Jennie Joann Ramey Jensen was born July 9, 1937 and passed away at home on Sunday, April 16, 2017. She was born at the St. Anthony Hospital in Pocatello, ID, to William and Edith Ramey. She was the third child of six children.
Joann lived with her family on a cattle ranch in Clayton, ID. She lived there until 1941, when they moved to Portland, OR. In 1946 the family moved to Aberdeen, ID, where Joann graduated from Aberdeen High School in 1955. During her schooling she was always interested in country music. In her senior year of high school she entered a singing contest and won first place.
In the summer of 1954, she met Ello Jensen; in the spring of 1955 Joann joined the United States Air Force, where she worked on some of the first computers for the military. When she came home on two weeks leave, she and Ello eloped. Joann was later honorably discharged.
In 1957 her oldest son, Karey Gail was born; in 1958, their daughter, Terri Marie was born; and their son, Galyn Orlando was born in 1963. Joann and her family moved to American Falls, ID, in 1963.
Joann began selling clothing for Balini Fashions which was a clothing line and received many promotions and was very highly thought of. In 1971 Joann became more focused on the possibility of her country singing career. Joann would practice her music five to six hours a day. She never missed the Grand Ole Opry on radio and television.
In March of 1978 they moved to Idaho Falls, ID. Six months after moving to Idaho Falls, Joann’s love, Ello, passed away after 25 years of marriage. She became very self-sufficient and started concentrating on her music career.
In 1992 Joann’s oldest son, Karey, passed away in Oregon. This took another heavy toll on Joann, as she tried to continue on with her life. In 1987 Joann put together a benefit for two Rigby children, whom she rescued from a house fire. Joann received recognition for her outstanding bravery from President Ronald Reagan, Idaho Governor Cecil Andrus, Idaho U.S. Senator Steve Symms, Civil Defense Capt. Wadsworth, the City of Idaho Falls and Bonneville County. Joann was involved in the Yellow Ribbon Campaign for our troops in 1991.
In the summer of 2014, Joann’s youngest son, Galyn, passed away.
In her last years she took pride in her gardening, taking care of her home and her beloved dog, Honey. She was still very independent and proved so by taking care of her home by herself, chopping and stacking her own firewood. She was a fierce and brave woman who was loved by many and made friendships wherever she went. She loved her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren beyond measure. As the matriarch of the family she was very caring and would do anything for any one of her family members.
She is survived by: her daughters, Terri Marie, of Arco, ID; Tammy Oden of Idaho Falls, ID; brother, Mike Ramey of Idaho Falls, ID; sister, Louise Ramey of Blackfoot, ID; and many cherished grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by: her parents; two brothers; husband, Ello; and sons, Karey and Galyn.
A Celebration of Life will be held at Russell Freeman Park, Idaho Falls, on Saturday, April 29, at 1 p.m. In lieu of flowers please make a donation to the Yellow Ribbon Campaign in Joann’s name.
Condolences may be made at www.colonial-funeralhome.com.
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