Jo Bethards Rupp, 97, of Hannibal, MO passed away at 12:50 PM Sunday, January 31, 2016, at Maple Lawn Nursing Home.
Funeral services will be held 2:00 PM Thursday, February 4, 2016, at the Smith Funeral Home & Chapel. Matt Ver Meer will officiate. Burial will be in Holy Family Cemetery.
Visitation will be held 12:30 to 2:00 PM Thursday at Smith Funeral Home & Chapel.
Jo was born on Oct. 10, 1918 to Ray Bethards and Cora Rufener in Shelbyville, Mo. She was married to Francis H. (Sank) Rupp on Nov. 8, 1942 and he passed away on June 15, 1961 of A.L.S.
Mrs. Rupp is survived by two sons, Ronald (Charlotte) Rupp of Buffalo Grove, Ill., and Joseph Rupp of Fort Madison, IA., along with four living grandchildren and six great grandchildren.
In addition to her parents and husband, Mrs. Rupp was preceded in death by two sisters: Jaunita Sanders and an infant Dorothy, and a granddaughter Gretchen Hayes.
Jo started playing the piano by ear at age six. She graduated from H.H.S. in 1936. Jo lettered in sports at both Eugene Field and H.H.S. schools. She sang in the H.H.S. glee club and played a snare drum in the band.
Mrs. Rupp's first job was secretary to Mr. Frank Hodgdon, Cashier at the F&M Bank in the 200 block of Broadway. Mr. and Mrs. Rupp went to Hanford Washington to work on the Manhattan Project to make the atomic bomb. He as a plumber and she as a secretary. One of her secretarial duties was to transfer the day's news from a Seattle radio station to the project P.A. system so the workers heard the day's news. After the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima they returned to Hannibal. After returning, she was secretary to B.L. Murphy M.D. for 25 years until his retirement. Jo's last job was secretary for 10 years to Roy H. Goodhart, President of the Commerce Bank retiring in 1983.
After Mr. Rupp's death, Mrs. Rupp kept busy playing the piano at the rest homes, taking puppies and kittens from the Humane Society to the rest homes and playing the piano on Wednesdays for Salvation Army church services.
Mrs. Rupp was appointed Jury Commissioner of the state of Mo. by the Honorable Wm. Hungate. She received a 70 year plaque in 2009 from the United Way.
Mrs. Rupp had a 19 year perfect attendance pin for Sunday school. Her church membership is with the First Presbyterian Church of Hannibal where over the years she was involved in all their projects including playing in the handbell choir for 5 years.
Jo baked sourdough bread for 30 years quitting at the age of 93 after baking 560 loaves and giving to 112 people. She was known for her hugs and smile.
The Rupp family would like to thank all of the people at Maple Lawn Nursing Home for the excellent care and also like to thank all of the people with the Community Loving Care Hospice Program.
Memorial contributions may be made to the First Presbyterian Church or Hospice Promise Foundation, in care of Smith Funeral Home & Chapel.