Jo-Anne Marie Stevenson, a mother and an elementary school teacher, who graduated summa cum laude from Rice University and, later, raised four children died on Monday, March 6, 2017, in Lakewood, CO. Jo-Anne was 83.
Jo-Anne grew up in Houston, TX, raised by her parents, John Belmar Hickman and Esther Marie Durel Hickman. She attended St. Agnes Academy for high school, and subsequently was one of the first women to attend Rice University, where she was awarded a full scholarship. At Rice, she excelled in academics. She graduated in 1955 with a bachelor’s degree in English and as a member of Phi Beta Kappa. As an undergraduate, she traveled to Boulder, CO, during the summer of 1953 where she met John Cleland Stevenson, who would later become her second husband.
After graduation, Jo-Anne married Robert Broughton, an officer in the U.S. Air Force, in 1956. Robert Broughton was stationed in Peru, IN, where they had their first child, Debra. Robert later left the Air Force and the couple moved to Glendale, CA, where they had two more children, Robert and Judith. The marriage was dissolved in 1961.
Jo-Anne returned to Houston, TX, where she raised three children and served as a teacher in a local elementary school. Recognized for her talent, she was rapidly promoted to school principal. She earned a master’s degree from the University of Houston in 1969.
She reconnected with, and in 1974, married John C. Stevenson. With John, she moved back to California, living now in Chula Vista where John was employed in the defense and aerospace sector. Jo-Anne followed John to live as an expatriate in Shiraz, Iran, where John worked on a contract for Westinghouse. In Shiraz, Jo-Anne taught at the American School. In 1978, before the Iranian revolution, Jo-Anne and John returned to California for the birth of her last child, John Peter Stevenson. In 1984, they moved to Tulsa, Oklahoma, to raise their son. In Tulsa, Jo-Anne served as an assistant librarian for Union Public Schools. She moved to Lakewood, CO, in 2016.
Jo-Anne was an insatiable reader who excelled in the use of written language. She was an expert at contract bridge and she enjoyed solving difficult cross-word puzzles. The same talents made her a formidable opponent in both Trivial Pursuit and Scrabble.
Jo-Anne is survived by her children, Debra Anne Edwards with her husband William James Edwards, Robert John Broughton, Judith Marie Broughton, and John Peter Stevenson with his wife Siejen Yin Stevenson, and her grandchildren Christine Marie Edwards Stewart, Lindsey Joanne Edwards, William Michael Edwards, Andrew John Edwards, and John Robert Stevenson, and her great grandchild Austin James Stewart. Jo-Anne was pre-deceased by her husbands Robert Broughton and John C. Stevenson, and her brother Paul Hickman and her parents John Belmar Hickman and Esther Marie Durel Hickman.
A graveside service and interment will be held at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, March 18, 2017, at Home Cemetery, Tarkio. There is no visitation. Services are under the direction of Davis Funeral Home, Tarkio. Memorials may be directed to the General Fund of the United States Naval Academy. Online condolences may be left at www.minterfuneralchapels.com.