Following the service
Joanna Ward Jackson, a beloved wife, mother, daughter, sister, and friend, passed away on November 11, 2023, at the age of 39. Born on August 18, 1984, in Anderson, SC, Joanna brought joy, compassion, and perseverance into the lives of those around her.
Joanna’s journey began at Walhalla High School, where she graduated with the Class of 2002. Her pursuit of knowledge led her to Greenville Tech, where she earned her associate degree in December 2004, specializing in Physical Therapy Assistance. As a Physical Therapist Assistant, Joanna found her calling in working with children and special needs individuals, providing them with care and motivation.
Joanna’s commitment to physical fitness and strength was evident in her love for exercise. Her passion led her to meet her loving husband, Ronald “Ronnie” Jackson Jr., at the gym in 2009, as they shared a common interest in staying active and healthy. Together, they embarked on a beautiful journey filled with love, adventure, and shared dreams.
A competitive spirit, Joanna excelled in the world of cheerleading but found her real love of running later in life, running many half marathons, constantly pushing her physical limits. In October 2019, she achieved a remarkable milestone, completing a full marathon on the scenic shores of Kiawah Island, testifying to her unwavering determination and indomitable spirit.
On October 26, 2013, Joanna and Ronnie exchanged vows, solidifying their lifelong commitment to each other. Their union blessed them with two incredible sons, Brooks and Jake. Joanna’s devotion to her children was immeasurable, she poured her love, passion for life, and determination into them, creating cherished memories as they grew. They were simply the biggest joy and greatest source of pride in her life.
Throughout her life, Joanna touched the hearts of many with her quiet strength, unconditional love, and one-on-one connections. Her exemplary skills as a physical therapist brought healing and hope to countless children and special needs individuals. Her career took her many places, from her early days at Baptist Easley Hospital, traveling PTA in Texas and North Carolina, The School for the Deaf and Blind in Spartanburg and finally finishing her career at NHC Healthcare Greenville. Joanna’s caring nature shone brightly, leaving an indelible impact on those she served and helped.
Joanna’s unwavering faith in God guided her through the challenges she faced. Despite her diagnosis with brain cancer in January of 2020, she bravely fought for almost four years, undergoing multiple forms of treatment, and demonstrating her personal resilience all while trusting in the Lord’s plan for her life, no matter the outcome. Throughout the highs and lows of her battle, Joanna leaned into her faith, finding comfort and strength in prayer, family and biblical community.
Joanna was an active member of Grace Church and a loved member of the Eastside YMCA in Taylors, where she was immensely supported and cherished by her friends. Her genuine kindness and warm smile created a lasting bond with those around her. She may not have sought the limelight, but her humble soul, strength and gentle presence touched the lives of countless individuals.
In the midst of her struggle, Joanna always found time to celebrate and savor the irreplaceable moments with her beloved family. Recently, she was able to join her son Brooks on the deck to commemorate his 9th birthday, cherishing the simple joy of being a mother to the last moment and sharing cherished memories together.
Joanna will be deeply missed by all who had the privilege of knowing her. She is survived by her devoted husband, Ronnie Jackson Jr. and their two adoring sons Brooks and Jake, her loving parents, Robert and Elaine Ward, her brother Justin Ward and sister in law Rachel Ward, grandparents John and Jean Dickson, brother and sister in law Blake and Rachel Jackson, mother and father in law Ron and Robin Jackson, and many wonderful nieces and nephews who she loved deeply.
The funeral service to honor Joanna’s life will be held at Grace Church on Pelham Rd in Greenville, South Carolina on Thursday, November 16th, at 1:00 pm. Following the service, family and friends are invited to attend the burial ceremony at Woodlawn Memorial Park in Greenville, South Carolina, where Joanna will be laid to rest. The family will receive friends the night prior, Wednesday, November 15th, from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. at Grace Church on Pelham Road.
In lieu of flowers, the family kindly requests donations be made in memory of Joanna Ward Jackson to the Eastside YMCA in Taylors, South Carolina to be used there for special projects in her memory. Go to (www.ymcagreenville.org/give) and specify the Eastside location to make a donation.
Joanna Ward Jackson’s memory will forever live on in the hearts of those who were fortunate enough to have been touched by her vibrant spirit and unwavering love. Her legacy of kindness, dedication, and strength will continue to inspire us all.