Our beloved mother, (Helen) Jo Ashton (aka "Jo Mama") serenely left the earth on Jan. 18th, 2023, with her daughters by her side.
A myriad of family and friends had visited in the months prior to her passing, unaware that they were saying goodbye.
Born April 10th, 1927, to Thomas John and Marguerite Helen (nee Hazen) Liston in Escanaba, MI., residing in Land 'O Lakes as a child and attending Eagle River High School, graduating in 1945. As Jo grew up, her love of music inspired her to learn piano by drawing a keyboard on cardboard and practicing on it. Eventually, an encouraging teacher gave permission to use the school piano after hours. This motivation to learn developed a lifelong romance with piano, particularly the classical genre'.
She married Robert Kyle Ashton II in 1949, until his passing in 1982 and lived in several locations until discovering beautiful Lake Geneva, then insisting our family move there!
She was proceeded in death by her parents, 2 brothers, John (Reny), Tom (Yoko) Liston, a sister Patricia (Sonny) Alt, nephew Tom Alt, 2 grandsons Justin and John Ashton Jr., 2 nieces Colleen and Kelly (nee O'Brien), great grandchild Maggie and special friend, John Brandley.
Jo is survived by her daughters, Cindi, Lake Geneva, and Julie (Elvin) Nekoosa, Robert III, San Pedro Belize and John Ashton (Marianne), Eagle River and her youngest brother, Patrick (Sara) Liston, Baraboo, 4 grandchildren and 5 great grands, a flock of nieces and nephews and extended family.
Special mention to the love of her life, Gordon Bear, who has filled her heart for over 50 years!
Our mother was the epitome of kindness and compassion, with a big scoop of stubborn to balance her out. She is remembered for these traits.
Her quality of life was enhanced by care provided her from Arbor Village/ Village Glen for over 8 years and finally by Aurora Hospice.
No service is planned, as per her wishes. A celebration of life will be forthcoming...
Memorials may be directed to the MDA Shamrock drive held in March in many stores to honor Justin Ashton and Mental Health Awareness/ Suicide Prevention honoring John Ashton Jr.
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Derrick Funeral Home of Lake Geneva is more than honored to be assisting Helen's family.
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