Cover photo for JoAnne Shoemaker's Obituary
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1931 JoAnne 2022

JoAnne Shoemaker

March 9, 1931 — November 26, 2022

Fergus Falls


JoAnne Shoemaker, Age 91, of Fergus Falls, Minnesota, went to be with the Lord Saturday, November 26, 2022 in Fergus Falls, MN.

JoAnne was born March 9,1931, to Aubrey Glen and Ruby Elizabeth (Gunsolley) Milburn in Fort Scott, Kansas.  She was Baptized at Cherry Grove Baptist Church, Garland, Kansas, and married in the same church to Donald Dean Shoemaker on March 28, 1948, by Rev. R.B. Shoemaker.  They celebrated over 74 years of marriage.

JoAnne’s lifelong career goal was to be a teacher.  She graduated with a BA & MS from Pittsburg State University, Kansas.  She continued with Graduate work at Central Baptist Seminary in Kansas City, Kansas, the University of Nebraska, the University of North Dakota, and North Dakota State University.

Mrs. Shoemaker started her career life working for the family country store.  After graduation from high school, she assisted an insurance adjuster in Kansas City, MO, was secretary for a Wallace County, Kansas judge, and assistant to a chemistry professor at Pittsburg State University, Kansas.  After graduating from college, JoAnne taught in public schools as a media specialist in Lamar, Missouri.  The family moved to Fairbury, Nebraska, where she taught 5th grade and went on to set up a multi-media program within the school.  She simultaneously taught classes at South East Community College.  After moving to Bismarck, North Dakota, she taught 5th grade in public schools and became Assistant Principal.  She assisted her husband, Rev. Don Shoemaker, with serving in church ministry in many ways, including secretary, Sunday school teacher, co-writer of several books and more.  In retirement, they traveled to over 13 countries and volunteered in missions.  Her multi-media skills were used in Johannesburg, South Africa; Bacone College in Muskogee, Oklahoma, Central Baptist Seminary in Kansas City, Kansas; and assisted with setting up a seminary library in Prague, Czech Republic.

JoAnne and Don made Fergus Falls their permanent home in 1994 and were members of Crossroads Church. JoAnne was also a member of NEA: North Dakota Retired Teachers Association.

She enjoyed sewing, decorative painting, crocheting, tatting, making greeting cards, reading, and playing games and puzzles in her spare time.

She was preceded in death by daughter Teresa Shoemaker, grandson Bradley Schmidt, brothers Donald Milburn, Dale Milburn, Kenneth Milburn, and sister Lucille Arnold.

JoAnne is survived by her spouse, Don Shoemaker; children Loraine (Daniel) Schmidt, Rapid City, South Dakota, ; Gina (Bob) Slechta, Crestview, Florida; Thane (Ruth) Shoemaker Natchitoches, Louisiana; John (Judith) Shoemaker, Bismarck, North Dakota; Royce (Jennifer) Shoemaker, Fergus Falls, Minnesota, 18 grandchildren, and 27 great-grandchildren.


In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Crossroads Church, Fergus Falls, MN.


Visitation: Friday, December 9, 2022 from 10 to 11 A.M. at the Glende-Nilson Funeral Home in Fergus Falls.


Memorial Service: Friday, December 9 at 11:00 A.M. at the Glende-Nilson Funeral Home in Fergus Falls.


Burial: Oak Grove Cemetery in Fergus Falls.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of JoAnne Shoemaker, please visit our flower store.
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