JoAnn Steele, age 80, passed away peacefully in her sleep on July 13, 2020. She was surrounded by her family and loved ones. She was born on June 28, 1940 in Haysi, Virginia and was the daughter of the late Bana and Mellie Willis. She was a 1958 graduate of Haysi High School. She married Ralph Steele in November 18, 1957 who preceded her in death in 2013. In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by her six brothers Foy, Jack, Buster, Gene, Amos, and Andy Willis. JoAnn loved her family and organized a family reunion each year named after her Grandfather William Patton Willis. She had a knack for always bringing people together and would bake stack cakes for folks as a thank you. She was also a wiz in the kitchen and was known for her amazing cobblers in all flavors. For many years, JoAnn worked as a teacher’s aide at Sandlick Elementary. She loved spending time with children and watching them grow up in the community. JoAnn is survived by her three sons, Eddie Steele, of Haysi, VA; Tim (Missy) Steele of Roanoke, VA; Chris (Whitnee) Steele of North Potomac, MD; brother Bana Willis Jr.; her sisters Marie (Pete) Wallace of Haysi, VA; Mae Mullins of Goldsboro, NC; and Debbie Kirby of Goldsboro, NC; and sister-in-law Brenda Willis of Haysi, VA; and, five grandchildren Hayley, Jared, Todd, Evelyn, and Allie, and several nephews and nieces. Funeral services will be held on Thursday, July 16, 2020 at Haysi Funeral Home. Family is asked to arrive at 5 PM and will receive guests at 6 PM. A 7 PM service will be officiated by Rev Danny Sluss. Since Joann was always focused on taking care of others, the family asks that those attending follow measures to protect others during the Coronavirus pandemic by observing social distancing and wearing face masks. Graveside services will be conducted at 1 PM, Friday, July 17, 2020 at Mountain Valley Memorial Park in Big Rock, VA. Pallbearers include grandsons Jared and Todd Steele; nephews Bana Willis, Ryan Wallace; grandnephews Caden and Cooper Powers and Brooks Horne; and, nephews-in-law Clay Powers and Jessie Yates. Honorary Pallbearers include nephew Jamie Willis and grandnephew Brandon Willis. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the American Cancer Society in gratitude to Dr Daryl Pierce. Online condolences may be sent to www.haysifuneral.com Haysi Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
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