Gardening 09

Joanne Day Thompson

November 7, 1936 ~ December 7, 2021 (age 85)


Joanne Day Thompson, age 85, passed from this life peacefully on December 7, 2021.  She was born November 7, 1936, in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  She was preceded in death by her son Barry Michael in 1993 and her parents, Nathaniel and Grace Day.  Joanne is survived by her son David, her brother Robert (Pam) Day, nephew Steve (Kathryn) Day and their daughter Emma, niece Marcia (Dan) Johnson and their children Alyssa and Luke, cousins and friends.  She grew up on a small acreage in Plymouth, Minnesota, and loved the outdoors, fishing and gardening, and did dramatic reading at a young age.


Joanne graduated from Wayzata High School in 1954 and began work in the field of business as a bookkeeper and secretary, and later as an office and building manager.  After marriage, several moves and two children, in 1980 she settled in Cedar Hills outside Snowflake, Arizona. She worked as a legal secretary, had a transcribing business, and also did sewing and alternations.  She loved to garden outside and inside in her beautiful attached greenhouse.  She had the proverbial green thumb.  She was an avid reader and would finish a good book on a weekend.  Joanne could do many things.  She took shorthand, typed, could hammer and saw, split wood, paint, spin yarn, quilt, cook, garden and much more.  She could have been an early pioneer.

Joanne retired from the Navajo County Attorney's Office as a legal secretary. In 2008 her neighbor, Larry Hildebrand, invited her to assist him in forming a volunteer organization to establish the Cedar Hills Senior Center in their rural community.  She and Larry were co-directors, with Larry being president and Joanne secretary-treasurer, and the Senior Center still successfully operates to this day.  For many years Joanne has been the editor of the Cedar Hills monthly newsletter, which has a circulation of over 700.  The newsletter brought timely news from the Cedar Hills Senior Center and also many interesting and factual articles.  Her last publication was October 2021.

Joanne lived a life filled with service. She had a kind heart and a creative soul. She was a wonderful cook, and she cooked breakfast and lunch at the Center until recently. She made organic buttermilk-buckwheat pancakes, zucchini chocolate cakes and lemon bars, which were some of her popular favorites.  Joanne took great pride in all of the many things that she did.

Joanne will be greatly missed by her family and friends.  Per her request, there will be no funeral service.  As Joanne would say, “See you on the other side.”   Memorial contributions may be made to the attention of Larry Hildebrand at Cedar Hills Senior Center 9419 Concho Hwy, P.O. Box 2504, Snowflake, AZ 85937, Online condolences may be left at the Silver Creek Mortuary in Snowflake:

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