Jo Ann Dolford was born on June 15, 1946 in Kountze, TX, to proud parents, Hazel and Felix Dolford. She was the youngest of eight children. Based on the way she bossed her siblings around you would have thought she was the oldest.
A few years after graduating from Carver High School, Jo moved to San Francisco, CA. While in CA, Jo Ann attended San Francisco Bible College where she obtained a Certificate in Theology. She also attended barber college in San Francisco, CA and began practicing as an active barber for six years. Jo Ann then started a career working in group homes to help provide guidance to troubled youth. After working with the group home for eight years, she began working as an in-home care provider in Oakland, CA.
Jo Ann accepted Christ at an early age and for many years was a faithful member of Center of Hope Community Church in Oakland, CA. While attending Center of Hope, she served as a member of the Intercessory Prayer Team. Jo Ann later accepted the calling to become an Evangelist. As an Evangelist she shared the word of God with everyone she met and brought many souls to Christ. After moving to Patterson, CA Jo Ann joined Mountain’s Hope Community Worship Center in Tracy, CA where she continued to serve the Lord and hosted in-home Bible Studies and Prayer Meetings. Jo Ann was committed to attending church every Sunday until she was physically unable to do so. Although she couldn’t attend in person, she was committed to sending her tithes in every month. She devoted herself in service to God for over 40 years.
Jo Ann was like a mother to many young men and women however she formed a very special bond with Lanette Gurule and Merci Woods. They both became a part of Jo Ann’s life during their formative, young adult years. They were the daughters she never had.
Jo Ann was a blessing to everyone who knew her. If asked she’d tell you she never met a stranger. Even in the weeks leading up to her passing, Jo Ann was inviting her roommates and hospital staff to Thanksgiving dinner.
Jo Ann quit her job and relocated to Beaumont, TX in the mid 1990’s to care for her aging mother. Jo Ann didn’t go alone, she made sure her grandchildren were in tow. She didn’t want to miss out on the opportunity to help raise them. Jo Ann had high expectation for both her children and grandchildren, she really wanted them to be the best possible people that they could be.
Jo Ann’s most fervent prayer and greatest desire was for her children to come to know the Lord as their personal Lord and Savior. Although she didn’t see if for herself, she continued to stand in faith knowing that God would answer her prayers.
On September 27, 2021, God looked down, smiled on Jo Ann and said, “well done my good and faithful servant.” She’s rejoicing in Heaven with parents Hazel and Felix, sister Helen Mae Wade, brothers Clarence Dearborn and LeRoy Dolford.
She leaves to mourn her two sons Ricky Anderson and Elvin Warren, Sr. (Karen), a step-son Charles “Pee-Wee” Jackson, grandchildren: Ricky Jr., Alesha, Brioni “Nana”, Elvin Jr. “Ronnie”, Rodrick, Princess, Precious, Christopher, Shawnel “JoJo”, Armani, Anrie, Eliah, Aliyah, and Amya, 15 great grandchildren, sisters Shirley Fears, Betty Jones, brothers Henry Dolford and Charles Smith, and a host of nieces, nephews and friends.
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