Mary Jo Wemhoff Chase passed away Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020, at the age of 77 at Guardian Angel Homes in Lewiston.
Mary Jo was born Nov. 18, 1942, to Sylvester (Buster) and Philomena Wemhoff in Cottonwood. She graduated from Nez Perce High School in 1960. Upon graduation she attended Idaho State University earning a bachelor of science degree in nursing.
Mary Jo’s long and varied nursing career began in Queen’s Hospital in Honolulu, Hawaii, where she was a clinical instructor in obstetrics and pediatrics. She spent the next six years as a staff nurse and clinical coordinator at Stanford University (Palo Alto, Calif.,) where she found her nursing specialty in pediatric/adolescent. Mary Jo had a passion for travel and spent time traveling through Europe before embarking on her next career stop in Montana.
In Montana Mary Jo was based at St. Patrick Hospital where she worked at the Child Development Center, traveling through Western Montana conducting pediatric assessments for the Center. After the closing of the center Mary Jo was hired as a nursing supervisor at the University of Montana Health Center in Missoula, Mont. It was here that Mary Jo met and married her husband, William “Bill” Chase and had their beloved son Bryan.
Shortly after Bryan was born they moved to Alamosa, Colo., where Bill was a business professor at Adam’s State College. Mary Jo worked at the hospital in Alamosa until she was hired by San Luis Centennial School as a school nurse. Two years later she became the school nurse for the entire Alamosa School district until her retirement in 2000.
Mary Jo enjoyed traveling, which she and her husband Bill did extensively, spending time with Bill’s family in Vermont, Minnesota and Colorado and in the Pacific Northwest with Mary Jo’s family. Bill and Mary Jo were avid sports fans supporting the high school and college in Alamosa.
Mary Jo is survived by her stepchildren, Joe (Mary) Chase of Colorado, Julie (Ric) Middlebrook of Vermont; five stepgrandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. She is also survived by her siblings Pat Bowersox, Ray (Raylene) Wemhoff, Janet (Steve) Morris, Karen (Tom) Schumaker and Odetta Reed and many nieces and nephews.
Mary Jo was preceded in death by her husband, William Chase; son Bryan Chase; parents, Sylvester (Buster) and Philomena; brothers Teddy, Ralph and David; sisters Margaret Ann and Jean Dustin; sister-in-law Betty Wemhoff; brother-in-law Gary Dustin and Berkley Bowersox.
Funeral services will be held in the spring of 2021.