Bessie Joan Yowell, life-long resident of Piedmont and beloved Mother, Grandmother, and Great-Grandmother, passed peacefully on August 13, 2020. The 87 years of her life were full of adventure, love, strength, and devotion to her family, friends, and community. Bessie “Joan” was born on July 21, 1933, to parents Clarence Beryl and Bessie Ethel Jones in Yukon, OK. As an only child, her feisty spirit, determination, and care for others shined. Her sparkling smile and big personality awarded her the lead role in four theatre plays in high school. Joan’s compassion and natural caregiving abilities emerged at an early age as she served her neighbors and community as a Rainbow Girl. That compassion turned into a career as she started working as a nurse aid and a scrub tech at Baptist Hospital in Oklahoma City when her three children, Sharron, Robert, and Janet, were still young. That career turned into a life calling as she pursued further nursing experience and enrolled in school for her nursing degree. She studied through the day at OSU – OKC and worked nights to continue to provide for her family. That dedication paid off when she graduated with her Associates Degree in Nursing. As a Registered Nurse, Joan nurtured patients at Baptist Hospital for over 10 years and excelled as a scheduling coordinator for prestigious heart surgeons including Dr. Zudhi, Dr. Greer, Dr. Carey, Dr. Holly, and Dr. Hartsuck during the 1970s. The heart specialty intrigued her personally as her father passed from a massive heart attack 10 years earlier at the young age of 52. The procedures Joan assisted with, such as the first pacemaker in Oklahoma, were on the leading edge of cardiac research which created major, lasting impacts in the world of medicine. In the 1990s, she assisted with deliveries in El Reno Hospital’s Labor and Delivery ward.
Joan also nurtured her children and supported them as they grew in the Piedmont community. She was involved in the Cub Scouts with Robert as a Den Mother, cheered at Sharron and Janet’s basketball games, supported the Piedmont schools, and even worked in the administration office for the Piedmont school district. Her love for her small community was evident by the many friendly acquaintances and close friends she made in the town, and the multiple opportunities to be involved such as membership in the Piedmont Historical Society and the local Order of the Eastern Star. Joan shared her enthusiasm for history as a tour guide at the Cowboy Hall of Fame. Always on the go, she loved to travel and explore the world around her. Her spunk and joy for life were also found in the adoration towards her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. They will especially remember the glass soda pops shared at “JoJo’s” house. The legacy Joan began will continue in the hearts and memories of her family and friends.
Joan Yowell is preceded in death by her spouse Homer Yowell of 20 years, parents Clarence and Bessie Jones, and first husband Mason Treece, father to their three children. She is survived by daughter Sharron and husband Gregory Olson; son Robert and wife Aimee Treece; daughter Janet Clayton; grandchildren Jason Tinsley, Sarah and husband Aaron London, Melissa Prigmore, Maree and husband Steve Lunsford, Kevin and wife Demmy Clayton, and Cameron “Farrah Moan” Clayton; and great-grandchildren Cruze London, Chase London, Paris Prigmore, Piper Prigmore, and Steven “Eli” Lunsford, III.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Bessie "Joan" (Jones) Yowell, please visit our floral store.