Joan Olsen Jowers of Mt. Airy, MD, (formerly of Mineola Rd in College Park, MD for 54 years) passed peacefully from this life on 9/17/2023 at the age of 92.
Born on 5/25/1931, the oldest child of the late Norwegian-born immigrants Arne and Ada Olsen, she grew up in N.E. Washington, DC. She met her future husband when her friend (Nell Stange, nèe Jowers) invited her next door to meet Roy, Nell’s handsome brother, home on Military leave. Joan and Roy were married in 1951 and had three children. She is preceded in death by Roy B. Jowers of College Park, MD, beloved husband of 64 years, brother, Arne F. Olsen of Lynchburg, VA and son-in-law, Duane Wattay of Mt. Airy, MD.
Joan’s family was very dear to her. She took a special interest in each of her “kin”, showering them with kindness and hugs. She brought joy through her warm smile and happy stories.
“Grandma” or “Mema” to her grandchildren and “Bestemor” to her great-grandchildren, Joan is survived by her 3 children, 8 grandchildren and 9 great-grandchildren:
She is also survived by her sister-in-law, Becky Olsen (Lynchburg, VA) (Arne), nephew Arne Olsen (Larissa) and their triplets (Abigail, Annabelle and Julie) (Jacksonville, FL) and niece Beki (Lynchburg, VA).
In addition to her direct descendants, she is survived by Roy’s nieces and nephews: Marci Ulery, Bobby Adcock, Glenda Harris (David), Debbie Knight (Terry), Florence Jowers (Paul Webber), Ruth Reilmann (Karl-Heinz), David (DJ) Jowers (Mary), Frances Taylor, Emily Taylor-White and Cristina Ogle.
Joan was a graduate of McKinley Tech High School in Washington, DC. She volunteered as a Sunday School teacher at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Washington DC. In the 1970’s and 1980’s, she worked as a secretary at the University of MD University College. She was best known outside of work for her delicious peanut butter cookies and Norwegian crowns, always available to the neighborhood children and for her incredible Holiday feasts.
Joan showed us, through her joy and faith in God, that we have control over how we respond to the burdens of life. Her life verse comes from John 14:1-2 “[Jesus said, ] Let not your heart be troubled. You believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house,there are many mansions. I go to prepare a place for you.” She lived here on earth, but everyone who knew her saw that she was also part of the Kingdom of God.
We were blessed by her life. While we will miss her quick smile, loving way and generous spirit, she will always remain in our hearts.
The family will receive friends on Wednesday, September 27, 2023 from 2:00pm to 4:00pm and 6:00pm to 8:00pm at Stauffer Funeral Home, 8 East Ridgeville Blvd., Mount Airy, MD 21771. A Celebration of Life service will be held at the funeral home on Thursday, September 28, 2023 at 10:00am. Interment services will be held at 1:00pm at Ft. Lincoln Cemetery, 3401 Bladensburg Road, Brentwood, MD 20722. Rev. Tim May will officiate.
Memorial donations can be made in Joan’s name to the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital (stjude.org) or Kline Hospice House (https://www.frederickhealthhospice.org/kline-hospice-house/)