OBITUARY: Jeri Joan Ballard

Jerie Joan Ballard Orr, 90, passed away on Feb. 1, 2019, at her home with her daughter by her side.

Joan was born on Sep. 24, 1928, in Newton, Kan., to Ray and Dorothy Edna Ballard.

She attended Newton schools and received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Oklahoma and her masters from the University of Kansas. Her loyalty remained with the Oklahoma University Sooners, and she was a lifelong fan of OU football.

Early on in her career, Joan worked for the Santa Fe Railroad and later served as a clinical/child abuse social worker and mentored many in various programs. Joan was a very compassionate, caring, and giving person who reached out and helped others her entire life. As an animal lover, she enjoyed her three cats and beloved dog. She had a gregarious personality and always took pleasure talking with friends, old and new. Her hobbies included knitting, genealogy, being an avid reader, and she had a passion for traveling the world with her daughter.

As an active member of St. Matthews Episcopal Church, Joan was involved in the Payee Program as well as the Prayer Shawl Ministry. Other organizations that were dear to her were the Daughters of American Revolution (DAR), Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), International Rescue Committee (IRC) and various bridge clubs in Newton. She was a diehard Democrat!

She is survived by her daughter, Jane Jolette Orr; and grandchildren, London Olivia Orr-Thompson and Jordan Brinkley Orr.

Joan was preceded in death by her parents, Ray and Dorothy Edna Ballard; and sister, Judith Rudberg.

A memorial service will be at 2 pm, Saturday, Feb. 9, at St. Matthews Episcopal Church in Newton. The family will greet friends following the service.

A memorial has been established with The Caring Hands Humane Society of Newton, 1400 SE Third, Newton, KS, 67114, and International Rescue Committee, 1530 Oliver #270, Wichita, KS, 67219.

The family would like to express their deep appreciation to Good Shepherd Hospice for the care, comfort and love shown to Joan. Petersen Funeral Home in Newton is in charge of arrangements.