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Joanna Simpson

Joanna (Hoffman) Simpson, 85, of Evansville, Indiana, went home to be with her Lord and Savior on Saturday, May 4, 2019. She was born October 27, 1933 in Evansville, Indiana.  She met her husband, Gerry, one Saturday at the local roller-skating rink while he was attending military boot camp at Camp Breckenridge, Kentucky.  Later, Gerry deployed to Korea and their love continued to blossom through the writing of letters. When he returned home, they enjoyed traveling the country together.  They were married October 9, 1954, spent several years traveling the world through Gerry’s military service, and then welcomed four beautiful children, Karen, Gerald, Daniel, and Teresa. During these years, Joanna spent her time serving in many capacities in the communities in which she lived, whether that be through volunteer services for senior citizens, delivering meals on wheels, leading girl/boy scouts, and supporting her children’s many interests in sports and activities. Following Gerry’s retirement from the military in 1973, Joanna and Gerry continued their tradition of traveling and lived in many locations in the Midwest.  The two enjoyed serving the community together, going to garage sales, and spoiling their grandchildren until Gerry’s death in 1989.  Since then, Joanna shared a home with her son, Daniel, with whom she shared a love of gardening and cooking for the last few decades of her life. In between times, she enjoyed collecting various treasures including her skunk collection, many crafts and crocheting. She also loved traveling and took every opportunity she could to visit her son in Maine, visit her daughter in South Carolina, and make other trips across the country, including her most recent trip out west to various national parks with her daughter, Karen. Joanna is survived by her brother, Ronald E. Hoffman; her daughter, Karen L. (Erik) Conover of Grand Rapids, Michigan; her son, Gerald M. Simpson of Naples, Maine; her eight grandchildren, Andrea (Mike) DeWinter, Joanna (Jason) VanBelkum, Sandra (Ryan) Hunt, Darin Nativio, Jordin Nativio, Sebastian Nativio, Kodiak Simpson and Casey Simpson; nine great grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband, Gerald L. Simpson; her children, Daniel M. Simpson and Teresa J. Nativio; and her brother, Donald A. Hoffman. Family and friends will be received Friday, May 10, 2019 from 6:00PM – 8:00PM at Matthysse-Kuiper-DeGraaf Funeral Home, 4646 Kalamazoo Ave. SE, Kentwood.  In addition, family and friends will be received Saturday, May 11 from 10:00 AM until the time of an 11:00 AM service at St. Mary Magdalen Church, 1253 52nd St. SE, Kentwood, MI. Interment Ft. Custer National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to St. Judes Children’s Research Hospital (

  1. Karen and Gerald just wanted you to know you’re being held close in thought and heart.

    - Ron and Cathy Hoffman
  2. Please accept my condolences for the loss of your mother. May the God of all comfort be with the family during this difficult time. (2 Corinthians 1:3)

    - Hester

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