JoAnn Alma Vollenweider
March 31, 1934 – September 1, 2022
Mom was born to Jon Arthur (Jake) Jacobson and Ethel Elizabeth (Nelson) Jacobson in Eureka on March 31, 1934. She was the third daughter of four children. Her siblings were Doris Jane Jacobson, Nancy (Hilfiker) Jacobson, and Fred Jacobson.
Though born in Eureka, Mom had described her young life as living in Samoa and moving to Blue Lake in 1941. She had fond memories playing in the Samoa sand dunes and going to Samoa Elementary School. Even after moving she enjoyed going back to Samoa with her mother during the Samoa Women’s club events and visiting with her old classmates. She had strong memories from those trips of watching the blimps from the Navy base drag their mooring cables down the beach. She could remember seeing some of the boys hanging onto the cables and being lifted high into the air and over the ocean. Later on in life Mom (who always enjoyed a good adventure) and while recounting that story, she would proudly state that she never grabbed one of those cables.
She remembered her family childhood and growing up on the farm in Blue Lake with equal pride and enthusiasm. Those family events and cherished friends helped fashion a women of strength, strong family values, a deep appreciation of her friends and a relish to live life to its fullest. Compassionate, kind, loving, decent, honest, and truly enthusiastic for life, only begin to describe Mom (a very special lady from a very special family). Through the ups and downs of life she managed in many ways to live life on her terms.
Mom graduated from Arcata High School in 1951, attended Humboldt State College, and in December 1952 married the love of her life, Kenneth Fred Vollenweider. They had three children, Linda Ann (1953) Kenneth Bruce (1956), and Michael Jon (1957). Their journey through life together was one of shared experiences, both positive and a few negative, but always together. Their love for each other made an impression: Dad had an old picture of mom that he carried in his wallet and almost to himself repeat how beautiful mom was. As children growing up with Mom and Dad, life consisted of family outings to the beach, to friends, to local relatives and one or two longer vacations that almost always included visiting with the more distant Vollenweider or Lindberg relatives in Alaska and Washington.
In addition to family, Mom and Dad had a group of Humboldt County friends that they would cherish for the remainder of their lives, wonderful people that would all look back and describe the “wonderful times“ they had together. Whether the trips were to baseball or football games in San Francisco, an RV outing, camping trips, Jazz Festivals, Fire and Police Olympics, running events, poker games, or larger social functions at the Elks, the group truly enjoyed the company of each other. Many fond memories.
Mom enjoyed many different careers throughout her life. Her first paying job was at an ice cream shop in Arcata; she made a very good banana split for the rest of her life. She worked at Hornbrooks shoes, was an office manager for a construction company, and after moving to the Redding area, worked solely in the banking business for the remainder of her career. She made some very important friends in her life while working in banking.
One thing that did remain constant for Mom was her appreciation of a good book. She was a voracious reader, often having two or three books going at the same time. She continued to read up to the last week of her life. With the passing of her husband, many things changed but Mom continued to enjoy the close friendships she had and the travel bug never left her, culminating in an around-the-world cruise that she took by herself while in her 80s.
Mom was preceded in death by her husband, Kenneth Fred Vollenweider, her parents Jake and Ethel Jacobson, her sisters Doris Jane (as an infant) and Nancy Hilfiker, and her daughter Linda Ann.
Mom is survived by her two sons Kenneth Bruce ( Ann), Michael Jon (Katherine), her brother Fred Jacobson, her brothers-in-law David Bruce Vollenweider and Bill Hilfiker, her grandchildren LaRay and Eric Chambers, Kenneth Jon Vollenweider, Kyle Grant Vollenweider, David Jon Vollenweider, Paul Thompson, and Adina Lawrence, her nephews Harold and Billy Hilfiker, Darrell, Fred, and Martin Jacobson, JJ and Brent Vollenweider and too many great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews to mention.
Mom lived her life as she wished. She had unique rising and bed times, often to the distress of her husband and friends who would prefer to arrive at an event or a meal somewhat earlier. But she was a woman of consistent opinions and only wished for each to treat others respectfully and well. One of her last wishes was to remain at home for as long as possible. With the help of her wonderful care giver, Kari Sjobakken and the care of Bonnie and Darlene from 21st Century Health Care, her last wish was achieved.
To a wonderful mother grandmother, aunt and friend, you will be missed.
Memorial Service: Elk’s Lodge #1073, 250 Elk Dr, Redding CA, Sunday October 9, 2022 from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm. Interment will be held at Sunset Memorial Park at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, a contribution to the Nancy Hilfiker Memorial Fund at the Humboldt Area Foundation would be appreciated by Mom and her family.
The obituary above was submitted by JoAnn Vollenweider’s loved ones. The Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. See guidelines here. Email email@example.com.