Madison – Joanne (Stevenson) Sprecher, age 76, passed away on July 17, 2021, at Sienna Meadows in Oregon, Wisconsin, after a long struggle with early-onset vascular dementia.
She was born on July 7, 1945, in Madison, Wisconsin, daughter of Kenneth and Agnes (Ulvestad) Stevenson. The youngest of four children, Joanne grew up on the farm in Dane that’s been in her family since 1880. In her youth, she was a member of Arlington Prairie Church, 4-H and FHA. She graduated from Lodi High School in 1963 before taking a job in Madison with the Wisconsin Department of Health and Social Services. It was when her boss took her to Thorstad Chevrolet to purchase a new car that she met her future husband.
Joanne married Eldred “Al” Sprecher on August 21, 1971 at Bethel Lutheran Church, where she was an active member for over 50 years. They settled into his home in Midvale Heights, where she joined his family of three teen-age children, Teresa, Scott, and Mark. Two years later, they welcomed their daughter, Aimee.
Warm, caring and soft-spoken, Joanne devoted her life to family and to making a home for her loved ones. She enjoyed time spent in her kitchen and flower beds, knitting and crocheting, hosting gatherings and visiting family, caring for family dogs, thrift shopping, dining at the Elks Lodge 410, camping up north, and boating on the Madison chain of lakes. Grandma Sprecher had an endless supply of homemade cookies and delighted in reading and playing games, walking over to Segoe Park, and enjoying simple times spent with her grandchildren.
Joanne is survived by her daughter, Aimee (Neill) Bailey, as well as her stepchildren, Teresa Sprecher, Scott (Tenney, and son, Rory Lipke) Sprecher; and Mark (Sandy) Sprecher; grandchildren, Elissa Sprecher, Kaitlyn Sprecher, Tanner Bailey, and Brock Bailey; great-grandson, Grayson; sister Roselyn (John) Skopek; sisters-in-law, Dorothy Schreiner, Jayne Sprecher, and Carol Ann Sprecher; and 25 nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Eldred; her brother and sister-in-law, John and Dorothy Stevenson; sister and brother-in-law, Vicki and Larry Brandt; and sister-in-laws, Luella Sprecher and Arlene (Bob) Pete, and brother-in-laws, Donald (Vee), Russell, Dutch, and Ralph Sprecher.
Aimee wishes to extend deep gratitude to the many people who cared for and provided support to Joanne over the years, including the staff at Sienna Meadows Memory Care, Dr. Art Walaszek of UW Geriatric Psychiatry; Agrace Hospice staff, Kristin Showers, Megan O’Connor, and Marsha Rotherham; Pastor Roger Black; former caregiver, the late Jean Rose; and Joanne’s special caregiver and friend, David Ives.
Visitation will be held from 9-10:30 AM on Friday, July 23 at Bethel Lutheran Church, 312 Wisconsin Ave., Madison. The funeral will be held at 10:30 AM with Pastor Bill White presiding, followed by a graveside service at Sauk City Cemetery and a luncheon in Madison. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made out to Bethel Lutheran Church’s Media Ministry or to Agrace Hospice Care.
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Agrace HospiceCare, Inc.
5395 East Cheryl Parkway, Fitchburg WI 53711
Media Ministry at Bethel Lutheran Church
312 Wisconsin Ave, Madison WI 53703