Joan Rebecca (Hocker) Runyan, age 86, of Elwood, passed away at Methodist Hospice Care in Indianapolis on Saturday, June 16, 2012, surrounded by her loving family, after a battle with cancer. Joan was born on Sept. 4, 1925 in Elwood, the daughter of Herman A. Hocker and Leona (Hill) Hocker Wesson. Joan married her high school sweetheart, Thurman Runyan, on March 21, 1943. She was a farm wife to Thurman while raising their seven children and her sister, Ginny. Later, after raising her family, she attended Indiana Wesleyan University in Marion, and graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education. She taught in the Elwood school system, and substituted in the Madison Grant school system for many years. She leaves behind a legacy of teaching with many of her children as teachers and educators. She was a devoted Christian and loved her Savior, Jesus Christ, and put her faith and trust in Him. Joan was a member of the Harmony Christian Church in Leisure where she taught Sunday School and Summer Bible School for over 50 years. She was a member of the 50 Plus Club in Elwood, the Y.M.C.A., and the Silver Sneakers exercise group. Joan and Thurman loved attending their children and grandchildren’s hundreds of sporting events and cheering for them. They also enjoyed having large family gatherings - especially Sunday “after-church” brunches, birthdays, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, Mother’s and Father’s Day gatherings. Grandma especially enjoyed watching her grandchildren and great-grandchildren as they opened their Christmas gifts.
She is survived by her seven children, Ron (Sandy) Runyan of Elwood, Nina (Ed) Huntsinger of Elwood, Ken (Brenda) Runyan of Fairmount, Jo Mitchell of Elwood, Jamie Runyan of Minneapolis, Minn., Mindy (Bob) Parker of Elwood, and Dennis (Anne) Runyan of Elwood; 16 grandchildren, Shelley (Steve) Shoup, Stacey (Greg) England, Rodger (Katie) Runyan, Heidi (Tom) Beyer, Jaclyn (Sean) Spillane, Kelley (Alix) Engle, Katie (Nate) Brown, Kyle (Adrienne) Runyan, Morgan (Evan) Smith, Becky (Jared) Grandlienard, Bonnie and Bo Parker, Kirk, Lynn, Dana, and Gail Runyan; 15 great-grandchildren, Madelyn and Samuel Runyan, Lauren and Larken England, Dane and Bridget Beyer, Quinn Spillane, Caleb Runyan-Middlesworth, Jett, Gage and Livia Engle, Reece Runyan, Miles and Sloan Brown, and Parker Grandlienard; two brothers, Bill Hocker and Dana Hocker both of Bradenton, Florida; two sisters, Florence Graham of Elwood and Ginny Noble of Tipton; and she also leaves behind special people in her life, Butch Groover, Jeff McKay and many nieces and nephews.
Joan was preceded in death by her parents; her husband of 60 years, Thurman C. Runyan in 2004; son, Daniel Keith in 1949; and two grandsons, K.C. Runyan and Clint Groover.
The family would like to thank Dr. Helm, Dr. Workman, Erica Powell (RN), Dr. Hormuth and Dr. Morton and the entire staff of Methodist Hospital and the Hospice Department. Also, a special thanks to Jennifer McCarty, her hairdresser, for her special attention and care. Joan really appreciated the many cards sent to her by friends and her church family during her time of illness. The family wants to thank all those caring people who called on the phone or lifted her up in their thoughts and prayers. A special thank-you to her pastor, Ron Meyer, for all his calls and visitations.
Funeral services will be conducted at 11 a.m. Wednesday, June 20, 2012, at Copher-Fesler-May Funeral Home, 415 S. Anderson St., Elwood, with the Rev. Ron Meyer officiating. Burial will follow in Forrestville Cemetery in Summitville. Visitation will be held from 2 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, June 19, 2012, at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Harmony Christian Church Building Fund or The K.C. Runyan Scholarship Fund at the Community Foundation of Grant County, 505 W. 3rd St., Marion, IN 46952.