Joni Lea Simpson

Joni Lea Simpson

Joni Lea Simpson


Joni Lea Simpson, 67, of Toledo, Iowa, passed away at her home on Sunday, May 21, 2023, under the care of Iowa River Hospice, surrounded by her loving family.

Joni was born Jan. 28, 1956, to Walter and Norma (Vavra) Kriegel in Marshalltown, Iowa.

She grew up in Tama and attended South Tama High School, graduating in 1974. She competed in many sports and was a track star, holding a school record for more than 40 years. As a stand-out athlete she was selected to lead a POW march, something she truly honored as a strong supporter of veterans. Joni graduated from Kirkwood College and spent most of her career as a legal assistant.

Joni had a gentle and kind-hearted nature that radiated love. Her quick-witted and sharp humor created much laughter. She was a humble servant of God who was self-sacrificing, giving and understanding, and always put others first.

Joni married the love of her life, Richard “Rick” Simpson, on April 12, 1985. Together, they made a beautiful home where the family often gathered. Joni and Rick were a commanding pair on the dance floor, having mastered the two-step, and moved together in dance the way only true partners can. They enjoyed camping, keeping flower and vegetable gardens, and Joni enjoyed cooking family meals and especially making desserts. She valued time with family above all else.

Joni was a remarkable mother, filled with unwavering love and support for her three sons, Joe, Josh, and Rian. During their high school years, she and Rick attended all their sporting events and activities without fail. She enjoyed sharing stories about their childhoods and kept a wonderful collection of family photographs. She was extremely proud of her sons and kept close relationships with each of them.

Her grandchildren, Alana and Jase, brought her immense joy. Joni taught them about nature, music, and instilled a deep love for learning. They would often create art, play games, and enjoy being outdoors together.

Joni was best friends with her mother, Norma Kriegel. They cherished their bond and spent time together almost every day. Joni made it a point to call her mother every night and they had a standing weekly dinner together. Their appearance was so close in likeness, it often created confusion and laughter, which they both enjoyed.

Joni was preceded in death by her father, Walter Junior Kriegel; her grandparents; and many loved aunts and uncles.

Those left to cherish her memory are her beloved husband of 38 years, Richard (Rick) Simpson, her children, Joe Casey (Abigail Pelzer); Josh Casey (Danielle); and Rian Simpson; her grandchildren, Alana and Jase Casey and Brandon Pelzer; her mother, Norma Kriegel; her sisters, Jody (John) Karkosh and Julie (Mac) Chyma; and many nieces and nephews.

Todd and Lori Kruse, of Kruse-Phillips Funeral Home, have been entrusted with the care of Joni and her family. A Memorial Visitation will be held from Friday, June 2, 2023, from 4 to 7 p.m., at Kruse-Phillips Funeral Home in Tama. A Family Interment will be

held at a later date.

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