JoAnn Elizabeth Guenther was born Dec 2nd 1941 to Margaret and Walter V. Hicks. She spent most of her school age years in Great Falls, Mt and graduated from Great Falls High School in 1959. During her high school years, she was very involved in Jobs Daughters organization and worked her way up to becoming their Honored Queen.
After H.S. she moved on to college to pursue a teaching degree from MSU. She graduated in 1963 with her bachelor’s degree in Education and moved back to Great Falls to teach First grade at Largent and Riverview Elementary schools. She married Joel Guenther in 1967 and had two children, JoDee and Jeremy. They moved to California shortly after that and she taught school in Santa Maria for 3 years, Cypress preschool for 3 years and then taught 6th grade the rest of her 30 plus years in Garden Grove, Ca. She always knew she wanted to be a teacher and felt blessed that she could fulfill her passion for helping children learn and grow for so many years.
JoAnn was a social butterfly and liked to keep active so in addition to teaching full time, she was very involved in Garden Grove Education Association (GGEA) serving on the Board of Directors for most of her career, the National Education Association (NEA) as a representative for 12 years, and served on the California Teachers Association (CTA). During her time in California, she never forgot about her Montana roots and her beloved sorority sisters from Alpha Gamma Delta at MSU. She visited Great Falls every summer and got together with them as much as she could. She attended all of the reunions over the years as well.
JoAnn retired from teaching in 2004 at the age of 63 but she never slowed down. She was very involved in Saddleback Valley Church, she was a member of 2-3 bridge groups, she loved to travel, spend time with her grandkids and she loved to share a meal with friends.
To read the complete obituary and share condolences, visit the Croxford Funeral Home website.