Joanne “Jo-Bob” Beechey, formerly of Saxonburg PA, left for an extended holiday on Thursday, January 28, 2021 to the infinite Doo Wop Concert in the sky. She was born in East Pittsburgh on September 12, 1942 and was raised amongst the Oak Hill Gang. She was older than many, the same age as some, but always young at heart.
She had an effervescent spirit and light, that bubbled over when she talked about things she knew (and those she thought she did), people she loved, and strangers she never met. Her innate knack for relating to all people was her most endearing quality, even if it did drive her daughter stark raving mad….She was a conundrum, wrapped in a riddle, inside an enigma, as she was even keeled and yet larger than life in the same continuum.
Jo was a member of the “bearcats” and relished the opportunity to show off her Rockette high kick on the bar top at the Bears Den to Frank Sinatra’s New York, New York. It was there that she, her husband “Jim-Bob,” and the gang honed their bowling skills while enjoying the wings and camaraderie. For years she and Jim hosted the annual 4th of July picnic that commenced shortly after daybreak and carried on well into dark with plenty of horseshoe throwing and an endless supply of love and laughter.
Her open-door policy often found friends gathering on the outside patio even when the hosts weren’t home. She loved being band manager/groupie to her Generation Gap and a frequent food contributor to Faulx Fest. Some of her favorite times were spent traveling, whether local or far away. Jo always had a spirit of adventure and enjoyed her jaunts to everywhere and nowhere equally. She often found respite and solace in the open water on a boat with good company, cold beer, and music to suit the mood.
Jo was a voracious reader and was rarely without her security blanket – aka her Kindle. She enjoyed music of all kinds, and her homes were filled by the sounds of Motown, James Taylor, Eva Cassidy, 70’s Rock along with so many others. She was also the ever-loving “bubba” and had homemade soup, a recipe, and a story, for every situation.
She was an avid sports fan, proud stage mother, and never missed her daughter Jamie’s high school or collegiate games. She was known to load up a group of her daughter’s friends in the car and travel far and wide to bring a whole cheering section with her. She loved Duke basketball with Coach K and followed all local sports teams, college and pro. Her Delaware doctors noted that her lone heart attack came during the Cowboys-Steelers game when the hometown ballers tried desperately to lose. She really did bleed black and gold and, in knowing her, every other color of the rainbow.
She became a constant fixture (some may even say icon) in her daughter’s career in recreation and parks. Jo was the ultimate volunteer, working everything from concession stands and special events to wrangling spreadsheets.. She was proud to be a founding member of the Titusville Community Café, where she cooked meals made with love for the community every Thursday for several years.
Jo is survived by her grateful and loving daughter, Jamie Beechey of Kitts Hummock, Delaware and four much-loved siblings: Tom Cape of New Mexico, Jane Cape of Westminster, Maryland, Larry Cape of East Pittsburgh and Doll (Cape) Kubiak of Palm Springs. She is also survived by her loving sibling-like Passarelli family members: Sal, Les, Luca, Quinn, Jen, Emmie and Sam –in addition, many beloved cousins, nieces, nephews and all of the special “chosen” family members that were adopted and adored along the way
She was preceded in death by her loving husband James (Jim-Bob) Beechey; her mother, Anna Cape, and siblings Dorothy Cape, Bobby Cape, Jack Cape, and Margie (Cape) Zavada.
Jo epitomized the spirit and definition of the word mom, and her life footprint is embedded in the heart and souls of all the lives she touched, and she touched a great many.
Due to COVID-19, a celebration worthy of her life will be held in Western Pennsylvania when it is safe to do so.
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