Joanne Carol Spear, age 82, of Billings was called home suddenly by her Savior on Wednesday, June 5, 2019. Joanne was born on Sept. 23, 1936 in Thermopolis, Wyoming to Glenn and Leota (Turner) Hammond. The youngest of seven, she was the baby of the family.
When Joanne was 7, her mother, Leota died and Joanne went to live with her oldest sister, Gertrude until her father remarried. Needing a mother for his little girl, Glenn married Silvia Jane Grant on August 16, 1943. Joanne spent most of her school years in the Big Horn Basin.
The Hammond and Spear families had a long acquaintance and Joanne dated John Spear in high school. After graduation, they both found themselves in Southern California; Joanne in nurses training and John in the US Navy. Their affections rekindled and they married March 1, 1958.
After schooling and Navy obligations finished they moved to Fort Benton, Montana, and started their family. Sons, Todd and Bradford ‘Brad’ were born there in 1961 and 1963 respectively. John worked in the aircraft industry until their sons graduated high school. His work took them from Fort Benton to California, to Everett, Washington, and back again to Southern California with job changes and advancements. Being a nurse, Joanne could find a job with little more than a phone call. In 1980, life brought them back to the Billings area. John died suddenly in 1995 at the age of 58. Joanne moved into town within the year.
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Joanne loved to read and always had a book within arm’s reach. But, she loved her family more. Her sons, grandchildren and great-grandchildren were her joy. Getting together with her siblings, nieces and nephews meant so much to her; nothing pleased her more.
Joanne is survived by her sons, Todd Spear of Buffalo, Montana and Brad (Claudette) Spear of Lake Stevens, Washington; grandchildren, Aspen, Stephanie, Sarah (Martin) Townsend, Sean (Erica), Seth (Abba), Suzie, Stephen, and Samuel; great-grandchildren, Hazel, Logan, Mathias, Nolan, and Eliana. She is preceded in death by her parents; husband; brothers, Curtis, George, Jim, and Vern Hammond; sisters, Gertrude David and Jean Nielsen; and daughter-in-law, Beth Spear.
Memorial services will be held at the Worden Open Bible Church on Friday, June 21, 2019 at 10:30 a.m.
Creel Funeral Home is assisting with the arrangements. Joanne’s family and friends can share memories and condolences at www.creelfuneralhome.com