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Virginia Joan (JoAnn) Needham, 94, from Morehead, a loving mother with a deep passion for her community passed away on October 13, 2021 in her home surrounded by family and friends.
JoAnn was born in Mount Sterling, Kentucky on September 27, 1927 at Mary Chiles Hospital to the late Eunice E. Stamper Cecil and Hobert Jackson Cecil.
JoAnn graduated from Breckinridge Training School in June 1945 and four years later from Morehead State Teachers College, now Morehead State University. She was a MSU cheerleader and active in University functions. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Vocational Home Economics and taught at Ropes Regional Vocational School for a year before going to work for the Gateway District Health Department as an Environmental Health Coordinator then Supervisor.
JoAnn was very active in making Morehead and Rowan County a safe and healthy community for generations to come through volunteer work and her elections to many community boards spanning over 50 years. Committees and positions she was most proud of include, Civil Defense County Deputy Director, Morehead Zoning Adjustment Board, Rowan County Drug Abuse Education Chairman, Rowan County Sanitarian, Rowan County Extension Council, Morehead-Rowan County Recreation Commission, Morehead-Rowan County Joint Planning Commission, Morehead Ambulance Board, Morehead City Council, Farmers Home Administration, Morehead-Rowan County Fiscal Improvement Corp., Mobile Home Recreational Vehicle Parks Advisory Committee and Gateway Area Development District Board just to name a few.
She married Robert C. Needham in 1950. They had three loving children, Robert T. Needham who preceded her in death, William H. Needham and Jo E. Needham.
The family would like to express a very special Thank You to Jeanetta Johnson and Janet Puckett who not only cared for Mom the last few years of her life, but became her good friends and companions. We could not have made through Mom’s final years without them.
A private graveside service was held at the Caudill Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, contributions are asked to be made to S.T.A.R.
The Michael R. Gray Funeral Home, 808 Old Flemingsburg Road, Morehead, Kentucky 40351 cared for all arrangements.
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