A devoted mother, sister and Air Force wife, Joanne Mary Yackley Brownell left us on February 20, 2020 at the age of 87. She was born May 28, 1933 in South Dakota where she lived on a farm 3 miles from Onida until she graduated from High School.
Joanne, with her parents Viola and Benno Yackley and their 6 other children: Richard, Patricia, Bud, Bob, Deanie and Lois survived the Dust Bowl together and grew up helping their family on their farm.
Joanne left home twice - once to attend boarding school as a very young girl and then again for her move to California where she met her ex-husband Harry Martin Brownell. She served as an Air Force wife, volunteering and entertaining while she raised her two children, Annette Maureen King and Paul Martin Brownell at bases in Altus, Oklahoma; Abilene, Texas; and Bangor Maine. She settled in Bellevue, Washington and made her home there for the next 35 years where she took care of her granddaughter Joslyn King and also worked as a travel agent and office assistant. After her divorce in 1997, Joanne traveled and toured extensively abroad, making several trips to Africa. Joanne loved to read, cook and clean her tidy townhome.
Joanne loved art, gardening, flowers, going to movies and brunches, home improvement and the color blue, like her eyes. She had a wonderful network of other independent girlfriends whom she loved dearly and kept an active social calendar. In the last 9 years, Joanne moved closer to where her son and daughter-in-law, Monica Brownell, could visit her often and assist her with everything she needed. She made fast friends and was a favorite patient at her assisted living community in Bothell. She suffered no pain nor fright at the time of her passing from natural causes. Her wicked sense of humor, grace, patience, style and beautiful manners were never extinguished. She was joyful, funny and laughed often near the end of her life. She is already missed by her close friends; surviving siblings Pat, Bud, Bob, Deannie and Lois; and immediate family Paul, Monica, Dillon, Ryan, Annette and Joslyn.
Due to travel difficulties and the current inability to gather due to the pandemic, her service will be held this summer. Paul will carry Joanne's ashes back to her cherished home in Onida where her family will plan a graveside service and placement in the Yackley family plot. Joanne missed South Dakota dearly in the last years of her life and Paul is so grateful to his cousins for helping him help his Mom find her way back home. May Joanne rest in the peace and love of the Lord's endless embrace.