.D. She graduated from Hot Springs High School.
Joanna attended the Arthur Murray Dance School and became a dance instructor. In 1957 she also married Steve Corbin of Hot Springs. They were later divorced. Joanna worked for numerous radio and television stations as a copy and traffic manager. While living in California in 1968 she married Jack Barber. In 1971 when Jack was sent abroad with the U.S. Air Force, Joanna settled in Edgemont, S.D., where her parents lived. She was divorced from Jack in 1978.
Jo worked at the Beef Palace Feedlot in Igloo, she drove truck to deliverer bulk propane and worked for Burlington Northern Railroad as a brakeman, then conductor. After an on-the-job injury, she retired from BN in 1986. Jo moved back to Hot Springs and purchased a house her father had built. While living in Hot Springs she worked in real estate sales as a closing agent.
As her health presented challenges, Jo moved to Custer, S.D., to be near her daughter. In late 2010 she moved to assisted living in Lead, S.D. She recently moved to the nursing home in Custer.
Jo took great pleasure in many activities. She loved to cook, garden and can her home-grown vegetables. She spent countless hours landscaping her yard and growing flowers. She also loved horses. She spent many years hauling kids to compete in rodeos and as a 4-H horsemanship leader. Jo also loved the Black Hills. She inherited several gold claims from her father and spent a good amount of time attempting to mine gold. Jo’s door was always open to family, friends and those less fortunate or lonely. Jo was an artist who loved to oil paint. Her daughters are blessed to have her art hanging on their walls.
On Tuesday, June 26, 2012, Jo died at Custer Regional Senior Care due to complications of congestive heart failure and diabetes. She was 74.
She was preceded in death by her parents; a sister, Helen Gorsuch; a son, Larry Hanson; and a grandson, Justin Stover.
Survivors include daughters, Teresa (Victor) Pedersen, Custer, and Misty Peck, Belle Fourche, S.D.; a brother, Raymond Hanson of Hot Springs, a sister, Patricia (Stephen) Koller, Scottsbluff, Neb.; and her closest cousin, Verna Barker of Edgemont; five grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces, nephews, cousins, aunts and uncles.
Services were held July 2 at McColley’s Chapel of the Hills in Custer with Pastor Wally Steele officiating. Burial followed at the Pringle Cemetery. A memorial has been established. Written condolences may be made at www.mccolleyschapels.com.
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