Cover photo for Joanna  Mae Sass's Obituary
Joanna  Mae Sass Profile Photo

Joanna Mae Sass

July 24, 1932 — May 31, 2014

Joanna Mae Sass, age 81, of La Grande, died May 31, 2014 at the Grande Ronde Hospital. A family service will be held on Saturday at the Summerville Cemetery. Those who wish may make contributions in her memory to the Oregon Heart Association. To sign the online guest book visit

Joanna was born on July 24, 1932, the daughter of Wayne and Marjorie (Wallsinger) Reavis in La Grande. She attended elementary school in Union, and when she was in the eighth grade, her family moved to Richland, Oregon where she graduated from high school. On December 31, 1950 she married Orin Herman Sass. They had three children together.

Joanna was a devoted homemaker and mother and kept an immaculate home, garden, and flower beds. She was an excellent cook and seamstress. For many years she taught piano lessons out of her home and had a keen intelligence. She excelled in her embroidery, knitting and crocheting. She loved being with her children and grandchildren and also loved to travel around the valley viewing wildlife through binoculars.

Joanna provided daycare in La Grande for many years. She took special care of the children she cared for and formed long-lasting friendships with many wonderful families who remain dear to her family.

Joanna is proud to have been a fourth generation Oregonian; some of her ancestors were first settlers in Wallowa and Union Counties. There are some well-documented and noteworthy accounts about some of these ancestors in Eastern Oregon history.

Survivors include her children and their spouses, David and Karen Sass of Genesee, Idaho, Catherine Bars of La Grande and Nancy and Bobby Morrison of Antlers, Oklahoma; sister, Mary Jean and brother-in-law Max Henry of Baker City; nine grandchildren, Lucas, Tyler, Austin, Carson, Dana, Blake, Ashleigh, Megan, and Abby; five great grandchildren, Jack, Lucy, Becky, Ethan, and Logan.; three nieces, Ann Dennis of Baker City, Kelly Richards of La Grande, and Jennifer Gibb of Wallowa; and other relatives and friends.

Arrangements are entrusted to Daniels~Knopp Funeral, Cremation & Life Celebration Center in La Grande.


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