JoEllen Rehder

Departed on May 15, 2024


JoEllen Rehder, 79, of Marion, passed away Wednesday, May 15, 2024, at The Views of Marion.  Services will be held Saturday, June 15, 2024, 11:00 am, at the Cedar Memorial Chapel of Memories.  Visitation will begin at 9:00 am at the Chapel.  

JoEllen was a kind and loving person.  She presented her best version of herself every day.  It did not matter who you were, what you do or did.  The amount of money you did or did not make or have.  Who you loved.  How you dressed. All were equal in God’s eyes. Therefore, they were all equal in her eyes.  She pitied those who were not open to “different”.  For many years, JoEllen would open her home and kitchen on Thanksgiving to all friends and acquaintances who did not want to be alone.  The kitchen was filled with people, turkey and/or ham, so many sides and more love than could be measured.  She often added a table in the living room for overflow people.  All were welcome.  Even every year to the last year of her life, the somewhat spicy ex mother in-law.

JoEllen loved playing games with family.  It started as card games with her mother and brother and grew into family card competitions in Pinochle and Canasta.  The games sometimes drifted into gray areas where people were kicked under the table and poorly worded clues were passed across the table. “Agh my aching heart!”  “Ma, I said I wanted a club sandwich!” Board games, putting together puzzles, and problem solving games were favorites.  She continued to complete the puzzle section of the paper well into Alzheimer’s.

JoEllen leaned on God in times of crisis.  She leaned a little harder on God when she learned, like her father and grandmother, she had Alzheimer’s.  Nothing prepared her for the gradual loss of her memories and the aloneness she was left feeling.  Even through the loss of her identity, JoEllen retained a positive and kind demeanor along with a quirky sense of humor that stood out to those she came in contact with.  She shared old stories, she bantered, and she enjoyed the little things like flowers, smiles and time with her favorite child.  All 3 of us believe we were the favorite, but we all know there can only be one, and it’s the girl.

Survived by children; Michael (Mickey) Walker, Patrick (Tricia Kitzmann) Walker, and Diana Lane.  A cousin, Deborah Oliver.  Step children; Carolyn (Doug) Olson and Craig (Tina) Rehder, grandchildren; Trevor Lane, Brittny (Sam) Carius, Nicole (Bodi) Allen, along with 3 great grandchildren.  She was preceded in death by parents, Frank and Lucia Minard, and a brother, William Minard.  Her husband, Carroll Rehder, and ex-husband, Michael Walker. 

JoEllen would also want to acknowledge her surviving furry grand dogs and grand kitties.  She understood the value pets have on owner’s lives.

In lieu of flowers, please donate your time or money to one of your favorite charities. Some of her favorite charities are The American Heart Association, Alzheimer’s Association, Mercy Hospice and Critter Crusaders.