JoAnn R. (Winters) Raper

Born: Wed., Aug. 20, 1930
Died: Mon., Aug. 28, 2017


1:00 PM to 3:00 PM, Sat., Sep. 02, 2017
Location: Cleveland Rd. Location

Funeral Service

3:00 PM Sat., Sep. 02, 2017
Location: Cleveland Rd. Location

Print Obituary   Home Page All Obituaries

Music by The Piano Brothers

 JoAnn R. Raper

Aug. 20, 1930 - Aug. 28, 2017

EDWARDSBURG, MI - JoAnn R. Raper passed away August 28, 2017. JoAnn was born in Augusta, Illinois as the only daughter of the late Esther R. (Hunt) and Chester A. Winters on August 20, 1930.

She married the love of her life Harold E. “Gene” Raper on September 8, 1951 whom has cherished and adored her for 65 years. To their union, two sons were born, Joseph E. Raper, of Fishers, Indiana and Timothy W. Raper of Elkhart, Indiana who remain loving and devoted sons. In addition she is survived by Joe's daughter, Shari R. Grinnell, her husband Aaron Grinnell and JoAnn's great-grandchild, Jacob H. Grinnell who remain to mourn her passing as well as many cousins and grand cousins.

JoAnn graduated from Illinois Wesleyan University with a bachelor's degree in music education in August 1952. JoAnn earned a Master's degree in music education from Notre Dame University in 1972. JoAnn taught vocal music at Marquette, John F. Kennedy and Thomas Edison schools in the South Bend School Corporation for 38 years retiring in June 1994. She loved teaching, forming choirs and giving concerts. She had a wonderful way with children helping them to develop their music skills as well life skills, inspiring many to continue to further their music education.

After retiring she and her husband moved to Edwardsburg, Michigan and have enjoyed living on Eagle Lake and playing golf at Four Lakes Country Club. She has been a lifelong member of P. E. O., national sorority and a member of the local chapter 45 until it ceased activity. JoAnn was a member of the Augusta Methodist Church and was director of its choir until leaving for college. She was a member of the South Bend Methodist Church for many years.

Visitation shall be held at Welsheimer Family Funeral Home North located at 17033 Cleveland Road, in South Bend, on Saturday September 2, 2017 from 1:00 PM until 3:00 PM with funeral services commencing at 3:00 PM. Committal services will follow at St. Joseph Valley Memorial Park, 375 W. Cleveland Rd., Granger, IN. Contributions to the American Cancer Society, 130 Red Coach Dr., Mishawaka, IN, 46545 or Harbor Light Hospice, 1608 E. Day Road, Mishawaka, IN, 46545 are requested in lieu of flowers. Family and friends may leave email condolences at

Charitable donations may be made in JoAnn's memory to the following organizations:

American Cancer Society, Great Lakes Division, Northwest Indiana Office
130 Red Coach Drive, Mishawaka, IN 46545

Harbor Light Hospice,
1608 E. Day Road, Mishawaka, IN, 46545

Click to send flowers using our local area florist
Direct website to florist ordering, saving on wire fees
View/Sign the Condolence Book

Click the button to generate a printable document containing all condolences submitted

Condolence Booklet

Jack Silvius
   Posted Thu August 31, 2017
My sympathy Thinking of you.

Barbara Hunt Ekx
   Posted Thu August 31, 2017
Gene and Family, I am so sorry for your loss. Joann will be missed by many. But what a legacy she left, in her music and teaching to so many esp. the young people whose lives she impacted. That gift lives on in those many lives and their giving of what she taught them to future music lovers /students. What wonderful memories all of you will have to share and keep in your hearts now and forever. KEEPING ALL OF YOU IN THOUGHT AND PRAYER. Sincerely Barbara J.Ekx

Bill and Diane MacDougall
   Posted Thu August 31, 2017
Our prayers are with you and Joanne will be greatly missed by all.

Bill and Nancy Pittman
   Posted Fri September 01, 2017
We wanted to let you know how deeply sorry we are for your loss. We are neighbors to Tim and when your mom would come to visit, she was always so nice and kind to us. We did not know her well, but we could tell she was a soft, gentle person. We appreciated knowing her.

May God comfort you. Please know you are in our prayers, hearts and thoughts.

-Bill and Nancy Pittman

Ellen Anderson
   Posted Sat September 02, 2017
So sorry for your loss. I have many fond memories working with JoAnn at Four Lakes.

Rose Marie (Merrick) Kaseweter
   Posted Mon September 04, 2017
Raper family-

I worked w/JoAnn at Edison Middle School starting in the late 80's & played the piano for her concerts until she left Edison. We had such a great time & she was extremely helpful, as I was a new teacher in the SB schools. She still had a lot of energy to deal w/those kids & I appreciated her willingness to include plenty of fun in the choral program at EMS.

And now nearly 30 years later, I relish those years at Edison, where I was able to consult so many fine, experienced educators. Oh, yeah. The staff knew how to have a good time, too.

My best, Rose Marie Kaseweter