Jo Lauckhart passed away on June 8, 2013, following a short battle with cancer. Jo was born in Stewart, B.C. on July 8, 1920, to Ernest Robert Workman and Laura Theresa Workman (Curl). She remembered the wooden sidewalks in Stewart being very high off the ground, but when she traveled back to Stewart as an adult, those wooden sidewalks were much closer to the ground.
At the age of 5 she moved with her mother and sister to Manette, Washington. Her mother later remarried and Jo was adopted by her stepfather, George Benjamin Lawrence. She attended public school in Manette. Her most memorable day in Manette was when the family home burned to the ground and Jo lost all her pictures of the pet monkey she had in Stewart.
After high school, Jo went to work as a secretary in an insurance company and lived at home. As these were the years of the depression, her folks were taking on boarders. One of the boarders was Donald W. Lauckhart. Jo and Don married on October 12, 1941.
While Don was starting his career as an Electrical Engineer, they lived for a time in Bremerton, where son Roger was born; West Seattle, where son Richard was born and Marysville, where daughter Jennie was born.
In 1951, Don accepted an offer from the Grays Harbor PUD and the family settled permanently in Aberdeen. Jo was an accomplished piano player and piano teacher, with all three of her own children and six of her grandchildren among her students. Jo was a youth choir director, an active scout mom and community volunteer. She also directed the Montesano Methodist Church Choir during those years.
In 1986, after Don retired and was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease, Jo and Don moved to Wesley Homes in Des Moines, Washington. A lifelong learner who had been very active in the Aberdeen Study Club, Jo pursued new interests, including writing a book about Parkinson’s Disease and graduating from Evergreen State College. Jo also became accomplished at cross stitch, watercolor painting, and earned a Federal Income Tax preparer certificate from the IRS. For several of her last years Jo prepared tax returns for Jackson Hewitt, then H&R Block, and finally for AARP, just retiring during tax season this year, at the age of 92.
Jo was preceded in death by her husband Don in 1996, a brother, Roy Workman and a sister, Daphne. She is survived by a sister, Vera Parkins in Anchorage, Alaska; a brother, Ben Lawrence and wife, Louise in Greeley, Colorado; two sons, Roger and wife, Kathy of Montesano and Richard and ,wife Donna of Davis, California; and her daughter, Jennie Galloway and husband, Gary of Wilmington, North Carolina. Jo was also an attentive and loving Gramma to 9 grandchildren and 8 great-grandchildren, Claire, Lea, Finn, Sonia, KyLee, Payton, Josie and Aleena, who were the delight of her later years.
Jo was the matriarch of the family and would send out an email every Sunday to all the family members about what everyone in the family was doing. Jo was loved very much by her family and will be greatly missed.
A memorial service will be held at 2:00 pm. on Friday, July 5, 2013, at Wesley Homes in Des Moines, Washington. Donations can be made in Jo’s name to Wesley Homes Circle of Concern in Des Moines, Washington or to the United Methodist Church in Montesano.