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Obituary - Jo Ann DeShazo Steffen
Carter Funeral Home, Oglethorpe Chapel
Jo Ann DeShazo Steffen
Jo Ann DeShazo Steffen passed away on Saturday, September 25, 2021, at the age of 69.
    She was born in 1951 to Joe Preston DeShazo and Nancy Tanaka in Yokohama, Japan.
    After Jo Ann graduated from Wellston High School in 1970, she went on to study education at the University of Oklahoma.
    She began her teaching career at Choctaw Middle School in Choctaw, Okla. After graduating with a master’s degree, Jo Ann went on to teach at Georgia Southern University and Charter Conservatory for Liberal Arts and Technology (CCAT) in Statesboro, Ga.
    She was a passionate, dedicated, award-winning teacher who inspired many of her students.
    Jo Ann was an excellent writer who published poems and short stories. She was a speaker at numerous writing conferences and an active member of the Georgia Writing Project.
    Jo Ann retired and enjoyed reading, writing, crafting, volunteering and spending time with her family.
    Jo Ann is survived by her mother, Nancy Tanaka; her longtime companion, George “Terry” Johnson; sister, Betty DeShazo, sister, Barbara Smith, and brother-in-law, Garry; sister, Jodie Johnston, and brother-in-law, Mike; stepbrother, Art Tanaka and Faye Cardle; stepbrother, Kenny Tanaka, and sister-in-law, Suzanne; her daughter, Stephanie, and husband, Wesley Moore; daughter, Carrie Roberts; and son, Sean Steffen; and her four grandchildren, Jacob, Caitlin, Colby and Ashley; and nieces and nephews, Trica, Kasey, Chelsey, Tyler, Danyel, Taryn, Dylan, Sydney, Abbey and Katey.
    Jo Ann joins her father, Joe Preston DeShazo; and stepbrother, Steve Tanaka, who preceded her in death.
    The service will be held at Emmaus Baptist Church in Oklahoma City on October 22, 2021, at 11 a.m.
    In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Alzheimer’s Association at
    To share a memory or leave a condolence, please visit

Statesboro Herald, October 7, 2021

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