In loving memory of

Jo Anna Perkins
August 21, 1948 - May 27, 2021

Jo Anna Perkins, 72 of Malvern, IA, passed away at the Montgomery County Memorial Hospital in Red Oak, IA, on May 27, 2021. Funeral services will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday June 3, 2021 at St. John's Lutheran Church, rural Hastings, IA. Burial wll be in the East Liberty Cemetery. Loess Hills Funeral Home in Malvern is caring for Jo Anna and her family.

Memorials: Jo Anna Perkins Scholarship Fund

Jo Anna (Pontow) Perkins, 72 of Malvern, IA, passed away on May 27, 2021 at the Montgomery County Memorial Hospital in Red Oak, IA.

Jo Anna was born on August 21, 1948 in Omaha, NE and was one of four children to August Louis and Phyllis Marie (Wheeler) Pontow. She grew up on their family farm northwest of Hastings, IA, and attended Golden Hill School, a one-room country school through the 5th grade. She completed her elementary and high school education at Malvern and graduated in 1966. After graduating, she supplemented her music education studies at Drake University.

Jo Anna was baptized, confirmed, and a lifelong member of St. John's Lutheran Church where the extended Pontow family were founding members. She was introduced to Gary Lee Perkins through mutual friends attending St John's, which came to be the cornerstone of their Christian life together. The couple was married at St John's on January 27, 1968, and made their home in Malvern, IA. Gary and Jo Anna were blessed with four children, Spencer, Jennifer, Benjamin, and Joshua.

In her professional life, Jo Anna was a pianist, organist, choir director, family-run small business manager, and spent many years working in the Mills and Pottawattamie County court houses. Jo Anna had a great passion for music. Playing the organ and piano for St. John's beginning at age 12 and for over 50 years thereafter, her gift of music extended well beyond St. John's sanctuary by playing for many weddings, funerals, school programs, and community concerts. A favorite annual passion was performing the Messiah with the Southwest Iowa Baroque Oratorio Choir. Jo Anna taught organ and piano lessons to hundreds of students and tutored several musicians throughout the community. She also led and served within various community and school sponsored organizations. Jo Anna was ever so gracious, kind, and always willing to help others. She was impactful to many including family, friends, students, colleagues and clients. She loved spending time with her family who were her pride and joy and will be remembered for her smile, warmth, energy, and love for life and family.

Jo Anna was preceded in death by her parents and is survived by her beloved husband of 53 years, Gary Perkins of Malvern; children, Spencer (Kelly) Perkins of Port Orange, FL, Jennifer Perkins of Des Moines, IA, Benjamin (Nicole) Perkins of Ankeny, IA, and Joshua (Deborah) Perkins of Long Beach, CA; nine grandchildren; siblings, Jerry (Jeannie) Pontow of Hastings, Bonnie Corron of Ankeny, and Dale (Debie) Pontow of Sun City West, AZ; nieces, nephews, cousins, and all their families; and many special friends.


Linda Greaves wrote on May 30, 2021:

"Gary and family. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all during this time of sadness. During the days, weeks and months that follow may your memories bring not only tears but smiles. We rejoice that she is with our Lord and getting everything ready for the rest of us when we are too called home. May the Love, Peace and Comfort of Jesus be with you all and may the wishes and love of family and friends be felt by you not only today but in all the days ahead. God Bless you! Hope to see you soon but hope you feel our hugs across the miles. Russ and Linda Greaves "

Dan Sandy Benscoter wrote on May 30, 2021:

"Our Hearts and Prayers are with the entire Perkin's Families, as Jo Anna is now walking with the Good Lord in the Garden of Heaven. Dan Sandy Benscoter Detroit Lakes, Minnesota "

Lora Strehle wrote on May 28, 2021:

"Jo Anna has always exemplified kindness to my Family & will always be remembered with fondness. Gary & Family, I am sorry for the loneliness & grief Jo Anna?s passing has left you with & praying for you all comfort in the days ahead. Lora McConkey Strehle"

Linda Wooten wrote on May 28, 2021:

"Our thoughts and prayers to Gary and Family. Jo Anna was a loving and gracious friend and woman. She was one of my best friends when we moved to Malvern over 60 years ago. We shared in so many wonderful times, confirmed together and lots of sleepovers. She is gone but will never be forgotten. I was so blessed to have known her. May God hold her in his arms."

Denise Bosworth wrote on May 28, 2021:

"So very sorry for your loss Gary. Prayers for comfort to you and family. Denise Bosworth"

Larry & Peggy Kruse wrote on May 28, 2021:

"So very sorry to learn of Jo Anna; God bless Gary and all family members. Peggy & Larry Kruse"