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Joan Ellen Armstrong

FARMINGTON – Joan Ellen Armstrong, of Farmington, entered eternal rest on January 24, 2024, at her home surrounded by her family at the age of 83. She was born on November 14, 1940, in Bonne Terre, Missouri, to the late Jesse and Helen (Rickus) Heck. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Jimmy Wilson Armstrong, her daughter, Andrea Simmons, her infant son, Mark Jones, and her grandson, Abram Wilson Armstrong.

Joan Ellen formerly managed her family’s business, Heck’s IGA for many years. She also worked as a part-time foreign language teacher at Mineral Area College where she was able to turn her passion for Italy into a career. She was a sophisticated, elegant lady unless you tried to use her sewing scissors to cut paper or came into “her kitchen” while she was cooking. Joan Ellen loved cooking, sewing, quilting, card playing, and flower and vegetable gardening. She was an animal lover, especially dogs, and took in many strays through the years including her cherished companion, Bobo. She will be fondly remembered and dearly missed by all who knew and loved her.

Joan Ellen is survived by her children, Amanda Armstrong of St. Louis and Jay (Rachel) Armstrong of Farmington, her grandchildren, Jesse Simmons, Justine Simmons, Rosalie Armstrong, and Josephine Armstrong, her great granddaughter, Rylee Willhelm, along with many friends.

A celebration of Joan Ellen’s life will be held on Wednesday, January 31, 2024, from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. at Cozean Memorial Chapel. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations, are preferred to the Farmington Pet Adoption Center, P.O. Box 45, Farmington, MO 63640. View the video tribute and share your condolences at

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