The daughter of Harold Christian and Evelyn Irene (Schnartz) Bahnsen, Jo was born August 7, 1932 at her Aunt Rose’s home in Rock Falls, Iowa. She graduated in 1950 at the top of her class from Ventura High School.
Jo was proud to have earned and accepted the title “Miss Iowa” in 1950.
On October 22, 1950, she married Darrell “Bill” Lewis. They wed at The Little Brown Church in Chickasaw County, Iowa.
Jo was an amazing wife, mother and Nana. She loved cooking, playing bridge, reading, crossword puzzles, and life at Pleasant Lake, especially pontooning and swimming. Jo and Bill, together, enjoyed “walking the line,” while listening to Johnny Cash.
Through the years the couple traveled extensively. In 1995 they built their dream home in Scottsdale, Arizona where they spent the winter months — a favorite place for her family to gather and vacation.
Remaining to cherish her loving memory are her husband, Bill Lewis; son, John “Spark” Lewis; daughters, Lonnette (Dale) Wood and Sherri Jo (Rodney) Wagner; grandchildren, John Paul Lewis, Max Lewis, Sam Lewis, Mitch Lewis, Evelyn Wagner and Billy Wagner; great-grandson, Greyson Lewis; sisters, Ann Smith and Sherri Vetter.
She was preceded in death by her parents.
Arrangements are pending.
Donations in Jo’s memory may be directed to the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, or to Three Rivers Hospice. Envelopes are available at Hohner Funeral Home in care of her arrangements.