JoAnn Carol Luedke
1929 - 2021
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JoAnn Carol Luedke

Neenah - JoAnn Carol Luedke, age 91, of Neenah, Wis., left our earth surrounded by loved ones and entered into the loving arms of our Lord on Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. Known affectionately as "Joanie," she will be remembered always for her magnetic smile, kind heart and giving soul.

JoAnn was born to parents, Arthur and Evelyn Grube, on July 17, 1929, in Sheboygan, Wis. She graduated from Sheboygan H.S. in 1945, went on to study at UW-Whitewater, and graduated with a degree in Education. JoAnn met the love of her life, renowned artist, Russell Luedke, in Whitewater. They were married on Oct. 20, 1951, in Sheboygan. They settled in Neenah, where together they raised three children, Linda, Suzy and John. JoAnn applied her education and love for children as an elementary school teacher in the Appleton School District and the Neenah School District.

JoAnn was very spiritual and involved with the First Presbyterian Church, Neenah, where she served as a Deacon and an Elder. In later years, she was a member of the Covenant Presbyterian Church in Madison. A proud, two-time cancer survivor, she was a strong and resilient person who relied on her unwavering faith to overcome life's obstacles. JoAnn channeled this gift in the mentoring of fellow breast cancer survivors in the Reach for Recovery program - truly an inspiration to all she touched.

An avid sports fan, she loved her Badgers and Packers and enjoyed cheering them on at Camp Randall, the Kohl Center, Lambeau Field and the Rose Bowl in Pasadena.

JoAnn was active in community service activities, which varied from organizing the annual Pie Party for residents at the local nursing home to Pet Pals program that selects dogs who visit patients at the American Family Children's Hospital in Madison. She provided support to American Cancer Society, the Carbone Cancer Center and Czar's Promise, an organization that fights canine and pediatric cancer.

JoAnn is survived by her children, Linda Sullivan, Suzy Piorier (Jim Dawson) and John Luedke (Patti Shine); grandchildren, Caley Piorier, Taylor Piorier, Kyle Luedke, Blair Luedke and Sean Luedke; and grand-dogs, Niles Newton, Stella, Ozzie, Magz, Rigby and EeVeE. She was preceded in death by her parents, Arthur and Evelyn Grube; husband, Russell Luedke; and brother, Fred Grube.

JoAnn was very grateful for her family, friends, and caregivers. She will be remembered fondly by all who she touched with her positive spirit, her deep faith, and that unforgettable twinkle in her eye. Heaven has gained a beautiful and very special angel.

In lieu of flowers, donations in her name may be made to the Carbone Cancer Center at the University of Wisconsin and Czar's Promise of Madison. Online condolences may be made at

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Published in Appleton Post-Crescent from Jan. 16 to Jan. 17, 2021.
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Memories & Condolences
Guest Book sponsored by the Appleton Post-Crescent
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3 entries
January 20, 2021
I am so sorry to lean of your Mother’s passing. She was one of my Sunday School teachers at First Presbyterian in Neenah. I looked forward to her lessons as they were taught with devotion and a smile. She also was a very dear friend of my mother, Lee Brezina. Her friendship was one that my mother cherished. May your wonderful memories of your mother bring you comfort in the days ahead. Keeping you in my heart and prayers.
Jill Brezina Hinkley
January 18, 2021
I am so very sorry to hear about the loss of your Mother. She was a dear long time friend to my Mother through church, Neenah Joint School District and beyond. Holding your entire family close to my heart and wishing you peace in the days ahead.

Wendy Brezina Ressler
January 17, 2021
Joanne was well known at First Presbyterian church Neenah. Her vibrant smile, wisdom at church school, and kind heart continue as living memories. We are going to miss this woman.
Scott Dickson
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