Whitman County Gazette - Serving Whitman County since 1877

Joanne Kay Howard

June 10, 1951 - Mar. 16, 2018


August 2, 2018

Joanne Kay Howard

Joanne Kay Howard

Devoted wife, proud mother, loving sister – passed away peacefully on March 16, 2018 in Kirkland, Washington, surrounded by loved ones. She was 66 years old.

Joanne was born on June 10, 1951 in Spokane, WA to parents Merle and Vivian Fish. Despite complications from Spina Bifida, Joanne's sunny outlook and determined spirit enabled her to defy medical expectations. She enjoyed a happy childhood, and graduated from Shadle High School in 1970. Joanne earned her Associate's Degree before beginning her lifelong career in medical records/transcription at Deaconess in 1975. On June 10, 1979 – Joanne's 28th birthday – she became engaged to the love of her life and husband of 38 years, Philip Howard. The two married on September 29th of that same year, and welcomed their first and only daughter, Stephanie, in June of 1987. In 1991, the Howards moved west to raise their family in Bothell, Washington.

Affectionately nicknamed the Princess of Positivity, Joanne taught her daughter that "God made no junk." She lived confidently, courageously and unapologetically, and would remind all who knew her of their value and purpose. She will be warmly remembered as perpetually upbeat, fiercely loyal, and sincerely supportive – an animal lover with a gift for gab. She is survived by her loving husband, Phil Howard, her daughter and greatest joy, Stephanie Howard, her dear sister, Darlene Polles (Mick), and her favorite four-legged companion, LuLu.

A graveside service will be held at 11:30 AM on Saturday, August 4th, 2018 at the St. John Cemetery. A gathering at the Community Building in St. John will follow. In Lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Spina Bifida Association or the ASPCA in Joanne's honor. Bruning Funeral Home of Colfax is in charge of the arrangements.


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